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Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Whipped-cream Frosting… “Happy Birthday” cake!!!

We just celebrated two birthdays in the last 3 weeks in my family – my husband and my son. I made the same gluten-free cake for both of them. It’s a tradition in my family – chocolate cake with chocolate, whipped-cream frosting! We have it at every birthday celebration…sooo good! I would have included a picture of the cake, but it was eaten too fast – that’s how good it is.

I must admit, though, it’s the frosting that really makes this cake so delicious and I have to give credit to my mother for that one. She made chocolate, whipped-cream frosting since before I was born (and I’m not telling how long ago that is!!). In my family growing up, we could request whatever kind of cake we wanted for our birthday. Only my father and oldest sister (#1) would request something different for their birthday – my father loved Boston Creme Pie and my sister liked Apricot Pie. The rest of us (#2 sister, #3 brother, #4 brother, mom and myself, #5) would have cake covered in Chocolate, Whipped-Cream Frosting – any cake. It could be sponge cake, Angel food cake or chocolate cake. In the end, chocolate cake was the best choice – every year!

This recipe makes a LOT of cake. What I’ve done is make 2 – 9 inch round cakes and use the extra batter for cupcakes. If the cupcakes survive long enough, they are frozen for a quick treat some other day! They taste great warmed in the microwave, then add a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top – no frosting required.

I’d love to hear some of your family birthday traditions – please share!! Enjoy!

Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake

(**This recipe makes 3 – 9 inch round cakes or 30 cupcakes or 2 – 9 inch cakes and 12 cupcakes.)

1-1/3 cup strong, brewed hot coffee

1¼ cup cocoa powder

2 sticks butter

2¼ cups sugar

4 large eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3¼ cups Pamela’s Gluten-free Baking and Pancake Mix + 1 teaspoon baking soda

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease cake pans and dust with gluten-free flour or use paper liners for cupcakes. In a medium bowl, whisk together hot coffee and cocoa powder until very smooth. Set aside. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time. Add vanilla extract and mix until well blended. Add half of Pamela’s mix to the butter mixture and blend well. Add half of the coffee/cocoa mixture and beat until well combined. Add the remaining Pamela’s mix and coffee/cocoa mixture and blend completely until smooth. Spoon batter into prepared pans and fill to half full. Bake cake pans for 40 minutes or cupcakes for 20 minutes. It is done when a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool cake pans for 20 minutes then turn cake onto wire racks to cool completely before frosting.

Chocolate Whipped-Cream Frosting

1 pint heavy or whipping cream, chilled

Hershey’s syrup

Chill a large mixing bowl in the freezer for 15 minutes. Remove bowl from the freezer and add the cream. Beat cream on high speed until stiff peaks form. Add ¼ cup Hershey’s syrup and continue to mix until well blended. Add more Hershey’s syrup until desired chocolate flavor has been reached. Frosting will not get darker, just have more chocolate flavor. This recipe makes enough for a two layer cake with frosting in the middle and covering the outer surfaces completely. Refrigerate cake after frosting.

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Posted by on July 22, 2012 in Desserts

 

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Blueberry Cake to end 2011…

Gluten-free Blueberry Cake

Wow, this year flew past. I can’t believe we’re in to another new year already – I guess that happens as you get older. Well, the holidays were very nice this year. We spent Christmas weekend at home, with friends on the “Eve” and just the three of us for Christmas day. Somehow, the week after Christmas seemed to disappear – I had no time to write a post for this blog, although I did do a good amount of cooking. With my college son at home, it seems like I’m either cooking a meal, cleaning up after one, putting dishes in the dishwasher or taking them out. Also, I’ve been going to the grocery store at least three times a week! My son is a weight-lifter and can really empty the refrigerator and cupboards quickly… It’s so good to have him home!!!

To end the year, we were invited to our friends/neighbors for a family version of  “Chopped“. If you’ve never seen the American version on the Food Network, here’s a short summary:  four chefs have to prepare an appetizer in 20 minutes using mystery ingredients from a basket, one chef is “chopped” after the first round; then, three chefs prepare a main course in 30 minutes with a new set of mystery ingredients, another chef is “chopped” in the second round; finally, two chefs prepare dessert in 30 minutes with still another set of mystery ingredients and one chef is chosen as the winner.

Our friends modified this a little, having two teams and only preparing the main course, but it was still a lot of fun. My husband and I were allowed to be the judges – YUMMY! I was also the only one who brought the dessert for this meal – so I guess you could say that I won the dessert round – by default – but I’ll take it!

My dessert was gluten-free Blueberry Cake, made with fresh blueberries. It’s one of our favorites, especially in the summer when the local blueberries are ripe, but the store-bought ones work just as well. It’s very light and not too sweet, even with a light sprinkling of powdered sugar on top. Enjoy!

Blueberry Cake

 4 tablespoons butter, softened

¾ cup sugar

1 egg, beaten

2 cups Pamela’s Gluten Free Baking & Pancake Mix

½ cup milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup fresh blueberries

1 tablespoon powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8 x 8-inch baking dish. Using an electric mixer on medium speed, cream butter and sugar together until smooth. Add beaten egg and blend in. Add Pamela’s mix, milk and vanilla and beat on medium speed until smooth and light. Gently fold berries into batter with a spatula, do not beat in. Bake for 45-50 minutes. After cake cools completely, sift powdered sugar on top. Makes 8-10 servings.

** Options:  Can use fresh raspberries, blackberries or cut strawberries in place of blueberries.

 
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Posted by on January 4, 2012 in Desserts

 

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Mmmm….Upside-down Cranberry Cake!

Fresh out of the oven!

First, I had a funny coincidence happen last night! So, I’ve just started this blog 4 days ago, right? Last night, as I was flipping through the TV channels, guess what movie was on – “Julie & Julia“! I’m not saying I expect my blog to do anything like hers, but I do think it was a message from the Universe that this might be a good thing for me. That I should be creative, and just have fun with this blog. I’m not going to worry about how many comments I get, or even how many views – I’m going to write recipes and share tips because I love to cook and I enjoy sharing my passion. Just my two cents…

Now, on to the food…  This is the season for cranberries. It means Thanksgiving is right around the corner – I can’t wait! This year I did not pick the cranberries myself as I have done in the past, but I still found a local farm that sells them and I stocked up. The great thing about cranberries is they freeze so well. Buy a couple extra bags and just pop them in the freezer – they will last up to a year that way and still be great in recipes. If you want to pick your own, the season is from around the end of September to the end of October, depending on the crop. I’m sure you’ve seen the Ocean Spray commercials on TV where the men are standing in knee-deep water – that’s because there are two types of bogs – wet and dry. Woodward Cranberry Farm in Albany, Maine (http://www.woodwardcranberryfarm.net/) has organic cranberries in a dry bog. I picked there a few years ago and it was a lot of fun! This year I bought my berries at Ricker Hill Orchards in Turner, Maine (http://www.rickerhill.com/). Either way, I still supported some local farmers.

The recipe I have for today is both delicious and beautiful. The bright red berries are festive and they take center stage in this dessert! Enjoy…

Upside-down Cranberry Cake

4 tablespoons butter

½ cup brown sugar, firmly packed

2 cups cranberries, fresh or thawed frozen

1 egg

2/3 cup sugar

½ cup canola oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

½ cup yogurt, plain or vanilla

1½ cups Pamela’s Gluten-free/Wheat-free Baking & Pancake Mix

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch round cake pan very well. Combine the butter and brown sugar in a sauce pan and melt over medium-low heat, stirring until smooth. Pour this glaze into the cake pan and spread evenly. Arrange the cranberries evenly on top of the glaze. Set aside. In a large bowl, beat together the egg and the sugar until well mixed. Slowly add the oil and vanilla and beat until blended. Gently mix in the yogurt. Add the baking mix and beat until blended well. Pour the batter over the cranberries, spreading it evenly in the pan. Bake for 45-55 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let the pan cool for 10 minutes. Run a thin knife around the outer edge of the cake. Invert the cake onto a serving plate and carefully lift off the pan. Serve warm or at room temperature with whipped cream. Makes 6-8 servings.

 
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Posted by on November 8, 2011 in Desserts

 

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