Southern Diner Cake is one of those cakes that will make whomever you made it for feel extra special! Who wouldn't love sweet, cherry syrup soaked layers of cake covered in a luscious and creamy cream cheese frosting?
This post is sponsored by Workman Publishing Company in conjunction with a social media campaign through Sunday Supper LLC. All opinions are my own.
This cake was perfect for a celebration that was very special to me. My first full year at the Law Firm! I made this cake and took it to work to share with all my co-workers to remind them how thankful they can be to have a food blogger as an office administrator. 😉 After all, I like to bake my own cakes and share them!
I recently received an opportunity from Workman Publishing through Weekday Supper to review Caroline Wright's new cookbook Cake Magic!. When I received the book I was completely drawn in by all the photos. The first section of the book shows a photo of every single cake combination recipe she shares in her cookbook. Then the concept of using 3 elements to come up with endless varieties of cakes just blew me away. I loved her concept and her recipes!
Each cake starts out with a basic recipe. You have 8 different basic cake recipes to choose from, one being the Brown Sugar Cake I made for this particular post. Each cake has the element of the Cake Magic! Cake Mix as it's base for the recipe.
Then there is the syrup! There are so many choices of syrup flavors that my head started spinning! The Southern Diner Cake uses cherry syrup which is simply made with water, sugar, jam, and kirsch (a cherry brandy).
I love the tips and suggestions that she gives in her book, and this is the first time ever that I used the crumb method (see the crumb layer below) to frost a cake. It worked perfectly!
Layer and frost with the delicious cream cheese frosting recipe in the book and you have just made a cake that is going to make someone's day!
Try these Cappuccino Biscotti with your next cup of coffee!
Banana Cake with Browned Butter Maple Frosting is a great sheet cake for every day.
Whatever the occasion, you are bound to find a cake that fits in well for your celebration. Even if it is just a stay at home celebration! As a part of #Weekday Supper, 9 other bloggers along with myself are sharing recipes from this amazing cookbook with you. Be sure to check out the links below the recipe for their tasty creations!
Don't forget to check out my Amazon storefront for some of my favorite products!
When you make this recipe, please comment below and let me know what you think. I'd love it if you tag me on Instagram @grumpyshoneybunch or #grumpyshoneybunch so I can see your photos!
If you love this recipe, please leave a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating
Southern Diner Cake
- 2 9-inch round cake pans
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For the Brown Sugar Cake
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter at room temperature, for preparing the pan
- 1 tablespoon flour for dusting the pans
- 4 cups cake magic mix (see below for mix)
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ⅓ cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 cup unsalted butter , melted and cooled, or 1 cup vegetable oil
- ¾ cup full fat plain yogurt , preferably not Greek yogurt-see note for substitutions
- ⅔ cup water
- 1 tablespoon unsulfured molasses
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 4 large eggs at room temperature
For the Cake Magic! Cake Mix
- 2-½ cups flour
- 1-½ cup sugar
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon table salt see note
For the Cherry Syrup
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ cup water
- 2 tablespoons cherry jam
- 1 pinch of salt
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon cherry liquor or kirsch , optional but recommended
For the Cream Cheese Frosting
- 1 cup unsalted butter , at room temperature
- 3 ounces cream cheese , at room temperature
- 1 pinch salt
- 4 cups confectioners’ sugar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
To bake the cake
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter the bottom and side of the pan(s). Dust with flour to coat, then invert and tap out any excess. (If making cupcakes, use liners instead of greasing and coating the tins.)
- Whisk together the cake mix, baking soda, and brown sugar in a large bowl. Stir in the butter, yogurt, water, molasses, vanilla, salt and eggs until moistened and no lumps remain (be careful not to overmix).
- Divide the batter between the prepared pans. Bake until the layers are domed and a few moist crumbs cling to a skewer inserted in the center of the cake. Bake for 35 minutes.
- Remove the cakes from the oven and pierce in one inch intervals the top of the cakes with a skewer or knife. Pour or generously brush the cherry syrup over the hot layers, dividing it as evenly as you can.
- Transfer the soaked layers (while still in their pans) to a wire rack to cool completely. When they are cooled and no longer wet to touch, one or two hours, carefully turn them out of their pans and assemble and frost.
For the Cake Magic Mix
- Place all of the ingredients in a large bowl and whisk together well to combine. Whisk the mix again before measuring
NOTE: It’s important to use table salt in the cake mix; other types will eventually settle out of the mix.
To make the syrup:
- Combine the sugar, water, jams, and salt in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Stir to dissolve the sugar, then stir in the vanilla and liqueur, if using. Remove from the heat and set aside to steep, covered, for at least 20 minutes. Strain the syrup, use the syrup warm or at room temperature.
- Cherry syrup will keep, in an airtight container in the refrigerator, for up to 1 week. Reheat in a small saucepan over low heat before using.
To make the frosting:
- Combine the butter, cream cheese, salt, and 2 cups of the sugar in a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer on low speed until incorporated, about 1 minute.
- Add the remaining sugar and beat on medium speed until the frosting is pale and no longer grainy, about 2 minutes. Add the vanilla and beat until the frosting is very light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
- Cream Cheese Frosting will keep, in an airtight container in the refrigerator, for 1 week. Before using, bring it back to room temperature and stir it vigorously or beat it again for best results.
I bet your co-workers love you....your cake looks delicious and what a wonderful way to celebrate.
This is a really beautiful looking homemade cake!
This looks amazing! I like the brown sugar cake with the cherry syrup combination!
This would be the perfect cake to make for a Monday. Just Because! You need something to get you through the day...this beautiful cake would certainly work!
Brown sugar + molasses + cherries +cream cheese frosting = one scrumptious cake!
Great looking cake amazed by the light texture
What a beautiful cake. I have several cook books with cakes, they are the thing I like to bake the best. Never tried cake magic but might be a new good thing..
Thanks Sandi! I promise you will love the endless combinations you can create from this cookbook! Good luck in the draw!