Monday, April 4, 2011

Spring Time Watergate Cake

For a very special occasion, like my Mothers Birthday, a gift from the heart is homemade cake. I love to ponder on favorite things to eat and colors with a little character coming from something nostalgic. For my mom the pistachio nuts seemed to do the trick for flavor and the fresh and light spring colors of soft green and pinks seemed just right for a March in Texas. I always think about my mom in spring as her birthday comes as the wildflowers open. For the nostalgia part of the cake, would be the Watergate Cake itself. It first received its name in the early 70's as the notorious Nixon Watergate Scandal took place. Jell-o had just come out with their first ever pistachio pudding mix as it was all happening. As the folks in their test kitchens went to work on some recipes to use for their new product they came up with the Watergate Cake and the Cover Up Frosting as well. They say it was named Watergate Cake because it was filled with nuts and covered in fluff ostensibly like the Nixon administration had been. None the less, I had my first slice of Watergate Cake made by a dear friend for myself. My memory recalled it as being the best cake I had ever had. For that reason I thought it the best cake to make for this very special celebration.

Pink Primrose Wildflowers at our Gate
Everyone seems to have a little twist on how they prefer to make a Watergate Cake. Most who know me well know I don't like making anything from a box. But I would assume that we must all have our indulgence once in while for a special event. So you will find a few healthy things I tried to add to this recipe as well as a whole lot of stuff from boxes. After all it's my Mothers Birthday.

Watergate Cake Recipe

1 White Cake Mix
1 pkg. instant pistachio pudding
1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup applesauce
3 farm fresh eggs
1 cup 7up or club soda
1 cup nuts crushed very fine (I used pecans)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour two round cake pans. Whisk your dry ingredients together. Add the rest of the ingredients and beat on medium high until well combined. Bake on 350 for 45 to 50 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Cover Up Frosting

2 boxes instant pistachio pudding mix
2 1/2 cups milk
2 pkgs. dream whip topping mix
1 cup of crushed pineapple

Drain the pineapple. Cook it on the stove top in a saucepan just long enough to cook down any extra juice from it. Set aside.Next combine all the other ingredients and whip until nice and thick. After your cakes are cooled you can spread the pineapple on the top of the first layer and then frost on top of it. Place your top layer on the cake and finish frosting. For a little fun and decoration I make tiny flowers with soft pink mint candy and made the leaves by slicing green sugar gummy candies.

Happy Gardening and Happy Birthday Mom!!


  1. Yummy, I guess it was all gone? I always think of my mom this time of year. Her birthday was in April and we always took a drive to see the bluebonnets! Your primrose are so pretty I could eat them! LOL But they don't taste as good as they look, I should know. :0

  2. Yes, it was all gone giggles...;) I know you can eat some primrose hehehe xxooxx

  3. I'm delighted to have found your blog. Love its name, by the way. Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a trail so I could find you! I look forward to reading more.

  4. Hi Dorothy, I'm so glad you stopped by.Your blog is fabulous. It's so much fun finding others in the Houston area who love the garden.

  5. That cake sounds amazing. Today is my mom's birthday - she just might be getting 2 cakes this year.

    Take good care,


  6. So for your Mom, did you use pistachio nuts instead of pecans, or with pecan

  7. Hi Robyn, I actually used Pecans instead of Pistachio nuts. The pudding gave it plenty of Pistachio flavor. Pecans have been plentiful in Texas this year. And really have you seen how much Pistachios are going for now? It's outrageous!! So glad you stopped by =)