Let Them Eat Pastel

I'm not one for telling you what to do, but now that summer's over, you are going to stop obsessing over your waistline and that little black dress with the sales tag still attached that you have hanging in the back of your closet and hope to fit into some day. You are going to bake this cake and love every bite. Even if you'll hate yourself in the morning. And everyday for the rest of your life. I promise.
What is there not to love about a cake that is all things to all people: light but rich, creamy but darkly sensual, a little sweet and a little hot—with a flan face and a Mexican chocolate soul? The flan is especially delightful when you top it with Cajeta, a pourable caramel made from goat's milk. Despite its fancy appearance, it really is ridiculously facilĂ­simo—easy to make. Plus, there is no need to bake this cake in a pan of boiling water as you do with flan clasico.

Now that I have become the self-styled "Divissima of Mexican Cuisine", I have had to prove my chuletas--chops to my friends and family—most all of them great cooks. So when one of my wily cuñaditas—sisters-in-law—very sweetly asked me to bring a fab Mexican dessert to a family fiesta, I knew that she had thrown down the gauntlet. So I pulled this special recipe from my arsenal.
As I arrived, all of us sisters-in-law were laying our dishes on the table. Everyone was discreetly eye-balling everyone else's food. I laid my dish without saying a word. Then I pulled off the cover and let "el cake-y" speak for itself.
When I saw the look on my sister-in-law's face, I knew I had struck gold.
Oh, yeah.
As you can see, the result was sensacional. (Please click photo.) The original recipe called for box cake mix, but I decided to bake it from scratch, adapting it from the Devil's Food Cake recipe from a box of Softasilk Cake Flour and adding a few touches of my own. If you want to do it the box cake way, that's fine, but make sure you doctor up the batter with the ingredients I have listed.

Me, The Mexican Cuisine Diva? Can anyone be more delusional? Only don't feel too bad for me. . . . After wowing them with this cake at the fiesta, it pretty much sealed the deal—for now, that is. You never know what that little sister-in-law of mine will think of next.
Which is your favorite cake recipe? Let me know by clicking "comments" link at the end of this post.

Flan/Chocolate Cake with Cajeta Caramel Topping

What you need:
A Bundt pan
2 mixing bowls
Whisk or beater
Non-stick cooking spray
An electric beater
Rubber spatula
A large pan


Cajeta (available in the Mexican section of your supermarket, or at a Mexican foods market). Or, use caramel flavored ice cream topping.

For Flan (Top Portion of the Cake):
3 Eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 12 ounce can of evaporated milk1 14 ounce can of condensed milk
Thoroughly beat together all ingredients. Set aside.

For Devil's Food Chocolate Cake (Bottom Portion of the Cake):
1 box of Devil's Food Cake Mix
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon powdered cinnamon
1 teaspoon hot chili powder (California or New Mexico)
1 tablespoon Ibarra's or Abuelita's Mexican Chocolate, finely grated
Follow written instructions, except use milk instead of water. Add vanilla, chili powder, cinnamon and Mexican chocolate to cake batter. Beat until well blended. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare the flan and the devil's food cake mixtures. Spray the inside of the Bundt pan with non-stick cooking spray. Pour a generous amount of Cajeta caramel along the bottom of the pan. Add devil's food cake mixture to two-thirds up the sides of the pan. Shake the pan a little bit so that the cake mixture settles evenly. In a circular motion, pour in the flan mixture. (What? Put in the flan mixture after you put in the cake batter? Yes. It seems counter-intuitive, but trust me on this one.)Put a large pan on the oven rake and pour some hot water in it, up to one inch, and put the Bundt pan with the batter in it. (Oops!  I forgot to do that!)  Bake the cake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until done. To test doneness, insert a tooth pick in the center of cake until it comes out clean.Take out of the oven and let cool for about 15—20 minutes.Invert onto a plate.


El Random Hero said...

I love you now and forever !!!!!!!

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Iron_woman said...

Thanks for passing by and leave comments to my blog. My husband is Mexican. No Habla espanol mucho. poquito. I am still practicing. Stay tuned.

Emma said...

I almost passed out when I read the description of this cake. Seriously. I die just with the recipe. Oh my goodness. I can't wait to make this!

Jillian said...

WOW~ Thanks for sharing...that looks awesome. And thanks for stopping by my Bella Rosa Antiques blog. Your Mother's vintage treasures are a wonderful gift!


Elra said...

Oh, I am so glad to discover your blog. I like Mexican food, and hope to learn more about it through your blog.

The flan/cake sounds so mighty delicious! Cheers,

kberry said...

I...uh...my minds a little blown. The flan ON TOP of the cake....what....?

La Traductora said...

This cake just blows my mind, too! Yes, the flan does bake together with the chocolate cake. Perhaps only a physicist can tell us why, but who cares? It is a show stopper cake and is utterly delicious. Hope you like it!
And thanks for visiting!

Karen J. said...

Hi, My daughter, kberry (see comments)made this cake for me and it was a knockout!I'd like to make it but I'm back in Portugal now and we're a little short here on Mexican ingredients like cajuta and mexican chocolate. The pre made topping for flan which is sold here is very thin and (to me) a little burnt tasting. I'm hoping maybe I can substitute semisweet chocolate with canella for the chocolate. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. As you've probably guessed there are no devil's food cakemixes floating around the shelves here either! Thanks. Can't wait to try it.

Clementina said...

Hola, Karen J.!
Wow, I'm so glad that the cake was a hit!
Suggestions: I would guess that it is perfectly okay to use any kind of pourable (emphasis on pourable) caramel topping instead of the cajeta.

I would definitely add canella (powdered) and a little almond extract to the cake batter. Don't forget the chile powder.

Instead of cake mix, please use the cake flour recipe I have included. However, if there is no cake flour in Portugal, then any chocolate devil's food cake recipe will be fine. Just make sure that when you pour the flan mixture into the cake pan that it actually sit there for a few minutes so it can settle at the bottom prior to putting the pan in the oven.
Hope this helps!
Portugal? My Spanish friends love it. I have some Portugese friends who are from the Azores. I hope to go there some day.
Thanks for visiting!