When I heard the news that Hostess would be no more, I felt momentarily wistful for my favorite snack cake – the Twinkie. Though I have not bought a Twinkie in approximately six years, I still love them. They are better than the chocolate cupcakes filled with cream and topped with a squiggly white line of icing. When those same chocolate and cream filled cakes are coated in wobbly marshmallow and pink coconut to become snowballs, the competition increases. Yet still, the Twinkie comes out on top. Those poor apple and cherry hand pies? They never stood a chance.
I love Twinkies so much that I actually own The Twinkies Cookbook. Here are a few pieces of my favorite Twinkies trivia, direct from that source.
- Twinkies have a shelf life of a mere 25 days.
- Upon their invention in the 1930s, the snack cakes were filled with banana-flavored cream. The switch to vanilla was in response to a banana shortage experienced during in WWII.
- The inspiration for their name came from a St. Louis billboard advertising Twinkle Toe Shoes.
- Twinkies sparkle with an undeniable magic. (That is not actually trivia, but it is an exact quote from the book that struck me as funny. Who thinks this stuff up?)
When I came across a recipe for a Twinkie Bundt Cake in Pure Vanilla a few weeks back, I marked it on my “To Bake” list. When I heard people across America were stockpiling Twinkies a few days ago, I thought I had better share this homemade twist on a classic sooner rather than later. Admittedly, the cake is not quite like the Twinkies I remember. The crumb seemed more heavy than spongy, but on the other hand, the filling was remarkably similar.
Preparation requires a bit of forethought as both the eggs and the buttermilk should warm to room temperature. Creating a tunnel to fill with the vanilla cream was also interesting. It was not as difficult as I expected, but I found I needed to shake the cake pan over the sink a few times to remove all of the crumbs and form a clear path. Because this recipe will leave you with four egg whites, I suggest simultaneously cooking an omelet or baking Flourless Chocolate Cookies.
The Twinkies cookbook concludes its ode to the beloved snack cake with this statement, “So let us raise a toast to an American original – the magical, mystifying, magnificent Twinkie. The journey’s been quite a treat.” Indeed it has. Enjoy!
- For the Cake
- 3 cups cake flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extra
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- 7 eggs: 3 whole eggs and 4 egg yolks, at room temperature
- 1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
- For the Filling
- 1 jar (7 to 7.5 ounces) marshmallow cream
- ½ cup butter, softened
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Confectioner's sugar for dusting (optional)
- Spray a 12-cup Bundt pan with non-stick cooking spray and dust lightly with flour and set aside.
- Sift together the cake flour, baking powder and salt and set aside as well.
- Beat the butter and vanilla extract on medium speed until smooth and creamy.
- Add the sugar and beat until evenly mixed, about one minute.
- Slowly pour in the vegetable oil and beat until light fluffy, about two minutes more.
- One at a time, beat in the eggs followed by the egg yolks.
- Add the flour mixture and buttermilk in three alternating additions, beginning and ending with the milk,
- Continue to beat on low speed until all lumps are removed, then fold by hand a few times before pouring into the prepared Bundt pan.
- Bake at 325 degrees F for 60-70 minutes until golden and a wooden skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean.
- Allow to cool in the pan for approximately two hours.
- To make the filling, beat the marshmallow cream, butter and vanilla together until smooth.
- Place in a pastry bag fitted with a round tip (a Ziploc bag with a corner cut off should serve in a pinch).
- Use and apple corer or a knife to cut six deep holds into the bottom of the cake. Take care not to cut down through the top of the cake.
- Use your fingers to connect each hole by burrowing down into one and across into the other. Dump crumbs as necessary.The goal is to create a tunnel within the cake.
- Insert the tip of the filled pastry bag into each hole and gently fill. You should be able to see the filling start to fill an adjacent hole as it moves through the tunnel. If not, gently work the bag back and forth as you fill.
- Scrape away any excess filling, invert onto a serving platter to remove from the pan, and dust lightly with confectioners sugar if desired.