Cakes

Chantilly Cake

Chantilly Cake is stunning and this cake was baked by daughter, Megan. Megan is the official family baker, and no one complains!

Chantilly Cake

INGREDIENTS:

Moist Yellow Cake

  • 3 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cup sugar
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • ½ stick unsalted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla (or sub 1 tsp almond extract)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar

Chantilly Frosting

  • (recipe can be halved)
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, room temp
  • 16 oz mascarpone cheese, room temp
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, room temp
  • 2½ – 3 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • ⅛ tsp. salt
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream (1 half pint)
  • 1 tsp. almond extract, optional

Berry Syrup optional

  • ½ cup water
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 2 heaping tablespoons of berry jam (I used strawberry)

Apricot Glaze

  • 3 Tablespoons apricot jam
  • splash of water

Garnish

  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Raspberries
DIRECTIONS:
  1. If making a 4 layer cake: Using a large bread knife, trace the outside of the cake and then slowly saw back and forth through the cake, making sure the knife is as parallel as possible.
  2. Spread a layer of the berry syrup on top of the first layer of cake (this should be the rough, cut side if making a 4 layer cake)
  3. Pipe or spread a thin layer of icing on top of the berry syrup.
  4. Evenly distribute sliced berries on top of the icing layer.
  5. Place the second layer of cake on top, and so on. Do not put any berry syrup on the very top layer of the cake, because the frosting is too difficult to spread and your cake will look too crumby.
  6. Roughly spread the frosting all over the cake to create a crumb coating. I like to refrigerate or freeze my cake for 10 minutes before proceeding. Ice the rest of the cake and garnish with fresh berries.
  7. Glaze the berries with simple syrup or apricot glaze (microwave for about 15 seconds, or until thin and pourable) and refrigerate until serving.

Recipe Notes: 

This incredibly moist cake paired with the sinful, yet not too sweet, mascarpone frosting will send you straight to cake heaven. (If you would like a lighter and fluffier frosting, use 2 cups of heavy whipping cream instead of 1, and only 8 oz of mascarpone cheese) This frosting recipe makes enough for two cakes, so if not doubling the cake recipe, cut the frosting ingredients by half.

Recipe from Suzanne Bruno

Cakes · New Favorite

Lemon Yogurt Cake

Lemon Yogurt Cake is a moist, delicious cake that can be served on its own or served with fresh berries. I must admit I messed up the recipe and it still turned out great. The recipe read in such a way that I thought the 1/3 cup lemon juice was added to the cake batter. Yikes! I quickly added another 2/3 cup flour to the batter and crossed my fingers. It turned out just fine and added more intense lemon flavor to the cake. I poked holes in the lemon cake (much like my Rum Cake) to assure that the lemon juice/sugar mixture penetrated the cake. I liked the result but that’s the reason for the holes in the cake. I added the glaze and had to take a taste! So, so good. I froze half of the bread and it was good as fresh when I pulled it out of the freezer.

Lemon Yogurt Cake

INGREDIENTS:
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar, divided (reserve 1/3 cup for step 3)
  • 3 extra-large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest (2 lemons)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (reserve for step 3)

For the glaze:

  • 1 cup confectioner’s sugar
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
DIRECTIONS:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 2 1/2-inch loaf pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper. Grease and flour the pan.
  2. Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt into one bowl. In another bowl, whisk together the yogurt, 1 cup sugar, the eggs, lemon zest, and vanilla. Slowly whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. With a rubber spatula, fold the vegetable oil into the batter, making sure it’s all incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 50 minutes, or until a cake tester placed in the center of the loaf comes out clean.
  3. Meanwhile, cook the 1/3 cup lemon juice and remaining 1/3 cup sugar in a small pan until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is clear. Set aside.
  4. When the cake is done, allow it to cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Carefully place on a baking rack over a sheet pan. While the cake is still warm, pour the lemon-sugar mixture over the cake and allow it to soak in. Cool.
  5. For the glaze, combine the confectioners’ sugar and lemon juice and pour over the cake.

Adapted from Recipe of Ina Garten the kitchn.com

Breads · New Favorite

Yogurt Cake with Pear and Dark Chocolate

Fresh, sweet pears have always been a favorite of mine. Rarely have I baked with pears but this recipe sounded too delicious to resist.  It has a wonderful texture and so very moist!
Yogurt Cake with Pear and Dark Chocolate

YOGURT CAKE WITH PEAR AND DARK CHOCOLATE

1 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup plain yogurt (I used vanilla Greek yogurt)
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup canola oil
1 large pear, ripe but still firm, cored and cut into small pieces (leave the skin on)
1/2 cup bittersweet (dark) chocolate chunks.

  • Preheat your oven to 350F and grease an 8 inch loaf pan with butter (I found the recipe made too much for one loaf pan–I made an 8 inch loaf and a small loaf pan).
  • In a small bowl combine all the dry ingredients (flour through salt). In medium bowl, whisk together the sugar, yogurt, eggs and vanilla until smooth. Then, stir in the dry ingredients, a bit at a time, until well blended. Finally, use a rubber scraper to fold the oil into the batter until it is fully incorporated.
  • Pour about one-third of the batter into the greased loaf pan. Sprinkle 2/3s of the pear pieces and the chocolate chunks all over the batter. Then, scrape the rest of the batter on top of this and gently spread it smooth. Sprinkle the rest of the pear and chocolate over the top of the loaf and gently press all the pieces down into the batter to partially submerge them.
  • Bake in the middle of the oven until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean – 55-60 minutes or so. Then, take the cake out of the oven and let it sit for about 5 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen the cake. Carefully turn the cake out of the pan, and then put it upright on a cooling rack to cool the rest of the way. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature. The cake will keep for several days (refrigerate if it’s more than 2 days), and slices are delicious lightly toasted before eating. Serve with sweetened whipped cream.
Slightly adapted from FiveandSpice.com

 

 

Breads · New Favorite

Fresh Pear Bread

Pears, pears, pears!  I’ve overrun with pears thanks to my CSA shares this fall. They have been absolutely delicious but more than I can eat.

This recipe was simple and resulted in a moist, delicious bread great for a breakfast treat with a cup of hot coffee, tea or hot chocolate.  Due to family tastes, I omitted the nuts, but it would be delicious with walnuts or pecans!

Fresh Pear Bread
Fresh Pear Bread

FRESH PEAR BREAD

3 eggs
1-1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
4 cups finely chopped peeled ripe pears (about 4 medium)
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
  • In a bowl, combine the eggs, sugar, oil and vanilla; mix well. Combine flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda and salt; stir into the egg mixture just until moistened. Toss pears with lemon juice. Stir pears and walnuts into batter (batter will be thick).
  • Spoon into two greased 9-in. x 5-in. loaf pans. Bake at 350° for 55-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks. Yield: 2 loaves.

Recipe from Taste of Home

Cakes · Garden · New Favorite

Chocolate Zucchini Cake…good for you, right?

Zucchini has been plentiful this year and I was craving a chocolate fix.  I found this recipe and LOVED the cake. The glaze turned into chocolate globs which I did try to spread on top of the cake.  Next time I’d either just skip the glaze, or make my own.

The cake is moist and delicious…a keeper!

CHOCOLATE ZUCCHINI CAKE

Unsalted butter, for the pan
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for the pan
1/2 cup plus 1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg or allspice
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 medium zucchini, grated and squeezed dry
1 teaspoon honey

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter the bottom and sides of a 9-inch-square cake pan. Dust the pan with flour, tapping out the excess.
  • Toss 1/2 cup chocolate chips with 1 tablespoon flour in a small bowl. Whisk the remaining flour, the cocoa powder, salt, baking soda and nutmeg in a medium bowl; set aside.
  • Beat the sugar, 1/2 cup olive oil, the eggs and vanilla in a large bowl with a mixer on medium speed until smooth and pale, about 3 minutes. Add the flour-cocoa mixture; beat on low speed until combined, about 2 minutes (the batter will be thick). Add the zucchini and beat until combined, about 2 more minutes. Fold in the flour-coated chocolate chips with a wooden spoon.
  • Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes. Transfer to a rack and let cool completely.
  • Make the glaze: Combine the remaining 1/3 cup chocolate chips, 1 teaspoon olive oil and the honey in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on medium-high power in 30-second intervals, stirring, until the chocolate is melted. Spread over the cake, then cut into pieces.

Read more at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchens/chocolate-zucchini-cake-recipe.html?oc=linkback

NOTE:  I made this recipe again and used a different glaze that was perfect:

GLAZE
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
3 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Combine all ingredients in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 30 seconds. Stir. Microwave at 15 second intervals and stir each time until mixture is smooth. Pour over cake.

Family Favorites · My Roots

Chocolate Poke Cake

Here’s a blast from the past…chocolate poke cake.  The recipe can be altered to any cake and pudding flavor. Get creative with your favorite flavors.  I remember when Poke cakes became popular in the ’70s.  Easy, kid and adult-friendly, and a walk down memory lane.

CHOCOLATE POKE CAKE

1 package (2 layer) cake mix, any flavor
2 packages (4 serving size) Jello Instant Pudding, any flavor
1 cup confectioner’s sugar
4 cups cold milk

  • Prepare cake mix as directed on package baking in a 13×9″ cake pan.
  • Remove from oven.
  • Poke holes quickly down through cake with round handle of wooden spoon at 1″ intervals (or use plastic straw).

  • Only after poking holes, combine pudding mix with sugar in a large bowl. Gradually stir in milk. Then beat at low-speed of electric mixer for not more than 1 minute (do not overbeat).
  • Quickly, before pudding thickens, pour about one-half of the thin pudding evenly over the warm cake and into the holes to make the stripes.

  • Allow remaining pudding to thicken slightly; then spoon over the top, swirling it to frost the cake.
  • Chill at least 1 hour. Store cake in refrigerator. Cover with plastic wrap.
Family Favorites

BBQ’d Chicken Breasts…marinated, moist and scrumptious

SUMMER = BBQ and it’s time to get this summer started! Several years ago a co-worker shared this recipe, from Creme de Colorado Cookbook, and it has become a summer staple.  The chicken is so moist and flavorful. I liked to marinade for 24 hours, but a minimum of 4-5 hours will do.

Typically I grill several extra chicken breasts to have the next day(s) in salads. So delicious!  Get ready for some yummy chicken for your 4th of July BBQ!

BBQ CHICKEN MARINADE

2 whole frying chickens, cut into pieces (or skinless/boneless breasts)
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup soy sauce
3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1 clove garlic, crushed

  • Mix all marinade ingredients. Pour into large plastic ziplock bag. Add chicken and assure chicken is coated. Marinate 2-4 hours. Can also freeze in marinade to enjoy later.

Recipe from Creme de Colorado Cookbook

Family Favorites

Pound Cake…with strawberries for me!

Pound cake is one of the recipes I make ‘once in a blue moon’ but enjoy it as long as it is dense and moist. No dry pound cake will match up!

Poundcake and strawberries (2)

As you probably can see, cakes are often the base pedestal for the fruit I really want. Once again, strawberries and whipped cream top this cake. I truly didn’t realize until I started this food blog, that almost every cake I make MUST have syrup or fruit on top. Hmmm…this blog may turn into a self-realization confessional.

Poundcake and strawberries (1)

POUND CAKE

3/4 cup butter or margarine
1/2 grated lemon peel
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 eggs
1 1/4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

  • Cream butter & peel; gradually add sugar, creaming till light, about 6 minutes at medium speed on electric mixer.
  • Add vanilla, then eggs, one at a time, beating well after each.
  • Sift dry ingredients together; stir together with egg mixture.
  • Grease bottom only of 9x5x8 inch pan; turn in batter. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes or till done. Cool in pan. Optional:  Sift confectioner’s sugar lightly on top.
  • Mandatory for me:  Fruit on top!