March 27, 2010

Classic Carrot Cake

This is the recipe my Mother always used.  I don't know where she got it.  Probably the Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook.  I like it because it is a plain carrot cake.  No nuts, or pineapple.  I love the smell of this as it bakes.  Almost sent it off with a piece missing ;-)


2 cups sugar
2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 1/2 cup canola oil
4 eggs
3 cups grated carrots

Cream Cheese Frosting of your choice.  I used Duncan Hines Homestyle.

Preheat oven to 350F.  Grease a 9 x 13 pan.

Beat eggs, oil and sugar until well mixed and smooth.  Add carrots and cinnamon.  Mix flour, baking soda and salt together.  Add to wet mixture and beat until smooth.  Pour into prepared pan and bake for 40 minutes or until cake tests done.  Cool completely and frost with cream cheese frosting.  I occasionally use coconut pecan frosting and that goes well too.

March 19, 2010

Irish Coffee Pound Cake

This is another variation of several recipes from the internet morphed into one cake.


1 box French Vanilla cake mix
1/2 cup very hot water
1 tbsp instant coffee granules
1/2 cup Bailey's Irish Cream
1 - 3 oz box vanilla instant pudding and pie filling
4 eggs
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened

1 tsp instant coffee granules
2 tbsp. very hot water
1 tbsp Bailey's Irish Cream
1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 to 1/2 cup slivered, toasted almonds

Preheat oven to 350F.  Grease and flour a bundt pan.

Combine coffee granules and water in a small bowl.  Stir to dissolve.  Cool.

Beat eggs in mixing bowl.  Add coffee and Bailey's.  Beat well.  Add softened butter in chunks.  Add cake mix and pudding mix.  Beat at medium speed for 5 minutes.  Pour into prepared pan and bake for 45-50 minutes or until cake tests done.  Cool in pan 15 minutes.  Remove from pan and cool completely.

Once cake is cool, prepare glaze.  Dissolve coffee granules in hot water.  Add Bailey's and sugar.  Beat until smooth.  Drizzle cake with glaze.  Top with toasted almonds.

March 12, 2010

Chocolate Chip Mint Cake

In honor of St. Patrick's Day, we have a touch of green.  I sort of scanned recipes form the internet, borrowed a few ideas and threw them together into one cake.  The problem with this approach, of course is that, as I don't actually taste these cakes before sending them out into the world, I don't know how successful the result is until I get feedback.

I used a Maryann Cake Pan .  I don't know how the pan got it's name but it gives you a nice depression in the top of the cake where you can put any kind of filling you like.  I just filled it with a thick layer of mint frosting today.  You can use a bundt pan or a 9 x 13 cake pan as well.

Chocolate Chip Mint Cake


1 box white cake mix
2 eggs
2 tbsp. oil
1 1/3 cup water
1 1/2 tsp. mint extract
1 12 oz. bag mini chocolate chips
A few drops green food coloring
White frosting of choice

Preheat oven to 350F.  Grease and flour pan.  Beat together cake mix, eggs, oil, water and mint extract.  Set aside one cup of batter.  Add mini chips to the rest of the batter.  Pour into prepared pan.  Take the cup of batter you set aside and add green food coloring to desired tint.  Drop green batter on top of batter already in the pan and use a knife to swirl the two together.  Bake for 35-40 minutes or until cake tests done.  If using a Maryann or bundt pan, cool cake for 10-15 minutes before turning out of pan.  Let cool completely.

Take your white frosting and add a few drops mint extract and green food coloring.  Frost top of cake. 

I had a bar of Ghirardelli Intense Dark Mint Bliss on hand so I added a few shavings of that on the top.

March 05, 2010

Lemon Blueberry Gooey Butter Cake

This is based on a recipe called Gooey Butter Cake that I got from  It lends itself beautifully to many variations based on the flavor cake mix that you use and what you put in the filling.  I have used chocolate/mint, chocolate/Baileys, vanilla/pumpkin, etc..  Today I am doing a lemon/blueberry variation.

1 package lemon cake mix
1 egg
8 tablespoons butter, melted

1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
8 tablespoons butter, melted
1 16-ounce box powdered sugar
1 15 oz. can blueberries (NOT pie filling)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Combine the cake mix, egg, and butter and mix well with an electric mixer. Pat the mixture into the bottom of a lightly greased 13 by 9-inch baking pan. Prepare filling.

In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add the eggs, vanilla, butter and beat together. Next, add the powdered sugar and mix well. Spread over cake batter. 

Drain blueberries and pat dry.  Get the berries as dry as possible.  Sprinkle the berries over the cream cheese mixture and bake for 40 to 50 minutes. Make sure not to over bake as the center should be a little gooey.