“Love is like a pineapple, sweet and undefinable.” – Piet Hein
I love pineapple, I would put it in everything if I could. This delicious recipe is called a poke cake – “poke” meaning to jab, not “poke” like the raw fish salad. The name comes from the process of baking the cake, poking holes into it and letting the glaze soak into it so that when you serve it, every bite has a ton of pineapple flavor.
Like so many new recipes I try, I was originally looking for a way to use up food before it went bad. I had intended to grill slices of pineapple, but the weather wasn’t cooperating, so I had to find something else. This poke cake was easy because I already had all the ingredients in the house. I’m especially a fan of any recipe that doesn’t require me to bring out the bulky electric mixer and clean all the fancy attachments afterwards.
Here is the recipe! I found it on the blog Avery Cooks, which is written by a woman who was named one of the top 10 food bloggers in 2012 by the Huffington Post, and has published several cookbooks. Avery said the pineapple poke cake was “the moistest, softest, juiciest cake I’ve ever made,” and she was absolutely right! This was also the only recipe for pineapple cake that I could find that didn’t use a boxed cake mix, so she gets extra points for that too.
This recipe is perfect to serve during the summer because not only does it has fresh pineapple chunks baked into the cake (above), but it also uses pineapple juice in the glaze. The cake didn’t rise very much in the oven, and it was dense even before I added the glaze. I had to drain the pineapple very well because too much extra moisture in the cake batter would mean that it wouldn’t set properly.
After the cake was cool, I poked the holes into it and poured the pineapple glaze over it, smoothing with a spatula away from the edges. I let it sit overnight in the fridge, and it had all soaked in the next morning. I could easily take the cake out the foil-lined pan (easy clean up!) and cut the cake into pieces to serve or to store in airtight containers. I really liked using a glaze because it adds just a little sweetness, unlike a thick layer of frosting which usually takes attention away from the flavors of the cake itself.