Friday was Girls Night In, as I wrote about earlier this week. We had a fabulous spread of Mexican food – chips, salsa, guacamole, enchiladas and more! To top off all of this great food, I thought we needed a yummy dessert. This usually is not a problem for me! But, there is a big But. One of my friends is allergic to chocolate!!! This poses a problem for me, almost every dessert I make has chocolate in it, even if it is just a little. So I had to get creative. It was Cinco De Mayo week, so how about a margarita cake. I mean, margaritas are part of the reason we get together, so why not put it in dessert :)
Ok, I had a plan, now how do I execute it? Well Betty Crocker had an interesting recipe, so why not turn that into my own. They had a pretzel crust, white cake mix with margarita mix instead of the liquids, and cool whip on top. Well, I couldn’t just do that but hhhmmm…..crust with cake? Why not! The girls thought this was a hit. The cake was a thick moist cake, and the lime flavor was just perfect. The crust was really good. You don’t normally have cake with a crust, so it was a unique twist. Now, I just used plain margarita mix, without the tequila in it. But you could easily use the premixed stuff. I just knew my family would be eating the leftovers, and didn’t want my 6 year old eating cake with tequila in it!
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
1 3/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 cup margarita mix
About 20 graham crackers (1 sleeve of them)
6 Tbls butter, melted
1 cup heavy cream
3 Tbls powdered sugar
1 Tbls margarita mix
Turn the graham crackers into crumbs. I use my food processor to make quick work of it. Mix in the melted butter, and press into a cake pan. This makes enough for about a 9 inch cake pan. I used a spring form pan, so I could get it out easily!
Cream together the butter and sugar. I “think” the fluffier you get this mixture the lighter your cake will be. I am new to making cakes from scratch, so this is just a theory to be tested at this point. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Combine the flour and baking powder, and add to the creamed mixture. Mix well. I also think next time I would use baking soda instead of powder. In my research most cakes used soda, again I think it leads to a lighter cake. Finally, stir in the margarita mix until the batter is smooth. Pour into the pan.
Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, in a a 350 degree oven. When a toothpick is inserted and comes out clean, the cake is done.
While the cake cools, you can make the topping. It is basically a lime flavored whipped cream. Whipped cream is really easy to make. Start by putting your mixing bowl, and whip attachment in the fridge to get cold. Once ready, about 15 minutes later, pour in 1 cup of heavy cream. Mix until it starts to thicken. Then add in the sugar and margarita mix until you get to stiff peaks. Be careful not to overmix, it will turn to butter. You can fix it if you mix to far – just add more cream and mix again.
Spread cream over cooled cake. Top with some lime zest, and sliced lime!