Sunday, April 22, 2012

Some of my favorite Cakes

Lemon Pudding Cakes
makes 3 individual servings

1 egg, separated
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/3 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
Pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 350°F. Place a 9-inch cake pan, filled with about 3/4 inch of water, into the oven. Grease 3 small souffle cups.

In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, flour, and salt. Add in egg yolks, lemon juice, lemon zest, milk and vanilla and whisk thoroughly. In a medium bowl, beat egg whites to soft peaks. Stir egg whites gently into lemon mixture, until well combined.

Pour mixture into prepared souffle dish and gently place in water bath.

Bake for 30-40 minutes, until the cake has risen and begun to pull away from the sides of the dish.

Bananas Foster Upside-Down Cake

One quick flip and this cake tumbles from the skillet perfectly golden and party ready.
Southern Living NOVEMBER 2011
  • Yield: Makes 8 servings
  • Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened and divided
  • 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons rum
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose baking mix
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon


1. Preheat oven to 350°. Bake pecans in a single layer 8 to 10 minutes or until toasted and fragrant, stirring once.
2. Melt 1/4 cup butter in a lightly greased 10-inch cast-iron skillet or 9-inch round cake pan (with sides that are at least 2 inches high) over low heat. Remove from heat; stir in brown sugar and rum.
3. Cut bananas diagonally into 1/4-inch-thick slices; arrange in concentric circles over brown sugar mixture. Sprinkle pecans over bananas.
4. Beat granulated sugar and remaining 1/4 cup butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Add milk and next 2 ingredients; beat just until blended. Beat in baking mix and cinnamon until blended. (Batter will be slightly lumpy.) Pour batter over mixture in skillet. Place skillet on a foil-lined jelly-roll pan.
5. Bake at 350° for 40 to 45 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in skillet on a wire rack 10 minutes. Run a knife around edge to loosen. Invert onto a serving plate, spooning any topping in skillet over cake.

Chocolate Strawberry Cake Basket

I found this recipe in Southern Living magazine in 1998.  I made this cake for lots of weddings.  Grooms like chocolate!  For weddings I dipped the berries to look like tuxedos.
  • 1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons instant coffee granules
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup cocoa
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
  • Florist wire
  • Assorted fresh flowers and foliage
  • Florist tape
  • Florist water picks
  • Chocolate-Dipped Strawberries
  • Garnish: Marzipan Bees


Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until fluffy; gradually add sugars, beating well. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating until blended after each addition. Set mixture aside.
Stir together instant coffee granules and 1 cup boiling water until granules dissolve.
Stir together flour and next 4 ingredients. Add to butter mixture alternately with sour cream, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat at low speed until blended after each addition. Gradually add coffee mixture and vanilla, beating at low speed just until blended. Pour batter into 2 greased and floured 8-inch square cakepans.
Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes; remove from pans, and cool on wire racks.
Spread a thin layer of Chocolate Buttercream Frosting between layers and on top and sides of cake, reserving remaining frosting.
Fit a decorating bag with basket-weave tip, and fill with some of remaining frosting. Pipe basket-weave pattern around sides, refilling bag as needed. Change to star tip, and pipe ruffle around top and bottom of cake.
Form handle from florist wire; attach foliage and flowers with florist tape.
Insert 2 water picks into top of cake near 2 opposite edges, and insert wire ends of handle into water picks. Mound Chocolate-Dipped Strawberries onto top of cake.
Garnish with Marzipan Bees, if desired.
NOTE: For foliage, we used strawberry plants. Roses, pansies, and violas may also be used.

Cream Cheese Pound Cake
With Pina Colada Sauce


  • 1 1/2 cups butter
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
  • 3 cups white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 6 eggs
  • 3 cups cake flour


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Grease one 10 inch tube pan.
  2. Cream together the butter, cream cheese, and sugar until light. Stir in the vanilla and the almond extracts. Add the flour and the eggs alternately, beginning and ending with the flour. Pour batter into the prepared pan.
  3. Bake at 325 degrees F (165 degrees C) for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Chocolate Mocha Cake with Ganache Frosting

This impressive chocolate cake recipe features three layers of tender chocolate cake and two layers of creamy mocha-chocolate filling covered in a rich chocolate-coffee ganache. The fourth element of chocolate is the garnish of chocolate curls that are sprinkled on top of the cake.
See how to make chocolate garnish at the end of this blog
  • cooking spray
  • vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 (4 ounce) semisweet chocolate baking bar, chopped
  • 1/2 (4 ounce) bittersweet chocolate baking bar, chopped
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups cake flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • Coffee Liqueur Ganache Icing
  • Mocha-Chocolate Cream Filling
  • Garnish: chocolate curls


Coat 3 (8-inch) round cakepans with cooking spray. Line bottoms of pans with wax paper; grease wax paper with shortening, and set aside.
Melt chocolate in a small saucepan over low heat, stirring until smooth; set aside.
Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until yellow disappears after each addition. Stir in melted chocolate and vanilla.
Sift together flour and next 3 ingredients; add to butter mixture alternately with buttermilk, beating at low speed just until blended, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Stir in boiling water. Pour batter evenly into prepared pans.
Bake at 350° for 28 to 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes; remove from pans, and cool completely on wire racks.
Place 1 cake layer on a serving plate; spread top with 4 tablespoons Coffee Liqueur Ganache Icing. Spread half of Mocha-Chocolate Cream Filling evenly over ganache on cake layer. Top with second cake layer; spread top with 4 tablespoons Coffee Liqueur Ganache Icing and remaining Mocha-Chocolate Cream Filling. Top with remaining cake layer. Spread remaining Coffee Liqueur Ganache Icing on top and sides of cake. Garnish, if desired.

BlackBerry-Raspberry Truffle Cake  

You will not believe this fabulous cake starts with a cake mix!  It is elegant enough for company but is easy to put together!
  • 2 (18.25-ounce) packages devil's food cake mix
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/3 cups water
  • 1 1/4 cups light sour cream
  • 1 (12-ounce) package semisweet chocolate morsels
  • 1 1/2 cups whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup seedless blackberry jam
  • 1/2 cup seedless raspberry jam
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 (16-ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 to 3 1/2 cups chopped pecans, toasted
  • Garnish: 1/4 cup blackberry and raspberry candies

  • Directions

    1. Beat first 5 ingredients at medium speed with an electric mixer 2 minutes or until blended.
    2. Grease 3 (9-inch) parchment or wax paper-lined round cakepans. Pour batter evenly into cakepans.
    3. Bake at 350° for 35 to 40 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool cake layers in pans on wire racks 15 minutes. Remove from pans, and remove paper. Cool completely on wire racks.
    4. Combine chocolate morsels and whipping cream in a medium saucepan over medium heat, whisking constantly, 10 minutes or until mixture is smooth. Pour into a mixing bowl; cover and chill 1 1/2 hours or until mixture begins to thicken.
    5. Cook jams and 1/4 cup water in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly, 5 minutes or until jam melts. Brush tops of cake layers with jam mixture.
    6. Beat chocolate mixture at medium speed with an electric mixer about 20 seconds or until stiff peaks form. (Do not over beat.)
    7. Place 1 layer, glazed side up, on a cake platter. Spread with half of chocolate mixture. Top with another cake layer, glazed side down; spread with remaining chocolate mixture. Top with remaining cake layer, glazed side down. Secure layers by inserting wooden skewers from the top layer down through the other two layers.
    8. Beat cream cheese and powdered sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Add whipped topping and vanilla, beating until smooth. Working quickly, frost top and sides of cake with cream cheese mixture. Press pecans around sides of cake. Garnish, if desired.
    9. Jelly Belly Confections Blackberries and Raspberries for candy. Candies may be found at Cracker Barrel, in the bulk candy aisle of supermarkets, or in specialty stores.
      • Italian Cream Cake

      • (18.5-ounce) package white cake mix  (Duncan Hines)
      • 1- 3 &1/2 oz pkg vanilla instant pudding 
      • large eggs
      • 1 1/4 cups buttermilk
      • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
      • (3 1/2-ounce) can flaked coconut
      • 2/3 cup chopped pecans, toasted
      • 2  tablespoons rum (optional)
      • 1 Tablespoon of maraschino cherry juice
      • 1/2 cup chopped maraschino cherries
      • Cream Cheese Frosting
      • Pecans chopped for garnish
      • coconut for garnish
      • maraschino cherries for garnish
      1. Beat first 4 ingredients at medium speed with an electric mixer 2 minutes. Stir in coconut and pecans. Pour into 3 greased and floured 9-inch round cakepans.
      2. Bake at 350° for 15 to 17 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes. Remove from pans, and cool completely on wire racks.
      3. Sprinkle each cake layer evenly with rum, if desired; let stand 10 minutes.
    10. Cream Cheese Frosting:
      1. Spread Cream Cheese Frosting between layers and on top and sides of cake. Chill 2 hours before slicing.
After icing cake gently press chopped pecans on to the sides of cake.  Using icing bag pipe border around bottom and around the top edge.  Sprinkle some lightly toasted coconut on the top and some more chopped pecans.  Pipe a ruffle of icing in the middle and garnish with 3 long stemmed maraschino cherries. 

Chocolate Snickers Cake
I made 100s of snicker cakes in the restaurant and for catering. There is just something about snicker candy bars that bring out the kid in us!

1 box devil’s food cake mix
1 small package instant chocolate pudding mix
1 cup sour cream
1 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla

Chocolate Buttercream: Double this recipe if you are using piping bags and planning on piping borders on bottom and top

1 stick butter, room temperature
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder

6 Regular sized Snickers
Salted chopped peanuts, chopped (about 1 cup)
Chocolate Ganache- Optional -
Caramel Sauce- Optional See Recipe Below
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together all ingredients for cake. Batter will be thick. Pour into two well greased 8 or 9 inch cake pans. Bake as directed on box, or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Let cakes cool for 5 minutes in the pan, then remove and place on wire rack to cool completely..

To make the frosting beat together the butter and vanilla, then add in powdered sugar and cocoa powder.

To assemble the cake, cut each of the two layers in half using a serrated knife, creating four thin layers. frost each layer and sprinkle one finely chopped snicker bar over each layer. Frost the outside of the cake with the chocolate frosting. Gently press chopped peanuts onto sides of cake, then pipe a border on the bottom. On the top pipe larger border and top with the remaining three finely chopped snicker bars.

Homemade Caramel Sauce

Yield: 1 cup


1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon corn syrup
1/4 liquid cup water
1/2 liquid cup heavy cream, heated until warm
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
½ teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


1. In a heavy saucepan (at least 5 cup capacity), stir together the sugar, syrup, and water until the sugar is completely moistened. Place your candy thermometer into the pot taking care that it is tip in immersed into the sugar mixture.
2. Heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar dissolves and the syrup is bubbling. Stop stirring completely and allow it to boil undisturbed until it turns a deep amber (like the color of Bass Ale) (see notes below). Immediately remove it from the heat and slowly and carefully pour the hot cream into the caramel. It will bubble up  and steam, so make sure you have used a big enough pot that it doesn't boil over!.
3. Use a high-temperature heat-resistant rubber spatula or wooden spoon to stir the mixture until smooth, scraping up the thicker part that settles on the bottom. If any lumps develop, return the pan to the heat and stir until they dissolve. Stir in the butter and salt. The mixture will be streaky but become uniform after cooling slightly and stirring.
Allow the sauce to cool for 3 minutes. Gently stir in the vanilla extract.


 Keep at room temperature for up to 3 days; refrigerated, about 3 weeks. To reheat, simply place in a microwave safe container and heat for about 30 seconds, heat 20-30 seconds more. Stir well.
 In my opinion, it's best to rely on the color of the caramel as opposed to the temperature. You want to look for a dark dark amber color. However, dark amber goes to burnt in a matter of seconds. If using a thermometer, start paying close attention at about 340 degrees. Once the color deepens, pull the mixture from the heat.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake with Peanut Butter Ganache' Filling & PB Cream Cheese Frosting

OK, what could be better than chocolate, peanut butter and cream cheese?  Not much in my opinion.

 Most people would agree that homemade cooking is the best. But sometimes taking a few kosher shortcuts is perfectly acceptable. One example is boxed cake mix, which is simply the pre-measured combination of all the usual cake ingredients. Using boxed cake mix, you can make a chocolate cake with peanut butter frosting and a chocolate peanut butter ganache' that will leave no one questioning your culinary skills. And only you will know how simple it was to make.

The Boxed Secret

  • Boxed cake mixes offer easy-to-follow directions, save you the trouble of extra measuring and eliminate that white-powder guessing game: did it say baking soda or baking powder? The directions are (literally) a piece of cake to follow.
    Carefully read the directions on the box of mix you are using, whatever brand it may be. Most cake mixes call for eggs, oil and water. You can follow the steps exactly as written, or you can add your own twists: ****Replacing the water with strong brewed coffee and adding a little extra cocoa powder will give your chocolate cake a richer flavor. Adding an extra egg will increase the cake's denseness.


1 Duncan Hines chocolate cake mix- mix according to package directions****
Bake in 2- 8 or 9 inch prepared pans
Let cool and remove from pans.  

Peanut Butter Cream Cheese Frosting
    • 1 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
    • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter 
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
    • 3 -3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
    •  2 tablespoons cream


  1. Mix together cream cheese and peanut butter with mixer until smooth.
  2. Add vanilla and powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time, along with the milk or cream and beat until spreading consistency.
  3. (I used only 3 cups powdered sugar and 2-3 tbsp. of milk).
  4. Spread on cooled cake.
    Chocolate Peanut Butter Ganache'
    • 12 ounces chocolate, chopped into small pieces
    • 1 cup heavy cream
    • 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter (do not use natural, it is too oily)
    1. Place chocolate pieces in a large bowl. Heat heavy cream on medium high until it comes to a boil. Remove from heat and immediately pour cream over chocolate and stir until completely mixed and glossy. Allow ganache to cool before pouring over cakes as a glaze.
    Slice each cake in half using a serrated knife. Frost the layer and then drizzle some ganache over the crushed candy bars.  Repeat with rest of layers.  frost outside of cake and top.   Pipe a layer of frosting on bottom border.  Pipe layer around top border  add rest of crushed candy and drizzle all over the top of the candy and let drip down the sides if desired

    Randalla's Coconut Cake

    Here again you start with a cake mix for a no fail cake

    1 (18.25 ounce) package white cake mix (Duncan Hines)
    3 eggs
    1/4 cup vegetable oil
    1can cream of coconut (8 & 1/2 oz)
    1 (8 ounce) container sour cream
    2 Cups flaked coconut -Garnish

    1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour one 9x13 inch pan.
    2.Combine the cake mix, eggs, vegetable oil, cream of coconut and the sour cream and mix well for 4 minutes. Pour batter into the prepared pan.
    3.Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 35 to 40 minutes. Let cake cool Remove from pans and using a serrated knife cut each cake into 2 layers. then frost with cream cheese frosting Gently push coconut onto sides and top of cake covering completely. Garnish with chocolate dipped maraschino cherries if desired.
    4.Cream Cheese Frosting:  andh and spread over cooled cake. Top with flaked coconut.

    Moms Rum Cake
    My mom makes this rummy bundt cake and it was a favorite in our restaurant.  I found an easy way to glaze the cake is to pour half the glaze into the bundt pan and re-insert your cake and then poke holes into the bottom and spoon rest of the glaze over .  Let all soak in and then invert back onto platter.


    • ---Cake---
    • 1 cup chopped, toasted pecans or walnuts
    • 1 18-1/2 ounce yellow cake mix
    • 1 1-3/4 ounce (4-serving size) instant vanilla pudding mix
    • 4 eggs
    • 1/2 cup water
    • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
    • 1/2 cup Bacardi dark rum
    • ---Glaze---
    • 1/2 cup butter
    • 1/4 cup water
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 1/2 cup Bacardi dark rum
    • Preparation:

      Cake: Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease and flour 12-cup Bundt pan. Sprinkle nuts on bottom of pan. Combine all cake ingredients. Beat for 2 minutes on high with electric mixer. Pour into prepared pan. Bake for 1 hour. Cool in pan. Invert on serving plate. Prick top with fork. Drizzle glaze over top of Bacardi Rum Cake. Use brush or spoon to put extra dripping back on cake.
      Glaze: Melt butter in saucepan. Stir in water and sugar. Boil 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in rum. Note: The rum will cause steam. Be careful not to burn yourself.

      Chocolate Garnishes

      There's nothing like a creatively placed swirl, drizzle, curl, or flourish of chocolate to elevate an everyday dessert to gourmet status. It's one of the easiest ways to add drama and an impressive finishing touch. Try these quick tricks with chocolate next time you want to step it up a notch.

      Chocolate Curls 

      Create a halo of chocolate curls on top of your favorite sweet treat. Or, top cups of coffee with dollops of whipped cream and chocolate curls. Make brownies extra special by frosting them with vanilla buttercream frosting. Then, top each one of the brownies with a chocolate curl.

      To make chocolate curl garnishes:

      1. Place square or bar of semisweet chocolate on cutting board; shave it into small pieces with paring knife.

        Shave chocolate into small pieces.
        ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
        Shave chocolate into small pieces.
      2. Place shavings in measuring cup. Add shortening. Use 1 teaspoon of shortening for every 2 ounces of chocolate. Fill a saucepan one-quarter full (about 1 inch deep) with warm, not hot, water.
      3. Place measuring cup in water to melt chocolate, stirring frequently with rubber spatula until smooth. Be careful not to get any water into chocolate.

        Place measuring cup in water to melt chocolate.
        ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
        Place measuring cup in water
        to melt chocolate.
      4. Remove measuring from saucepan. Let chocolate cool slightly.
      5. Pour melted chocolate onto back of baking pan. Quickly spread chocolate into a thin layer (about 1/4 inch thick) with metal spatula.

        Spread chocolate onto back of baking pan.
        ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
        Spread chocolate onto back of baking pan.
      6. Let stand in cool, dry place until chocolate is firm. Do not chill in refrigerator. When chocolate is just firm, use small straight-edge metal spatula to form curls. Holding spatula at a 45-degree angle, push spatula firmly along baking pan, under chocolate, so chocolate curls as it is pushed. If chocolate is too firm to curl, let stand a few minutes at room temperature. Refrigerate again if it becomes too soft.

        Scrape chocolate into a curl.
        ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
        Scrape chocolate into a curl.
      7. Using small skewer or toothpick, transfer curls to waxed paper. Store curls in a cool, dry place until ready to use.

        Transfer curls to waxed paper.
        ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
        Transfer curls to waxed paper.
      8. Garnish as desired.

        Garnish with Chocolate Curls.

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