The Market Spring Fling Cake

The_market_Spring_Fling_Cake_recipe

The Market Spring Fling Cake

A delightful layered zucchini cake topped with a fluffy cream cheese frosting and all the fresh fruit you can imagine, this gorgeous Spring Fling Cake from The Market is the perfect celebratory cake for spring.

What a perfect way to celebrate mom for Mother’s Day by treating her to a homemade spring fling cake!

I was saddened to hear that The Market, a long-standing restaurant, bakery, and coffee shop in downtown Denver is closing for good.  The market was known for its epic baked goods, sandwiches, and pasta salads, but in my mind, the Spring Fling Cake was their most iconic bakery item.

I have personally ordered the Spring Fling Cake throughout the years for bridal showers, baby showers, birthday celebrations, graduation, and for Mother’s Day.   It is so gorgeous and makes a beautiful centerpiece for any dessert table.   If you’ve never experienced the Spring Fling Cake from the Market, not to worry, you can make your own at home.

The recipe was originally published in the Rocky Mountain News, another obsolete Colorado influence of the past.

I made 2 minor changes to the recipe that improves the baking of the cake and the flavor of the cake itself.

I added the zest of one orange as an ingredient to the cake and that makes a world of difference.  You still get the zucchini cake flavor, but its accented with a touch of orange.  Lemon zest could also be substituted, but a touch of citrus zest is needed to brighten the cake.

The second change to the originally published recipe is that I put the cake batter into two baking pans rather than one.  The original recipe calls for a 10″ x 3″ round pan and that is a commercial size baking pan that I did not have on hand.  As a result, the first time I made this, I had 4 inches of cake that baked to a cone-shaped point that I had to cut off.   Of course, we ate it, but it was a wasted 4 inches of cake.

By dividing the cake batter into two 9-inch round pans, you have two perfectly proportioned cake halves with which to work and you won’t have the excess cone-shaped cake that needs to be cut off.

 

The Market’s Spring Fling Cake Recipe

Ingredients:

For the cake:

  • 2 1/2 cups shredded zucchini
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • zest of one orange
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • Pinch of salt

For the frosting:

  • 3/4 cup cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract

Apricot Glaze

  • 1 tablespoon apricot jam, thinned with a teaspoon of water

Fruit for the cake:

  • 1-pint strawberries, cleaned, stemmed and sliced
  • 4 kiwi fruit, peeled and sliced
  • 2 mangoes, peeled and sliced
  • 1-pint blueberries or raspberries
  • one clementine peeled

(Or whatever you like and is in season)

How to Make a Spring Fling Cake at Home

  • Preheat oven to 350.° Grease and flour 2 9-inch round cake pans.
  • In a stand mixer or large bowl, beat together shredded zucchini, eggs, sugar, oil, sour cream, and 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • Combine the flour, baking soda, salt and baking powder and sift into the wet mixture.
  • Continue to beat until well-combined, but do not overmix. The batter was thick, fairly wet and easy to pour.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan and bake for 50 – 60 minutes.   The cake will be done when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  • Cool on a rack for 10 minutes, then remove the cake from the pan and allow it to cool completely for a few hours.

For the Frosting

  • While the cake is cooling, prepare the frosting. Beat together the cream cheese, vanilla and butter until smooth.
  • While continuing to beat, gradually add the powdered sugar. Keep mixing until it’s all incorporated and smooth.
  • In a separate bowl, whip the heavy cream until stiff peaks form.
  • Fold the whipped cream into the frosting. Be careful not to overmix.
  • Cut the cooled cake, making either two or three layers.

Spring_Fling_Cake_Recipe

Spread a layer of frosting over each inner layer. Then add a layer of fruit on top of the frosting. I used sliced blackberries, blueberries and strawberries for the filling, but you could also add mango if you wish.  Stack the layers of cake together.

Use the bottom of the cake that was in the pan as the top piece of the cake.  It is flat and will hold the fruit and frosting easily.

Evenly frost the top of the cake and the sides. Arrange the fruit in circles overlapping the fruit all over the top of the cake.

For the apricot glaze, heat the apricot jam in a small saucepan and add a teaspoon of water to thin.  Stir frequently.  If your jam has chunks of apricot in it, then strain it through a fine-mesh sieve so that you have just the glaze without any fruit.

Using a pastry brush, gently glaze the fruit on the top of the cake.  Only glaze the fruit, not any frosting that is peeking through, otherwise, the frosting it will be a brownish-orange color.

Apricot_Glaze_Spring_Fling_Cake

Refrigerate the cake until ready to serve.

You may find it easier to make the zucchini cake the day before and refrigerate overnight and then do the frosting and fruit toppings the day of to divide to work.

The_market_Spring_Fling_Cake_recipe

Spring Fling Cake

A delightful layered zucchini cake topped with a fluffy cream cheese frosting and all the fresh fruit you can imagine, this gorgeous Spring Fling Cake is the perfect celebratory cake for spring.
4.15 from 7 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Spring Fling Cake, The Market Spring Fling Cake
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 10 servings
Calories:
Author: Eva Fry

Ingredients

For the cake:

  • 2 1/2 cups shredded zucchini
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • zest of one orange
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 tablespoon plus 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract for frosting
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • Pinch of salt

For the frosting:

  • 3/4 cup cream cheese at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup butter at room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

Apricot Glaze

  • 1 tablespoon apricot jam
  • 1 teaspoon water

Fruit for the cake:

  • 1 pint strawberries cleaned, stemmed and sliced
  • 4 kiwi fruit peeled and sliced
  • 2 mangoes peeled and sliced
  • 1 pint blueberries or raspberries
  • one clementine peeled
  • Or whatever you like and is in season

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350.° Grease and flour 2 9-inch round cake pans.
  • In a stand mixer or large bowl, beat together shredded zucchini, eggs, sugar, oil, sour cream and 1/2 tablespoon vanilla.
  • Combine flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda and sift to add to the wet mixture. Continue to beat until well-combined. The batter should be fairly wet and easy to pour.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared cake pans and bake for 50 to 60 minutes. It is done when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  • Cool on a rack for 10 minutes, then remove the cake from the pan and allow it to cool completely for a few hours.
  • While the cake is cooling, prepare the frosting. Beat together the cream cheese, vanilla extract and butter until smooth.
  • While continuing to beat, gradually add the powdered sugar. Keep mixing until it's all incorporated and smooth.
  • In a separate bowl, whip the heavy cream until stiff peaks form.
  • Fold cream into the frosting. Be careful not to overmix.
  • Cut the cooled cake, making either two or three even layers.
  • Use the bottom of the cake that was baked in the pan as the top of the cake as it is perfectly flat and will hold the frosting and fruit perfectly.
  • Spread a layer of frosting over each inner layer. Then add a layer of fruit on top of the frosting. Stack the layers of cake together.
  • Evenly frost the top of the cake and the sides. Arrange the fruit in circles overlapping the fruit all over the top of the cake.
  • For the apricot glaze, heat the apricot jam in a small saucepan and add a teaspoon of water to thin.  Stir frequently.  If your jam has chunks of apricot in it, then strain it through a fine-mesh sieve so that you have just the glaze without any fruit.
  • Using a pastry brush, gently glaze the fruit on the top of the cake.  Only glaze the fruit, not any frosting that is peeking through, otherwise, it will be a brownish-orange color.
  • Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Spring_Fling_Cake_Recipe_the_market

Be sure to let us know your thoughts on this iconic cake if you make this at home.

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About The Author

4 thoughts on “The Market Spring Fling Cake”

  1. Hi! I haven’t frosted her yet but was wondering if another fruit glaze would work… Maybe a raspberry? I’m having a hard time finding apricot or even orange or marmalade without jalapeno or habenero which I fear will turn it into a Spring Fling into a dumpster cake. Maybe a peach? Just wondering if anyone has tried this. I have my cakes done-cooling and will frost and decorate tomorrow. I can’t wait for the flavors! I lived in Denver for 12 years. I had this cake for the first time for a co-workers anniversary, then I got a piece every year on my birthday. It holds special memories. Can’t wait to share!

    1. Hi Sarah – I’m sure any fruit glaze would work. For the raspberry – you’ll definitely have to strain it to remove the seeds. I would heat it in a saucepan, add a teaspoon of water to thin slightly, then strain through a fine-mesh sieve. I was at Safeway this morning and there were lots of apricot and peach preserves on the shelves. Good luck! Can’t wait to hear how it goes!

  2. 5 stars
    Delicious! Thank you for sharing the recipe and I also used 2 pans and added orange zest and it was excellent. The whole family enjoyed it for mom’s birthday!

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