Friday, February 24, 2012

Week 8: Sugar Cookie Cake

So hard to believe the eighth week of 2012 is almost over and that March will be here next week!
I found this week's cake a few years ago from my friend Kelli's lovely blog. It is delicious served with fruit and whipped cream and is wonderful for a lady's gathering. I hosted our monthly women's fellowship last night and all enjoyed the Sugar Cookie Cake. Let me know if you bake it!

Sugar Cookie Cake

3/4 cup cold butter, cut in small pieces
3 cups all purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl mix butter, flour and sugar into a crumbs (I use my food processor for this step and then pour the crumbs into a large bowl and finish off with a pastry cutter). Set aside 1 cup of the crumbs.

To the rest of the crumbs, add the buttermilk to which the 1 teaspoon of baking soda has been added.
Add the eggs and vanilla; mix and pour into a greased 9x13 in. pan
Top with the 1 cup reserved crumbs.
Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes (or until a cake tester comes out clean).

Happy Baking!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Week 7: Chocolate Chip Cheesecake

Our Benjamin is coming home for the week-end so I baked one of his favorite cakes today... Chocolate Chip Cheesecake. My dear friend, Nancy Z., shared this recipe with me years ago and it has become a family favorite. This is a great make ahead recipe. I've also made it without the chocolate chips and it was delicious. I usually make a raspberry sauce to serve alongside the cake.

Chocolate Chip Cheesecake
Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees

1 cup graham cracker crumbs
2 Tablespoons sugar
3 Tablespoons melted butter

Combine all three ingredients and press into a lightly greased 9-inch springform pan. Set aside.

Cheesecake ingredients:
3 - 8 oz. bars cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 cup mini chocolate chips
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

With an electric mixer blend the cream cheese and sugar until smooth and combined well. Add eggs one at a time, mixing after each addition. Stir in mini chocolate chips and vanilla extract.
Pour batter over the crust and bake at 450 for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 250 degrees and bake 35 more minutes.
Place on cooling rack for an hour or so and then cover and refrigerate. Wait to unlatch your springform pan right before you are ready to serve the cake.

Happy Baking!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Week 6: Fourteen Carat Cake

As the week was drawing to an end I knew I had to bake my cake for week 6. I asked Samuel what cake I should bake this week and he chose this wonderful and delicious carrot cake:

I discovered it years ago in a cookbook my mother-in-law gave me - Stirring Performances. Charles Kuralt from CBS news reviewed this cookbook and said, "The fabulous moist 14 Carat Cake recipe alone is worth double the price of the cookbook!" I hope you'll bake it soon!

Fourteen Carrot Cake

2 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons cinnamon

4 eggs

2 cups sugar

1 and 1/2 cups vegetable oil (canola)

2 cups raw carrots, grated

1 (8 and 1/2 oz ) can crushed pineapple, drained

1/2 cup chopped pecans

Pre-heat oven to 350.

Sift together first five ingredients.

In a separate bowl, beat eggs with wire whisk. Add sugar and beat until dissolved.

Add remaining ingredients . Mix well.

Turn into three greased and floured 9-inch cake pans. Bake 35-40 minutes, until done.

Cool in pans 10 minutes. Invert onto racks to cool completely.

Frost with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting between layers, on top, and sides.

Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting:

1/2 Cup butter or margarine, softened

1 (8oz) package cream cheese, softened

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 pound confectioners sugar

Combine butter, cream cheese, and vanilla in mixing bowl and blend until smooth.

Add sugar gradually until well incorporated.

Happy Baking!