Thursday, March 22, 2012

Peanut Butter Cup Chocolate Cake

I made this for a co-worker's birthday. She loves peanut butter cups. I found the idea for this on flickr. I followed the recipe for the frosting, but used a different cake recipe. Her picture is great.

Peanut Butter Cup Chocolate Cake adapted from flint knit at flickr

Hershey's Perfectly Chocolate Cake from : Hershey's of course!

2 cup sugar
1 3/4 cups flour
3/4 cup cocoa
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup of milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil ( I use canola)
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup of boiling water

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease and flour 2 9 inch round pans.

Mix the sugar through the salt together. Add in the milk through the vanilla and beat with a mixer for 2 minutes. Stir in the boiling water and then pour into the pan. This batter is very thin. Bake for 30-35 minutes. Cool in pans 10 minutes and then on wire racks.


1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 cup of butter, softened
 3 tsp vanilla
4 cups of powdered sugar

Beat the butter and peanut butter together until smooth. Add the vanilla and then slowly add the powdered sugar.

I doubled the original recipe for the peanut butter frosting. She had a chocolate ganache in the middle of the layers. I just filled and frosted it with the peanut butter frosting. Frost and decorate with cut up peanut butter cups. Freeze them first or they will become a huge mess!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


So, I have had Tiramisu at restaurants, but I am not crazy about the whole lady finger thing. This recipe uses a Hot Milk Sponge Cake in place of the lady fingers. It's so good and not really hard to put together. It holds up very well in the fridge for several days.

Tiramisu  From: Better Homes and Garden Cookbook (another favorite cookbook of mine)

First make the Hot Milk Sponge Cake:

2 eggs-at room temperature (about 30 minutes sitting out)
1 cup of flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons of butter

Grease a 9 x 9 square pan. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Mix the flour and baking powder together. In another bowl, beat the eggs 5 minutes -until thick. Slowly add sugar, while beating for another 5 minutes (until light and fluffy). Add in the flour and beat until just combined.

In a small sauce pan heat the milk and butter, stirring until the butter melts. Add this to the batter and pour into the baking pan.  

Bake for 20-25 minutes and cool in the pan.

The rest of the recipe:
1/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons of instant coffee or espresso powder ( I use instant coffee)
2 tablespoons of rum (you can use 1/2 teaspoon of rum extract)
2  8oz packages of cream cheese at room temperature (or 16 oz of mascarpone cheese)
1/2  cup of sifted powdered sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla
2 oz of semisweet chocolate, grated
1 cup of heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons of strong coffee ( I just make some with instant coffee and a couple of tablespoons of hot water)
1/2 oz semisweet chocolate, grated

For syrup-In a small pan mix the regular sugar, the instant coffee and 1/3 cup of water. Heat to boil and boil for 1 minute. Stir in the rum or extract and allow to cool. 

For the filling-Mix together the cream cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla. Stir in the 2 oz of grated chocolate.

For the topping-In a chilled mixing bowl with chilled beaters, mix the whipping cream and the strong coffee until soft peaks form.

To assembling-Evenly cut the cake horizontally into 3 layers. ( Yes, this is tricky!) Put one cake layer to the 9x9 pan and brush the top with a 1/3 of the syrup. Layer with half of the filling, another cake layer, more syrup, the rest of the filling, the last of the cake and then the last of the syrup. Spread on the topping and sprinkle with the 1/2 oz of grated chocolate. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, overnight is even better.

I usually make a double batch of the syrup because the cake really soaks it up fast, plus more flavor isn't going to hurt anything. 

I am linking up to Sweets for a Saturday

Monday, March 19, 2012

Guiness Chocolate Cake

I don't like Guiness, or beer for that matter, but I love this cake!

 The fluffy frosting above.

I found this recipe on the Cookie Madness blog and made it for my birthday a year and a half ago. I made it a while back for the head of my department for his birthday. It was well received at the office and at home.

Chocolate Guinness Layer Cake  from:  Cookie Madness (adapted from Epicurious)

1 cup of butter
1 cup of Guinness Stout
3/4 cup Hershey's Dark Cocoa
2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs 
2/3 cup sour cream

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 2  8 inch cake pans. 

Melt the butter over medium heat. Add the stout and cook until it starts to simmer. Turn the heat to low and add the cocoa. Whisk ingredient together and remove from heat. Whisk the flour through salt together in a bowl. In another bowl beat the eggs for 5 minutes until thick. Add the sour cream, then the stout mixture. Add the flour mixture and stir until well combined. Bake the cakes for 28-32 minutes.

Even though the cake was great, the best part was this frosting: 

Malted Chocolate Frosting from: Cookie Madness (adapted from Dorie Greenspan)

6 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate ( I used semisweet)
1/3 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup of malted milk powder ( I used Carnation)
1 tablespoon of cocoa
1/4 cup boiling water
1 cup of butter, softened
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon of vanilla
2 1/4 cups powdered sugar

Melt the chocolate and half of the brown sugar in a double boiler or a glass bowl over simmering water (or carefully in the microwave)

Mix the rest of the brown sugar with the malted milk, cocoa and boiling water until smooth.

Beat the butter, then add in the melted chocolate, the malted milk and the vanilla. Slowly add in the powdered sugar until smooth. Chill the frosting for at least 60 minutes, then beat with a mixer until light and fluffy. What a great cake! I think I need to make it again soon.

Sunday, March 18, 2012


This is one of my husband's favorite cookie

It is good either plain or dipped in chocolate.

You do have to carve out some time to make it since you are baking it twice.
This recipe comes from the Pamper Chef cookbook Doris Christopher's Stoneware Sensations. Although it has pecans in the title, it is great with toasted walnuts or almonds also.

Cinnamon Pecan Biscotti
1/2 cup chopped, pecans-toasted
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
6 tablespoons of butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon of vanilla 

2 teaspoons of sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat butter and sugar until smooth. Mix in eggs and vanilla. In a separate bowl-mix flour, baking soda, and cinnamon. Add to the butter mixture and then add the pecans. Divide dough in half and form each into a 10 x 1 1/2 inch log. Bake several inches apart on a greased or parchment lined large cookie sheet. Sprinkle the sugar on the top of the logs. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Allow to cool a few minutes. Cut logs diagonally into 1/2 inch slices. I lay the biscotti on one side and bake 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and turn over onto the other side and bake another 10-15 minutes. Cool. They will crisp up even more once cooled, but we start eating them as soon as they get out of the oven. I use Baker's semi sweet chocolate melted with a little shortening if I dip the biscotti.