Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Chocolate Skillet Cake

Cake Ingredients:
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup sugar
dash salt
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup buttermilk
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla

Frosting Ingredients:
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
2 tablespoons cocoa
3-4 tablespoons milk (as needed for consistency)
1/2 cup pecans, chopped
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
ice cream (for serving)
caramel sauce (for serving; this one is delicious!)
whipped cream (for serving)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, sugar, and salt together and set aside.

In a 10-inch cast iron skillet, bring the butter, vegetable oil, cocoa powder, and water to a boil. Remove it from the heat and whisk in the dry ingredients well. Mix in the buttermilk, egg, and vanilla. Bake the skillet cake at 350 degrees F for about 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out with just a few moist crumbs.

While the cake starts to cool, make the frosting. In a medium saucepan, bring the butter, cocoa, and milk to a boil. Remove them from heat and add the icing sugar, nuts, and vanilla. Stir to combine. Pour over the warm cake, spread with a spatula, and serve with vanilla bean ice cream, caramel sauce, and whipped cream.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Plum Cake (AKA Prune Cake)


  • 1 cup Prunes
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 3 whole Eggs
  • 1 cup Canola Oil
  • 1-1/2 cup Flour, Sifted
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 teaspoon Nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon Allspice
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 1 cup Buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  •  _____
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 Tablespoon White Corn Syrup
  • 1/4 cup Butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
Cover prunes with water. Bring to a boil and cook until soft and mashable, about eight minutes. Remove from heat, drain water, and mash on a plate. Set aside.
Mix together oil, sugar, and eggs. In a separate bowl, sift together dry ingredients. Combine wet and dry ingredients, add buttermilk and vanilla and stir gently until just combined. Throw in the mashed prunes and stir gently to combine. DO NOT OVERMIX!
Pour batter into buttered baking dish (9 x 13 or so) and bake for 35 to 40 minutes. DO NOT OVERBAKE!!!
While cake has five minutes remaining, make the icing:
Combine all icing ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat and bring to a slow boil. Boil without stirring for 5 to 7 minutes, or until icing starts to turn dark. Do NOT allow icing to reach soft ball stage; icing should be caramel in color, but not sticky like caramel. Icing should be easily pourable.
Remove cake from oven and pour on icing immediately.
Allow to rest on the counter. Serve warm.

. . . ala Pioneer Woman

Friday, February 14, 2014

Chocolate Caramel Brownies


1/4 cups Ghirardelli Sweet Ground Chocolate and Cocoa
1/2 Ghirardelli Milk & Caramel SQUARES™ Bag, 5.32 oz
2 eggs
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup unsalted butter or margarine, melted
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt


Preheat oven to 350°F. Stir eggs with sugar and vanilla. Add melted butter.
Sift ground chocolate with flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir into egg mixture.
Spread half the batter into a greased 8" square pan. Place chocolate squares in a single layer on top of batter. Cover the squares layer with the remaining batter. Bake 20 to 30 minutes. Cut into 16 to 20 squares.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Chicken Confetti Soup

2 3/4 c. milk
2 T. chicken base
1/2 t. each sage, thyme, and pepper
1/4 t. celery salt
1/2 c. onions, chopped finely
1/2 c. chopped carrots
1/2 c. chopped celery
1/2 c. butter
3/4 c. flour
4 1/4 c. water
1 c. cooked, diced chicken

Heat water, chicken base, all seasonings, onion, carrots, & celery until vegetables are crisp tender.

Make a roux of butter and flour--add milk slowly.  Add flour mixture to vegetables and broth.
Heat through.

This is SO delicious!  Shared by my friend Linda Garrison.  PLUS, she made it and brought to me after surgery--yummy!!!