This week brought news of the recent death of Charles E. Entenmann, 92, who helped build his family bakery into a national brand of boxed pastries and desserts. Many people, especially those in the New York metropolitan area, grew up eating Entenmann’s desserts. I have many fond memories of destroying boxes of their cookies and cakes. In my house, we usually skipped the step of slicing the cake and just dug in with a fork (we weren’t good at sharing in my family). As part of a tribute to Entenmann and his legacy, I’ve compiled a ranking of the bakery’s ten best desserts.
Before continuing, I would just like to offer a caveat. In this list, I have focused on products that are in regular and wide production and featured on company website. I’m sure lovers of boxed pastries can point to more obscure or seasonal offerings. For my part, I loved their chocolate blackout cake (in the style of the mythical Ebinger’s Black Cake), but I haven’t seen it since about 2002. I had a little addiction to tres leches cake in 2005, but it’s been a long time since I’ve come across this one.
Without further ado, here is the final ranking:
10) NY Style Crumb Cake – If you want something similar to the crumb donuts described below, but prefer a cake format, this is a great option. Truth be told, I prefer softer Drake’s coffee cakes than mass-produced coffee cakes because Entenmann’s version has harder crumbs. But it’s still a solid option in the crumb cake genre.
9) Cheese Danish Twist – It’s all in the name. Nothing fancy, but even a standard cheese danish with a bit of frosting on top is still very good.
8) Pop’ems — These are delicious glazed donuts. At the time, it was one of my favorite items to bring to parties when I knew the drinks were already covered. They did not disappoint.
7) Marble Bread Cake — Simple and good. that pretty much sums it up. Just sweet enough to pack a punch without being overwhelming. Versatile as a nice treat with a hot drink or as a dessert. To kick it up a notch, you can add whipped cream and berries.
6) Raspberry Danish Twist – This is a great dessert option that could serve as breakfast if you’re under 25 or just feeling decadent – a cake mix, with raspberry jam and drizzles of white icing on the top.
5) Chocolate fondant cake — A classic chocolate cake with a rich chocolate frosting. Although it tastes good, the frosting can harden, especially in cold weather, and become a separate unit of the cake. On numerous occasions, I’ve had the frosting stick on my fork and separated from the cake, requiring clumsy attempts to try to reassemble the cake and maintain rapport. Still, the flavor is strong and the part of the cake moist, so it’s worth fixing that, especially if you need a chocolate bombshell.
4) Crispy Louisiana Cake — This one doesn’t get enough credit and offers quite a bit of variety. It is a tube cake, with a good crunch and a coconut flavor. I remember being sick once in my room during grad school with just a Louisiana Crunch Cake handy, and it served me well.
3) Fritters with crumbs — While the company produces a variety of donuts, the two types that come to mind when I think of Entenmann involve crumbs on top. One is the standard buttery donut with frosting and lozenge-sized crumbs on top, and another is Devil’s Food’s Crumb Donuts, which contain chocolate cake and crumbs. , but are also glazed and with powdered sugar on top. The other donuts are less good (for example, I find the chocolate-covered ones lacking in flavor).
2) Chocolate Chip Cookies — These are the perfect little chocolate chip cookies, soft enough to be chewy yet firm enough to maintain structural integrity. Distinct flavor and the right ratio of fries to cookie dough. It’s a great product to share with friends without the need for utensils or plates. It’s a challenge to avoid eating the whole box in one session because you can pop them like M&Ms.
1) Marshmallow Devil’s Ice Cream Cake — The king of all. Moist chocolate cake, smooth white frosting and more chocolate cake crumbs on top. None of the frosting separation issues described above in the chocolate fudge cake come with this one, as the frosting stays soft and fuses seamlessly with the cake, providing the perfect texture to match the explosive flavor. You could serve me this in a gourmet restaurant and I’d have a big smile on my face.