Top 100 Cake Blog

Top 100 Cake Blog

Monday, December 31, 2012

A Cake Bakes Best of 2012

There were so many noteworthy dessert discoveries this year (rescued from the early 20th century, of course), but I managed to whittle the list to a baker's dozen.  So, in no particular order, I present the best of 2012.  (To get the recipes and more pictures, just click on the recipe names, the ones highlighted in red at the first words in each description.) Here's to a sweet new year.

Toll House Cupcakes 

Toll House Cupcakes  were the sleeper of the year. These are so unusual and so delicious, it's hard to imagine that they fell out of favor. Careful, though, as you may create a cadre of addicts.  Your friends and family will request them again and again.

Lemon Chiffon Pie
Lemon Chiffon Pie is so light and ethereal that it's hard to believe that just three simple ingredients -- sugar, eggs and lemons -- are responsible for this masterpiece.  Make chiffon pie part of your new year.

Barney's Brownies
Barney's Brownies can literally be put together in minutes.  They will disappear just as quickly, guaranteed.   Brownies so delicious, you'll be amazed there's no butter.

Elaine's Anise Cookies
Elaine's Anise Cookies are perfect at Christmas or any time of year on account of the flavor, the texture and most of all, the perfect little cookie caps that form in the oven.

Ritz Cracker Meringue Pie
Ritz Cracker Meringue Pie is an unusual dessert that's a mid-century American version of the French dacquoise.  You'd think that crackers would form the crust, but no!  They're folded into the filling, creating a wonderful new way to experience this salty and buttery cracker.

Old Fashioned Molasses Cookies
Old Fashioned Molasses Cookies because I know you want one right now with a tall glass of milk.

The $28 One-Step Pound Cake
The $28 dollar One-Step Pound Cake, so named because that's how much I paid for a recipe box that contained only one fabulous recipe -- this one.  It's easy and everyone should have a delicious pound cake recipe in their repertoire. 

Cinnamon Crunchies
Cinnamon Crunchies were a favorite among co-workers this year, and they are a very discriminating bunch.  These three-layer treats are way more than the sum of their parts.

Rhubarb Custard Pie
Rhubarb Custard Pie is the perfect way to celebrate spring, no strawberries needed. Plus the pie is even more delicious the next day.

Lemon Crunch
Lemon Crunch is a personal favorite, and what happens when a 1950s housewife takes a traditional lemon bar and ramps it up with coconut for the added crunch, a welcome flavor and texture note.  

Apple Dowdy Cake
Apple Dowdy Cake is a wonderful autumn and winter cake, made extra delicious by the caramel-praline glaze.  Plus, what a great name!

Passover Woodchucks
Passover Woodchucks are another addicting treat you won't find on everyone else's table.  No need to wait for the holidays because walnuts, dates, sugar and coconut are always in season.

Cake made the list because this basic (and delicious) yellow cake is the building block of all manner of desserts, from Boston Cream Pie to upside down cake (pictured here) to coffee cake. It's like the little black dress of the kitchen and who doesn't want one of those?

Grandma Jean's Challah
Grandma Jean's Challah is very good, though there are many richer challah recipes around.  I like the bread, but I love the serendipity of its discovery even more.


  1. Wow! That all looks just scrumptious Susan! Beautiful!

  2. You blew it by not including the "hello Dolly" bars. I have found them to be a crowd pleaser with people begging for the recipe. Not to mention, a clean platter.

    Never-the-less, you have such a beautiful spread here on this page. Makes me want to go to the kitchen and start baking. . . . . . or maybe I will just continue to look at the pictures and salivate like a Pavlov dog. :)

    Have a happy New Year and keep up the good work with your web page. I love it. It has also inspired me to start a family cook book with copies of old recipes.


    1. Kev -- It was a tough call, that's for sure and I did have Hello Dollys on the list at first. But, then...whatever. Thanks so much for writing, and happy new year to you. Best of luck on your family cookbook!

  3. Great -- now I'm hungry. So how do we get the recipes?

    1. Hi, Jill -- Just click on the name of the recipe, the first word(s) in the text that are highlighted in red. Please let me know if you have trouble accessing.

  4. I made the Tollhouse Cupcakes at Christmas time. They turned out wonderfully and looked just like the photo. You would think it tastes like a cookie in another form but that center is light and has a more delicate flavor than any chocolate chip cookie you ever tried.

    1. So glad they turned out so well, Librarian. And you're so right about the texture. Thanks for writing.

  5. I certainly enjoy your blog - thanks for baking & sharing. Going to make Cinnamon Crunchies right now as a surprise for my sweetie!

  6. I love your site which I found while doing genealogy research about my ancestors, much of which is centered in Brooklyn. I was looking for recipes that they might have made in the early to mid 1900's.

    I want to try the brownies in addition to several others from this post. They look so delicious.


  7. The toll house cupcakes and lemon crunch are amazing, now I have to try the cinnamon crunchies and that awesome looking challah!