Platter Of Maple Glazed Rum Cake

A couple months back, a coworker brought in some mini Tortuga rum cakes to share at lunch. I had actually never heard of rum cakes, but surely anything with “rum” and “cake” was going to be amazing. Sure enough, it was. Tortuga rum cake is soaked with a rum simple syrup that’s so strong, you probably don’t even want to eat it before a one on one meeting with your boss unless you want them to think you drank rum at lunch.

I added it to my recipe queue. Once I finished perfecting this Artisan Rosemary and Roasted Garlic Focaccia, it was rum cake time. Unfortunately, Tortuga didn’t seem willing to share their secret recipe for some odd reason. However, there was a lot of rum cake recipes online. Some of them were even boldly named something along the line of “Almost Tortuga” Rum Cake.

So bold. Especially since these recipes fell so, so flat. I have a handful of slightly-rum flavored pound cake recipes if any of you are interested! There are a few tricks to making rum cake as moist as Tortugas and after a lot of trial and error, I’m back here to share what it takes to make a Better Than Tortuga Rum Cake.

Oh yeah, I said it. Better Than Tortuga.

Maple Glazed Rum Cake

For the Cake
  • 4 large eggs
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup spiced rum, i.e. Captain Morgan
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 1/2 cups cake flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled-off with knife, plus a couple of tablespoons for flouring the pan (see note)
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened, plus more for greasing the pan
For the Rum Simple Syrup
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup real maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons dark rum, i.e. Captain Morgan
For the Maple Rum Glaze
  • 1 and 1/2 cup confectioners sugar
  • 1 T real maple syrup
  • 2 T dark spiced rum, i.e. Captain Morgan
  • 1/8 tsp Kosher salt

Preheat the oven to 325 F. Using some of the extra unsalted butter, lightly grease a 12-cup Bundt pan. The easiest way is to hold a thumb-sized piece of softened butter under your fingertips and pull it along each ridge of the pan.

Greasing Bundt Pan for Maple Rum Cake

Remove any residual chunks of butter so the pan is evenly coated.

Greased Bundt Pan for Maple Glazed Rum Cake

Add a couple tablespoons of flour to the pan. While holding the pan at an angle in one hand, use your other hand to lightly bump the pan and evenly distribute the flour. Make sure you flour the sides of the center tube as well. Once the whole pan is lightly floured, hold it upside down and tap the sides to get rid of any excess flour.

In a medium mixing bowl, add the eggs, egg yolks, rum, vanilla extract, and almond extract. Whisk until smooth.

If you don’t whisk the eggs until they’re smooth, you will have to mix the cake batter more in the mixer. This creates more gluten, which leads to a chewier cake instead of the light, crumbly one we’re aiming for.

Vanilla Extract Almond Extract Eggs Spiced Rum for Maple Glazed Rum CakeWhisked Vanilla Extract Almond Extract Eggs Spiced Rum for Maple Glazed Rum Cake

Measure out 2 and 1/2 cups of cake flour by spooning it into a dry measuring cup, then use the back of a knife to scrape off the excess.

To get 1 cup of packed light brown sugar, use the palm of your hand to press the sugar into the measuring cup, then scrape the top with your palm to level it off.

If your brown sugar comes in a bag, scoop the brown sugar directly in the bag while your other hand is on the outside pressing down. Level off the top by rubbing the measuring cub with the palm of your hand through the bag. Everything’s contained within the brown sugar bag, so there’s no mess!

Add 1 cup of granulated sugar, 2 tsp baking powder, and 1/2 tsp Kosher salt.

Add the dry ingredients to your mixing bowl. Connect the paddle attachment then mix on the lowest speed for 30 seconds.

Dry Ingredients In Mixing Bowl For Maple Glazed Rum CakeConsistency Of Mixed Dry Ingredients For Maple Glazed Rum Cake

Add the softened, cubed butter and continue to mix on low speed for 1 minute.

Adding Cubed Softened Butter For Maple Glazed Rum Cake

Scrape down any remaining chunks of butter off the paddle and sides of the mixer, then continue mixing for 1 more minute or until the butter is evenly distributed. The final texture should be sandy and crumbly with no butter or dry sugar visible.

Creamed Brown Sugar For Maple Glazed Rum Cake That Needs To Be Scraped Down

While the mixer is still on low speed, slowly pour in about a quarter of the whisked egg mixture. Mix for a few seconds or until it’s no longer sloshing on the bottom of the mixer. Increase to medium speed for 1 minute to fully mix it in. Stop the mixer and raise the attachment, then scrape the sides and bottom of the mixing bowl with a spatula or bowl scraper.

This step is important because unmixed butter and sugar will melt and leave uneven holes in your cake. Take your time to make sure it’s evenly mixed.

Pouring In Egg Mixture For Maple Glazed Rum CakeCreaming Brown Sugar Butter For Maple Glazed Rum Cake

Scraping Down Batter Brown Sugar Butter For Maple Glazed Rum Cake

Repeat 3 more times for the remaining liquid. After you add the last of the whisked egg mixture, mix up to 2 total minutes on medium speed to make sure it’s evenly mixed. The final consistency should be smooth and creamy without any visible lumps.

Paddling Brown Sugar Butter For Maple Glazed Rum Cake

Pour the batter into the Bundt pan. Use the end of a spatula to evenly distribute the batter.

Bake the cake on the middle rack of the oven for 45-50 minutes.

Poked Whole Freshly Baked Maple Rum CakeWhile the cake is still cooking, prepare the glaze. You will need to start glazing the cake right after it comes out of the oven. Add the butter to a small sauce pot then add 1/4 cup water, 2/3 cup granulated sugar, 1/3 cup maple syrup, and 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons dark rum.

If you ever need to measure out maple syrup, spray the inside of the measuring cup with pan spray before you pour in the maple syrup. The pan spray will keep the maple syrup from sticking to the sides of the measuring cup and the maple syrup will pour right out.

Heat on low heat to slowly melt the butter.

Melted Maple Rum Simple Syrup For Maple Rum Glazed Cake

Use the tip of a spoon or spatula to break the butter into small pieces to help the butter melt faster.

Don’t let the butter boil over or you’ll cook off too much of the alcohol rum! We want to keep as much rum flavor as we can.

Melting Maple Rum Simple Syrup For Maple Rum Glazed Cake

After ~40 minutes has passed, start checking the cake. It should be done after 45-50 minutes or until a tester inserted in the thickest part of the cake comes out clean. The top of the cake will be a light golden color and the edges dark golden brown. Keep a close eye on it and take it out as soon as you think it’s ALMOST done. Chances are, is it. If you cook it too long, you’ll risk it drying out.

Kitchen supply stores often sell packs of wooden skewers for ~$1-2. These work a lot better than toothpicks.

Once the cake is finished cooking, remove it from the oven and set it on the stove top or a wire rack to start cooling. Immediately poke ~30 holes in the top of the cake, going about halfway down into the cake. This will help the glaze soak down into the middle of the cake instead of just settling at the top.

Poked Whole Freshly Baked Maple Rum Cake

Pour about a third of the glaze evenly over the cake. Make sure the glaze gets between the cake and the pan. Let the glaze soak into the cake for ~10 minutes.

Don’t think for a second you can get a nicely soaked rum cake by brushing glaze over the top. Not a chance. Sorry, tried it. It only soaked in a few millimeters. I don’t want you to waste your time trying.

Repeat two more times with the remaining glaze, but now focus pouring the remaining glaze near the outside and inside edges of the cake. This helps the glaze distribute evenly throughout the cake instead of just having a soggy middle!

Let the cake cool completely. To remove the cake from the Bundt pan, put the serving platter you want to use upside down on top of the Bundt pan. Slide the Bundt pan to the edge of the counter. Slip one hand underneath the Bundt pan and put the other on top of the platter. Quickly flip the Bundt pan and platter over and set it down.

Carefully start lifting the Bundt pan. If the cake is still stuck, that’s ok. Give the Bundt pan a couple of good thumps with the palm of your hand.

If that doesn’t work or the cake has been left out for a long time, the sugar may have crystallized. You have two options:

  • Soak a kitchen towel with HOT water, wring it out, then cover the top of the Bundt pan with the towel.
  • Fill a large bowl with water and submerge the Bundt pan partially in the water.

The hot towel or hot water will melt the crystallized sugar between the cake and the pan, which will release the cake. Don’t try jamming a knife down in the pan or violently slamming the cake pan. You’ll risk breaking a piece of the cake crust off.

Slice Of Fresh Maple Soaked Rum Cake

At this point, the cake is totally worth eating. But you want to take it one tiny step further. Trust me, it’s totally worth it.

Spread Of Sliced Maple Rum Cake On Vintage China

Sift 1 cup of powdered sugar into a medium mixing bowl. (I say sift because it’s almost impossible to get all of the lumps out once you start adding the rest of the ingredients.) Add 1 T maple syrup, 2 T dark rum, and 1/8 tsp Kosher salt then whisk until it’s smooth. Drizzle the glaze over the top of the cake.

Whole Maple Glazed Rum Cake on a Platter Drizzled with Rum Glaze

Much better. Now you can dig in!

(If you happen to have some creme anglaise sitting around or have enough heavy cream and eggs to make it, I definitely suggest pairing the two together!)

Slice Of Maple Glazed Rum Cake With Creme AnglaiseTaking A Bite Out Of A Slice Of Maple Glazed Rum Cake With Creme Anglaise

 

Maple Glazed Rum Cake
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • (Cake) 4 large eggs
  • (Cake) 3 large egg yolks
  • (Cake) ½ cup spiced rum, i.e. Captain Morgan
  • (Cake) 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • (Cake) 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • (Cake) 2½ cups cake flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled-off with knife, plus a couple of tablespoons for flouring the pan (see note)
  • (Cake) 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • (Cake) 1 cup granulated sugar
  • (Cake) 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • (Cake) ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
  • (Cake) 1 cup unsalted butter, softened, plus more for greasing the pan
  • (Syrup) ½ cup unsalted butter
  • (Syrup) ¼ cup water
  • (Syrup) ⅔ cup granulated sugar
  • (Syrup) ⅓ cup real maple syrup
  • (Syrup) ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons dark rum, i.e. Captain Morgan
  • (Glaze) 1 and ½ cup confectioners sugar
  • (Glaze) 1 T real maple syrup
  • (Glaze) 2 T dark spiced rum, i.e. Captain Morgan
  • (Glaze) ⅛ tsp Kosher salt
Steps
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 F. Using some of the extra unsalted butter, lightly grease a 12-cup Bundt pan. The easiest way is to hold a thumb-sized piece of softened butter under your fingertips and pull it along each ridge of the pan.
  2. Remove any residual chunks of butter so the pan is evenly coated.
  3. Add a couple tablespoons of flour to the pan. While holding the pan at an angle in one hand, use your other hand to lightly bump the pan and evenly distribute the flour. Make sure you flour the sides of the center tube as well. Once the whole pan is lightly floured, hold it upside down and tap the sides to get rid of any excess flour.
  4. In a medium mixing bowl, add the eggs, egg yolks, rum, vanilla extract, and almond extract. Whisk until smooth. (If you don't whisk the eggs until they're smooth, you will have to mix the cake batter more in the mixer. This creates more gluten, which leads to a chewier cake instead of the light, crumbly one we're aiming for.)
  5. Measure out 2 and ½ cups of cake flour by spooning it into a dry measuring cup, then use the back of a knife to scrape off the excess.
  6. To get 1 cup of packed light brown sugar, use the palm of your hand to press the sugar into the measuring cup, then scrape the top with your palm to level it off. (If your brown sugar comes in a bag, scoop the brown sugar directly in the bag while your other hand is on the outside pressing down. Level off the top by rubbing the measuring cub with the palm of your hand through the bag. Everything's contained within the brown sugar bag, so there's no mess!)
  7. Add 1 cup of granulated sugar, 2 tsp baking powder, and ½ tsp Kosher salt.
  8. Add the dry ingredients to your mixing bowl. Connect the paddle attachment then mix on the lowest speed for 30 seconds.
  9. Add the softened, cubed butter and continue to mix on low speed for 1 minute.
  10. Scrape down any remaining chunks of butter off the paddle and sides of the mixer, then continue mixing for 1 more minute or until the butter is evenly distributed. The final texture should be sandy and crumbly with no butter or dry sugar visible.
  11. While the mixer is still on low speed, slowly pour in about a quarter of the whisked egg mixture. Mix for a few seconds or until it's no longer sloshing on the bottom of the mixer. Increase to medium speed for 1 minute to fully mix it in. Stop the mixer and raise the attachment, then scrape the sides and bottom of the mixing bowl with a spatula or bowl scraper. (This step is important because unmixed butter and sugar will melt and leave uneven holes in your cake. Take your time to make sure it's evenly mixed.)
  12. Repeat 3 more times for the remaining liquid. After you add the last of the whisked egg mixture, mix up to 2 total minutes on medium speed to make sure it's evenly mixed. The final consistency should be smooth and creamy without any visible lumps.
  13. Pour the batter into the Bundt pan. Use the end of a spatula to evenly distribute the batter.
  14. Bake the cake on the middle rack of the oven for 45-50 minutes.
  15. While the cake is still cooking, prepare the glaze. You will need to start glazing the cake right after it comes out of the oven. Add the butter to a small sauce pot then add ¼ cup water, ⅔ cup granulated sugar, ⅓ cup maple syrup, and ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons dark rum.
  16. If you ever need to measure out maple syrup, spray the inside of the measuring cup with pan spray before you pour in the maple syrup. The pan spray will keep the maple syrup from sticking to the sides of the measuring cup and the maple syrup will pour right out.
  17. Heat on low heat to slowly melt the butter.
  18. Use the tip of a spoon or spatula to break the butter into small pieces to help the butter melt faster. (Don't let the butter boil over or you'll cook off too much of the alcohol rum! We want to keep as much rum flavor as we can.)
  19. After ~40 minutes has passed, start checking the cake. It should be done after 45-50 minutes or until a tester inserted in the thickest part of the cake comes out clean. The top of the cake will be a light golden color and the edges dark golden brown. (Keep a close eye on it and take it out as soon as you think it's ALMOST done. Chances are, is it. If you cook it too long, you'll risk it drying out.)
  20. Once the cake is finished cooking, remove it from the oven and set it on the stove top or a wire rack to start cooling. Immediately poke ~30 holes in the top of the cake, going about halfway down into the cake. This will help the glaze soak down into the middle of the cake instead of just settling at the top.
  21. Pour about a third of the glaze evenly over the cake. Make sure the glaze gets between the cake and the pan. Let the glaze soak into the cake for ~10 minutes. (Don't think for a second you can get a nicely soaked rum cake by brushing glaze over the top. Not a chance. Sorry, tried it. It only soaked in a few millimeters. I don't want you to waste your time trying.)
  22. Repeat two more times with the remaining glaze, but now focus pouring the remaining glaze near the outside and inside edges of the cake. This helps the glaze distribute evenly throughout the cake instead of just having a soggy middle!
  23. Let the cake cool completely. To remove the cake from the Bundt pan, put the serving platter you want to use upside down on top of the Bundt pan. Slide the Bundt pan to the edge of the counter. Slip one hand underneath the Bundt pan and put the other on top of the platter. Quickly flip the Bundt pan and platter over and set it down.
  24. Carefully start lifting the Bundt pan. If the cake is still stuck, that's ok. Give the Bundt pan a couple of good thumps with the palm of your hand.
  25. If that doesn't work or the cake has been left out for a long time, the sugar may have crystallized. You have two options: (a) Soak a kitchen towel with HOT water, wring it out, then cover the top of the Bundt pan with the towel. (b) Fill a large bowl with water and submerge the Bundt pan partially in the water.
  26. The hot towel or hot water will melt the crystallized sugar between the cake and the pan, which will release the cake. Don't try jamming a knife down in the pan or violently slamming the cake pan. You'll risk breaking a piece of the cake crust off.
  27. At this point, the cake is totally worth eating. But you want to take it one tiny step further. Trust me, it's totally worth it.
  28. Sift 1 cup of powdered sugar into a medium mixing bowl. (I say sift because it's almost impossible to get all of the lumps out once you start adding the rest of the ingredients.) Add 1 T maple syrup, 2 T dark rum, and ⅛ tsp Kosher salt then whisk until it's smooth. Drizzle the glaze over the top of the cake.
  29. Much better. Now you can dig in!
Notes
(If you happen to have some creme anglaise sitting around or have enough heavy cream and eggs to make it, I definitely suggest pairing the two together!)

Maple Glazed Rum Cake
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