Thursday, May 21, 2015

Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake with a Rocky Road Frosting (for #bundtbakers)


Are you ready for a delicious bundt cake!?  How about one that is jam packed with mini chocolate chips within a lovely vanilla cake and then topped off with a chocolate ganache, chopped almonds and mini marshmallows?  This month the Bundt Bakers group that I am part of was given spectacular guidance by Laura of  Baking in Pajamas  to incorporate the flavors of "rocky road" into a bundt cake.  Chocolate, marshmallows and chopped nuts are all ingredients that make up "rocky road".  Dried fruit can also be featured in a "rocky road"  combination, especially when found in treats made in England. 



After much thought and exploring of different cakes and combos of the rocky road flavors I decided on a simple and decadent chocolate chip cake that is then drenched in chocolate ganache.  On top of the chocolate ganache I sprinkled chopped almonds and soft mini marshmallows.  All the flavors in an American version of rocky road.  I did consider sprinkling some chopped dried apricots too over the ganache but unfortunately forgot all about it until the cake was half way gone.   I love the idea of having dried fruit in a rocky road baked sweet.  I think that would be delicious!  Those bakers in England are smart cookies for sure!


Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake with a Rocky Road Frosting 
(cake recipe found on Boston.com)

Cake Ingredients :
3 cups flour
2 1/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups granulated sugar
4 eggs + 1 egg yolk
2 tsp vanilla extract 
1 cup 1/2 and 1/2
2 1/3 cup mini chocolate chips

Frosting Ingredients:
1 cup heavy cream
1 1/3 cup chocolate chips, semi-sweet,  milk chocolate or dark 
1/2 cup chopped almonds
1/2 cup mini marshmallows

Cake Directions -

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Butter and flour bundt pan and set aside.

In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.  Pour mini chips into a separate bowl and toss with 2 Tbsps of flour mixture, coating chips well.  Set aside both bowls. 

In a large bowl beat butter until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes.  Add in sugar in 3 additions, beating for 1 minute with each addition.  Add in eggs and then yolk, one at time, beating well with each addition. Lastly, add in vanilla extract.

Put mixer on lowest speed and add into the wet mixture the flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with the with the 1/2 and 1/2, beginning and ending with the 1/2 and 1/2.   Add in flour tossed chocolate chips with a rubber spatula.

Pour cake batter into prepared bundt pan.  Bake in preheated oven for 55-60 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the center of cake comes out clean and the cake has pulled away from the sides of the pan.   Cool cake on a rack for at least 30 minutes before inverting onto a serving plate. 

While cake is cooling, make frosting.  Pour chocolate chips into a medium bowl that can be covered tightly with either a plate or tin foil.   In a medium sauce pan, heat heavy cream over medium-low heat.  Bring cream to a gentle simmer, remove from heat and pour over chocolate chips and DO NOT stir but rather cover bowl with a plate or aluminum foil and allow to sit for 10 minutes.  After 10 minutes uncover bowl and gently whisk hot cream and chocolate chips together until all the chocolate has melted.  Let mixture cool and thicken for at least 20-30 minutes before pouring over cake.  Finally, sprinkle chopped nuts and then mini marshmallows over the chocolate drenched cake.  Serve and enjoy! 



Happy Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake with a Rocky Road Topping Baking!

Please take a moment to browse through my fellow Bundt Bakers "rocky road" creations.  All the links can be found below.


 
BundtBakers
#BundtBakers is a group of Bundt loving bakers who get together once a month to bake Bundts with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on the BundtBakers home page.  

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

EASY Applesauce Muffins


I have always enjoyed baking with applesauce.  I love how it can replace oil and still give a nice moist texture to what I am baking.  I recently discovered a beautiful recipe for muffins that uses 1 1/2 cups of applesauce.  This large amount of applesauce not only replaces some of the oil but it gives a wonderful flavor to the muffins.  





My girls gobbled up these muffins.  "Yum, yum",  they said.  They had them for breakfast heated up with a lovely pat of butter smeared on it and then again for snack after school with a layer of PB.  I had quite a few myself and found that I liked them best heated up with a cup of tea.  Whether you are looking for a healthy muffin for breakfast or a sweet treat for an afternoon snack this is the muffin recipe for you.  I altered the original recipe just a tiny bit by splitting the flour into 1/2 all purpose and 1/2 whole wheat.  I also added some chopped walnuts and an apple chunk to the top of each muffin to give it a special appeal to the aesthetics and texture of the muffins. 



Best part of this recipe.  It's EASY!!  Let's make some muffins friends!

EASY Applesauce Muffins
(recipe slightly adapted from Catch My Party)

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking soda
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
2 eggs 
1/2 cup canola oil
1 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 apple - peeled, cut into chunks

Directions: 
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease 2 regular size muffin tins and set aside.   

In a large bowl combine well first 8 ingredients (all of the dry ingredients) and set aside.  In a medium size bowl combine eggs, oil and applesauce - stir well until thoroughly combined. 

Add wet mixture into the dry mixture - mix well all together with a wooden spoon.  Batter will be thick. 

Fill prepared pans 3/4 of the way full. Sprinkle muffins with chopped walnuts and insert one apple chunk into the top of each one.   Bake for 20-22 minutes or until muffins are golden brown and toothpick comes out clean.  Cool slightly and serve. Store muffins in an air-tight container.  Enjoy!!! 




Happy EASY Applesauce Muffins Baking!

Monday, May 4, 2015

{SRC} Breakfast Quesadillas


Do you ever find yourself stumped as to what to feed your kiddos?  I am constantly on the hunt for new meal ideas for my girls that are not only appealing to them but also healthy and well balanced.  This month my wishes were granted for a fantastic breakfast/snack to offer the girls.  It was through my fantastic Secret Recipe Club assignment for the month of May that I discovered, Breakfast Quesadillas on My Hobbie Lobbie


Trisha of My Hobbie Lobbie has a wide variety of recipes on her blog.  They range from a vast amount of delicious Goan food from India to healthy options for breads and even sinfully rich dessert recipes.  A well rounded collection of recipes. Honestly, it really wasn't easy for me to pick a recipe from Trisha's collection.  Just as soon as I picked one I would then find yet another one that I wanted to make.  But, as I stated above I am constantly keeping my eyes peeled for new, fun and healthy recipes to make for my precious girls. Breakfast Quesadillas won!  Winner for me and winner for the girls too.  They LOVED these delicious wedges of yumminess.  



The recipe calls for a tortia that is slathered with peanut butter and then layered with banana slices and sprinkled with dark chocolate chips.  Once the tortia has been folded in half it is then cooked in a frying pan on both sides until the insides become all warm and melty and the tortia is a pretty golden brown. Delicious.  And yes, healthy. 

I had lots of fun with this recipe as the second time I made it I switched it up a bit and made my own variation.  I made a scrumptious almond butter, maple cream and strawberry version.  Devine.  Deliciously devine.  


The possibilities are endless with these breakfast quesadillas.  Imagine making one with Nutella, almond butter and banana slices or even cream cheese and green olives for a savory version. Yum!  What version would you like best? 

Breakfast Quesadillas 
(recipe from My Hobbie Lobbie)  

Ingredients:
1 tortia - white or whole wheat
3 Tbsp peanut butter, smooth or crunchy
1/2 banana, sliced
10-15 dark chocolate chips 
non-stick spray, butter or coconut oil - for greasing your frying pan 

Spread peanut butter on 1/2 or all of tortia.  Place banana slices over PB and then sprinkle evenly with chocolate chips.  Fold tortia in 1/2 and place in a heated medium size frying pan that has been greased well.  Lower heat to medium-low and cook each side until golden brown, about a minute on each side.  Cut into wedges and serve.  Enjoy! 

Happy Breakfast Quesadillas Making!

Friday, May 1, 2015

ONE Bowl Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting


My girls love being in the kitchen with me.  Stirring, measuring, rolling and mixing are all skills that they have become comfortable with and are quite good at doing.  Yes, there is often a thin layer of flour or sugar on the counter when all is said and done but the smiles on their faces and confidence in their step makes the mess worth every inch. 


Recently my girls and I decided that we really should make a chocolate cake.  We had already made a lovely chicken dinner all together so why not finish it off with a fantastic chocolate cake!  I grabbed this recipe from Taste of Home and within 15 minutes the girls and I had placed our cake into the oven.  Boom! The hardest part was waiting for it to bake....and then of course cool so we could frost it. 


We all agreed that this cake was THE. BEST. ONE bowl chocolate cake we had ever made (even though it was really the first one we had ever made).  It was moist, chocolaty and very tasty. A chocolate perfection.  The frosting and sprinkles made it extra special as it really could be eaten without such decadence but who eats chocolate cake without frosting?  Not our household.  Cake and frosting are always paired together. 




Grab your kiddos and have some fun in the kitchen baking up this cake.  It is truly simple to make.  And of course delicious too!   Definitely well worth the wait for it to bake, cool and frost.  



ONE Bowl Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting 
        (recipe from Taste of Home)

Cake Ingredients:
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup baking cocoa
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1 cup canola oil
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup hot water 

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Ingredients:
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
2-3 cups powdered sugar
1/4 baking cocoa
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3-4 TBSP milk - to get desired consistency
Sprinkles, chopped nuts, mini chocolate chips - if you wish to make your cake extra special


Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Butter and flour a 9x13 pan and set aside.

In a large bowl whisk together first 6 ingredients.  Add in eggs, oil and buttermilk.  Mix well all together and then add in hot water and mix to combine.  

Pour batter into prepared cake pan and bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.  Cool completely before frosting.

Make frosting by beating butter until light and fluffy - about 3 minutes.  Add in powdered sugar and then cocoa and vanilla.  Add in milk 1 TBSP at a time to achieve desired consistency. 

Frost cake and sprinkle with sprinkles, chopped nuts, mini chocolate chips etc.   Enjoy! 

            Happy ONE Bowl Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Baking! 






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