Wednesday, May 31, 2006

I'll gain more than a pound from this cake..

Oh My Ganache!

Here goes a super late Happy Birthday shout to my big bad dad. Yup so pop's is another year older, a little bit crankier and thanks to the cake I made him, I'm a little bit ok, so he's not a little bit crankier - thank goodness!! but I swear I couldn't help but be a little bit fatter, after indulging in all those sinfully delicious calories..

It doesn't matter how many different types of cakes I bake, no matter what flavors or fancy new recipes I find, my dad always says.."why can't you just bake something normal, like a pound cake?" Normal?? Yup, I guess growing up a southern boy, pound cake was normal..Pound cake is definitely a traditional dessert in the south, a culinary staple even. But yanno what? Pound cakes aren't the easiest thing to make. Yes the recipes are pretty straight-forward, there aren't alot of complicated steps or special ingredients, but the outcome is what's tricky. It's not uncommon for a pound cake to sort of colapse in the middle, resulting in what my grandfather always called a "sad streak", ironically in our family, those sad streaks were usually our favorite part of the cake. It certainly doesn't ruin the taste of the cake, it just doesn't look very pretty. Luckily there were no sad streaks to be found in my big bad dad's birthday pound cake.

For me, a pound cake should be moist with a dense crumb. This cake came close, but wasn't quite as dense as I think a pound cake should be. The batter was pretty thick, so I actually expected the cake to be dry, but much to my surprise it wasn't. Would I make this cake again?? Definitely! I'm still on the look out for a lemon pound cake with lemon glaze like my grandma used to make. So if anyone has a recipe you recommend let me know!

The Bag Lady's Favorite Chocolate Pound Cake

3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons cocoa
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
3 cups sugar
5 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease and flour a 10-inch Bundt pan.
2. Sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cocoa and set aside.
3. Using an electric mixer, cream together butter, shortening, and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time and mix well after each addition. Add flour and buttermilk alternately to butter mixture, beginning and ending with flour. Add vanilla and mix well.
4. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake for 1 3/4 hours, or until cake is done. Remove from oven and allow cake to cool in pan for 10 minutes. Invert onto cake plate and serve.

Chocolate Ganache

4 oz bittersweet chocolate
4 oz semisweet chocolate
1 cup heavy cream
2 tsp vanilla extract

1. Break chocolate into small pieces and put in a medium sized bowl, set aside.
2. In small saucepan, heat heavy cream over medium-high heat, bringing just to a boil.
3. Remove cream from heat, and pour over chocolate. Allow to sit until chocolate has melted completely.
4. Add vanilla extract and stir using a whisk until completely combined. Pour over cake.

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Sunday, May 28, 2006

Weekend Dog Blogging

I've been meaning to do this for a while and Sunday usually rolls around and I either forget or there's so much other stuff going on I don't get around to blogging until super late. But here I am now, making the effort.

With a wonderful new camera I figured it was about time to participate in Weekend Dog Blogging again, atleast every once in a while. Afterall, I love my kids and they deserve the attention..even if they are rotten sometimes! lol

The weekend brought some beautiful weather so we couldn't resist getting outside & soaking up the sun.

Stumpy, my youngest baby:

Sammy, his big brother:

Check out the rest of the bloggin doggies over at Sweetnicks

Sunday, May 21, 2006

White Trash Wedding Cake

I'm ashamed, so very ashamed. I've been gone for too long, and I've missed my blog so much. So much has been going on I wouldn't even know where to begin so I'll skip it all. But with all the busy-ness & goings on as of late, I'm happy to report that life is fine - great actually, just extremely busy. Just know that I've missed y'all terribly and I hope to be back to blogging on a much more regular basis.

My shame isn't that I've been gone for so long, it's that I consumed an entire cake all on my own, minus a few bites that crossed the lips of my Big Bad Dad. A while back the thought crossed my mind of this cake my Nana used to make when I was younger, it was actually more like a cobbler than a cake - a layer of cherry pie filling, a layer of crushed pineapple then a sprinkling of yellow cake mix. So I brought out my treasured cookbook filled with all her handwritten notes and trusted recipes to find her recipe for "Dump Cake". Yes, I said it- Dump Cake. I was craving something called Dump Cake, can you believe it? Nana was anything, but white trash, but that's certainly what this recipe screams to me, so I've renamed it "White Trash Wedding Cake" because I simply can't bear to eat something called "Dump Cake".

White Trash Wedding Cake aka Dump Cake

And I have to admit, I enjoyed every calorie-filled morsel of that cake, I won't deny that. I did an internet search because I thought I remembered pecans and coconut in the cake, but wasn't sure. Well I found umpteen different slight variations of the recipe, I even saw a chocolate version. Stay tuned, I might have to give that a try soon!

White Trash Wedding Cake aka Dump Cake

White Trash Wedding Cake aka: Dump Cake

1 stick butter/margarine, melted
1 package yellow cake mix
1 (21 oz) can cherry pie filling
1 (15 oz) can crushed pineapple, undrained

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pour cherry pie filling and crushed pineapple into 9x13 baking dish. Sprinkle cake mix evenly over fruit mixture. Pour melted butter/margarine over cake mix.

If desired sprinkle 1 cup coconut and/or 1/2 cup pecans or walnuts on top. Bake for 50-60 minutes, until golden browned and bubbly.

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