Thursday, September 8, 2011

Funny Cake Pie (or Why I've Been Gaining Weight)

This summer I have gained between three and five pounds.  Normally, I would rationalize the extra pounds as water weight and not let it get to me.  This past year, though, I have worked very hard to lose about twenty-five pounds.  The scale stopped going down a few months ago, and I didn't mind that.  I could stand to stay where I was; I just didn't want to see the numbers start creeping up again.

If you saw my last post (it's been a while), it's easy to see where the extra pounds are coming from. Four pies in four weeks will do it. I've also been taking the easy way out and have been making cheap, calorie-rich meals in order to save money, instead of looking for ways to eat healthy on a budget.  Oh yes, and I'm eating things called Funny Cake Pie for breakfast, which I am sure doesn't help.

I am not sure that Funny Cake Pie is meant to be a breakfast food. I think it's an Amish dessert.  My husband made it for me on a Saturday morning a few weeks ago.  The night before I had told him about my weekend-morning fantasies.  It starts out with my getting to sleep in until 7:30 or 8:00 am.  I glide down the stairs to the smell of coffee and perhaps David Byrne's "Somebody" coming through the ipod.  When I get to the living room, both of the boys are clean and dressed, and Edward is making me breakfast, using as few dishes as possible.  There is no fighting from the boys in the living room, and no angry muttering in the kitchen.  It's a perfect Saturday morning.

I can't remember all the details of the actual Saturday in question, but things didn't go exactly according to my fantasy.  It was still a great morning though.  Edward woke up early to make the pie crust (the night before I had told him cinnamon toast would be great, but he wanted to try this), and finished the chocolate sauce and batter while I took Sam up to the tub to wash his breakfast off.  When Sam and I came down, the pie was in the oven, Max was playing quietly on the floor, and coffee had been poured.

Funny Cake Pie


I realize that I have not yet mentioned what Funny Cake Pie actually is.  It starts with a pie shell, then there is a layer of chocolate sauce, and on top of that you pour cake batter.  As the pie bakes, the chocolate sauce thickens and comes up around the outside edges of the cake layer.  My husband got the recipe from a colleague of his at work, who was late one day because his wife was preparing this, and he had to let it cool so he could bring a slice for breakfast.  Hence, we thought it was a breakfast pie.  In fact, the cake is very much like a fluffy, crumbly pancake, so it probably can go both ways.



You will need:

Unbaked 9" Pie Shell (see this post for great crust recipe)

Cake layer:
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup milk
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp vanilla

Chocolate layer:
1/2 cup sugar
6 T water
4 T cocoa
1/4 tsp vanilla

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

For the cake layer:  Cream together the sugar and butter. In a small bowl, combine the egg and the milk.  In another small bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder.  To the butter, add the milk mixture alternately with the flour mixture. Add vanilla and stir until just evenly mixed. Set aside.

Mix together the cocoa, sugar, water, and vanilla in a large measuring cup. Pour chocolate sauce into the unbaked pie shell.  Over this pour the cake batter.  It will seem to float on top of the sauce. When baked, the chocolate comes up around the outside edge of the cake. Bake for 35 minutes or until a toothpick pierced in the center comes out clean.

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