Posted by: cassymuronaka | January 3, 2012

The Cherpumple

Leave it to a woman who recently participated in a triathlon to take on the challenge of completing a Cherpumple, a towering three-layer cake with an entire pie baked inside every one of those cake layers.

Each New Year’s Eve, KPCC Public Insight journalist Sharon McNary and her husband, Variety reporter Dave McNary, hold a celebration with a loose theme; this year it was OccuPie, with a big emphasis on pie.

During a time when she also was cleaning, preparing plates of food for the event — she’s a great cook — and probably throwing the things in closets because company is coming, Sharon also spent three days baking the Cherpumple, a finicky creation that is famous for breaking apart and collapsing.

Naturally, Sharon’s did not; Sharon’s would not (Sharon not only finished the prestigious Kona Ironman World Championship in October, but she trained while nursing an arm broken six weeks before the event).

On New Year’s Eve, Sharon McNary’s Cherpumple not only stood, but survived being cut without falling over.  Well, for a while at least.

It also was very good and 3/4 of it was gone before by midnight because it contained cherry pie, apple, pie, pumpkin pie, strawberry cake, spice cake and lemon cake.  It was a lot.

To live vicariously through the assemblage of a Cherpumple, visit the Youtube video produced by the cake-pie’s inventor, Charles Phoenix.  He has a website where you can view the successes and failures of those who have tried to reproduce the monster dessert in various flavors and combinations.



  1. After day one of my “serious” excercise regimen and a large bowl of morning oatmeal, the Cherpumple doesn’t even look good to me.

  2. It was quite tasty! I’d say that even if I weren’t married to Sharon

  3. Sounds like something my husband would love!

  4. I just got hungry reading this again. Hope you’re having a great New Year, Cassy

  5. If I were to make this again, I think I would put the more stable pumpkin pie/lemon cake layer on the bottom, then the apple pie/spice cake in the middle and keep the cherry pie/strawberry cake layer on the top.

    Thanks for the recap!


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