I used to have a horrible relationship with cake. Ok, for real, a horrible relationship with food in general, but for some reason, cake was a kicker for my ED.
How to Ruin the Fun of Eating Cake
If I knew we had a birthday party at night, I would, of course, be extra “good”, aka restrictive, all day in anticipation that ED would allow me to have cake. He allowed me these occasional “indulgences” if I followed all his rules plus did extra exercise for him.
So I’d go to the birthday party not really caring about anything except for the cake I was going to be able to eat after the presents were opened. My mind completely focused on the cake, and this is a blanket apology to my family who never knew I wasn’t paying much attention to them as they opened presents.
I always offered to help my sister or my mom or whoever served up the cake. Because if I got to help cut the cake and serve it, then I could nibble on those tasty bits that get left behind when you scoop a piece of cake out of the pan.
So that one piece of cake ED allowed me to have ended up being a piece of cake plus all the bits of leftover I snooped plus all the extra frosting I managed to scrape off the side plus the leftover that my boys didn’t eat plus the extra slice I snooped when I went into the kitchen by myself.
When ED gave me permission to eat cake, and when I had been extra “good” all day, I completely went over the edge. Instead of simply eating one piece of cake, I ate as much as I possibly could, and then some. I shuffled away from those parties in shame at my complete lack of self control. Not to mention I was miserably stuffed.
Freedom to Each Cake
I don’t do that anymore. Because now that I don’t restrict and don’t have to follow “rules” in order to eat, I’m allowed to eat whatever, whenever. Nothing feels like a cheat food or a reward food or an off limits food. Food has simply become food.
When I know I can eat cake whenever I want to, I no longer feel the need to stuff myself simply because I don’t know when ED will give me permission to eat it again.
Eating cake is real food freedom. This is balance. I can eat one slice and be content. I can stop because my body knows how to listen to that full cue without the ED override button getting pushed.
And so, my friends, I share my joy in food freedom with you because in complete truth, this is what I want for all of you. I want you to be happy to eat a slice of cake simply for the joy of eating a slice of cake. Simple pleasures.
Deliciously Simple Vanilla Cake
And this cake is my favorite. It’s super simple. Deliciously Simple Vanilla Cake whips up in 15 minutes – if that. It’s way better than a cake mix. You must trust me on this until you make it and prove it for yourself. I originally found the recipe here. You can easily tweak the recipe to make chocolate cake instead, or any other flavor for that matter.
I’ve experimented with using milk instead of water. I’ve even used pureed strawberries instead of the water to make a strawberry cake. I’ve added spices to make a spice cake. Basically, your imagination in the kitchen is the only limit to using this recipe.
But with all those flavors, the vanilla is always my favorite. It’s crazy moist and I love it. Deliciously Simple Vanilla Cake (or Wacky Cake as it’s known by many) is my go to cake recipe. And now I’ve shared it with you as many others have shared their versions as well.
The amounts I use for this bundt pan recipe are more than what I use for a 9×13. Basically, if you reduce the ingredients for this recipe into thirds, you have the amounts for an 8×8 or a 9×13.
One note: the icing on here is not the same as the frosting I make if I baked this in a 9×13. That frosting is thicker and a bit richer, more like this one that I use on my Sugar Cookie Bars.
COVID19 quarantine is the perfect time to bake. And spring is the perfect time for a vanilla cake. And anytime is the perfect time to tell ED to shut up so you can enjoy your dessert.
Deliciously Simple Vanilla Cake
- 5 1/2 cups flour
- 3 cups sugar
- 1 tbsp baking soda
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup oil
- 2 tbsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp almond extract
- 1 tbsp white vinegar
- 3 cups water
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup milk
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Find a large mixing bowl (You really don't need to use your stand mixer; this mixes up easiest by hand.)
- Add to the bowl the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Mix together with a whisk.
- Add to the bowl the oil, vinegar, vanilla, almond, and water. Whisk altogether until flour completely incorporated. Don't overmix! Just get it incorporated.
- Spray a bundt pan with cooking spray. Then sprinkle a couple tbsp of flour into the pan and tilt it around, tapping the outside as you turn in so that the flour coats all the cooking spray. This flour step will ensure it flips out of the pan later.
- You will want to move your middle grate in your oven down a notch so that you allow room for the cake to rise without hitting the top grate or the top of your oven.
- Bake for 60-70 minutes. Mine was done at 67 minutes. The top (which becomes the bottom when you flip it out of the pan) will be golden brown with cracks in it. Insert a toothpick into the crack to test. It should come out with moist crumbs on it – that's when I call it done.
- Immediately flip it over onto a pan to cool for 4 hours. It's okay that it sets on the actual cake and not on the edge of the pan.
- When it is cooled, slip a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen it, and then carefully slide it out of the pan onto your cake tray.
- In a microwavable bowl put the butter, white chocolate chips, and milk.
- Microwave for 20 seconds, stir, 20 more seconds, stir . . . continue until melted smoothly together. You must be careful with white chips that they don't turn into a clump. The butter and milk should help with that. As they are melting smoothly, you can melt the chips all the way down, or you can do like I did and leave little bits of the chips unmelted so there is some texture to the frosting. That is totally up to you.
- Put the powdered sugar into your mixing bowl and pour the melted mixture over top. Add the vanilla. Beat slowly at first so you don't poof the powdered sugar all over, but then turn it up to medium until your icing is smooth (or with just the little chip chunks you allowed to stay).
- Using a big spoon, drizzle the icing over the cake. Let it slide down the sides. This is plenty of icing so if you don't want to use it all, you don't have to. I have 4 boys so I used it all and had thick icing with a lot pooled at the bottom and in the center. (And I blame it on my boys but I like all that icing too.)
- This cake is devourable! It should be super moist inside, the bottom (which was the top in the oven) should have a delicious crispness to it compared to the super moist inside. You can eat it with ice cream, but honestly, I don't especially want the ice cream to mask the amazing flavor and texture of the cake. Enjoy!