This cake is one of our favorites and is often requested by family members near and far. One year we made this cake for Christmas gifts. When I send a cake to family, I use those those Sterilite containers, (I usually find them at Target) box them up and ship them on their way. If you happen to be a reoccurring cake recipient you are requested to bring the container back to be refilled at a future date. My youngest son will bring 3-4 home at a time when he comes to visit.
Back to the cake, it's as simple as can be, and can be whipped up in no time at all. I've made it so many times, I can almost do it without having to look at the recipe...note I did say almost.
The recipe comes from The Cake Doctor by Anne Byrn, one of the few cookbooks I still own,(thanks to Pinterest and the Internet) and one I would highly recommend, if you use cake mixes.
Vegetable oil for misting the pan
1 Package yellow cake mix (18.25 ounces) (do not use any with pudding in the mix)
1 Package (5.1ounce) instant vanilla pudding mix
3/4 cup Amaretto (Almond flavored liqueur) (you can also substitute some of the Amaretto with fresh lemon juice)
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
4 large eggs
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup confectioner's sugar
3 1/2 tablespoons Amaretto (or 1 tsp almond flavoring)
1 tablespoon butter
1/3 cup slivered almonds
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly mist a tube pan or bunt pan with vegetable oil spray (use can also grease with butter and dust with flour, if you don't like using the sprays. Place the cake mix, pudding mix, Amaretto, water, oil, eggs and almond extract in a large bowl (basically dump everything in a bowl) Blend with an electric mixer on low speed for about a minute. Then stop the mixer, scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat another two minutes, scrapping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.. The batter will look thick and smooth. Pour batter in the prepared pan, smoothing it out with the rubber spatula. place pan in the oven.
Bake the cake until it is a golden brown and springs back when it is pressed lightly (it takes about 48-52 minutes depending on your oven) Remove the pan from the oven and let cool on a wire rack for about 20 minutes. Then run a knife around the edges to make sure there are no stuff areas and turn over on rack to finish cooling. Mine usually pops out without a problem.
Prepare the glaze. I modified the glaze recipe a bit by adding some butter, it just gives it a richer taste. I found that you can also use almond flavoring in the glaze in place of the Amaretto if you don't care for the taste of the liqueur,(the cake doesn't have any liqueur taste, at all, just a rich almond flavor ) Melt the butter add the Amaretto /Almond flavoring,(if using the almond flavoring decrease the amount to 1 tsp and make up the difference with water, then the sugar, cook for about a minute then start spooning over the cake. After glaze the cake is glazed, sprinkle the almonds on. (if you don't have almonds, not to worry, just as good without but the almonds make it a prettier cake)
Because I make this cake often, I watch for cake mixes to go on sale (sometimes you can get them for under a 1.00) and pudding mix. If I need a cake at a moment's notice I'm set.
The only real problem with this cake is I can't eat it because I don't do dairy (instant pudding has non fat dry milk in it) I do indulge on occasion and husband likes it so I make it for him...it keeps well so it can stick around for awhile without a problem. Son has been known to keep his for almost three weeks...I wouldn't recommend that, but it has been done. It also freezes well (leave half of the cake out now save the other half for later) Hope you think about giving this a try, it's always a hit around here