A Little History (stick with me)
The bundt pan's ornate designs are often thought to relate to some of the intricate deserts associated with European baking, but the bundt pan is actually a relatively recent invention with roots in the United States of America. H. David Dalquist founded the iconic Nordic Ware company, and subsequently created the Bundt Pan in the 1950's. The shape was inspired by the traditional kugelhopf. As demand grew, the designs became more ornate.
So what's with the shape?
As bakers know, the denser the cake, the longer the bake time. To create a big dense cake, it can become a challenge to have it bake through without getting overly browned, or overly crisp edges. The funnel in the centre allows for even baking without over baking. Bundt cakes work well with a poundcake type dough, but with some adjustments other batters can work also.
What to Bundt?
Typically a bundt batter is a poundcake type batter. These batters are sturdy enough to hold up to the shape of the pans and not get stuck in the groves.
A classic bundt recipe, a coffee cake, or even a banana bread recipe can be converted to be used in a bundt pan. I have linked a few of my favourite recipes here that have been made in bundt form.
Butter and flour your pans. This is actually a requirement and not a tip. Be sure to get into all the grooves with the butter and flour to ensure that your cake releases from the pan.
Do not fill your pan more than 2/3 full. Any more than that and you risk your batter rising over the sides of your pan.
Cool the cake in the pan before attempting to invert it on to your serving tray.
Do not use a sharp object to release your cake - this could damage your pan.
Ina Garten's Pound Cake recipe translates to a great Bundt Cake - no need to adjust recipe size. This double loaf recipe nicely fills a 10 cup bundt pan.
Two Peas and Their Pod chocolate Bundt Cake recipe has a more cake like consistency than a pound cake, but it still sturdy enough to hold up.
The Spruce Eats Kentucky Butter Cake is a delicious twist on a Bundt Cake. Cake soaked in butter? No further words needed!
*No affiliation with the above links - just recipes I have tried and loved!