Baklava Cake – A Shortcut to Baklava

The real thing! Unfortunately, I don’t have a picture of my cake.

My detective stories set in Greektown Detroit, Michigan, are full of references to food. The family congregates around an old, walnut dining room table, eating the same food my family ate when I was growing up.

Readers asked me to compile a recipe book. I thought, why not? How hard can it be? Well, it was so far over my head, I quickly put the brakes on it and instead offered titles to the plethora of fabulous Greek cookbooks available.

One recipe however, is mine when I’m too lazy to make real Baklava, which I’d never attempt anyway.  This is a pretty cake, a big hit at potlucks, and takes very little effort.

Baklava Cake.


Yellow cake mix

White frosting

Walnuts to cover top of cake


Frozen Filo dough



Prepare the cake mix in two pans according to directions.

While the cake is baking, toss walnuts with a Tsp. of oil and a pinch of salt, spread on a cookie sheet and roast, being careful they don’t get too dark. Chop coarse when cooled.

After removing the nuts from the oven, put several layers of semi-thawed filo dough prepared according to the directions on the box, into the oven to bake. It doesn’t take long . You’ll want the sheets to be light brown.

After the cake has cooled, assemble it, covering with the white frosting.

Cover the frosted top with the chopped walnuts. Dust lightly with cinnamon. Crush the filo dough into quarter-sized pieces. It’s easy to turn it into dust, so use caution here. Take the crushed baked filo and press it into the sides of the frosted cake. Drizzle with honey!

The crisp filo and salted walnuts are a really nice accompaniment to the super sweet frosting and honey. I use a light hand drizzling with the honey. Diners can always add more if they’d like.

The Donut Shop Murder is the new novella prequel to The Greektown Detective Stories


Suzanne Jenkins

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Her anthology of romance titles with eleven other authors, A TOUCH OF PASSION, has just become the 2016 WINNER of The Romance Reviews Readers’ Choice Awards.

Suzanne writes page-turning contemporary romance, mystery, and women’s fiction with passionately gripping characters that stay with readers long after they turn the last page. The Detroit Detective Stories, beginning with The Greeks of Beaubien Street are a reflection of American fantasy with historical reality. Pam of Babylon books consistently rank in the Top 100 Best Sellers in American Drama with over 500,000 downloads.

Suzanne’s stand alone novels include Someone Like You, the Family/LGBT themed Alice’s Summertime Adventure, suspenseful The Savant of Chelsea, Slow Dancing, The Liberation of Ravenna Morton and Perfect for Him, her latest romance story. “Bring the tissues,” readers say.

Burn District, Jenkins new sci/fi series, follows an American family as they flee from political insanity to save their lives in the Arizona Desert.

Her short story, Vapor appeared in Willow Review, Spring 2013.

A retired operating room nurse, Jenkins divides her time between the west Michigan lakeshore, the Brandywine River Valley, and the mountains of Southern California, traveling across country with her husband, Jim and dog Oscar in an RV, to visit their children and grandchilden on different coasts.

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Cherry Pineapple Dump Cake by @JoanReeves #mgtab

Love, Christmas, a USA Today BestsellerI guarantee this Cherry Pineapple Dump Cake is effortless–and delicious! You’ve probably heard of “dump cakes,” a concoction where everything is dumped together and baked.

When I wrote Last Christmas, part of the fabulous Love, Christmas Romance Collection, I wrote long. Way too wordy. So I ended up cutting a lot of those words in every way I could.

One thing I deleted was the recipe for Cherry Pineapple Dump Cake that one of the characters makes. (Since I love to cook and bake–my daughter and her friends call me MacGyver in the kitchen–I often put recipes in my books.)

After I finished that novella, I dived into another project that was dear to my heart: a collection of family recipes from my grandmother, my mom, other far-flung friends and family, and me that I’ve titled Friday Is Cake Day.

The title comes from the fact that my mom always made a cake on Friday so she’d have something delicious to serve family and friends for the weekend and beyond. The cake was always gone by Thursday. It would have been gone a lot sooner, but we were allowed only a slice for dessert after our evening meal.

Deleted Words Always UsefulFriday Is Cake Day by Joan Reeves

I added the cake recipe, deleted from Last Christmas, to my “bake book.” Today, I’m sharing that with you.

If you’ve not made or eaten a dump cake, then you’ve missed out. There is nothing easier than a dump cake, and, believe it or not, it tastes delicious served warm or cold!

Excerpt from Friday Is Cake Day: Cherry Pineapple Dump Cake


1 large can crushed pineapple in juice
1 can cherry pie filling
1 box of yellow cake mix
1 stick butter
1 cup chopped pecans or other nut of your choice


• Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. (I’m American so I have no idea what that is in Celsius.)
• Prepare rectangular glass baking dish or metal pan (13″ long type) by spraying with Baker’s Joy or Pam.
• Pour pineapple and juice evenly into pan. Spread it around so it’s evenly distributed.
• Spoon the pie filling evenly over the pineapple.
• Crumble the cake mix evenly over the fruit layer.
• Slice the butter into slender pats and place evenly over the layers.
• Sprinkle with nuts.
• Bake for one hour or until golden brown.

Add Friday Is Cake Day to your library. You’ll find it at: Amazon * Nook * Smashwords.

last-christmas_joan-reevesLast Christmas she gave him her heart…this Christmas he’s going to pay for breaking it!

I hope you enjoy reading this rollicking romance set in the Texas panhandle. It’s funny, poignant, and suspenseful according to reviewers.

If you haven’t grabbed a copy of Love, Christmas yet, you should. It’s been the bestselling holiday collection this year!

Joan Reeves writes sexy Contemporary Romance Novels–available at most ebook sellers. (Audio editions available at Audible, and iTunes.) All of Joan’s books have the same underlying premise: “It’s never too late to live Happily Ever After.” Joan lives her Happily Ever After with her hero, her husband, in the Lone Star State. Readers, sign up for Joan’s Mailing List/Free NL. Connect Online with Joan: Blog * Facebook * Google+  * Twitter * YouTube.

Happy Baking and Happy Holiday!


Joan Reeves

Joan Reeves—Keeping Romance Alive…One Sexy Book at a Time—is a NY Times and USA Today bestselling author of Contemporary Romance. From Romantic Comedy to Romantic Thriller, all of her books have the same premise: “It’s never too late to live happily ever after.” Joan lives her happily-ever-after with her hero, her husband, in the Lone Star State. They divide their time between the hustle and bustle of Houston and a quiet house at the foot of the Texas Hill Country where they grow fruit trees and grapes and make wine. Sign up for Joan’s Mailing List and be the first to know about new books and giveaways.

Visit Joan Reeves Website