My Creative Life: Liz Jeffrey | Dobos Torte

April 6, 2017
Dobos Torte - A Hungarian sponge cake that's known for its thin sponge cake layers and complemented with a rich buttercream. It's a show stopper!

“Life is uncertain. Eat dessert first”     ~ Ernestine Ulmer

Photo Credit: Facebook – Liz Jeffrey

(This post may contain affiliate links)

Today .. the final installment of a five-part series here at The Veggies

Liz Jeffrey and her husband Ryan are the geniuses behind Arcadia .. one of Ames, Iowa's most loved coffee shops. Home to “The slowest cup of coffee in town”  Not only is their food comforting (mmmm .. Laksa soup and Sweet Potato Gnocchi) .. but the homey vibe makes you want to stay a while .. have a turtle bar .. and take a million Instagram pics

In Part I .. They chatted about moving to Ames .. early experiences in the culinary world .. and her parent's funny reaction when she told them they were getting married

In Part II .. Liz shared her journey toward perspective .. why she doesn't take short cuts .. and a terrifying late-night robbery that would forever shape their business strategy

In Part III .. Words of wisdom to someone thinking of opening a restaurant .. the bachelor food they love to cook at home .. and the unexpected origin of their (much-loved!) cheesecake recipe

In Part IV .. Funny customer pet peeves .. a truly unforgettable order .. Ryan's home-brew .. and why the bakery is Liz's sacred space

Ahead they share Arcadia's most popular coffees .. favorite cookbooks .. the magazine her famous chocolate cake recipe was clipped from .. and Mixmaster vs Kitchen Aid  (it's a real thing!)

Photo Credit: Facebook – itsthehappypage

Are you coffee snobs?

Liz:  Absolutely .. 100%

Ryan:  Actually she’s more of a coffee snob than I am

I will not drink diner coffee. If I can see through to the bottom of cup .. it’s just not worth it.

Ryan:  In a diner I can drink diner coffee just fine. I couldn’t drink it in a different environment .. but in that environment .. that’s what it’s supposed to be

I learned to drink coffee because of his roasting .. so it needs to be within the parameters. The really, really light roasts are gross .. and the really, really dark roasts are gross

It's very hard to travel. We actually bring our coffee

— — —

What are your favorites?

Our customers love the Sumatra (our darkest roast). It makes up about a third of our total coffee sales. For me? It's the Guatemala .. the El Salvadores .. the chocolaty type coffees

Ryan: Ethiopian is my favorite. It's the first coffee that I ever had fresh roasted

The Ethiopian isn’t my favorite .. but I can get around it .. a long as I don't have to smell it. Whenever we were doing tastings .. I’d smell soggy cardboard, cinnamon, and cedar. I never really got the fruitiness

Ryan:  Fruit and berries .. that’s what it is

But to me .. I smell soggy cardboard and I think “Ethiopia.”  Once I get past the smell .. I can taste the berries .. and then it's ok

Dobos Torte - A Hungarian sponge cake that's known for its thin sponge cake layers and complemented with a rich buttercream. It's a show stopper!

 

When roasting coffee beans, is it hard match the flavor from one batch to the next?

It can be. Some customers say “I loved it yesterday .. now do it again!”

Ryan:  Especially Ethiopian Harar .. it's tricky

Harar is my favorite region and it's not trivial to get that flavor setup. These were flavors I didn’t even think were possible in coffee .. and I've never been able to quite match that first day. Unfortunately .. the Harar region has basically been decimated in terms of coffee production

— — —

Who inspired your baking? 

My grandma and my mom

My birthday cake was always a seven layer Dobos Torte. It’s only found in recipe books. I tried to sell it at Arcadia .. people were like “That’s awesome! I’ll take a turtle bar”

 

What are your top three tips for baking/dessert success?

I have a baker’s instinct .. and not everybody does. It’s really hard to instill.

Temperature and the way you combine ingredients is very, very important. When a recipe says “room temperature” it can’t be melty. It can’t be cold. If it says “cream it for three minutes” .. you actually need to cream it. It's important to learn what the stages look like .. so you know if you're on the right track or not.

Sometimes you can fix things and sometimes you just can’t

When it comes to finishing desserts? You just have to do it. You can’t be afraid of it. I always tell people to move with intention. You have to frost it like you mean it. You have to torte that cake like you mean it .. you can’t be afraid. You just have to do it a hundred times. They’re going to be ugly and that’s fine.

Don’t be afraid of it .. it’s just a cake .. come on

Ryan:  Carefully reading and understanding the recipes .. especially older recipes. They’ll use words like “cream” that correspond to settings on a mixer. Most modern mixers just have numbers .. but mixers from the ‘20s through the ‘60s had words

He’s from a Mixmaster family and I’m from a Kitchen Aid family. We weren’t even sure we could combine families. His bowl spinned. Who does that? I was a planetary mixer .. my beaters spinned .. his bowl spinned

Ryan:  They haven’t made Mixmasters well since the mid ‘70s. So all those I grew up with are antiques

Mixmaster vs Kitchen Aid .. it’s a real thing

— — —

Who are some of your pastry heroes or mentors?

I like anything by Dorie Greenspan. Also Fran Bigelow's chocolate recipes .. but she’s super fussy

Ryan:  Her cakes are hard. They’re wonderful .. but you have to be very careful when making them because they’re easy to screw up

Sherry Yard .. she has some really good things

Rose Levy Beranbaum did her thesis on yellow cake mix. I highly recommend her Cake Bible .. Baking Bible .. and Bread Bible

Facebook – Arcadia's coffee roaster

 

What are some of your favorite cookbooks?

Those

It’s like Christmas when they all release cookbooks. It's pretty awesome.

I do a lot of research online as well. I have enough cooking experience to know which mommy blog works and which doesn’t. If I see a blog where their picture comes up in various other places .. I know it’s not necessarily a truthful representation of what they can do

I’ll read through a recipe and in my head I can tell if it works or if it doesn’t work. I also compare it to recipes I have that I know work. As baker I collect recipes. I’ve found that you just need five or six that work really well and you can do anything to them

I use the same chocolate cake recipe that Ryan's grandma cut out of Women’s Day and sent it to me in the mail .. six or seven years ago

When it arrived I thought “All right grandma .. thanks”  Then I tried it

“Thanks grandma!”

— — —

What are your favorite kinds of desserts? And do you have a signature one?

Probably the Dobos Torte. It's my signature cake that nobody else really does

Ryan's is probably the chocolate-cinnamon cheesecake. My grandma said “He has his own cake recipe?”  She wouldn’t allow my grandpa in the kitchen at all .. except to do dishes

Ryan:  The idea that I would not only be in the kitchen .. but I would develop recipes and do my own thing was astonishing to her

My favorite thing to make is the croissants. The process is probably the most fun for me

What is your secret to fluffy scones? 

I used a recipe from some cookbook .. I can’t even remember which one but I’m sure I checked it out from the library. I use a method from a different cookbook .. which uses a dough hook. I mix the dry ingredients in the food processor the night before. The next day we add milk .. the mix-ins and eggs.

They're baked in a convection oven

A lot of the girls who work for me say “I made your scones at home and they’re not the same”

So the Danish dough hook .. not over-working the dough .. and the convection oven. The gluten-free are actually easier because you can’t overwork them.

Ryan:  She used to make her own gluten-free flour

Now we get a palette at a time. That's a lot of flour(!)

— — —

What are some of your favorite things on the Arcadia menu?

The Lomito is very popular. The Chimichurri Steak .. sunny side up egg with the brioche-type bun

Ryan:  The bacon baguette sandwich is still the best-selling product

Ryan didn't have bagels growing up .. so he couldn't understand why you would choose a bagel vs a donut. So his favorite is the sausage + egg + cheese on a jalapeno bagel

Ryan:  The new stuff. Either the Lomito or the Grilled Octopus

Sweet potato gnocchi is awesome

Oh and the broccoli is so good! It’s amazing! I love the broccoli

Ryan:  Every time the two of us go to eat there we each get a plate and share the broccoli

I had to laugh .. because there are so many platforms for people to leave their opinions on. (And frankly I just don’t care that much)  One of them said $5 for broccoli? And I was like “I could eat that broccoli all day long .. two servings”

Photo Credit: Liz Jeffrey

Who or what inspires you daily?

We try to travel as much as we can.

People do not like to go to restaurants with us .. because we’re looking at the menu and looking around at the design aesthetic. How is it being served? What are the glasses and all of those things? And so when we’re traveling .. I’m constantly looking for inspiration.

The inside of our house looks a lot like Arcadia. We defiantly chose the things we liked

Ryan:  I grew up going to Taliesin and saw Frank Lloyd Wright architecture on a daily basis. So that’s always been a core part of my design language

I’m hoping in the next few months .. I can get back to being inspired. Not just surviving. These first months have just been surviving .. with little room for anything else. At some point I need to play

— —

What’s the one thing always on your grocery list?

Apples .. bananas .. cottage cheese. They’re my survival things

Ryan:  And whiskey

— — —

Thank-you Liz and Ryan for your funny stories .. words of wisdom .. and for being all sorts of wonderful(!)

Dobos Torte - A Hungarian sponge cake that's known for its thin sponge cake layers and complemented with a rich buttercream. It's a show stopper!

As I transcribed our interview .. there were a number of recipes that made it onto the short list of those to feature. The one always at the top? Liz's favorite .. the Dobos Torte. A celebration cake if there every was one .. with its thin sponge-like layers of cake .. sandwiched between rich chocolaty buttercream

Little did I know .. what I (or the neighborhood, really) were getting ourselves into

Once I figured out a process for making the layers .. surprisingly it was one of the easiest cakes I've made. There's only one cake batter. No syrups .. no splitting of layers or leveling the tops. They bake roughly five minutes apiece .. and are cool by the time the next one is coming out of the oven

The frosting is a breeze (especially if you have a master cake decorator who lives a few doors down) and is the chocolate-butter bomb you're hoping it would be. Worried about left-overs calling your name? Me too(!)  So pretty plates wrapped in plastic were delivered to houses up and down the street that evening

(ps:  If you deliver cake on a Sunday night .. guaranteed you'll come home with some delicious treasures. Homemade bread + grilled pizza + lemon cake – thank-you everyone!)  

As the emails trickled in with the results of the taste test .. it was declared a winner

This cake is most definitely doable .. and infinitely delicious. Go for it. We're all here .. cheering you on

Dobos Torte - A Hungarian sponge cake that's known for its thin sponge cake layers and complemented with a rich buttercream. It's a show stopper!

A few notes:

The best method I found for making the layers is demonstrated in The Aubergine Chef's video. A skeptic at first .. I was a true convert by the end. Circles are traced onto parchment paper .. which is then flipped pencil-side down onto a flat cookie sheet. After that it's greased .. and the batter spread until the circle is filled. It worked every time. Some did stick .. but they all peeled off nicely without breaking. Some did overflow .. but I could trim them up and no one was the wiser

The neighborhood consensus was .. while it was awesome the first day .. it was just as good .. if not better a few days later. In the past .. sponge cakes have always seemed on the dry and dull side. But this one .. with its buttery chocolate frosting sandwiched between pancake-like layers is neither. It has a softness you wouldn’t expect from something that slices so neatly. In the fridge .. the shell-like chocolate exterior locks in the moisture for days

I detoured from tradition in a couple of different ways. First .. I made more layers than the requisite 7. Second .. I skipped the traditional caramel layer that goes on top

Dunk your cake batter bowl in water right away. It dries quickly and was surprisingly hard to scrub off later

Enjoy!

xoxo

Adapted from Gil Marks' The World of Jewish Desserts with the caramel layer + a wealth of tips from Joe Pastry

5.0 from 17 reviews
Dobos Torte
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • Cake layers
  • 7 large eggs, separated
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 1 pound (3½ cups) confectioners’ sugar + extra for dusting
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • ⅛ tsp salt

  • Frosting and filling
  • ½ pound (8 oz) semi or bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • ½ pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into chunks
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 2 Tbsp confectioners’ sugar

  • Caramel layer (optional)
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • Handful of toasted, peeled hazelnuts
Instructions
  1. Prepare your parchment rounds
  2. (I made mine using a cut-out of a 9" round)
  3. Cut each piece of parchment paper larger than needed for the cake shape and size.
  4. Stencil your cake shape on one side of the sheet, then flip it over and butter and flour the shape area on the reverse side.
  5. Tap away any excess flour

  6. Cake
  7. Preheat oven to 425°F
  8. In the bowl your stand mixer, beat 10 egg yolks for a few minutes at high-speed, until they're pale.
  9. Gradually add the sugar and increase the mixing speed .. beating the yolks and sugar until they've turned thick and glossy.
  10. (Don't forget to scrape the bowl occasionally with rubber spatula as you go)
  11. Gradually add the flour and salt, increase the mixing speed, and mix for 5 minutes more.
  12. Add the lemon juice and mix to combine
  13. (Your yolk mix should resemble the thickness of spackle at this point)
  14. In a separate bowl with cleaned beaters, beat the 7 egg whites with a whisk attachment until they hold stiff peaks
  15. Stir a few heaping spoonfuls of the whites into the yolk mix to loosen it .. before folding in the rest of the whites in three additions.
  16. When you’re finished, your batter will have transformed from a dry paste to a spreadable, foamy batter

  17. Bake the cake layers
  18. Place the stenciled shapes of parchment paper onto baking sheets.
  19. Spread the batter within their stenciled shapes on parchment paper .. trying to push the batter rather than pull it with an offset spatula (it will help keep the parchment from rolling up)
  20. Don’t worry if they spread past the shape outline on parchment, you can trim them later
  21. I spread about ¼" thickness into each circle. Alternately you could weigh the batter and divide it out accordingly.
  22. Bake each layer for 5-6 minutes, or until the tops are golden with a few dark brown spots (thicker layers may take a couple of extra minutes)
  23. When each layer is baked, remove it from the oven and flip it out onto a cooling rack that has been dusted with a small amount of confectioners’ sugar.
  24. Carefully remove the parchment paper before flipping the cake back onto another lightly dusted cooling rack to finish cooling. (It’s best to cool the layers right side up; the tops are the stickiest part)
  25. Repeat with the remaining layers (they'll cool very quickly)
  26. Trim the edges of cake, if needed, to make even shapes

  27. Chocolate Buttercream
  28. Melt chocolate until smooth.
  29. Set aside to cool to room temperature, but not so cool that it hardens again.
  30. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter until soft and smooth
  31. Add vanilla, 3 egg yolks, sugar and cooled chocolate, beating until thoroughly mixed (scraping as needed)

  32. Assemble
  33. Place a few strips of parchment or waxed paper around the outer edges of your cake plate.
  34. Place first cake layer on plate and spread chocolate on top and to edges with an offset spatula (the filling must be spread fairly thin to have enough for all layers and the outsides of the cake)
  35. Repeat with remaining layers (or all layers except one, if you’d like to do a decorative caramel layer), stacking the cakes as evenly as possible.
  36. Once fully stacked and filled, you can trim the edges again so that they’re even.
  37. Spread chocolate on outside of the cake in a thin coat, just to cover and adhere the crumbs to the cake.
  38. Place cake in fridge for 30 minutes (or freezer for 5 minutes) to set the chocolate.
  39. Spread chocolate more thickly and smoothly to make a final exterior coat of frosting.
  40. Remove paper strips

  41. Caramel Topping (optional)
  42. Lightly grease a sheet of parchment paper.
  43. Place last cake layer on this sheet.
  44. Lightly oil a large chef’s knife (if cutting layer into 16 traditional wedges)
  45. Combine the sugar and water in a small, heavy saucepan and swirl it until the sugar melts and begins to turn a pale amber color.
  46. Quickly and carefully, pour this (you’ll have a bit of extra) over the prepared cake layer and spread it evenly with an offset spatula, right over the outer edges.
  47. Using prepared knife or cutter, quickly cut layer as you wish.
  48. Leave in place, then cool completely.
  49. Once fully cooled, cut edges of shapes again, to ensure that you can remove them cleanly.
  50. Arrange caramel pieces or wedges over cake, propping them up decoratively with hazelnuts.
  51. Chill cake until really to serve

Notes
Do ahead:
You can bake the cake layers ahead of time, freezing them between sheets of waxed paper, wrapped tightly in plastic. No worries about defrosting before assembling

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56 Comments

  • Reply Mimi Green April 6, 2017 at 8:04 am

    Baked goods are nearest and dearest to my heart. I love cake, and this multi layer cake looks delicious. I swear I want to run out and hop on a plan and come and visit. I usually have to to wait for the holidays to get amazing baked goods.

  • Reply Stacie @ Divine Lifestyle April 6, 2017 at 8:12 am

    OMG, that looks absolutely delicious! I must have this in my life immediately! Om nom nom.

  • Reply Paula Parker April 6, 2017 at 9:49 am

    Wow , what a great place to have coffee and a torte. My favorite too. I am not a coffee snob, I don’t think, but it has to be strong. (Not Ethiopian strong-too much). I can drink coffee that’s been hanging around my desk all day long. Thanks for the recipe for the Dobos tart. Will have to try!

  • Reply Bill Sweeney April 6, 2017 at 11:29 am

    Go away with your evil torte! I am currently trying to loose weight, and all I want to do is eat all of that. Om nom nom.

  • Reply Tamara April 6, 2017 at 11:39 am

    I literally just had egg and sausage on a bagel – five minutes ago!!! And Sweet potato gnocchi !? Although I’ve never had grilled octopus, I would probably eat anything suggested here.

  • Reply Heather April 6, 2017 at 12:13 pm

    That potato gnocchi sounds so nice! I’ve recently taken to gnocchi soups. My eight year old son loves them too. He’s developing quite the palate.

  • Reply lisalisa April 6, 2017 at 2:16 pm

    Wow, looks like a place I would surely visit and the cake, OMGoodness looks so delicious!

  • Reply Chasity L Boatman April 6, 2017 at 2:19 pm

    I too will not drink diner coffee. Coffee should be a relaxing, delicious experience. This cake looks so moist! Seems like it would pair perfectly with a nice coffee.

  • Reply Kiwi April 6, 2017 at 2:35 pm

    I love a great coffee shop! Look at that cake I am drooling already over it!

  • Reply Jenn @ Best of Budgets April 6, 2017 at 3:15 pm

    What a yummy looking recipe. Looks amazing. I will definitely have to try it out some time. I loved the pic that said happiness is licking out the cake bowl. That’s me all day!

  • Reply Elizabeth Neas April 6, 2017 at 3:30 pm

    Oh my…I want that cake NOW. My husband is in Ames every now and then. I think for the School of Mines? I’ll have to make sure that he checks the place out on his next trip (and he better bring back some treats for ME).

  • Reply Paula Schuck April 6, 2017 at 7:13 pm

    There is nothing better than a great coffee shop! Except, maybe that cake. Does that ever look delicious!

  • Reply Ann Bacciaglia April 6, 2017 at 8:21 pm

    Arcadia looks like my kind of coffee shop. This cake looks so delicious. I wish I could have some right now. I am always looking for new dessert recipes to try. I am sure it will be a hit.

  • Reply Dogvills April 6, 2017 at 11:47 pm

    They are an inspiration. I love to bake, but there are times that I’m just too afraid to do it because it might turn up ugly. I enjoyed reading this.

  • Reply Joely Smith April 7, 2017 at 12:45 am

    Thank you so much for the recipes! I must make a Torte! That looks so good. Personally, I like my scones hard but to each their own haha. They look like such a lovely couple and I would love to visit their place!

  • Reply Bites for Foodies April 7, 2017 at 6:33 am

    Wow! That cake looks amazing…my mouth is watering! Besides the ingredients which sound delicious, the photos are stunning! That cake is perfection!

  • Reply Marcie W. April 7, 2017 at 8:50 am

    I am a total coffee addict, so spending time at a shop like this would be a lot of fun. Of course, I could never pass up a piece of that amazing torte either. It would be the perfect compliment to any cup.

  • Reply Our Family World April 7, 2017 at 10:52 am

    I enjoyed reading your series of interviews of Liz Jeffrey and her husband Ryan. It is amazing how they were able to establish Arcadia and how it is one of the most talked about coffee shops in Ames, Iowa. I believe it is because of their dedication to their craft, their passion in healthy food, and the careful selection of ingredients that go into their baked goodies, their coffee and the other delicious food they serve in their restaurant. Should I get the chance to visit Iowa, I will make sure I stop by Arcadia.

  • Reply Nancy at Whispered Inspirations April 7, 2017 at 11:48 am

    This cake looks beyond delicious. Just wow! Is there really anything better than a good coffee shop? I don’t think so.

  • Reply Kathy April 7, 2017 at 12:45 pm

    That cake looks amazing! I would love to try it sometime. What a wonderful coffee shop. It looks nice and the food looks great too.

  • Reply uprunforlife April 7, 2017 at 1:31 pm

    The cakes look so amazing. We had a new coffee shop named Arcadia open up. They are also doing all homemade items too. I wish you luck and hope that you can continue to grow your business.

  • Reply HilLesha April 7, 2017 at 2:46 pm

    I have never really been into cake, but I wouldn’t mind trying out this cake. It looks delicious in every sense of the word!

  • Reply Kelly Hutchinson April 7, 2017 at 5:51 pm

    I love a good cup of Sumatra! It would go perfectly with the chocolate cake!

  • Reply Tracy @ Ascending Butterfly April 8, 2017 at 12:47 am

    I do not drink coffee, my mom didn’t so I guess I never developed an interest. And while I love my treats, I do not like baking them myself at all. My friends know I will make a multi-course meal but they must bring dessert. Because much like Meatloaf says in his song: I will do anything for dinner, but I won’t do *THAT* and that is dessert or baking! LOL 🙂

  • Reply karlyn cruz April 8, 2017 at 8:31 am

    It looks yummy and delicious! I love your recipe. This is what really kids wants to eat at dessert time. Yummy!

  • Reply Mars April 8, 2017 at 9:01 am

    Omg I also lick mixing bowls. I thought Im the only one doing that. Your recipe is amazing as always. Great post!

  • Reply Sky Chiew April 8, 2017 at 9:52 pm

    Looks terrific as always! It reminds me of a local layered cake we have here – Kueh Lapis, although i’m sure the taste would be very different. Can’t wait to try 🙂

  • Reply Rebecca Swenor April 9, 2017 at 4:34 pm

    This Dobos Torte is something I am going to have to try making. It sounds and looks delicious. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  • Reply Censie Sawyer April 9, 2017 at 10:27 pm

    OH wow. This recipe looks simply amazing. Thank you for sharing I know that my whole family will enjoy this if I make it. There is no shame in licking the bowls when you bake. YUM!

  • Reply Nora April 10, 2017 at 2:54 am

    Gorgeous cake and super positive and inspiring interview! Grandmas sure are good motivators for baking. 🙂 I wish I could do that beautiful cakes more often!

  • Reply Juliana Chow April 10, 2017 at 8:17 am

    The cake looks absolutely incredible!!!

  • Reply Jacqui S April 10, 2017 at 10:06 am

    The torte looks absolutely delish! I love baking as well. Something I’d like to do more of. My grandmother was also a great cook. (who’s wasn’t???) She made her meals by ‘feel’. if it didn’t feel right, she added ingredients as needed 🙂

  • Reply krystal April 10, 2017 at 11:58 am

    I have never enjoyed a torte but you make it look so easy. Definitely a delicious dessert!

  • Reply Ana De- Jesus April 10, 2017 at 1:05 pm

    I liked when Liz was saying that you have to make the torte with intention because I think that can apply to any area of life. Never be afraid and press forward. I have to say I would love to attempt to make the dobos torte it looks incredible x

  • Reply joanna April 10, 2017 at 1:07 pm

    I love Dobos Torte, I used to have it all the time when I was little. Being neighbors with Hungary and living in Transylvania, a lot of their cooking has come into our house. However, would you allow me to challenge you, next time you make the Dobos Torte, make the top caramelized, same as they do in Hungary 🙂 That used to be my favorite part 🙂

  • Reply Amer Phils April 10, 2017 at 7:27 pm

    ok that chocolate cake is so beautiful. I’m salivating, I wish I had that right now.

  • Reply Elizabeth O. April 10, 2017 at 10:40 pm

    It was nice reading the final part of this interview. I had a great time learning about them and how they made Arcadia as great as it is now. I wish them more power and I hope they last for years and years!

  • Reply MissJHENZ April 11, 2017 at 2:50 am

    Pretty fun interview! When I read the part about their grocery list, I thought of what might be my answer, if Ryan said “and whiskey” I might say “and ice cream” HAHAHA!

  • Reply Lindsey April 11, 2017 at 7:19 am

    I love the fact that when travelling Liz and Ryan bring their own coffee, the coffee snobbery is real and makes me chuckle. This cake is truly heavenly, I have recently started to love and enjoy baking with my daughter and this looks like something that we could whip up together, probably destroying my kitchen in the process, but if it taste as good as it looks, it will be worth it.

  • Reply Diane Hoffmaster April 11, 2017 at 8:02 am

    I have a huge sweet tooth and that cake looks phenomenal. I must admit, if I go out with someone to eat, I don’t want to be sharing a plate of broccoli 🙂

  • Reply Nadine Cathleen April 11, 2017 at 11:19 am

    I am huge fan of coffee shops! I love it when they are unique, quirky and with lots of personality! This one looks awesome and the cakes look delicious !

  • Reply Mal April 11, 2017 at 3:15 pm

    That torte looks fantastic, I wish I could bake half as good as that! I’ll give it a go, when I decide it’s finally time for a cheat day!.Personally I like simple things the most, probably becasue I can cook them as well, hah! That’s why my sweet tooth top #1 is… apple crumble!

    Unfortunately I live nowhere near Iowa (or the States in general for that matter) but if I ever get a chance to visit, I’ll make it my priority to get to Arcadia, it seems like a very lovable place

  • Reply Cassidy's Adventures April 11, 2017 at 5:20 pm

    This cake looks absolutely delicious! And I loved the little interview with the coffee shop people! I would love to visit there one day 🙂 Coffee is my favorite <3

  • Reply Jenn @ EngineerMommy April 11, 2017 at 7:21 pm

    It’s so interesting to learn about the people behind successful businesses. I have often thought about opening up my own coffee shop one day. After all, I enjoy coffee all the time. Thanks for this peek behind the scenes.

  • Reply Kerri Olkjer April 11, 2017 at 8:47 pm

    I love that they take their own coffee when they travel! Now that I’ve read all of these I definitely want to visit this coffee shop, lol, I think I may have family close. Really appreciate that they have gluten free options. Hard to find around here.

  • Reply Alice April 12, 2017 at 12:07 am

    Looks so yummy! My brothers love sweets especially if made with vanilla and coffee.

  • Reply CATALINA NINI April 12, 2017 at 7:51 am

    I am having a <> . My grandma used to do a similar cake and I am so glad I discover your recipe. Emotions ♥♥♥

  • Reply CATALINA NINI April 12, 2017 at 7:58 am

    I am having a ” deja vu” . My grandma used to do a similar cake and I am so glad I discover your recipe. Emotions ♥♥♥

  • Reply Anton April 12, 2017 at 9:11 pm

    Fantastic pictures, Alison! Makes me feel like grabbing some cake now 🙂 Wish i could make this at home but we don’t have an oven. Hope the shops have something that look as good!

  • Reply Tonya Wilhelm April 13, 2017 at 8:26 pm

    That looks like a great spot. I’m a darker the better kind of gal. Coffee, chocolate…dark, dark, dark. Oh, but that cake. I’d like to shove a turtle bar inside that cake. Yum

  • Reply chichi April 15, 2017 at 9:43 am

    i am jut so bad at baking but illl definitely be trying this one, hope to get it right!

  • Reply Michelle V April 15, 2017 at 10:18 am

    That cake could steal the show at any event. And it’s my favorite flavor of cake. Yum!

  • Reply Tiara April 22, 2017 at 12:00 pm

    Okay, you caught me again. My goodness, all your amazing recipes, I’m going to make a cook book, based off your blogs, haha. I am so bad at baking but this cake has me wanting to give it another chance 😉

  • Reply David Elliott April 24, 2017 at 9:56 pm

    The cake looks spectacular. I will have to try to make it sometime. And it’s such a sweet interview with them. I loved the interplay with the couple, especially about the coffee. It was very cute and felt like being there hearing them talk.

  • Reply Sarah Bailey April 28, 2017 at 1:55 pm

    This is such a fantastic interview and their coffee shop sounds like such a wonderful, homey spot. This cake looks so very delicious and I would love to be able to bake something like this.

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