There’s a current trend going around of baking mini-cakes in a glass jars (here’s an example found on Pinterest, my newest online addiction). I love the idea of single-serving cakes, so I picked up a dozen bevelled jelly jars from the grocery store and prepped them for baking. They are approximately the same size as a cupcake.
As for the recipe, there really isn’t one because I just threw it all together. Since I still eat gluten-free, most baked goods I prepare come from a pre-packaged mix. (I haven’t mastered the art of gluten-free baking yet, so indulge me here. I’m not typically a “pre-packaged mix” kind of girl.) You can certainly use your own cake recipe or use a packaged cake mix like I did.
Prepare the cake according to box directions. Then, with your jelly jars cleaned and placed in a deep dish, fill the jars with two tablespoons of cake batter. Layer in a teaspoon of Nutella, then add another final tablespoon of cake batter on top. Leave the lip of the jar free from batter so the mini-cake can rise. Add approximately two inches of hot water into the baking dish for a water bath and bake at 350 degrees for 18 minutes (or until the tops of the cakes are lightly browned).
Instead of a traditional icing or a buttercream (I thought that would be too sweet), I simply whipped a little cream, added about two tablespoons of melted Nutella (20 seconds in the microwave) and two tablespoons of powdered sugar. The result was a pudding-like consistency to pour over the cooled cakes.
Here’s what I learned: 1) The Nutella sinks to the bottom during baking, which is fine because that left a sweet treat for your final few bites of cake. There might be a way to remedy that during baking, but it wasn’t a big deal. 2) I really like baking in glass jars! There’s no waste from cupcake wrappers and there are endless possibilities for layering. I’m already dreaming up a lemon custard filling with a sugar glaze on top. 3) The mini-cakes were even better after being refrigerated all afternoon. Some of the whipped cream seeped into the cake and made it incredibly moist.
Jackson wasn’t left out, mind you. He just doesn’t like sweets. I always joke that one day I’ll make him a potato chip cake because he’d always choose chips over chocolate…