ffwD–Caramel-topped Semolina Cake

Yum...caramel...

HAPPY BLACK FRIDAY! If you’re reading this, then you must be on your way to a sale, coming back from a sale or waiting in line to pay for your sale items! Or, you could be like me and you’re doing your Black Friday shopping online/having others get things for you while they’re out. Yeah, I’m that girl.

Anyway, for my final November ffwD recipe, I chose the caramel-topped semolina cake. End with the sweet stuff, right? This recipe piqued my interest because I’m not too familiar with Cream of Wheat. I admit I’ve never actually tasted it. I was an oatmeal girl growing up. Still am.

So, of course when I went to the store to buy semolina or Cream of Wheat, there were nothing but “family-size” boxes for entire families. Seeing as I’m a single gal and was unsure whether I’d like Cream of Wheat, I thought the best option would be to buy the smallest box of single-serving packets I could find.

This posed another dilemma: to purchase original or flavored Cream of Wheat. Since I didn’t know how Cream of Wheat would taste, I was on the fence. Unflavored is just that, unflavored and thus, no motivation for me to eat it later. Brown sugar flavor would possibly entice me to make a bowl for breakfast, but how would this affect the cake, which is the primary purpose for the purchase. In the end, I decided to get the brown sugar flavored variety so I could at least try and eat it for breakfast. Plus, I’ve seen pictures of plain Cream of Wheat with butter on it, and it kind of made me gag a little.

Preparing the batter was a bit perplexing because I had many things on my mind. While I was waiting for the Cream of Wheat to thicken, I was puzzled as to how thick it was supposed to be. I was distracted by the warm brown sugar smell being emitted. I was worried about whether this cake would flip out of the pan as my metal cake pans have all seemed to go yucky on me all at the same time and I was reduced to using a glass 9-inch pie plate.

To be honest, I was probably over-thinking this cake. (Hey! I’m an attorney! I get paid to over-think!) However, I’ll chalk it up to the unfamiliarity of the main ingredient instead. I think the cake ended up a little flatter that supposed to be, but it was delicious and pretty similar to the picture! My sister tasted it and said she could do without the fruit. In addition to my concern over the Cream of Wheat, I had purchased a bag of dried mixed fruit, so I painstakingly took out all the dark raisins and left the golden raisins, pineapple, apple and apricots. Not wanting to waste the rest of the bag, I gave the leftover dried fruit to my sister’s girlfriend. She liked the cake. But, our consensus was that I should just make flan next time.

This recipe can be found in Dorie Greenspan’s Around My French Table: More Than 300 Recipes from My Home to Yours.

See the fruit?

This is probably easier to see

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15 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Elaine
    Nov 26, 2010 @ 02:45:34

    Your caramel is such a beautiful, dark color. How funny that you got the brown sugar flavored cream of wheat – I was thinking the next time I make this it would be good to substitute brown sugar for the white.

  2. Flourchild
    Nov 26, 2010 @ 08:33:53

    Your so cute..paid to over think!! Ivolunteer for CASA and I get to work with some great attorneys that over think ,and Im grateful for that!!
    Your cake looks great! The caramel topping is perfect!

  3. Cher
    Nov 26, 2010 @ 10:55:52

    Too funny. I cracked up at the part about picking out the dark raisins. That is SO something I would have done (and do).

    I guess Cream of Wheat really is one of those things most people can take or leave! At least someone got the dried fruit in the end.

  4. Hornedfroggy
    Nov 26, 2010 @ 12:13:57

    Oooh, I LOVE Cream of Wheat, but have never tried a flavored variety! And I love how the caramel looks on your cake – beautiful!

  5. Krissy
    Nov 26, 2010 @ 14:31:52

    I grew up on “mush” for breakfast at least 5 times a week…and Cream of Wheat was a regular…so for me, this was a true comfort food. It is simple and light. Part of this Dorie experience is trying new things…and reading what other people think…and it is all fun. Enjoyed your post.

  6. Steph - jumpingoffthecliff
    Nov 26, 2010 @ 14:58:57

    How interesting that you had never had Cream of Wheat. I love CoW and was excited to make this recipe and have been going through the “family” sized box ever since! I used a 9″ pan too and had a very flat cake. I’ve finally learned my lesson and hunted down an 8″ pan for the next time Dorie requires one. I enjoyed your post, especially the image of you picking through all the dried fruit. :)

  7. Betty @ scrambled hen fruit
    Nov 27, 2010 @ 16:59:11

    I love cream of wheat- I’m sorry I never got around to making this. I’m with you on the dark raisins though- yuck.

  8. Jessica
    Nov 27, 2010 @ 17:23:34

    I like cream of wheat! It tastes like oatmeal. I’ve never heard of cream of wheat used for anything else other than a breakfast item.

  9. Ker-Yng
    Nov 27, 2010 @ 20:37:27

    I didn’t make this cake. Got turned around and around by the semolina/farina thing then made a totally different semolina cake in the end. :) Your cake looks good with the fruit!

  10. Lana
    Nov 28, 2010 @ 00:15:49

    I was flabbergasted when my husband told me that he hated Cream of Wheat. But when I found out that his mother prepared it with water, salt and butter, I forgave him. I would have gagged, too!
    Our porridge was creamy, milky, sweet, the epitome of comfort food, great for winter breakfast, or for going to bed snack.
    I loved this cake. And made it with raisins, leaving the picky eaters the choice and the task of picking them out. I made it, I like raisins, therefore I should have them in my cake:)
    But I give you a medal for courage for trying something that you had no experience with. I love the curious souls:)

  11. Cakelaw
    Nov 28, 2010 @ 01:12:00

    Man, that is dedication, picking out the dark raisins – I would have just used them anyway because I am too lazy for that. Your cake turned out well – I think it is supposed to be kind of flat.

  12. Trevor Sis Boom
    Nov 30, 2010 @ 01:08:20

    I had to buy a big box. It was amazing to see how little it took to make all that batter. I will probably be eating and making this cake for 10 years before I have to buy a new box. I like the idea of mixing it up with the dried fruit! (Do we have Dec. recipes yet?)
    Trevor Sis. Boom.

    • yummychunklet
      Nov 30, 2010 @ 01:32:33

      No official post as to the recipes yet. However, from the voting, it looks like the four December recipes will be sweet & spicy cocktail nuts, my go-to beef daube, leek & potato soup, and speculoos in the choose-your-own order. Not sure which I’ll try first because nothing jumps out at me at the moment. Needless to say, I didn’t vote for any of these. =D

  13. Becky
    Nov 30, 2010 @ 13:24:08

    Looks delish. Will you be eating cream of wheat for breakfast now?? :) I love it with brown sugar.

  14. Sarah
    Dec 01, 2010 @ 22:35:29

    Maybe if I had bought the brown sugar variety I would have liked this cake better!

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