A tender, moist and thoroughly scrumptious cake with a distinct honey flavor and toasted almonds.
We have another Make a Request fulfillment! This recipe comes by way of request from Leila Robson Armstrong. She wrote: “I am looking for an approximation of the Van de Kamp’s honey tea cake. I think it may have been a sponge type cake with a honey glaze and toasted sliced almonds on top.”
I had never heard of this cake before and searched everywhere for any information I could find on it – I couldn’t find a single thing about it online. Their bakeries apparently went out of business some time ago. I asked my husband if he had ever heard of it. His reply: “Van de Kamp’s? What, you mean like fish sticks?” Dead end there. I finally found one reference to a Van de Kamp’s “Honey Luncheon Cake” where the individual was trying to find a recipe for it as well. This individual described it as “a single layer of cake made in a round pan. It had a powdered sugar base glaze dripped on top, with sliced almonds on top of that. It did taste like honey, and was very moist.”
So equipped with Leila’s request and this additional description, I went to work. I wanted a cake that benefited from the fabulous flavor of butter but that was also moist. Butter, while it tastes heavenly, dries out baked goods, especially by the next day. So I added a little coconut oil to provide some extra moisture. For some added honey-oomph, I used not only honey, but also honey-flavored Greek yogurt. It was a good move. And I added just a hint of extra almond flavor to complement the sliced toasted almonds.
Not having ever tried the original version, I can’t claim this to be a Van de Kamp’s copycat. But I’ve created this Toasted Almond Honey Cake to fit the description of the original version and I can tell you that it tastes marvelous! My husband, who claims not to care much for cake (yes, those of you who are regular readers know we’ve all heard that before), really loved this cake. He single-handedly ate practically the whole thing – he and my 20 month old.
Take a look at that tender, moist honey crumb…
Let’s zoom in a bit….Mmmmm, convinced yet?
Thank you for your request, Leila!
Let’s get started!
Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium mixing bowl. Set aside.
Cream the butter and flour for several minutes until light and fluffy.
Add the eggs and beat until lighter in color and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
Add the honey, coconut oil, vanilla and almond extracts and beat until combined.
Using a rubber spatula, add the flour mixture and the honey yogurt to the wet mixture in thirds, alternating between the two, beginning and ending with the flour.
Generously grease a 9×2 inch round cake pan. I use and love Parrish Magic Line cake pans. Made in the USA from hand-forged heavy-gauge aluminum.
I recently had a conversation with several other baking bloggers. I was the only one who doesn’t line my cake pans with parchment paper. I’ve never had the need to. My cakes always slip right out of the pans. Maybe I’m just lucky – or maybe Magic Line pans really are magic!
Here’s a picture of my Parrish Magic Line cake pan after I released the cake – hardly any crumbs, a perfectly clean release. (By the way, I’m not getting compensated in any way for promoting these pans. I just really, really like them and wanted to share my findings with you. I own several cake and bread pans of theirs and love them all.)
Okay, moving on…Spoon the the batter into the cake pan.
Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees F for 35-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the very center of the cake comes out clean. Let the cake sit in the pan for 10 minutes before inverting and transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
Toast the sliced almonds in an oven preheated to 375 degrees F for about 4-5 minutes or until light golden brown.
Combine the glaze ingredients and mix until no lumps are remaining.
Place the wire rack over a cookie sheet. Pour the glaze over the cooled cake, starting in the middle and spreading outward, letting it drip down the sides.
Sprinkle the toasted almonds over the top of the cake. Let sit for at least 10 minutes before carefully transferring it to a serving platter. Enjoy!
- 2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- ¼ cup honey
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil (highly recommended, but can substitute vegetable oil) Note: Do not melt the coconut oil before adding it.
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ⅛ teaspoon pure almond extract
- 1 cup Greek honey yogurt (do not use non-fat)
- For the Honey Glaze:
- 1½ cups sifted powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 3 tablespoons whole milk
- ⅓ cup sliced almonds
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Generously grease a 9x2 inch round cake pan. I use and love Parrish Magic Line pans.
- Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl.
- In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar for several minutes until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and beat another 2 minutes until lighter in color and fluffy. Add the honey, coconut oil, vanilla and almond extracts and beat until combined.
- Using a rubber spatula, stir the flour mixture and honey yogurt into the wet mixture in thirds, alternating between the two, beginning and ending with the flour.
- Spoon the batter into the prepared cake pan and bake for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the very center of the cake comes out clean. Let the cake sit in the cake pan for 10 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- Toast the sliced almonds in an oven preheated to 375 degrees F for 4-5 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool.
- To make the glaze, combine the powdered sugar, honey and milk until no lumps are remaining. Place the rack over a cookie sheet and pour the glaze over the cooled cake, starting at the center and moving out, allowing the glaze to drip down the sides of the cake. Evenly sprinkle the almonds over the top of the cake. Let sit for at least 10 minutes before carefully transferring to a serving platter.