A Fork on the Road

Wynwood baker makes wreath-shaped Yule cakes



Cake prices range from $32.95 for a Christmas Bundt to $5.95 for four boxed bonbon Bundts. Nationwide shipping in vacuum-sealed boxes is available for $14.50. Details and ordering information are at itsabundt.com.


Gingerbread Cake

This easy cake from cooks.com isn’t a Bundt, but it smells and tastes like Christmas. It can be served plain or with whipped cream or ice cream.

11/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 cup butter (1 stick), softened

1/2 cup sugar

1 large egg

1/2 cup molasses

2/3 cup boiled water

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Sift together flour, baking soda, salt and spices. Beat together the butter, sugar, egg and molasses until blended. Add flour mixture and gently beat until just blended. Drizzle in water, gently beating. Bake in a greased 8-inch square pan for 30 minutes, or until cake tests done. Loosen edges and cut into serving pieces. Makes 16 pieces.

Per serving: 152 calories (36 percent from fat), 6.2 g fat (3.7 g saturated, 1.6 g monounsaturated), 26.8 mg cholesterol, 1.7 g protein, 22.8 g carbohydrate, 0.4 g fiber, 174 mg sodium.

Ring in the holidays with a festive, sugar-coated Bundt cake festooned in silver and gold ribbon. The Wynwood-based It’s a Bundt company makes gourmet ring-shaped cakes in a variety of sizes in flavors from maple-walnut to Irish cream with raisins.

Baker Mario Chiaradia arrives at 4 a.m. to bake several hundred cakes a day with his assistants, who rotate cakes in and out of the oven, a dozen at a time, and then decorate them.

Chiaradia grew up in an Italian family in Mendoza, Argentina, that ran bakeries. The graphic designer turned to baking after graduating from the Cordon Bleu in Miramar and started the company three years ago with partner Henri Almanzar, naming it for a line from the movie My Big Fat Greek Wedding. Almanzar, an interior designer who grew up in New Jerse, researched the cake and decided to create elegant upscale versions.

Bundts are descended from a European fruitcake known as bundkuchen, from the German words for “cake” and “bundle,” as the dough is “wrapped” around the central chimney of a fluted pan. They became ubiquitous in the United States after a Tunnel of Fudge Bundt cake came in second at the 1966 Pillsbury Bake-Off.

For Christmas there’s the Wonder Bundt, a silver-dusted, icing-glazed cranberry cream cheese confection infused with orange juice and orange zest. There’s also a mini chocolate Bundt covered in chocolate ganache with gold sprinkles and and even truffle-size bonbon Bundts in flavors including chocolate, white chocolate, orange-rum-guava and carrot-pineapple-coconut that make for a nice stocking stuffer or secret Santa gift.

Linda Bladholm is a Miami food writer and personal chef who can be reached at lbb75⊗@⊗bell⊗south⊗.net.

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