About 15 or so years ago when I was a single gal...who didn't cook - I mean, I occasionally baked chocolate chip cookies, stirred up some Rice Krispie treats, and threw together 7-layer cookies (the easiest, yummiest thing on the planet) - my mom bought me this book called Cake in a Jar. Great! Yipppeee!...What am I supposed to do with this? I kept it anyway.
Now at the time, this little gift ranked right up there with the cellphone my parents gave me for my twenty-first birthday...yeah that is what I needed...no one had a cell phone (then), and if they did it was the size of a file cabinet. Secondly, I was young and had no money, and now had a $200 dollar a month cell phone bill...I called it the "gift that keeps on giving." It did however pay off during the L.A. Riots.
OK, back to the point...fast forward a few years. Now, I am living the newlywed lifestyle and ready to tackle baking, canning, whatever (not all of this was successful by the way) - I was determined to be domestic! My first attempts at making a Cake in a Jar were comical and a lot of burnt fingers followed. However, I have since mastered the Cake in a Jar, and enjoy...actually look forward to making these every year.
Well, this year I am getting a jump start. The invitations for informal little get-togethers have started to pour in, and I thought that these would make a quaint hostess gift. The best part is I can make them now, and store them (they last for months). They will be ready and waiting for me when I need them. I also make them as gifts for friends and some of the people at my hubby's work.
I usually decorate the jars with ribbon or some sort of label. This year, I am making these labels using scrapbook paper and a circle cutter....and my printer.
Here's what ya need:
- Wide mouth pint-size canning jars (you can use 1/2 pint and larger...it just takes experimenting with the amount of batter and length of baking time) and lids. I just bought some platinum lids and they really make the jars look fantastic...of course, if you buy the box of jars, the standard lids are included.
- Cake mix and/or recipe. I swear by the Cake in a Jar book that is sold through Cookbook Cupboard. It is the only recipe source I have used for these cakes and the instructions are super easy...and the book is only $3.95! I will not be sharing the recipe here, because I do not want to get sued. I used the Vanilla Rum Cake recipe for this batch (hint, hint - I used a box of cake mix, a box of pudding, and some rum)! The Kahlua Cake is to-die-for! See the end of the post for some additional recipe sources.
- The ingredients to complete the cake mix (eggs, oil, water, etc.) or the ingredients for the recipe...duh!
- Bath Canner with rack (I used to use a stock pot...but this is so much better)
- Cookie sheet (to bake them on)
- Skewer to check for doneness
Here's how to do it:
- Preheat oven to 325
- Sterilize jars while you mix up the cake batter
- Remove jars and let dry, then grease with butter, shortening, etc.
- Place 1 cup of batter into each pint jar
- Wipe rims clean
- Place on a cookie sheet and put the jars into the oven
- Sterilize your lids while your cakes are baking
- Bake for about 45 minutes
- Remove cakes from oven, dry lids, and place lids on cakes
- You will start hearing them pop and seal
Voila! You can canned a cake....
trust me people will be amazed!
trust me people will be amazed!
I think I will saute some bananas in butter, brown sugar, and a wee bit of rum, spoon this over the cake, and top it with fresh whipped cream...delicious!
Here are a few recipes I have made in the jar:
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