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Chocolate Mug Cake

Have you ever been home by yourself and get a hankering for dessert?  Maybe something chocolatey?  You think “maybe some pudding, or a piece of chocolate cake?  But, no, you tell yourself you can’t make a whole dessert:  there’s all those ingredients, all the time to measure, mix and bake and whats more ~ the leftovers!

What if you could make a warm, chocolatey dessert made just for one?  Do you have a coffee mug?  Got some basic baking ingredients in the house?  Got a couple of minutes?  Then you’ve got a fudgey, chocolate mug cake!  You don’t even have to choose between cake and pudding when in less than 2 minutes, you could have both in the same hot dessert.

In 1 coffee mug, measure and whisk or stir together:
3 Tabl. Half and Half (or Whole Milk)
3 Tabl. Vegetable Oil
1 Egg
dash of Vanilla Extract
 
Whisk in:
4 Tabl. Sugar
1/2 tsp. Instant Coffee (optional, but it enhances the flavor of the chocolate)
 
Whisk in:
4 Tabl. Cake Flour
2 Tabl. Cocoa Powder
pinch of Baking Powder
pinch of Salt
 
Drop in:
1-2 Tabl. Chocolate Chips

Place the mug in your microwave.  Microwave on high for 1 minute*.  Remove from heat and stir from bottom up, just enough to mix up ingredients stuck on top.  Place back in microwave for 30 seconds.  Remove from microwave, cool for a few minutes and enjoy your own personal dessert!

     

     

* Microwave ovens cook differently.  Your microwave may cook faster than mine and cook in only 1 minute, or may need a few seconds longer than 1-1/2 minutes.  What is important to remember is:  you want some liquid in the bottom.  Be careful not to over-bake or you’ll have a very solid, dry cake. 

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Pumpkin Roll with Maple Cream Cheese Filling

Perfect for any fall or Thanksgiving meal, the pumpkin roll appeals to all. Rather than serve a pumpkin pie, or maybe in addition to a pumpkin pie, this cake is soft and slightly spicy and has a creamy cream cheese filling.  The maple extract really compliments the pumpkin, but if you don’t like maple, just use the vanilla extract.

Traditionally, the recipe says to dump the cake out on to a towel while it is hot from the oven and then roll the cake lengthwise.  Did you know there is an easier way?  Use parchment on the bottom of the sheet pan.  Then allow to cool before removing – It works great and there’s no chance of getting burned on a hot pan.

 

 

 

In a mixer bowl, whip until light colored and fluffy and doubled in volume:      
3 Eggs, whole
1 cup Sugar
2/3 cup Pumpkin
 
Sift and fold into above ingredients:
¾ cup Cake Flour
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1 tsp. Pumpkin Pie spice or ½ tsp. Cinnamon and ¼ tsp. Ground Cloves and 1/4 tsp. Ginger

Spread the mixture into a parchment lined 1” sided cookie sheet.  Bake in a 375 degree oven for 12 minutes or until it springs back when touched.

Allow the cake to cool completely, remove cake from the pan by pulling the parchment off on to the counter.  Flip over the cold cake and remove the parchment.

Maple Cream Cheese Filling:
Cream until smooth:
8 oz. Cream Cheese, softened
2 Tabl. Butter, softened
 
Add:
½ tsp. Vanilla Extract
½ tsp. Maple Extract
 
Add and beat until smooth:
1 cup powdered Sugar
 

Spread the filling onto the cooled cake.  Roll the cake lengthwise, rolling it tight.  Dust with powdered sugar.  Place on serving tray and cut into 1″ slices to serve.

Buche De Noel – Yule Log

Buche de Noel –  Also known as a Yule Log is traditionally French but has also become a traditional Christmas Day dessert  in America.  Classically it is a sponge cake (Genoise) with pastry cream filling, rolled into a log shape (Roulade) and iced with buttercream.  It is not just in the shape of a log, but it is meant to look like a log in a forest, right down to the meringue mushrooms.

Over the years, as happens with traditions, the recipe has been changed and has evolved.  In the bakery, I chose to make a sponge cake, fill it with fresh whipped cream and finish it with a chocolate glaze.  Instead of the meringue mushrooms, I opt for fondant shaped holly leaves because meringue mushrooms are easy to make but not easy to store (besides holly is prettier!).

A sponge cake is a very simple cake to make and it literally only takes minutes to bake because of its thinness.  We sometimes add peppermint or chocolate pieces or cherries to the whipped cream before rolling, though this is certainly not traditional.  Don’t be scared off by the steps involved.  You do have to make 3 components: a cake, a filling and a glaze.  You’ll find that none of the steps take too long and the assembly is really easy as well.

1.  THE CAKE:
 
In a mixing bowl, whip to soft peaks:
5 Egg Whites 
Slowly add while beating whites:
4 Tabl. Sugar

Continue to whip egg whites to stiff peak and then transfer to another bowl and set aside.

In the same mixing bowl, beat on high speed for 8-10 minutes:
5 Egg yolks
4 Tabl. Sugar

 

Remove the bowl from the mixer and by hand with a spatula, fold in:
1/3 cup Cake Flour, sifted
3 Tabl. Cocoa Powder, sifted

Gently fold in the egg whites to the above mixture:

Spread the batter into a parchment lined 1” sided cookie sheet.  Bake in a 375 degree oven for 10-12 minutes or until it springs back when touched.  Allow the cake to cool completely.

 


2.  THE FILLING:
Whip on high speed to stiff peak (Do not overbeat):
2 cups Heavy Cream 
Slowly add:
3 Tabl. Sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
 
3.  THE GLAZE:
 
Melt slowly in a microwavable bowl:
1 cup of Chocolate Chips
3 Tabl. Butter 
 
When melted, stir in 1 Tabl. Corn Syrup.  Cool at room temperature until the glaze is spreadable.
 
 

NOW HERE’S HOW TO ASSEMBLE –  (Don’t panic – it’s easy 🙂

1)  Remove cake from the pan by running a knife around the edges and then pulling the parchment off pan and on to the counter.  Flip over the cold cake and remove the parchment.

2)  Spread a thin layer of whipped cream over the cake – extending to the edges.

3)  OPTIONAL:  Add peppermint or cherries over the whipped cream.

4)  Roll the long edge of the cake up, rolling as you go, to form a log shape.

5)  Place seam side down on a piece of parchment.

6)  Spread the glaze from the top working around and down the sides (not the edges).

7)  Drag a fork through the chocolate to make it look like bark.

8.)  Allow the glaze to set-up firm.

9)  Cut the ends off on an angle.

10)  Place the ends (really, any way you like) to make it seem like a cut log.  See my pic for an example.

11)  Touch up the glaze on the cut ends.

12)  Transfer the set cake to a serving platter.

13)  Hand cut some green fondant to look like holly and add red M&Ms for the berries.

14)  Refrigerate

Now, wasn’t that pretty painless?  🙂

Pumpkin Crumb Cake

If you can take one more pumpkin recipe, this one would be perfect for Sunday brunch.  I’m sure you are familiar with the NY Crumb Cake, it is more crumbs than cake, but..oh, so delicious!  This take on the traditional crumb cake is more “timely” and seasonal:

Cream:
1/2# Butter, softened
3 cups Sugar

Gradually add:
4 Eggs, room temp.

2 cups Solid Pumpkin


Sift together:
4 cups Cake Flour
1 Tabl. and 1 tsp. Baking Powder
1 tsp. Baking Soda
2 tsp. Cinnamon
1 tsp. Nutmeg
1/2 tsp. Ground Cloves
1/2 tsp. Salt


Add alternatly with dry ingredients to above:
1 cup Milk

Pour batter into a greased 9″X13″ pan. Top with crumbs.  Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes or until tests done with toothpick.  Serve warm.

CRUMB TOPPING:

Mix with fingers to form crumbs:
2 ½ cups AP Flour
1 cup Brown Sugar
2 tsp. Cinnamon
1 cup Butter, softened

Gingerbread Cake

Here’s hoping all my readers had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  I so enjoyed cooking and baking and spending a lovely afternoon with my favorite people in the world – my family!

Just in case you have more company coming and still feel like baking, here’s a quick cake you can whip up in no time at all!   I’m thinking of experimenting by using leftover gingerbread for a Rum Raisin Bread Pudding. I’ll let you know how it turns out.

Sift:
3 cups AP Flour
1-1/2 tsp. Baking Soda
1 -1/2 tsp. Ginger, ground
1-1/2 tsp. Cinnamon
1/2 tsp. Cloves, ground
1/2 tsp. Salt

Beat until creamy:

1/2 cup Butter, softened
1/2 cup Brown Sugar

Add to above:

1 Egg, whole

Mix alternately with dry ingredients:

1 cup Molasses
1 cup Strong Coffee


Pour batter into greased 9″ pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until tests done with toothpick.

When cool, sprinkle with confectioners sugar.  Serve with a dollop of fresh whipped cream.

Pound Cake

The simplicity of a pound cake is intriguing.  Simple quality ingredients, whipped to incorporate air and make it light yet firm.  This cake is also quite versatile.  You can “add-in” any number of ingredients, from extracts, fruits (such as blueberries), juices (in place of the milk), chocolate, etc. or just enjoy it as a compliment to any meal.  Dress it up with whipped cream and fruit if you desire.
 
In a mixer bowl cream:
1 cup Butter, room temp.
1-1/2 cups Sugar
Add one at a time, combining after each addition:
4 Eggs, whole, room temp.
Add and combine:
1/2 cup Milk
2 tsp. Vanilla Extract
Add to above:
2 cups AP Flour
1 Tabl. Baking Powder
1 tsp. Orange  Zest (Optional)

Mix on med-high speed for 20 minutes.  Prepare the loaf pan by cutting parchment paper approx. 15″ X 7″.   Grease and line pan, leaving approx. 2″ to “grab” on each side.  Place in COLD oven (not pre-heated).  Bake in 350 degree oven.  Test for doneness at 1 hr. 15 minutes, using a toothpick.  Toothpick will come out clean when cake is done.   Cool completely.  Pull the parchment from the sides to release.  Peel parchment off to serve.

Chocolate, Peanut Butter Cup Molten Cake

Being a baker, I look forward to the prospect of trying a new recipe.  I care about my readers getting the best, most accurate recipe and method for making it, so sometimes I have to try a recipe several times before its perfect.  This recipe for Chocolate Molten Cakes was “one of those recipes” where I just wasn’t happy with it’s results, so had to keep trying.  Hopefully, my efforts to get it just right will not go in vain.

On my first attempt this weekend, I made the batter and baked it right away ~ it was too runny (I know it’s supposed to have a liquid center, but not that liquid).

The second attempt was much more successful and I know you will enjoy the results!  

(This recipe makes 5-6 oz. ramekins)

Melt in a bowl, over simmering water (or use microwave):
1/2 cup Butter
4 oz. Dark Chocolate (Use a good Quality!)


In mixer whip on high speed until light colored and thick:
2 Eggs, whole
2 Yolks
1/4 cup Sugar
1/2 tsp. Instant coffee/espresso powder dissolved in 1/2 Tabl. Hot Water


Fold the chocolate mixture into the egg mixture and add:
1 Tabl. AP Flour

Refrigerate the batter for at least one hour or overnight.  Butter 5 ramekins and dust them with flour.  Place one scoop of cold batter in each ramekin.  Press 1/2 of a Peanut Butter Cup into center (you can skip this step ~ but why would you?!).  Bake in 450 degree oven for 8 minutes.  Remove from oven and (OK, this is the really HARD PART) allow to set for 8 minutes.  Take a sharp knife and run it around the edge of the ramekins.  Flip the ramekin over onto a dessert tray.  Serve with a scoop of good quality vanilla ice cream.

Maple Layer Cake

Do you cook with maple syrup?  I admit, I don’t often think of adding maple syrup to my recipes.  But in my collection is this wonderfully moist, delicious Maple Layer Cake that makes me wonder why I don’t use it more often.  Please use a good quality maple syrup for best results, but if you have to use the imitation stuff, add 1 tsp. maple extract to both the cake and the icing.

Cream:
3/4 cup Butter, softened
3/4 cup Sugar
1/4 cup Brown Sugar
Add one at a time:
4 Eggs, whole at room temp.
Add to above:
3/4 cup real Maple Syrup
1/2 tsp. Vanilla Extract
Sift and add:
3 cups Cake Flour
1 tsp. Baking Powder
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1 tsp. Salt
1/2 tsp. Cinnamon

Pour batter into greased and parchment lined 9″ round cake pans.  Bake in 350 degree oven 25-30 minutes or until done in center.  Cool on a rack for 10 minutes, turn out onto rack, cool completely.

MAPLE FROSTING:

Cream until soft and light:
8-oz Cream Cheese, room temp.
1/2 cup Butter, room temp.
2 Tabl. pure Maple Syrup
 
Add and Whip:
3 1/2 cups Powdered Sugar, sifted


Frost cool cake with Maple Frosting, using some for filling and the rest for icing sides and top.  I like to garnish mine with toasted walnuts.

Chocolate Cake with Fudge Frosting

October 20th was my dear Mother-In-Laws 94th Birthday.  Mom King is an amazing, wonderful, strong woman of faith, and she is loved and adored by many.  Since she loves chocolate, I made this delicious, moist “old-fashioned” chocolate cake.  You can easily make this cake for all your special occasions too!

 
 
Sift together in mixing bowl:
1  3/4 c. AP Flour
2 cups Sugar
3/4 cups Cocoa Powder
1  1/2 tsp. Baking Soda
1  1/2 tsp. Baking Powder
1 tsp. Salt


 
 
To the dry ingredients add and beat for 2 minutes:
2 Eggs, whole
1 cup Milk
1/2 cup Vegetable Oil
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

 


 

Stir in:
1 cup Strong Coffee (I use instant) *

* You won’t taste the coffee, but coffee actually accentuates chocolate!

This batter is thin.  Pour it into 2 9″ round cake pans that have been greased and parchment lined.  Bake in 350 degree oven for 25-35 minutes.  Cool completely and ice with fudge icing.

Fudge Icing:

In pan, bring to a boil:
1 cup Sugar
1/4 cup Cocoa Powder
1/4 cup Milk
1/4 cup Butter

Boil for 1 minute.  Remove from stove, add just a couple drops of Vanilla Extract.  Cool, allow to thicken.  Spread cooled icing between layers and around the cake.  Use the tip of the knife to make a swirl pattern on your cake.

Tip:  Always serve cake room temperature.  At room temperature, the cake and the icing will be soft.

“In-a-Jiffy” Coffee Cake

I love to bake all from scratch, but sometimes, I’m in a hurry and need a quick cake to serve with coffee.  You’re going to love the ease of how this cake comes together and your family or guests are never going to guess you used a shortcut.

Cream:
1 Egg
1/2 cup Sugar
Add to above:
1 cup “complete” dry Pancake Mix
1/2 cup Milk
3 Tabl. melted Butter

Spread the batter into an 8″ X 8″ greased pan.   Top with streusel.

Streusel:
Combine:
1/2 cup Brown Sugar
2 Tabl. Flour
1  1/2 tsp. Cinnamon
4 Tabl. Butter, softened
1/2 cup chopped Walnuts

Sprinkle streusel over top of batter.  Bake in 350 degree oven for 30 minutes.  Serve warm.

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