Friday, November 22, 2013

Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes

It's beginning to taste a lot like Christmas...
the combination of chocolate and peppermint always makes me think of the holidays.

This recipe for Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes will put you in a festive mood!
It combines chocolate peppermint cake, peppermint buttercream frosting,
chocolate ganache and crushed peppermint candies.

They would be great for neighbor gifts and Christmas parties!

Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes
by Bird On A Cake
Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk (OR 1 tablespoon vinegar mixed with 1 cup milk)
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 2 teaspoons peppermint extract
Peppermint Buttercream Frosting
  • 1 cup unsalted butter (room temperature)
  • 6 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 2 teaspoons peppermint extract
  • approx. 1/4 cup milk
Chocolate Ganache
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line two cupcake pans with paper liners. Bring some water to a boil and keep it simmering while you mix the other ingredients.

In a large mixing bowl whisk together the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add the eggs, buttermilk, oil and peppermint. Beat with electric mixer until well combined.
Add 1 cup of the boiling water and carefully stir until it is mixed in. Beat for 1 1/2 minutes with mixer. Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full with batter. Bake for 18-20 minutes (until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean).

Peppermint Buttercream Frosting
In a large mixing bowl, cream butter with electric mixer for 1 minute. Alternate adding confectioners' sugar and milk; mixing on low speed. Mix in peppermint extract. Keep covered.

Chocolate Ganache
Heat cream in microwave for one minute. Add chocolate chips to the cream. Let stand for 1 or 2 minutes, then slowly stir the mixture. Continue to stir until all the chips have completely melted. Stir in the vanilla.

Drizzle ganache over frosted cupcakes and sprinkle with crushed peppermints.
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I share my recipes and tutorials at these fun link parties.

Another delicious chocolate & mint recipe...
Andes Mint Chocolate Cake

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Pecan Pie Cake

Thanksgiving dinner always includes an array of delicious desserts.
Do you have trouble choosing between a slice of cake or a piece of pie?
This recipe will solve that dilemma for you...
Pecan Pie Cake!

This just may be the perfect Thanksgiving dessert.
This delicious recipe has the best of both cake and pie worlds...
moist pecan cake, caramel filling, toasted pecans and pie crust leaves.

The top and sides of each cake layer are studded with toasted pecans.

The layers are brushed with dark corn syrup to give it a yummy pecan pie taste.

Pecan pie filling is then spread between the layers
and the cake is garnished with pretty pie crust leaves.

I think I hear angels singing! 

Pecan Pie Cake
Pecan Pie Filling
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 3/4 cup dark corn syrup
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 1/2 cups half-and-half
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter (room temperature)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pecan Pie Cake
  • 3 cups finely chopped pecans, toasted
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (room temperature)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 5 large eggs, separated
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup buttermilk (or 1 c. milk mixed with 1 T. vinegar)
  • 1 cup dark corn syrup
Pie Crust Leaves
  • 1 pre-made pie crust
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon water
Pecan Pie Filling
In a 3 quart saucepan, whisk together first 6 ingredients until smooth. Whisk constantly while bringing mixture to a boil over medium heat. Boil 1 minute or until thickened. Remove from heat; whisk in butter and vanilla extract. Place plastic wrap directly on the surface of the mixture to prevent a film from forming and chill for 4 hours.

To chill quickly: Pour filling into a bowl and place the bowl inside a larger bowl filled with ice. Whisk constantly until cooled (about 15 minutes).

Pecan Pie Cake
Toast the chopped pecans: Spread on a lightly greased cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 5 minutes. Generously butter three 8 or 9 inch round cake pans. Divide 2 cups pecans evenly into buttered pans; shake to coat bottoms and sides of pans.

In a large bowl, beat butter and shortening with an electric mixer until fluffy. Gradually add the sugar. Add the egg yolks one at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in the vanilla.
Whisk together flour and baking soda. Alternate adding the flour mixture and buttermilk to the butter mixture, beginning and ending with the flour. Stir in remaining 1 cup pecans.

Beat the egg whites with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form. Fold one-third of the egg whites into the batter. Fold in remaining egg whites. Pour batter into prepared pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes, until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire rack for 10 minutes. Invert layers onto wire racks with wax paper underneath. Brush the tops and sides of each layer with corn syrup, allow to cool completely.

Pie Crust Leaves
Roll out and smooth pie crust. Use a leaf shaped cookie cutter to cut out leaves and mark leaf veins with the tip of a knife. Whisk together egg and 1 tablespoon water; brush on pastry leaves.

To shape leaves: Crumple small aluminum foil pieces into 1/2-inch balls. Coat with vegetable cooking spray, and place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Drape a pastry leaf over each ball.

Bake at 425° for 6 to 8 minutes or until golden. Cool on a wire rack 10 minutes. Gently remove foil from leaves.

Assembling Cake: Place one cake layer, pecan side up, on your cake stand; spread half of Pecan Pie Filling on top. Place second cake layer, pecan side up, on top of filling; spread with remaining filling. Top with remaining cake layer, pecan side up. Arrange pie crust leaves on and around the cake, if desired.
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Happy Thanksgiving!
You wonderful readers are among the many blessings I have to be thankful for.
I hope your holiday is filled with family, food and fun!

I share my recipes and tutorials at these fun link parties.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Pistachio Pudding Bundt Cake

Let me tell you about this Pistachio Pudding Bundt Cake.

It is delicious!
It tastes just like pistachio pudding.

The recipe is easy!
It starts with a cake mix.

It is a crowd pleaser!
I have one very picky eater, who bravely took a bite of cake...
then proclaimed, "I love it!"

 The pistachio pudding in the cake and the cream cheese frosting
gives it a light green color and fabulous flavor.

Bake it in a bundt pan and top it with chopped pistachios,
and you have a perfect party cake!

Pistachio Pudding Bundt Cake
by Bird On A Cake
Pistachio Pudding Cake
  • 1 box white cake mix
  • 1 box (3.4 oz) pistachio instant pudding
  • 1 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
Pistachio Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 8 oz. cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 3 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1 box (3.4 oz) pistachio instant pudding
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup chopped pistachios (optional)
Pistachio Pudding Cake
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 10-inch bundt pan. Combine all ingredients in large mixing bowl. Beat with electric mixer on low speed 1 minute, then on medium speed 2 more minutes.
Pour batter into prepared cake pan. Bake 50-55 minutes, until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool in pan on wire rack 15 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely.
Pistachio Cream Cheese Frosting
Let cream cheese and butter sit in a large mixing bowl until softened. Beat with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. In another bowl, whisk together the confectioners' sugar and pistachio pudding mix. Gradually add the sugar mixture to the cream cheese mixture. Mix in the milk. Spread frosting over cooled cake and garnish with pistachios.
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I share my recipes and tutorials at these fun link parties.

Another yummy pudding cake recipe:
Butterscotch Bundt Cake

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