Aug.
13

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Earlier this week a coworker showed me a recipe for Chocolate Zucchini Cake.  He didn’t ask me to make it, but rather just showed me the recipe saying something along the lines of “isn’t this interesting”.  Of course, he figured once he put the bug in my ear I’d make it.  Some of my colleagues know me quite well ;)  As luck would have it two things came into play… 1) I had two gorgeous zucchini in my fridge just waiting to be used for something special and 2) this coworker is one of the nicest people I’ve ever met – for him I’d make pretty much anything he wanted.   Unfortunately I did not bookmark the recipe and when I went back to make it couldn’t find the site it was from.  I turned to the internet figuring it would be easy to find… I mean, chocolate zucchini cake?  Who ever heard of that?  But I was surprised to see just how many Chocolate Zucchini Cake recipes are out there – trust me, a lot!  After reading thru a whole bunch I decided on this one from the King Arthur Flour company.  Back when I first started baking, I tried many of KAF’s recipes… and called their “baker’s helpline” (as I call it) many times with what I’m sure were extremely elementary questions.  Yes, I was a total newbie and not ashamed to admit it… if only anonymously… and over the phone ;)  At this point I’ve lost count of just how many recipes I’ve tried from King Arthur Flour.  The results are pretty darn consistent and this is just one more that didn’t let me down !  This cake is rich, moist, chocolatey, fudgy, dark and… and… and absolutely delicious.

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Aug.
11

Prior to 2008, to say I was not a fan of coconut would’ve been a supreme understatement.  A more accurate way of phrasing it would be to say that I despised coconut with the intensity of a thousand burning suns… yup… that was pretty accurate alright.  Then something happened.  I don’t know what or why or how but sometime during the first quarter of 2008 I began to like coconut.  Then about a year later I began to LOVE coconut and now I can’t seem to get enough of the stuff.  Maybe it’s because I now bake coconut things myself instead of buying them from the store?   No clue.  The past couple/three weeks I’ve had a hankerin for coconut cake and came across a recipe from Paula Deen. It looked rather promising.  You could say it piqued my interest.  But as soon as I thought to add pineapple filling… my stomach shouted “hang a tag on that baby and consider it sold!”

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Aug.
04

Carrot cake is one of those traditional desserts that people hold near to their hearts. Seems that everyone I’ve talked to about it has a definite opinion about what makes a carrot cake “good”.   Some like it with walnuts… some like it with coconut… some like it with pineapple… some like it with raisins.  I like mine rather plain… without nuts or raisins… definitely with lots of spices… and standing mile-high with just a fringe of toasted coconut.   Whatever your preference, it all starts with a good recipe… and that’s where I can help you out!

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Jul.
30

My Wilton cake decorating course #3 has sadly come to an end and this was the final cake I made for class.  Hard to believe that barely a month ago I’d never worked with fondant before and now?  Well, all I can say is I just love doing fondant cakes!   I started doing cake decorating over ten years ago but it’s just now that I’ve learned fondant techniques.  I was so intimidated for sooooooooo long but quite honestly fondant is incredibly versatile,  pretty darn forgiving… and a whole lotta fun :)   It’s SO much fun that I’m doing my very first giveaway – all with the intended purpose of sharing the fun with one lucky reader!

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Jul.
19

Cherries-Jubilee Shortcake

When it comes to quintessential summertime desserts, shortcake pretty much ranks right up there with the best of contenders. Typically it’s made with strawberries piled over whipped cream and here on the west coast served over a slice angel-food cake or pound cake.   But in other places it’s served over an actual short-cake that often looks somewhat like a biscuit though all similarities end right there.  Done right, shortcake can transport you to another place and leave you feeling like you’ve never had anything like that before.  Well, all I can say is I must’ve done something right because this Cherries-Jubilee Shortcake did just that!

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