Simple Bundt Cake

I feel starting a new personal challenge with baking cakes. 

I bought a beautiful bundt recipe book and I was so excited to start baking from it. The first recipe was weird. The balance of ingredients was so incorrect and instead of a batter, I ended up with a dough. I adjusted the recipe on the fly and of course, I did not end up with the best result. The second recipe was the same. The third one, the same. It was then that I seriously asked myself what is wrong? Was it the book or was it me or my type ingredients?

One of the things I always do from most of the recipes is to cut the sugar. And this book was so generous in sugar. As a general rule, I keep the sugar in a cake to 100-150g, except for the ones where the sugar makes the structure (like for meringues, macarons). Even if I have a sweet tooth, I do this for a good reason, to reduce the general intake of sugar for me and my family. For me, I trained myself over time to eat less sugar and this had only good benefits. My taste has changed and I can really enjoy a cake with less sugar while finding the ones with too much sugar impossible to eat more than one bite. For my family things are similar. My husband was never fond of sugar, he prefers fresh fruits over cakes by far but for my kids, things were different. They love everything sweet, very sweet. And sweets are everywhere: at school, at an anniversary, with any treat, with any Christmas or Easter celebration. However, there is a daily snack that I prepare myself for them. Usually, this is a homemade bisquit, a cake, a cupcake a waffle or a savoury snack. I could buy this one for sure but I choose not to. Why? Because I would like at least for this daily treat, to control the amount of sugar they eat. This is actually why I bake every single week something sweet. Most of my cakes are without glaze because it would be difficult to transport them at school and eat it in a clean manner,

Coming back to my bundt book, with the last bundt cake I published on instagram I was complaining about my frustration with these recipes. One commenter left me a message that by adjusting the sugar quantity I might modify the structure of the cake. I had a wow moment, how could I have not thought of this before? Could sugar have much more importance in the structure of the cake? Incredibly how a dropped comment had opened up a new world to me. She is an angel sent to me at the right time.

I started then to make research,  lots of them, to understand how I can balance back a recipe by reducing the amount of sugar. I even looked at Harvard research... it's crazy... but this is pure baking science. How I couldn't think of this before for cakes, especially since I was baking with science for bread. The answer is probably simple.... because every day we make new connections in our brains and we learn something new. So happy to arrive here!

But the story didn't end here. Yesterday, I was wondering what others were commenting about the bundt cake book. I went on the web and the Aha! moment was there. The book was giving the recipes in 2 measurements: cups and millilitres/grams. As I like to be very precise, I always bake by grams. I found some comments mentioning that the ingredients in cups were OK but the ones in grammes were completely off. I found the culprit of my failures and is such a shame for a published book. Wouldn't you expect that when you buy a book the recipes are tested over and over again? Well ... dream on... not every book author is Julia Child.

For this recipe, I started with the first simple bundt cake, a pound cake. Pound cake has equal quantities of flour, sugar, fat and eggs. Nice cake but the sugar is way too much for me, so I started adjusting.

The original recipe was calling for 375g of sugar, way too much for me. I cut it to 200g and still, I can say it is too sweet for my taste. I had then to balance my reduction with some liquid, so I added milk and yes, I ended up with a batter, not a dough.

The cake ended up beautifully although I think there is still room to be even more fluffy. My challenge continues and with my next cakes, I'll add some baking science findings too...


  • 625g all-purpose flour
  • 375g butter (must be at room temperature)
  • 200g sugar
  • 8 eggs (425g)
  • 150g milk
  • 2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 30g rum
  • 2 tablespoons rum essence

  1. Preheat the oven at 160ºC.
  2. Beat the butter with sugar with a standing mixer until light and fluffy.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs with rum and rum essence.
  4. In another separate bowl, whisk the flour with baking powder.
  5. With the mixer on, add alternatively over the butter the eggs, the milk and the flour mixtures. You might need to stop from time to time to scrape the walls of the mixer bowl.
  6. Prepare the bunt pan by buttering it and sprinkling flour on it.
  7. Pour the batter into the bundt pan and put it in the oven
  8. Bake for 75 to 90 minutes at 160ºC or until a stick would come out clean.
  9. Let the cake cool in the pan until you can touch the pan without being burned.
  10. Invert the cake on a wired rack and let it cool completely to room temperature.

I keep this cake at room temperature covered by a big salad bowl for a few days.


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