Tres Leches Cake

Happy Birthday to me! 25 years old and I am not above eating cake for dinner.

Tres Leches Cake

This tres leches cake has been made for many birthdays and parties in my life. My fiance, my soon to be mother in law, my cat (it’s her favorite since it has a lot of milk products)…uhh, anyway, this actually wasn’t made for my birthday. But I’m baking my cake as I type this, so I’ll post about that later.

Tres Leches Cake

My lovely boy excitedly asked me what I would be baking for my birthday, and when I replies “a type of spice cake” he shouted: “you always make such weird cakes on your birthday”! Now what he doesn’t seem to realize is that it’s MY freaking birthday, and I want a damn spice cake and if you poo poo my cake choice, then you can’t have any! I assume he’ll eat two helpings and ask for more for breakfast…boys.

Tres Leches Cake

This cake is unreal. A top contender for my favorite cake ever so I’m super excited to share this with you. Shall we get started?! YES!

Tres Leches Cake

To start, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9 x 13 inch pan liberally until coated. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.

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Separate eggs. Have you seen this method?! So. Freaking. Cool.

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Beat egg yolks with 3/4 cup sugar on high speed until yolks are pale yellow. Stir in milk and vanilla. Pour egg yolk mixture over the flour mixture.

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Stir very gently until combined.

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Beat egg whites on high speed until soft peaks form. With the mixer on, pour in remaining 1/4 cup sugar and beat until egg whites are stiff but not dry.

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Fold egg white mixture into the batter very gently until just combined. Pour into prepared pan and spread to even out the surface. Don’t worry that it looks weird. This is normal!

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Bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Turn cake out onto a rimmed platter and allow to cool.

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Combine condensed milk, evaporated milk, and heavy cream in a small pitcher. This is the magical stuff.

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When cake is cool, pierce the surface with a fork several times.

Tres Leches Cake

Slowly drizzle all but about 1 cup of the milk mixture—try to get as much around the edges of the cake as you can.

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It’ll look like this:

Tres Leches Cake

Allow the cake to absorb the milk mixture for 30 minutes. To ice the cake, whip 1 pint heavy cream with 3 tablespoons of sugar until thick and spreadable. Spread over the surface of the cake. Decorate cake with maraschino cherries or toasted coconut. Cut into squares and serve.

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Happy Baking!

Tres Leches Cake
Recipe from The Pioneer Woman

Ingredients:
1 cup All-purpose Flour
1-½ teaspoon Baking Powder
¼ teaspoons Salt
5 whole Eggs
1 cup Sugar, Divided
1 teaspoon Vanilla
⅓ cups Milk
1 can Evaporated Milk
1 can Sweetened, Condensed Milk
¼ cups Heavy Cream

Icing
1 pint Heavy Cream, For Whipping
3 Tablespoons Sugar

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9 x 13 inch pan liberally until coated.

Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Separate eggs.

Beat egg yolks with 3/4 cup sugar on high speed until yolks are pale yellow. Stir in milk and vanilla. Pour egg yolk mixture over the flour mixture and stir very gently until combined.

Beat egg whites on high speed until soft peaks form. With the mixer on, pour in remaining 1/4 cup sugar and beat until egg whites are stiff but not dry.

Fold egg white mixture into the batter very gently until just combined. Pour into prepared pan and spread to even out the surface.

Bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Turn cake out onto a rimmed platter and allow to cool.
Combine condensed milk, evaporated milk, and heavy cream in a small pitcher. When cake is cool, pierce the surface with a fork several times. Slowly drizzle all but about 1 cup of the milk mixture—try to get as much around the edges of the cake as you can.

Allow the cake to absorb the milk mixture for 30 minutes. To ice the cake, whip 1 pint heavy cream with 3 tablespoons of sugar until thick and spreadable.

Spread over the surface of the cake. Decorate cake with whole or chopped maraschino cherries. Cut into squares and serve.

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Rolo Brownie Cake with Caramel Filling

Cake is by far my favorite thing to make, but doing the dishes after cake baking? Humf.

The time spent cleaning up at the sink and trying to find all the random ingredients I spilled all over my kitchen are all worth it when I get to share the finished product with friends. This Rolo Cake was actually made this summer for one of my best friends 25th birthdays, but I wanted to share it now since it’s one of those cakes that can be made any time of year!

This beauty has a thick caramel filling sandwiched between two chewy, brownie, cake layers with a milk chocolate whipped cream frosting. OH! And Rolo topping! Good heavens.

I’d like to tell you that my friends and I ate this entire thing in one sitting, but it’s not THAT kind of cake. It’s thick and rich and awesome and a small piece goes great with a glass of milk (or in my case almond milk)…or wine. Wine is good with everything.

To make this grab your Rolos, and open 2 tubes of them. You can open a good 4 tubes for the decoration now too if you’d like! Also, preheat the oven to 300°F and grease and line 2 x 8-inch round cake pans.

Melt butter and chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering, stirring occasionally until smooth.

There it is!

Whisk eggs and sugar in an electric mixer until thick and pale (about 3-5 minutes).

Fold in chocolate mixture and then fold in flour.

Mix until just combined. This. Is. Drinkable.

Pour batter into the prepared tins, smooth top.

Press the two tubes of Rolos over the surface of each cake (1 pack for each) and bake until just firm to touch (25-30 minutes).

Cool completely in pan.

Now, very carefully transfer one cake to a serving dish. Whisk dulce de leche to remove any lumps, then spread a generous layer of caramel over the top of the first cake. Refrigerate this for at least 30 mins, this will keep your dulce de leche firm.

Carefully sandwich the second cake on top (upside-down). It might drip…this is more than ok.

Prepare the ganache; place chopped chocolate in a large heatproof mixing bowl. Place cream in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring just to the boil.

Remove from heat and pour hot cream over the top of chopped chocolate and leave in bowl for 5 mins.

Use a whisk to bring mixture together. Chill in the fridge until thick but spreadable and just under room temperature.

Using a spatula, spread ganache over the top of the cake. Now spread it over the rest of the cake. You can decorate the beauty however you would like. I just made some fun stars around the edges.

Decorate cake with extra Rolos, I chopped half of them in half so you could see the caramel innards.

Can be served immediately, or stored in the fridge until ready to serve. Enjoy!

Rolo Brownie Cake with Caramel Filling
Makes one double layer 8-inch round cake
Recipe barely adapted from Raspberri Cupcakes

Ingredients:
Cake:
400g (about 3.5 sticks) salted butter
1 scant cup good quality dark chocolate, coarsely chopped (I used big dark chocolate chips)
4 large eggs
1 scant cup sugar
1 2/3 cups AP flour
2 tubes Rolos + (optional) 4+ tubes Rolos to decorate the top of cake
1 can (395g/14oz) dulce de leche or another store-bought thick caramel

For the chocolate ganache:
1 3/4 cups good quality milk chocolate, finely chopped
1 1/4 cup heavy cream

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 300°F, grease and line 2 x 8-inch round cake pans (or you can bake one cake after another if you only have one tin).

Melt butter and chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering, stirring occasionally until smooth.

Whisk eggs and sugar in an electric mixer until thick and pale (about 3-5 minutes), fold in chocolate mixture and then fold in flour until just combined. Pour batter into the prepared tins, smooth top and press Rolos over the surface of each cake (1 pack for each) and bake until just firm to touch (25-30 minutes).

Cool completely in pan, then very carefully transfer one cake to a serving dish.

Whisk dulce de leche to remove any lumps, then spread a generous layer of caramel over the top of the first cake. Refrigerate this for at least 30 mins, this will keep your dulce de leche firm.

Carefully sandwich the second cake on top (upside-down).

Prepare the ganache; place chopped chocolate in a large heatproof mixing bowl. Place cream in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring just to the boil, then remove from heat and pour hot cream over the top of chopped chocolate and leave in bowl for 5 mins. Use a whisk to bring mixture together.

Chill in the fridge until thick but spreadable and just under room temperature. Using a spatula, spread ganache over the top of the cake. Decorate cake with extra Rolos, I chopped half of them in half so you could see the caramel innards.

Can be served immediately, or stored in the fridge until ready to serve. Can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for several days.

Berry Vanilla Ice Cream Cake

It’s Canada Day this weekend, and with all this red, white, and blue I’ve been seeing, I thought I would join in the fun!

Yes, the Canadian flag is only red and white, but when I was choosing a fun recipe to post for the long weekend I just HAD to add blueberries. Why can’t Canada represent its flag with some big ol’ blues?! Also (and more importantly) I originally baked this cake for a friends birthday!…no theme colours there. Unless awesomeness is a colour. Hey Tristan!

Inside of this whipped cream frosted madness are two layers of vanilla bean cake and a big slab of vanilla bean ice cream + blueberry sauce + strawberry sauce in the middle. MAGIC, I tell you.

I feel like I’ve had this recipe bookmarked forever. It’s an Annie’s Eats recipe (a blogger who I obsess over and make almost everything she posts), and I had been waiting such a long time for an excuse to make it.

This beauty is light, and freaking PERFECT for summer! To start, gather your cake ingredients. Preheat the oven to 350˚ F. Line the bottom of two 8-inch round cake pans with parchment paper. Grease and flour the sides of the pan and shake out the excess.

In a medium bowl, combine the cake flour, baking powder and salt. Whisk together and set aside. Add the butter to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Scrape the vanilla bean seeds into the bowl of the mixer with the butter and discard the pod. Beat on medium-high speed for 3 minutes, until light and creamy in color. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat for one more minute.

Add the sugar to the butter mixture, about ¼ cup at a time, beating 1 minute after each addition. Mix in the eggs and egg yolk one at a time until incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl after each addition.

Combine the buttermilk and the vanilla extract in a liquid measuring cup. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients alternately with the wet ingredients, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients and mixing just until incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix for 15 seconds longer.

Divide the batter between the prepared pans and bake, rotating the pans halfway through, until the tops are golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 20-22 minutes.

Let cool in the pans for about 10 minutes, then gently run a knife around the edge of the cake and turn the layers out onto a wire rack. Remove the parchment paper and allow to cool completely. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and chill the cake layers until you are ready to assemble the cake.

To make the blueberry sauce, combine the blueberries and sugar in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the berries begin to release their juices. In a small bowl combine the cornstarch with the water and lemon juice and whisk until smooth. Stir the cornstarch mixture into the blueberry mixture. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 1 minute more. Remove from the heat. Cover and chill.

Make your strawberry sauce by simply combining the strawberries and sugar in a bowl. Toss well to combine. Mash the berries slightly with the tines of a fork. Stir in the lemon juice, cover and chill. Let the berries macerate at least one hour and if needed, mash once more to achieve your desired texture.

To assemble the cake, level the cake layers if necessary.

Place one of the chilled cake rounds in the bottom of an 8-inch springform pan. Place a piece of parchment or wax paper around the circumference of the cake to act as a tight collar for the ice cream layer.* Be sure the ice cream is soft enough to spread smoothly and easily before proceeding. Spread the vanilla ice cream in an even layer over the bottom cake layer.

Spoon the blueberry and strawberry fillings on top of the ice cream in whatever pattern you prefer (it’s ok if some is left over). Place the remaining cake layer on top of the ice cream and fruit filling. Ensure that the parchment collar is pulled tight around the cake and ice cream to keep the layers evenly in place. Close the sides of the springform around the assembled cake and transfer to the freezer to set.

When you are ready to frost the cake, place the heavy cream in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whip on medium-high speed, gradually adding the confectioners’ sugar, until stiff peaks form. (Be careful not to overbeat!) Blend in the vanilla.

Remove the sides of the springform pan carefully and peel away the parchment collar. Frost the top and side of the cake with an offset or straight spatula.

Place the remaining whipped cream in a pastry bag fitted with a decorative tip and add additional accents as desired.

Garnish with fresh strawberries and blueberries. Serve!

Berry Vanilla Ice Cream Cake
Recipe taken from Annie’s Eats

Ingredients:
For the cake:
2 cups cake flour
2 tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
11 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/3 cups sugar
3 large eggs plus 1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
¾ cup plus 2 tbsp. buttermilk, at room temperature
2 tsp. vanilla extract

For the blueberry sauce:
1 cup blueberries
3 tbsp. sugar
1¼ tsp. cornstarch
2 tsp. cold water
2 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice

For the strawberry sauce:
4 oz. strawberries, hulled, rinsed and coarsely chopped
1½ tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
2½ cups vanilla bean ice cream, slightly softened (but not TOO softened)

For the whipped cream frosting:
2 cups heavy cream
½ confectioners’ sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Fresh strawberries and blueberries, for garnish

Directions:
To make the cake, preheat the oven to 350˚ F. Line the bottom of two 8-inch round cake pans with parchment paper. Grease and flour the sides of the pan, shaking out the excess.

In a medium bowl, combine the cake flour, baking powder and salt. Whisk together and set aside. Add the butter to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Scrape the vanilla bean seeds into the bowl of the mixer with the butter and discard the pod (or reserve for another use.) Beat on medium-high speed for 3 minutes, until light and creamy in color. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat for one more minute.

Add the sugar to the butter mixture, about ¼ cup at a time, beating 1 minute after each addition. Mix in the eggs and egg yolk one at a time until incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl after each addition. Combine the buttermilk and the vanilla extract in a liquid measuring cup. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients alternately with the wet ingredients, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients and mixing just until incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix for 15 seconds longer.

Divide the batter between the prepared pans and bake, rotating the pans halfway through, until the tops are golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 20-22 minutes. Let cool in the pans about 10 minutes, then gently run a knife around the edge of the cake and turn the layers out onto a wire rack. Remove the parchment paper and allow to cool completely. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and chill the cake layers until you are ready to assemble the cake.

To make the blueberry sauce, combine the blueberries and sugar in a nonreactive saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the berries begin to release their juices. In a small bowl combine the cornstarch with the water and lemon juice and whisk until smooth. Stir the cornstarch mixture into the blueberry mixture. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 1 minute more. Remove from the heat. Cover and chill.

To make the strawberry sauce, combine the strawberries and sugar in a bowl. Toss well to combine. Mash the berries slightly with the tines of a fork. Stir in the lemon juice, cover and chill. Let the berries macerate at least one hour and if needed, mash once more to achieve your desired texture.

To assemble the cake, level the cake layers if necessary. Place one of the chilled cake rounds in the bottom of an 8-inch springform pan. Place a piece of parchment or wax paper around the circumference of the cake to act as a tight collar for the ice cream layer.* Be sure the ice cream is soft enough to spread smoothly and easily before proceeding. Spread the vanilla ice cream in an even layer over the bottom cake layer.

Spoon the blueberry and strawberry fillings on top of the ice cream in whatever pattern you prefer (it’s ok if you have some left over). Place the remaining cake layer on top of the ice cream and fruit filling. Ensure that the parchment collar is pulled tight around the cake and ice cream to keep the layers evenly in place. Close the sides of the springform around the assembled cake and transfer to the freezer to set.

When you are ready to frost the cake, place the heavy cream in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whip on medium-high speed, gradually adding the confectioners’ sugar, until stiff peaks form. Don’t overbeat. Blend in the vanilla.

Remove the sides of the springform pan carefully and peel away the parchment collar. Frost the top and side of the cake with an offset or straight spatula. Place the remaining whipped cream in a pastry bag fitted with a decorative tip and add additional accents as desired. Garnish with fresh strawberries and blueberries.

Store the cake covered in the freezer until ready to serve. Set the cake out and let stand at room temperature about 20 minutes before slicing. Run a long, thin knife until hot water to warm the blade. Wipe the blade completely dry and slice the cake, wiping the blade clean between slices and rewarming as needed.

*The parchment collar is not a necessity but it’s good for cleaner edges of the ice cream layer.

Happy long weekend everyone!

Cookbook Queen’s Cookie Brownie Cupcakes with Chocolate Marshmallow Frosting

It’s spring, and I know I should be craving a big bowl of fruit salad or a nice strawberry tart, but I can’t get chocolate off of my mind. There is too much love there. We get each other.

I spotted this beautiful recipe a while ago and have been saving it for a good enough occasion to eat like a maniac indulge in a big time sweet treat. Exam time was the perfect occasion, and these cupcakes got me through some tough organic chemistry problems. I mean, brownies and cookies together to make a cupcake? Puuuuulease!

That semi-naked brownie below gets me hot.

Anyway, to begin, preheat your oven to 350 and line 12 muffin tins with cupcake liners. Then slice store bought refrigerated cookie dough into 12 1/4 inch slices.

Place one slice of cookie dough in the bottom of each lined muffin tin. You can eat any extra…I demand it in fact! You can always make your own cookie dough too, but I needed these bad boys FAST and making everything myself was not an option that day. Waiting stinks.

Mix up that awesome store bought brownie mix following the instructions on the box. I used Duncan Hines Chewy Fudge.

Spoon brownie batter over the cookie dough, filling cups to about 2/3 full.

Bake for about 20 minutes or until brownies are set.

Remove from oven and cool on a cooking rack.

When the cupcakes are all set and cooled, get your frosting ready.

In the bowl of a mixer, beat butter, vanilla, and milk on medium-low speed until smooth and combined. Add powdered sugar and cocoa powder and beat on low until just combined. Add chocolate syrup and increase speed to high. Beat for 2 minutes until light and fluffy.

Using a spatula, fold in marshmallow creme, just until swirled throughout. You don’t want it to be completely mixed in.

Pipe or frost icing on cookie brownies. Enjoy!

Cookie Brownie Cupcakes with Chocolate Marshmallow Frosting
Recipe taken from Confessions of a Cookbook Queen
Makes 12 cupcakes

Ingredients
For Cupcakes:
Brownie batter (use homemade or mix, I used Duncan Hines Chewy Fudge prepared for cake-like brownies)
Regular sized tube of refrigerated chocolate chip cookie dough

For Frosting:
2 sticks salted butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 Tablespoons milk
3 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder
2 Tablespoons chocolate syrup
7 1/2 oz jar marshmallow creme (I used fluff)

Directions:
For Cupcakes:
Preheat oven to 350. Line 12 muffin tins with liners.

Slice cookie dough into 12 1/4 inch slices and place one in the bottom of each lined muffin tin. Don’t worry about any left-over cookie dough you might have–you will be eating it later.

Spoon brownie batter over the cookie dough, filling cups to about 2/3 full. Bake for about 20 minutes or until brownies are set. Remove from oven and cool on a cooking rack.

For Frosting:
In the bowl of a mixer, beat butter, vanilla, and milk on medium-low speed until smooth and combined. Add powdered sugar and cocoa powder and beat on low until just combined. Add chocolate syrup and increase speed to high. Beat for 2 minutes until light and fluffy.

Using a spatula, fold in marshmallow creme, just until swirled throughout. You don’t want it to be completely mixed in.

Pipe or frost on cookie brownies. Enjoy!

Cadbury Creme Egg Cupcakes

This Easter treat was destined to be in my kitchen.

I freaking LOVE Cadbury Creme Eggs. So, when I saw this idea on My Baking Addiction’s blog a while ago I bookmarked it right away. I mean, Cadbury Creme Egg cupcakes?? Yes, please.

These chocolate cupcakes are stuffed with a gooey mini Cadbury Creme Egg, and topped with the best buttercream my face has ever tasted. Jamie, I love you and your genius ideas.

My Easter plans this year are pretty basic. I’m staying home with the boy and the two of us are going to have an Easter dinner for two – with an Easter egg hunt in the mix as well. We act like we’re 8 sometimes. Perhaps that explains my obsession with sweets? Whatev’s, I’m a sugar addict and proud of it!

To make these cupcakes, first mix up the batter of your favorite chocolate boxed cake mix (enough for 24 cupcakes). I used Betty Crocker’s chocolate fudge.

Scoop batter into paper liner ⅔ of the way full.

Place one frozen Mini Cadbury Creme Egg into the middle of each cupcake. Use a spatula to spread the batter over the egg.

Bake according to the recipe you are using. Allow cupcakes to cool completely.

While your cupcakes are cooking, make your buttercream. Again, I used My Baking Addiction’s recipe. Remove about 1 cup of buttercream from the mixing bowl and dye it yellow.

Assemble your piping bag fitted with a large tip and pipe a large circle around the perimeter of the cupcake.

Fill in the center of the circle with the yellow buttercream.

Top with a Mini Cadbury Cream Egg.

Enjoy! And have a happy Easter!

Cadbury Creme Egg Cupcakes
Recipe Taken from My Baking Addiction
Yield: 24 cupcakes

Ingredients:
24 paper cupcake liners
Batter for 24 cupcakes. I used Betty Crocker’s chocolate fudge box mix. You can also use your favorite chocolate cupcake recipe.
48 Mini Cadbury Creme Eggs (24 frozen).
1 batch of buttercream frosting
yellow dye
Large Round piping tip or snip the end off of a piping bag.

Directions:
1. Scoop batter into paper liner ⅔ of the way full. Place one frozen Mini Cadbury Creme Egg into the middle of each cupcake. Use a spatula to spread the batter over the egg.

2. Bake according to the recipe you are using. Allow cupcakes to cool completely.

3. While your cupcakes are cooking, make your buttercream. Again, I used My Baking Addiction’s recipe.

4. Remove about 1 cup of buttercream from the mixing bowl and dye it yellow.

5. Assemble your piping bag fitted with a large tip and pipe a large circle around the perimeter of the cupcake.

6. Fill in the center of the circle with the yellow buttercream and top with a Mini Cadbury Cream Egg.

Note: Freezing the 12 eggs keeps them from completely vanishing inside the baked cake.

Tuxedo Cake

When I have an excuse to make cake, I go bonkers.

Like, bananas with excitement. This cake has been on my mind for a while. A Pastry Queen creation. A genius idea.

AND, a Valentine’s Day dream! I served this up the other night while entertaining some friends and every step of this cake was like creating a baby. Sweet and tender loving, hunny.

This year for Valentine’s Day, I’m not sure what the boy has planned. I decided to be a spoiled brat this year. I’m a lady, and this lady right here is going to take some serious time to be treated like a Queen. Valentine’s Day is about the lady anyway, right?

Plus it’s an excuse to eat more cake. And I’m ok with that.

To begin, spray 3 8-inch pans with nonstick spray and preheat oven to 350. Get your cake’s baked (directions at the end) and cooled, and let’s get rocking! Why do my cakes have funny squares on them? Because they cooled on the racks top side down. They like it that way.

To make the frosting, whip the heavy cream on high until soft peaks form.

Add the powdered sugar and whip until stiff peaks form.

Level the cake layers. You want them to be flat on the top, so if your cake looks like mine:

Chop that top off!

Top the first layer with ~1/2-2/3 cup frosting, spread evenly.

Now top with the second cake layer. Repeat.

Cover the cake with remaining frosting and refrigerate for one hour.

You should probably get your chocolate dipped strawberries ready now. Make extra, you won’t regret it.

For the ganache, heat chopped chocolate, heavy cream, and golden syrup in a microwave safe bowl in 30 second intervals until completely melted, stirring in between. Stir in vanilla and stick in the fridge for 15-20 minutes to cool. Stir after chilling. The glaze should be pourable but very thick. Pour the thickened glaze over the top, gently pushing it towards the edges so it will overflow. Refrigerate until time to serve.

Top that beauty with your berries and eat that chocolate sucker up!

Tuxedo cake
Recipe taken from Confections of a Foodie Bride who adapted it from the Pastry Queen
This cake is BIG. It serves anywhere from 12-16 people.

Ingredients
For the cake:
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
2 cups water
1 cup canola oil
3 cups sugar
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
4 cups all-purpose flour
4 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk or fat-free Greek yogurt
1 Tbsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp vanilla

For the frosting:
4 cups chilled heavy whipping cream
1 1/4 cup powdered sugar

For the glaze:
4 oz (100g chocolate bar + 4 squares more) dark chocolate
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
2 Tbsp Lyle’s Golden Syrup
2 tsp vanilla
Chocolate-covered strawberries (optional)

Instructions
Cake:
To make the cake, spray 3 8-inch pans (or two 10-inch pans) with nonstick spray and preheat oven to 350.
Combine the butter, water, and canola oil in a medium sauce pan set over medium heat and cook just until butter has melted.

In the bowl of your stand mixer, combine the sugar, flour, and cocoa. Pour the butter mixture into the flour mixture and mix on low. Increase to medium and add one egg at a time. Add the buttermilk (or yogurt), followed by the baking soda, salt, and vanilla.

Divide the batter evenly between the pans and bake for 30-40 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the center of the cakes comes out with moist crumbs attached.

Let cool 10 minutes in pan and then turn out onto a rack to cool completely, about one hour.

Frosting:
To make the frosting, whip the heavy cream on high until soft peaks form. Add the powdered sugar and whip until stiff peaks form.

Level the cake layers, if necessary.

Top the first layer with ~1/2-2/3 cup frosting, spread evenly, and then top with the second cake layer. Repeat and then cover the cake with remaining frosting.

Refrigerate for one hour.

Ganache:
Heat chopped chocolate, heavy cream, and golden syrup in a microwave safe bowl in 30 second intervals until completely melted, stirring in between. Stir in vanilla and stick in the fridge for 15-20 minutes to cool.

Stir after chilling. The glaze should be pourable but very thick. Test a small spoonful down one side of the cake – if it stops running before it hits the bottom or just as it hits the bottom, it’s done. If it’s too thick, add a Tbsp or two more golden syrup or heat for 10 seconds in the microwave.

Pour the thickened glaze over the top, gently pushing it towards the edges so it will overflow.

Refrigerate until time to serve.

Serve with chocolate-covered strawberries (optional). Leftovers will keep in a covered container in the fridge for a few days.

Cinnamon Sugar Apple Cake

After only 1 week back to school somehow I’m swimming in assignments already. But busy is a good thing, and with a to-do list ten pages long, things are getting done!

Besides organizing school and work, since being back from Costa Rica I’ve began marathon training, made my 2012 goals for baking (I’ll share these soon), and had to remember how to play the guitar for my guitar lessons. It’s surprising how easy it is to forget how to play! Especially since I’m a beginner. I blame all those cute monkeys outside my lodge!!

Even though I’m busy I can’t complain. In a way, it can keep you sain despite what many people say. I think as long as I’m organized, things will get done. And then I can enjoy the time I have doing things I really like! This cake made my extremely happy. It came together in no time, was delicious, and totally freezable! I made this as a dessert, and then ate this baby for breakfast for a few days after that. I think anything with warm apples is bound to make me swoon. It’s just how I am!

First, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. To prepare the apples, peel them and slice them into about 1/4 inch thick slices and place them into a large bowl. Pour the sugar over the apples and give them a quick toss with your hands and then add the lemon juice. Let the apples and the sugar sit for about 30 minutes.

This process with soften the apples and the sugar will become liquid.

Add the vegetable oil, eggs and vanilla to the apple mixture and stir together with a spoon.

In another bowl add the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and cloves.

Mix together until the baking soda and spices are evenly distributed through the dry ingredients mixture.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, and combine with a spoon carefully until the dry mixture is just incorporated.

Spray a 9×9 baking dish with baking spray. Transfer the batter into the baking dish.

Bake in a preheated oven for 50-55 minutes, or until a knife can be inserted in the center and comes out clean.

Cool cake on a wire rack to cool completely and then dig in! You can serve this with whipped cream, ice cream, or add some frosting. All are great choices!

Cinnamon Apple Cake
Adapted from Whats Gaby Cooking

Ingredients:
4 cups sliced and peeled apple (I used Honey Crisps, but you could easily use Granny Smith or Gala apples)
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cloves

Frosting recipe here!

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

To prepare the apples, peel and core about 4 apples. Slice them into about 1/4 inch thick slices and place them into a large bowl. Pour the sugar over the apples and give them a quick toss with your hands and then add the lemon juice. Let the apples and the sugar hang out for about 30-45 minutes. This process with soften the apples and the sugar will become liquid.

Add the vegetable oil, eggs and vanilla to the apple mixture and stir together with a spoon.

In another bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and cloves. Mix together until the baking soda and spices are evenly distributed through the dry ingredients mixture. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, and combine with a spoon carefully until the dry mixture is just incorporated.

Spray a 9×9 baking dish with baking spray. Transfer the batter into the baking dish and bake in a preheated oven for 50-55 minutes, or until a knife can be inserted in the center and comes out clean.

Serve with freshly whipped cream, frosting or ice cream. Enjoy!

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

I love when things go right. You know? Like when you do well on that test you studied so hard for? Or even better – you change your hair colour and get a happy surprise when you look in the mirror. I love that. Seriously. Sometimes I want to take my hair stylist out for a fancy dinner and shower her in gifts.

These cookies went right into my mouth. Not only are they totally cute, but they crackled perfectly while baking AND had the chewiest, fudgiest, center! A total success and a new favorite cookie of mine.

So, add these to your holiday baking list! Because you like it when things go right too. I can feel it.

Let’s begin, shall we? In a medium bowl, mix together cocoa, white sugar, and vegetable oil.

Beat in eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla.

Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt and stir it into the cocoa mixture. Cover dough, and chill for at least 4 hours. Waiting is stupid…but necessary.

Roll dough into one inch balls with lightly oiled palms (you can use a cookie scoop to portion the dough, a tablespoon or a rounded teaspoon depending on what size you like).

Coat each ball in confectioners’ sugar before placing onto prepared cookie sheets.

Ok, now that’s just pretty…

Bake in preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes. Let stand on the cookie sheet for a minute before transferring to wire racks to cool. Enjoy everyone!

Chocolate Crinkle Cookie
Recipe adapted from 17 and Baking
Makes 3 dozen cookies

Ingredients:
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups white sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar

Directions
In a medium bowl, mix together cocoa, white sugar, and vegetable oil. Beat in eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla.

Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt; stir into the cocoa mixture. Cover dough, and chill for at least 4 hours.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Roll dough into one inch balls with lightly oiled palms (you can use a cookie scoop to portion the dough, a tablespoon or a rounded teaspoon depending on what size you like).

Coat each ball in confectioners’ sugar before placing onto prepared cookie sheets.

Bake in preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes.

Let stand on the cookie sheet for a minute before transferring to wire racks to cool.

Carrot Cake {and Happy Birthday to Me!}

I made a cake. Yesterday was my 24th birthday and I wanted to celebrate with something sweet that makes me happy.

Having a December birthday is weird. As a kid, there were a few “Christmas-Birthday” gifts (a 13 year olds worst nightmare) and I often got money which I then spent on other peoples Christmas gifts soon after. Now that I’m in College, my birthday lies in the middle of exams. This sucks big time. No one is available to hang out and I end up having to spend my birthday studying! Silly eh? At lease there’s cake. Cake can always make a girl smile.

Now, you might be thinking “carrot cake for your birthday? Really?”. And the answer is YES!

When I first started dating my boyfriend his parents kept mentioning this little cafe in a town near by that sold “the best carrot cake/cake in general/sweet thing ever”. I was skeptical. You see, I didn’t like carrot cake. The only stuff I’d ever had was at church bake sales and it always had raisins in it. Yech. What are those short, cute, ladies thinking?!

Anyway, I won’t ever turn down a new dessert, especially one with such high praise. As I slid my fork into that double-decker, moist, deliciousness, and placed the cake in my mouth…I fell in love. I fell in love with a cake. And since that first bite I’ve been wanting to make a carrot cake that matched that spectacular taste.

The verdict? This cake is the second best carrot cake ever! haha, I didn’t completely get it. I WILL make this again, and the only thing I would change would be to take out the walnuts. I really like a big slice of cake that isn’t broken up too much, and I find the walnuts do that.

The icing though? Holy freaking moley. You could drink this stuff. It’s so creamy and tastes like a dream.

Let’s get baking shall we?

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line two 8-inch round cakepans with waxed paper. Lightly grease and flour the waxed paper. Set pans aside. Stir together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.

Put eggs, sugar, oil, buttermilk, and vanilla in a large bowl.

Beat them all together at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Add the flour mixture, beating at low speed until blended.

Fold in grated carrot.

Fold in pineapple, coconut, and pecans. Pour batter into prepared cake pans.

Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in the center come out clean.

Prepare your buttermilk glaze.

Drizzle Buttermilk Glaze evenly over layers; cool in pans on wire racks for 15 minutes.

Cool completely on wire racks.

Beat butter and cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy.

Add powdered sugar and vanilla; beat until smooth.

Place a big scoop of icing on top of the cake. And spread it around. Make sure to put it on thick!

Gently place the second cake atop the first one.

Evenly distribute icing on the top and on the sides. If you want to get fancy, you can stick this in the fridge so the icing can set and then add on one more even layer of icing.

Carrot Cake
Recipe taken from the Tasty Kitchen website.

Ingredients:
Cake
2 cups All-purpose Flour
2 teaspoons Baking Soda
½ teaspoons Salt
2 teaspoons Ground Cinnamon
3 whole Large Eggs
2 cups Sugar
¾ cups Vegetable Oil
¾ cups Buttermilk
2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
2 cups Grated Carrot
1 can (8 Oz. Can) Crushed Pineapple, Drained
3-½ ounces, weight Flaked Coconut
1 cup Chopped Pecans

Buttermilk glaze:
½ cups Sugar
¾ teaspoons Baking Soda
¼ cups Buttermilk
¼ cups Butter Or Margarine
½ Tablespoons Light Corn Syrup
½ teaspoons Vanilla Extract

Cream Cheese Frosting
¾ cups Butter Or Margarine, Softened
11 ounces, weight Cream Cheese, softened
3 cups Sifted Powdered Sugar
1-½ teaspoon Vanilla Extract

Directions:
Cake
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line two 8-inch (or 9-inch) round cakepans with waxed paper. Lightly grease and flour the waxed paper. Set pans aside.
Stir together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
Beat eggs, sugar, oil, buttermilk, and vanilla at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Add the flour mixture, beating at low speed until blended. Fold in grated carrot, pineapple, coconut, and pecans. Pour batter into prepared cake pans.
Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in the center come out clean. Drizzle Buttermilk Glaze evenly over layers; cool in pans on wire racks for 15 minutes. Remove from pans, and cool completely on wire racks. Spread Cream Cheese Frosting between layers and on the top and sides of cake.

Buttermilk glaze
Bring sugar, baking soda, buttermilk, butter or margarine, and light corn syrup to a boil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Boil, stirring often, for 4 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.

Cream cheese frosting
Beat butter and cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Add powdered sugar and vanilla; beat until smooth.

Zucchini Sweet Potato Bread

Call me crazy, but I turned my oven on again. I’ve been baking in the early mornings to keep myself less hot and can’t say I regret it. I NEED a new breakfast in my life.

I chose this bread because it was quick and full of good stuff. Good stuff being sweet potatoes, zucchini and walnuts. Yum! I feel like I’m existing off of cheese and chocolate and I sometimes have chocolate cereal for breakfast! Hellllppppp! So, I made this quick bread to put some green and orange in my life. Also, this bread is moist and super tasty. It tastes like carrot cake actually, which makes me feel like I’m eating cake for breakfast. This makes me happy. Let’s get baking!

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour a 9x5x3- inch loaf pan and set aside. Sift the first 7 ingredients into a medium sized bowl.

Then, grate your sweet potato.

grate your zucchini…

and chop your walnuts.

In a separate, large bowl, mix the sugars, oil, eggs and vanilla extract.

Beat them together well.

Mix in the zucchini and sweet potato. Mmm it’s looking good now.

Add the dry ingredients and stir just to combine. Fold in the nuts and stir well.

Transfer batter to prepared pan.

Bake until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, about 1 hour and 20 minutes.

Cool bread in pan on a rack for 15 minutes. Loosen the edges of the bread with a butter knife and turn out on a rack to cool completely.

Zucchini Sweet Potato Bread
Recipe taken from Joy the Baker
Makes 1 loaf

Ingredients:
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups sugar (I used 1 cup granulated sugar and 1 cup brown sugar)
3/4 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cup grated zucchini
1 1/2 cup peeled and grated sweet potato
1 cup chopped walnuts
(optional) you could also add 1/4 cup of raisins or dried cranberries to add some fruit if you’d like!

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour a 9x5x3- inch loaf pan and set aside.

Sift the first 7 ingredients into a medium sized bowl.

In a separate, large bowl, beat the sugars, oil, eggs and vanilla extract. Mix in the zucchini and sweet potato. Add the dry ingredients and stir just to combine. Fold in the nuts and stir well.

Transfer batter to prepared pan. Bake until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, about 1 hour and 20 minutes.

Cool bread in pan on a rack for 15 minutes. Loosen the edges of the bread with a butter knife and turn out on a rack to cool completely.