friends and loved ones · in my kitchen · more cake, please

cake #28 – not a bundt birthday cake

My son, Isaac turns 11 this week. It is quite mind-blowing to think he is going to be 11!  At the risk of sounding a little ridiculous, I have to say, I just don’t know where the time has gone.

Isaac has the best sense of humor, always making us laugh and living up to his name which means laughter.  Anyway, when my sweet boy who brings us so much joy, told me that he did not want a bundt cake, but that he wanted a layer cake with a lot of frosting, I knew what I had to do. I decided to take a one week hiatus from making bundt cakes.

We celebrated early on the 4th because daddy was home from work, and grandparents were free!  We had cake and presents, and celebrated Isaac and his life.

Here’s the cake I made:

I made a chocolate cake with a lot of chocolate butter cream.   I used a chocolate fudge cake duncan hines cake mix, with 4 eggs, 1 cup of milk, 1/3 cup of oil, and chocolate pudding mix.

My chocolate butter cream recipe was taken from the wilton’s website:   1/2 cup crisco, 1/2 cup butter, 3/4 cup cocoa, 5 tbsp of chocolate milk and a bit of vanilla.

I decorated with peppermint buttercream and mint oreos because my boy loves mint and chocolate.  Mmmmmm.

Guys!  It was fanatastic!

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in my kitchen · more cake, please

Cake #26. Half-way to the finish line, Kentucky Butter Cake.

Guys, I’m officially halfway thru the year of bundt-cakes!  I can hardly believe I’ve made 26 cakes!  Who knew I could manage this – and keep up with life?   Truthfully, I’ve enjoyed it!  I’ve come to look forward to my baking time each week!

Well, week 26 is a Kentucky Butter Cake.  I made it for my friend Lisa, who helped me out with making a few t-shirts for Scenic City Children’s Choir.  She definitely deserves cake!

When she told me this was her favorite cake, I had a feeling it would be a hit.  I found a good recipe (read:it has lots of butter) and got to work.   Honestly I can tell you that I’ve never seen such a light and fluffy, yet rich cake batter!  I had a tiny taste of the batter – it was RIDICULOUSLY DE-LISH!!!  It may look simple, and un-assuming, but seriously, this is a must-try for your list, and I don’t say that every week! (Do I?)

Here’s the recipe, from cookiesandcups.com

Kentucky Butter Cake

Ingredients:

Cake
  • 1 cup butter, cubed at room temperature
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup buttermilk
Butter Glaze
  • ⅓ cup butter
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F/165°C
  2. Grease a 10″ bundt pan (I use pam spray with flour)
  3. Place all the cake ingredients in the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low for 30 seconds and then increase the speed to medium and mix for 3 minutes.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 65-75 minutes until a toothpick entered into the center comes out clean.
  5. When the cake is done make the glaze. Combine all ingredients into a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir continuously until the butter is melted and the sugar is dissolved. Do not bring to a boil.
  6. Poke holes all over the warm cake (I use chopsticks) and pour the glaze evenly on the cake while still in the pan.
  7. Allow the cake to cool completely in the pan and then invert the cake onto a serving plate.
  8. I made this cake a day in advance, hoping it will be more moist and flavorful after resting overnight.

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in my kitchen · more cake, please

Apple Cider Donut Bundt

A few weeks ago, a friend of mine gave me a bunch of beautiful, lovely, much needed hand-me-downs for my Mackenzie!  I was so blessed by this wonderful gift, I promised my friend a cake.     Time went by and I realized that I still needed to make that promised cake!

After discussing what her family might enjoy, I browsed my pinterest page for ideas.  I found the PERFECT option (thank you to Martha Stewart) : Apple Cider Donut Bundt.  The write-up sounded like this cake was right up my friend’s alley.  I made a few changes, but- stayed true to the recipe otherwise.

When I baked the cake, the smell from my oven was AMAZING!  It was all I could do to not take a warm chunk!  But, I resisted the urge and got the cake to my friend quickly!  Within minutes of giving her the cake, I got a text!  They loved it!  She did say that maybe it wasn’t quite the texture of a donut- so, I’m gonna work on that a little bit!  Otherwise this may be a contender for the “keeper” list!

*****  Hey, friends!  When week 26 is completed, I’m going to post a “half-way-thru-the-year” review of my favorite cakes!  I would LOVE to hear from you if you’ve tried any cakes and loved them!  By the end of week 52 I would like to have a list of “best” cakes to draw on… you know, in case I go into business and need to create a menu of sorts! 🙂  ***********

Here is the recipe!  Seriously, you really might want to try this one!

Apple Cider Donut Bundt Cake

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more for pan (I used 1/4 cup of butter)
  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for pan
  • 1 cup whole-wheat flour (I used only all-purpose flour this time)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 3/4 cups natural cane sugar (I used regular, every day sugar)
  • 1 cup apple cider (I used part apple juice, part sparkling cider -because I dare you to find real cider in June.)
  • 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil (I used vegetable oil)
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a 12-cup Bundt pan. In a large bowl, whisk together both flours, baking powder, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. In another bowl, whisk together 1 1/2 cups sugar, cider, oil, applesauce, vanilla, and eggs. Add egg mixture to flour mixture; whisk until combined. Transfer batter to prepared pan.

  • Bake, rotating pan halfway through, until a tester inserted in center comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack set over a rimmed baking sheet; let cool 15 minutes. Meanwhile, mix together remaining 1/4 cup sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon.

  • Invert warm cake onto rack. Brush with melted butter, then sprinkle liberally with cinnamon sugar. Let cool completely before serving. Cake can be stored, covered, at room temperature up to 2 days. (While working on this coating, I painted butter on a small section of the cake, sprinkled cinnamon-sugar immediately, and then moved onto another section.)

 

 

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friends and loved ones · in my kitchen · more cake, please

Cake #23 – Lemon Rhubarb at the beach

Week 23 was approaching and I realized that, indeed, I needed to bake cake #23 in advance because we would be on vacation at the beach.

I’m a real sucker for some seasonal fruits, like blueberries and strawberries and especially rhubarb!  I have a love for rhubarb that cannot be measured. The aroma of rhubarb baking, brings back memories from childhood.    There is nothing like hot rhubarb crisp from the oven, with softening vanilla ice-cream running down into canals around the  warm and chewy fruit dessert.

But, alas, I cannot actually make a rhubarb crisp for my cake-a-week challenge – so, I did the next best thing.  I made a lemon rhubarb bundt to take to the beach with us.     The flavors of this cake are crisp and bright – and makes a sweet and sour explosion in your mouth with every bite! As much as I love chocolate, this might be my favorite cake so far!

Here is the recipe from the warmvanillasugar.com site.    I made a minor modification, using lemon extract and lemon juice from a bottle instead of lemon zest  in the cake batter and fresh lemon juice in the glaze because I forgot to pick up a few lemons at the store.    oops.  It was still amazingly yummy!

 

 

INGREDIENTS

Cake:

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 lemons, tested
3 eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups + 2 tbsp all-purpose flour, divided
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp Kosher salt
3/4 cup buttermilk
3 cups rhubarb, diced in 1/2-inch pieces

Lemon Glaze:
2 cups icing sugar
1 lemon, juiced
1 tbsp melted unsalted butter

 

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a bundt cake pan. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, or a large mixing bowl, beat together the softened butter, sugar and lemon zest until light and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes. Scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula and then add the eggs, one at a time, until fully incorporated. Mix in the vanilla.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together 2 1/2 cups of flour, baking powder and salt. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture into the egg mixture along with 1/3 of the needed buttermilk and mix on low speed. Alternate with flour and buttermilk until both are fully incorporated.
  4. In a medium bow, or large ziplock bag, toss the rhubarb with the remaining two tablespoons of flour until the rhubarb is well coated. Gently fold rhubarb into the batter with a rubber spatula until it’s distributed evenly.
  5. Turn out cake batter into the prepared pan, using a spatula to gently spread and level it out.
  6. Bake for about 60-70 minutes, or until the cake springs back gently when touched and a toothpick inserted into it comes out clean.
  7. Allow cake to sit and cool in the pan on a wire rack for 30 minutes.
  8. Meanwhile, make the glaze by whisking together all the glaze ingredients until smooth. Thin with extra lemon juice or thicken with more powdered sugar as you see fit.
  9. When the cake is cooled, tip it out onto a serving plate and generously drizzle cake with the lemon glaze.
  10. Slice and enjoy.

 

friends and loved ones · in my kitchen · more cake, please

Cake #22 – Welcome Neighbors! Lemon Blueberry Bundt.

We learned a few weeks ago that some friends from church were moving into a neighborhood near ours.  And I couldn’t resist making them a little “house warming” treat to welcome them!

I’ve been toying with the idea of a lemon blueberry bundt, so I decided to practice my recipe on them!  I can’t wait to hear if they like it!

Here’s what I did:

Cake #22 – Lemon Blueberry Bundt Cake.

Ingredients:

Classic White Cake mix
small lemon pudding
3 eggs
1 cup Fresca
1/2 cup oil
1 tsp lemon extract
1 cup of blueberries

Instructions:

Mix all ingredients (except the blueberries) on medium speed for two minutes.  (maybe scrape down the sides of the bowl halfway thru, to be sure all of the ingredients are combined well.)  Set the oven at 350 and prepare the pan.  Pour 1/3 of the batter into the pan, sprinkle with berries.  Pour another 1/3 of the cake mix and sprinkle again with blueberries.  Bake for 45 minutes.

When the cake is cooled, remove from the pan and prepare a lemon glaze.  mix powdered sugar with a bit of lemon juice until you have the consistency you want and gently pour over the cake, or paint lightly with a pastry brush.

Here’s to the lovely, fresh flavors of summer!  And Here’s hoping our new neighbors enjoy their special treat in their new home!  😉

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friends and loved ones

In the middle of the busy month of May,

my baby girl turned 8.    How in the world did that happen?  Time really does fly, friends, but, that is a subject for another time.

Let me tell you about our celebration!

Mackenzie, is my sweet, spunky, youngest baby.    She loves her family, loves to play outside and loves all kinds of board games.    When her birthday rolled around, her desires were simple.  A few friends and family to celebrate,  a cookie cake with ice-cream sundaes –  her gift wish list was even simpler.

Since she is so simple in her “wants”, we had little to go on as far as gift ideas.  But, my hubby came up with a fantastic idea! (He never fails to amaze me with his gift-giving skills.)   She loves being outdoors so much, we decided to clear an area of our side front yard and  surprise her by hanging a tree swing!  It was a huge hit!   She and her cousins and friends partied, swinging all day long!

I love who this precious girl is becoming – and I’m completely amazed and thrilled that we get to be her parents!  I can’t wait to share the coming with year with her and all the possibilities it holds!

Thank you, Lord for the goodness you’ve shown to our family by blessing us with the gift of Mackenzie!

 

 

 

 

friends and loved ones · in my kitchen · more cake, please

cake #21 black oil bundt

Okay, friends! Week 21 rolled around and I realized it was time to bake a birthday cake for my dear friend, Leslie.

This is my sweet mom, my friend,Leslie, and I at a Lookouts game just last weekend.  We chatted the time away at the game.  But, while we talked, I managed to squeeze out of Leslie (hopefully without her knowing) what kind of cake she might like.  Now, I know Leslie loves a good red velvet cheesecake – but, I’m making bundt cakes – not cheesecakes… so, I had to figure something out!  She mentioned a “black oil cake” – and I had never heard of that!

Of course, my curiosity was roused and I went home in search of a black oil cake recipe.  Guess what I found?  It is chocolate cake – but not just any chocolate cake!  It is dark, rich, thick chocolate cake full of egg yokes and buttermilk, covered in more satin-y smooth chocolate.

I had to go for it!  And, according to Leslie it was phenomenal.  Her family devoured it!  That makes this baker’s heart super happy!

Here’s to a Happy Birthday for Leslie and  to finding a new amazing cake recipe!  🙂

Cake # 21  Black Oil Cake

Beat together:
1 cup oil
1 cup buttermilk
3 egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla

sift together and add to the wet ingredients:
2 cups sugar
1/2 c cocoa ( I used hershey’s dark)
2 cups flour
1 tbsp soda
1/4 tsp salt

Mix all of the ingredients, then add 1 cup  of boiling water and stir gently until combined.  Pour into prepared pan.
Bake at 325 for 1 hour.

When the cake is mostly cooled, remove it from the pan and make this frosting:

Ingredients:
1 stick of butter, 6 tbsp of buttermilk, 3 3/4 cups of powdered sugar and 4 tbsp of cocoa.

Instructions:
Bring butter, buttermilk and cocoa to a boil.  Remove it from the heat and add the sugar and vanilla.  You can add nuts, but I did not use nuts.  Pour over the cake.  ( did not use all of the frosting on the bundt cake, but I’m sure you’d use it all on 9×13 cake. )

in my kitchen · more cake, please

cake #19 fudgy peanut butter bundt

It is really hard to believe that week #19 is upon us!  How can that be?  I guess time really does fly when you’re having fun!  And friends, I really am having fun!

What’s really great about this adventure is that I’m getting to share cake with friends!  I had no idea just how much satisfaction would come from baking and giving it away.  So, when my dear friend Wendy (yes, I baked cakes for  two different friends named Wendy two weeks in a row) texted me and said she might like to be in on the bundt cake action, I could NOT say no!

I thought a bit about Wendy and her husband Richard and what they might like – and this is what I came up with: a Fudgy Peanut butter Bundt Cake!  Here’s how I made it:

Ingredients:

devil’s food cake mix (duncan hines)
1 cheesecake pudding mix
4 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup mini semi sweet chocolate chips
1 diced peanut butter cup
hershey’s syrup
more peanut butter cups chopped (as many as you want) and mini chocolate chips.
fudgy peanut butter frosting: 1/2 cup mini semi sweet chips, a few tbsp of cream, 3 tbsp of Jif Peanut butter, heated in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time – whisked with a fork until smooth.

Instructions:

Mix first 4 ingredients on medium speed for 2 minutes.  then fold in peanut butter cups and chocolate chips.  Pour batter into prepared bundt pan.  Bake at 350 for 45-50 minutes.  Let cool.  Remove from pan. Paint hershey’s syrup on the cooled cake with a pastry brush until the exterior of the cake is shiny.  Then, prepare frosting and drizzle/pour over top of the cake.    sprinkle with chopped peanut butter cups and mini chips.

I heard from Wendy and Richard and they loved it!  Although, Wendy and I agreed this cake could stand to have more peanut butter flavors – but, she said it was really yummy! I think next time I might add more melted peanut butter into the fudge sauce – and maybe add some peanut butter chips to the top… or something along those lines!   Let me know if you decide to try this recipe – I bet you’ll love it, too!

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in my kitchen · more cake, please

Cake #18 Key lime pound cake with cream cheese glaze

Week #18 is Key lime pound cake!  I created this one for the second winner of my little competition back over Easter weekend.

In the spring time citrus just feels right with its bright and fresh flavors.  This cake, I believe, hit the spot!  I searched on pinterest of course for help on the recipe, and I found this gem on theirreverentkitchen.com!

Key lime pound cake (for Wendy Tate and her family!)

Ingredients:

  •  4 sticks butter, that’s 1 pound, room temperature
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 6 large eggs, room temperature
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup fresh key lime juice
  • 1/4 cup evaporated milk, (I always keep a good number of those small, 5 ounce cans in my pantry.)
  • 4 teaspoons key lime zest
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 300°.  Cover inside of 10 inch tube pan with non-stick spray.  My pan is 10  1/2″ and it’s just fine.  Set aside.
  • Using a stand-up mixer or electric hand-held, beat the butter well until light in color and fluffy.  Add the sugar and again beat well for at least 5 minutes.  I use a stand up mixer and beat the mixture 10-15 minutes.  I don’t like a “grainy” cake.
  • One at a time add the eggs and beat only until the yellow disappears.
  • Stir juice, milk, zest and vanilla together.
  • Now mixing by hand, gradually flour to the butter-egg mixture alternating with the key lime juice and milk mixture.  Begin and end with flour.  Mix well but just enough to incorporate all ingredients.  You don’t want a tough pound cake!
  • Pour evenly into the tube pan and tap pan on the counter to loosen any air bubbles.
  • Bake for 1 hour and 45 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean.
  • Cool on a cooling rack for 20-25 minutes in the pan then transfer from pan to cooling rack and allow to cool another hour or until completely cool.
  • When it was cooled, I mixed a little lime juice and confectioners sugar and painted it all over the outside of the cake with a pastry brush.  I feel like this gives it a little extra zing!
  • After glazing the cake I sprinkled with lime zest and white sugar crystals.

Unlike previous cakes – I tried to follow this recipe exactly (with the exception of the last step).  Now the glaze, on the other hand, I just monkeyed with the following ingredients until I found the consistency I wanted.

Glaze:
4 oz cream cheese, confectioners sugar(a cup maybe?), lime juice (a tbsp or two), and cream (a tbsp?) and maybe a drop of lemon extract. – I whipped these ingredients until they were smooth and ready drizzle over the cake.

I was thrilled to hear back from sweet Wendy and her family!  They thoroughly enjoyed the cake!  Here’s a bit of what she said:

Our family’s favorite season is summer, &, if you ask us what summer tastes like, we’ll probably say “Summer tastes like key lime!” Oh, we might say it tastes like ice cream and watermelon & lemonade too, but key lime is always a main ingredient of summer!

And your cake? It hit every note just right… it was bright & lovely… the perfect springy taste that says, “Summer is on the way, y’all!!”

The cake was packaged perfectly… a delicious gift!

The cake was a good texture & so “clean.” I loved the lightly browned edges.

And the cream cheese icing glaze was marvelous!! It was Beth’s favorite part. In her words: “I could eat the icing w/ a spoon!”

The icing was a wonderful blend of sweet-tart, & the lime zest & sugar crystals combined in my mouth in a tasty little explosion of flavor!

Thank you, Wendy for such and kind and glowing review!  🙂

a bit of history · friends and loved ones

Grandma B turns 93!

Two women who are so special to me, my Mum and Grandma B.

My sweet Grandmother turned 93 years young yesterday.   I wasn’t able to travel north this time for the celebration, but I’m thankful my mom and dad were able to be there!

It seems like yesterday we were visiting my grandparents’ home in Goderich, Ontario.  But, it wasn’t yesterday – it was probably 35 years ago…

A confident homemaker and loving wife, my Grandma was a master in the kitchen and around the house – her cooking, baking and sewing – I only dream of accomplishing so well.  Her hospitality as a pastor’s wife was well known in the community, and likely around many of the churches in Southern Ontario.    Without a doubt, I can tell you she was an example of the Proverbs 31 woman.

25 Strength and honor are her clothing;
She shall rejoice in time to come.
26 She opens her mouth with wisdom,
And on her tongue is the law of kindness.
27 She watches over the ways of her household,
And does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children rise up and call her blessed;
Her husband also, and he praises her:
29 “Many daughters have done well,
But you excel them all.”
30 Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing,
But a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised.

Though her body has aged a little, much about my Grandma has remained the same.  My Grandma B is, and has always been, a beautiful godly woman. She is joyful and content, with a gentle smile and an encouraging word.

She has arrived at 93 with grace that the Lord has given, and I can only hope I might do the same.

Mom took part of one of my cakes to Grandma to share with her, so she could see what I’ve been up to with all of this cake-a-week business!  I can’t tell you how thrilled and proud I am to know she had a little taste of my baking and approved!   Here she is with a piece of the cake I sent!  🙂

I’ve been staring at photos from the party that happened earlier today, just slightly jealous that I couldn’t be there.  But, it makes me feel a little better to share the photos of my family honoring her today, here on my blog!  Its like I was almost there!  Thankfully, we will head north this fall and we will get to visit Grandma (and all the other family, too!) then.

Happy Birthday, Grandma!  We’ll see you soon!

a bit of history · friends and loved ones

25 and counting…

then

and now…  (not that much has changed, right?!)

In the fall of 1992 I was beginning my senior year at Bowling Green High School.  It was only my second year at the school, and my third high school to attend.  Needless to say it was a little rough on the emotions.

Senior Year is a big deal.  There are firsts and lasts.  beginnings and endings.  opportunities offered and doors closed.    Some of those occasions I remember clearly, and some I’ve forgotten by now.  But there is one part of my year that stands alone from everything else.

That year I met my best friend.  Like so many other life-events, you don’t know it is important until long after the fact.

I suppose we had actually met earlier in the spring of 1992 in our junior year, but our friendship began to blossom our senior year.  I can’t really tell you exactly how it happened – I can’t even recall how or when we met. It may have been because of common experiences, or similar family values, or because we spent a lot of time in choir together. But, regardless of all that, our friendship began- and I believe my life is so much different because of it.

Twenty five years is a really long time to be friends.  Most of that time our friendship has endured long-distance.  Long phone calls.  texts. emails.  Our face to face visits have been too few.  But, our relationship remains strong.  I’ve often thought that we could actually be on the phone with each other, and not actually talk, and still know what the other person was meaning to say. That’s how long-term friendships work, I guess.

All those memes you see on social media about friendship; they may seem silly, but they’re kind of true.  She is the friend who chooses to be my friend, in spite of my faults – who knows how to sing my song to me even when I’ve forgotten – who believes in me and inspires me to be better – who gets me into trouble, or keeps me from getting into trouble, or both – who knows the majority of my history and still doesn’t mind admitting she’s my friend.

Most of all, I’m really a better person because she chooses to put up with me.  I’ve watched this dear friend walk some of the most painful roads, filled with hurt and confusion.  She’s held her head high.  She’s worked hard and given herself away. She’s survived and even thrived.  She’s not only survived, she’s successful.  She’s a magnificent mother, daughter, sister and she’s my friend.  There is no one who inspires me more.  no one.

And it is her birthday today.  My dear friend, Chiara – Happy birthday, friend!  Your love and friendship means the world to me!  Here’s to our friendship of 25 years ( its the only real gift I have to give you) – and here’s to 25 more!

Love, me.

a bit of history · in my kitchen · more cake, please

cake # 16 – Raspberry Zinger, (aka – “try, try again”cake)

It seems that my mind is cluttered with too many summer vacation memories: pools and beaches and the scent of a particular sunscreen, and a favorite towel – and playing with my dad in the water (when he’d finally get in because, truly he is a big chicken and he hates the cold water.).  Almost equal in importance to all of that: there were the favorite snacks.

For our family, there was one snack that we all agreed was the best – and that was a Zinger.  Not just any zinger – there were vanilla and chocolate, too –  but for us, only the raspberry coconut zinger would do.  Now in case you don’t know – the Zinger was a Dolly Madison treat – (not a Little Debbie  or  hostess snack cake.) and it was a small sized cake, shaped similarly to the twinkie – it also had golden sponge cake and was filled with cream – but it was covered in a raspberry coating and coconut.  Zingers are hard to come by these days – and so, you guessed it,  I decided for Easter to try to figure out if I could make a Raspberry Zinger bundt.

Now,  if you’ve been following my cake adventure since the beginning, you might remember week #7 – the twinkie cake, which was a failure.  Oh sad times, those were- heart-breaking in fact!  But, after several conference calls with my sister and baking confident, Marilyn, discussing how in the world to have a moist cake, and still get the filling inside without it falling apart –  I felt brave enough to try again!

What can I say?!?  I’m a glutton for punishment!

 

Here it is!

Raspberry Zinger Bundt – cake # 16.

Cake Recipe:

Gold cake mix
4 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup oil
2 cups coconut
small raspberry jello (with 2 cups of water)

Filling Recipe:

small jar of marshmallow cream
1/4 heavy cream
1/2 cup soft butter
3 cups confectioners sugar

 

Instructions:

Heat oven to 350.  Combine the mix, eggs, milk and oil in a bowl and beat on medium high for two minutes.  Prepare pan, pour batter in and bake cake for 60 minutes.  Let the cake cool for about 20 minutes, then flip out of pan.  The cake should cool completely before filling with cream.

Next fill the cake with the cream.  Combine the wet ingredients and beat until  creamy – then add sugar and whip till smooth.    I then used chopsticks to make small tunnels  around the cake (on the top side of the cake, I only made 4 holes, but went both directions away from the hole)  – and then used a frosting gun with a long tip to fill the tunnels with cream.

Then boil two cups of water, mix in the jello mix and put it in the fridge  to thicken(I poured it in a pan, so it was spread out in a thin layer and could cool quickly).    When it begins to have the texture of a very thick syrup, or loose jelly, spoon over the cake.  Do a small section at a time and press the coconut all over the sides of the cake.  Be sure to cover the top (and the cream holes) with the coconut.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Here are photos of the inside of my Zinger Cake, taken at our Easter brunch.  Guys, everyone loved it!  and I’m super excited that the cake was soft and light, with enough cream in the center.   Yay for second chances!   What’s true more than ever? If at first you don’t succeed,  try, try again!

 

 

friends and loved ones · who knows?

My Eternal King

We are at the end of Lent -40 days of contemplating sacrifice, ultimate sacrifice. After all this time of being a Christian – a Christ follower –  I don’t know if I can fully comprehend the reality of His sacrifice. But, over these last days I’ve come to realize this one thing :  Jesus is near; He is much closer than I expected.  And He is prepared to reveal Himself at every moment.   His sacrifice – His death and resurrection – made a way for me to know His presence more fully.

this Scripture, from Acts, put exactly what I’m experiencing:  Acts 17:27

“…that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us.”

It seems like Lent is a time set aside for groping for Him, knowing I have a hope that I will truly find Him. Good news! This season I have found Him so very present!

In His majesty and glory, I found Him, watching my favorite tree bring buds into leaves this spring.  I know that sounds strange, but,  I am reminded when I see this tall, strong, beautiful piece of creation that my Savior, by the power of His resurrection, makes all things new!  He brings the dead of winter, into the new life of spring – and it is truly glorious!  Even as He brings this tree to life, He has regenerated my own heart to new life in Christ!

And He was in the poetry of song.  I share this piece because it is rich with the truth and the splendor of His sacrifice.  I’ve heard it many times in the past, but this spring it brought His work on the cross to life in my heart and mind!

My Eternal King

My God, I love Thee;
not because I hope for heav’n thereby,
Nor yet because who love Thee not
Must die eternally.

Thou, O my Jesus, Thou didst me
Upon the cross embrace;
For me didst bear the nails, the nails and spear,
And manifold disgrace.

Why, then why, O blessed Jesus Christ,
Should I not love Thee well?
Not for the hope of winning heav’n,
Or of escaping hell;

Not with the hope of gaining aught,
Not seeking a reward;
But as Thyself hast loved me,
O ever-loving Lord!

E’en so I love Thee, and will love,
And in Thy praise will sing;
Solely because Thou art my God,
And my Eternal King.

May I continue to grope for Him and find Him, not just now before Easter, but all year long!  Heavenly Father, Help my heart to be revived by your gracious presence in all of life’s moments!  amen.

friends and loved ones · in my kitchen

I’ve finally made a decision…

People have been asking; you may have been wondering.  I was too, you know.  Sometimes,  on less significant choices (chocolate or red velvet? strawberry or blueberry?), I am terribly indecisive.  This time it took even longer than usual to make my decision.  I mean, I wanted it to be just right.

Ends up that I had to ask my sister.  She’s good at this kind of thing.  I mean, she’s GOOD.  So, I texted for her help.  (If you can’t ask your big sister, who can you ask?)

What in the world should I call my little, on-the-side, cake baking business?   And, without hesitating, (seriously, it was seconds) she texted:

More Cake, Please. 

And it was done.  There could not be a better title for this small little adventure I’m on.

Eventually there might be a website and other fun stuff!  But, for now, you can follow all the crazy cake baking nonsense (and other general kitchen and foodie shenanigans) on Instagram at:   mor3cakeplease

That is all for now.  Just thought you might want to know.

 

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in my kitchen · more cake, please

Cake #27 7-up cake

When week#27 was getting close, I realized it was going to be a busy one, and I needed to bake ahead.  I found out my folks were having company, and so I offered to bake something for my mom that she could pop in the freezer and pull out when she needed it.  My mom has done so much for me since moving here, I feel like a cake really doesn’t even come close to repaying her!  But – indeed, it is a yummy start!

She and I decided on a summer-y, 7-up cake.  I’m hoping she saves me a bite to I can try it, but, by all appearances, I think it is going to be everything a cake should be – a pound cake but on the lighter side, full of fizzy-lemon flavor. Perfect for a hot summer day!

Its a simple recipe – I found it on pinterest!  It was posted as a cut-out newspaper recipe – so, I’m not sure who to give credit to – I do know there was a handwritten date of October 1, 1981 on the photo, so I can say it is probably an old-school recipe.  You can’t go wrong with a tried and true recipe like that!

7-up Cake

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups butter

3 cups sugar

5 eggs

3 cups flour

3/4 cups 7-up

2 tablespoons of lemon extract.

Instructions:

Heat oven to 325 and prepare a 10″ tube pan.  Cream butter and sugar, add eggs one at a time and mix well.  Add flour.  Next, add 7-up and extract.  Spoon batter into prepared pan.  Bake at 325 for an hour, maybe longer depending on your oven.    When finished baking, cool and then remove from pan.  Sprinkle with powdered sugar.

in my kitchen · more cake, please

Cake #25 Hawaiian Pineapple Butter Cake father’s day MAJOR Fail!

Hawaiian Pineapple Butter Cake – #25.  Fail.

It is Father’s Day.  And let me say – I found this brilliant cake on Pinterest, or so I thought!  I just knew my hubs, my dad and my father-in-law would all love it.  Last nite I set out to make it, thinking I had a slam-dunk new favorite in the works.

I could not have been more wrong.

The cake itself was delicious – I know because I had extra batter and made mini bundts of just cake, without the pineapple. The cake was perfect – it could not have turned out better.  But, I knew as soon as I popped the full-sized cake out of the pan, I had miscalculated by drastic proportions.  There was a pineapple mixture that was supposed to bake up into the cake – and it didn’t.  Nope – it was just mushy slop, sitting on top of the cake.  It looked terrible and the pineapple mush didn’t even really taste good.

What a disaster.  And, what a waste!  Oh how I hate to waste such a golden, fluffy and moist cake with a delicious vanilla-pineapple sweet flavor.  How could I have gone so wrong?

Well, I’m giving myself huge loads of grace today – and remembering what NOT to do again…

So, what do you do when you need a Father’s Day dessert, and soon?  Well – I for one ran to the Wal Mart to get a few things – and I’m making Mississippi Mud for my family.  Its a nice, chilled, summertime-chocolatey dessert that I know everyone will love.

I’ll hop back on the bundt cake train next week!

(no photos, guys!  believe me – you don’t want to see this mess…)