Don't you just love a good poke cake? I do, but it can be difficult to find a recipe that doesn't use a nasty boxed cake mix. Also, a lot of recipes call for just vanilla extract to add a bit of flavor. By mixing vanilla and almond extracts, you can add a bit of depth to really make this cherry poke cake extraordinary.
I myself am not a big fan of coconut, but I've seen poke cake recipe variations that included a bit of coconut extract, and even a handful of shredded coconut. Feel free to play around with various flavorings. You never know what you may come up with!
Anyway, enough talk. Let's get on to the recipe.
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup full-fat buttermilk
2 large eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
1 (3.5 oz) package cherry jello
1 cup boiling water
1/2 cup cold water
1 cup very cold heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Cherries with stems for garnish
How to make it:
1: Preheat oven to 350°.
2: Butter and flour a 9" x 13" baking pan.
3: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together all dry ingredients.
4: In a medium mixing bowl, mix together buttermilk, oil, eggs and extracts.
5: Slowly add the liquid ingredients to the dry, stirring thoroughly until all ingredients are incorporated. Use a hand mixer if you like. (Batter will be thick.)
6: Pour batter into prepared pan, and bake for roughly 30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
7: Let cool, in pan, for 15 minutes.
8: While the cake is cooling, whisk together the boiling water and Jell-O powder in a medium mixing bowl until dissolved. Stir in the cold water. Using a wooden skewer, poke holes all over the cake, then pour the Jell-O mixture on top.
9: Place cake in refrigerator, and let cool for three hours.
10: Make the topping by combining the heavy whipping cream, vanilla extract, and powdered sugar in a large mixing bowl. Using a handmixer, beat on high speed until it is whipped cream consistency. Spread this over the cold cake, and return to the refrigerator for one hour.
11: Top with fresh cherries, and serve.
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