Amaretto Almond Cake (Personal Note: This is the one. Hailey's Favorite)

On Sunday afternoon I was doing the mundane household chores that are never-ending; dishes, laundry, vacuuming. Suddenly I was in the mood to make a cake. I didn't know what kind, but I knew I wanted to bake. I opened my files and glanced at a random untried recipe. It was for an Amaretto cake. It called for starting with a cake mix. Therein lay the deciding factor. Did I have a yellow cake mix on hand? I checked and the only cake mix in the house happened to be... yellow! I had bought it to make our families favorite lemon cheesecake bars but the almond flavored cake was going to win out.

It's a very light, moist cake with very good flavor. As a matter of fact my daughters friend was over after school, tried it, deemed it one of the best cakes she has ever had in her life. I sent 1/3 of the cake home with her to share with her family.

I hope you enjoy it as much as they did!

Amaretto Almond Cake

1 cup chopped almonds
1 box (18.25 oz size) yellow cake mix
1 box (4 serving size) vanilla instant pudding mix
4 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup amaretto liqueur
1 teaspoon almond extract

1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup amaretto
1/2 teaspoon almond extract

Heat oven to 325. Grease and flour a 10" tube or Bundt pan; sprinkle chopped almonds over the bottom and set aside.

In mixing bowl, combine cake mix, pudding mix, eggs, oil, water, amaretto and almond extract. Beat on low speed with electric mixer about 30 seconds until dry ingredients are moistened. Increase speed to medium and beat 4 minutes.

Pour batter into prepared pan and bake until done - approximately 1 & 1/2 hour for bunt/angel food style pan. Cool cake 10-15 minutes before removing from pan. Cool completely and place on cake plate.

For glaze, in small saucepan, combine sugar, water and butter and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and gently boil 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and cool 15 minutes. Stir in amaretto and almond extract. Punch holes in cake from top to bottom with wooden pick or skewer. Slowly spoon glaze over cake until entirely absorbed. *I opted to boil the amaretto with the sugar syrup to boil off the alcohol and lessen the strength of the amaretto flavor so all family members and the kids friends could enjoy the cake without a strong amaretto alcohol flavor.






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