Yes, I said casserole and cake together...in the same sentence...or sentence fragment. Don't come to any icky conclusions just yet! Keep reading.
The American Thanksgiving has come and gone. You cooked. You ate. You conquered the limited capacity of your stomach and it's pH levels. You sent your guests packing with disposable plates full of lunch for the next week. And you STILL have enough leftover food in your refrigerator to stock the local food pantry for a day or two. Hey, that is actually a wonderful idea! Share your leftover Thanksgiving feast with a person, or two, who may not have been so fortunate this year. However, if you just have barely enough leftovers to make another meal but you just can't stand another bite of ANYTHING that reminds you of turkey and gravy, why not transform those boring morsels of future waste into Mouth Heaven?
I have been without a paying job for over three months. While the time to reflect on what I truly want out of this life and to ponder what in the world I'm doing here, occupying this human body, has been very, veeeery nice, the lack of a paycheck hasn't exactly been sending me to the nail salon every day. I've had to really budget what I had left in my bank account, and sometimes that has meant getting really creative with very cheap pantry items, tracking sales and coupons, and being my own kitchen Picasso with the leftover food from previous nights' chow-downs. And you know what? It's actually kind of fun! Well, not the dusty, hollow-as-a-barrel bank account part of it all, but the artistic process of taking something cold, hard, and already cooked and turning it into something totally new, warm, and tasty. This is the very process I decided to take with my own Thanksgiving dinner leftovers.
I had plenty of ideas of what to do with things like turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, and rice pilaf. But the sweet potato casserole was something a little more perplexing to me. However, it didn't take me long figure out that I could probably construct a wonderfully moist cake from that rich, orange-y goodness, especially since my sweet potato casserole gets a brown sugar and Ritz cracker crumb topping rather than the traditional American marshmallow and whatever else goo-gone-wrong stuff everyone else seems to enjoy. (Sorry, but marshmallows are only for hot cocoa in my house...uhhmm, and for making marshmallow fondant!)
I did a quick search on one of my favorite recipe sites, AllRecipes.com, and found exactly what I was looking for, adapting the recipe to suit my taste and to accommodate what I had on hand. Although the original recipe called for leftover mashed sweet potatoes, not an actual casserole, it still worked out great. It was a tad bit on the sweet side, but that was perfectly O.K. with my sweet tooth. The cake ended up being super moist, so I would recommend eating this thing within three days.
Spiced Sweet Potato Casserole Bundt Cake
- 2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
- ¾ cups white sugar
- ¾ cups brown sugar
- 3 tsp. baking powder
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- ¾ tsp. salt
- 2 tsp. cinnamon
- 3 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups sweet potato casserole (or just use cooked, mashed sweet potatoes)
- ¼ cup butter, melted (½ a stick)
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- 1 tps. vanilla extract
- ½ cup whole milk
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Prepare your bundt pan, or cake pan of choice, with a cooking spray that has flour added (I LOVE Baker's Joy!)—or just do it the old-fashioned way, butter and flour, baby .
- Use an electric hand mixer to beat together the sugar and vegetable oil in a large bowl until smooth. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla and sweet potatoes. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a separate bowl.
- Stir the dry ingredients in with the wet, with a large wooden spoon or spatula, just until mixed. (I usually run my hand mixer through it for jut 10 seconds or so to break up any large lumps.)
- Pour cake batter into prepared cake pan.
- Bake for at least 45 minutes in the preheated oven, or until
a knife or toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes
clean. I think mine took close to an hour to bake. Times will vary
and depend on your oven and altitude.
Because this cake is so sweet and rich on its own (thanks to the sugar, spices, and butter in the sweet potato casserole), I opted to go with a basic vanilla glaze, lightly drizzled on top. You can make one yourself very easily and quickly by beating together some powdered sugar (about 1 ½ cups), a pinch of salt, a Tbsp. of melted butter, and about 3 Tbsp. of milk, or until you get your desired consistency. (If it is too thin, the glaze will not harden...keep this in mind when adding the milk.) Just use the Ziplock bag method I mentioned in the previous post to get the glaze over your cake easily and effortlessly.
I'm surprised it lasted long enough for a photo shoot.
Link to original recipe: