Wednesday, September 5, 2012

[Chocolate Cake.]

So ... here's how the story went:   I was preparing for Katia's birthday cake ... I didn't have a box-cake in the panty ... I needed to make a cake.  I went online, found this recipe ... and after making it and then deciding that I should actually have a WHITE cake for the Hello Kitty cake ... I haven't stopped cutting the edges off of THIS cake cake.  It's INCREDIBLE.  I've never made a classic chocolate cake before, because, why would I with so many great boxed recipes?  Oh THIS is why!!

Chocolate Cake

2 cups sugar 

1 3/4 cups flour 
3/4 cup baking cocoa (dutch process or dark cocoa preferably) 
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder 
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda 
1 teaspoon salt 2 eggs 
1 cup milk 
1/2 cup vegetable oil 
2 teaspoons vanilla extract 
3/4-1 cup boiling water (see note below) 


1 Heat oven to 350°F. 
2 Grease and flour two 9 inch round baking pans or one 13x9 inch pan. 
3 In large mixer bowl, stir together dry ingredients. 
4 Add eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla; beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. 
5 Stir in boiling water by hand (batter will be thin). 

NOTE: I have tried it with 1/2 cup, 2/3 cup and 3/4 cup boiling water and we prefer it with less than 1 cup water. I usually use between 2/3 & 3/4 cups. The cake is still very moist but it doesn't seem to "fall" as much as it cools. This might have to do with our high humidity or brand of flour or other factors so I don't know if it will work for everyone. 

6 Pour into prepared pan. 

7 Bake 30 to 35 minutes for round 9-inch pans, 35 to 40 minutes for rectangular pan or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. (Do not use 8-inch pans or the batter will overflow.). 
8 Cool 10 minutes; remove from pan to wire racks.

Monday, September 3, 2012

[Pizza Pinwheels]

This was courtesy of LB - who got it from the Mennonite Girls Can Cook site ... LB had an instagram pic of hers baking in the oven with the caption (something like) "... baking in the oven, making lunches for the girls and they freeze well!!"

So - I thought I'd give them a try.  I feel like a hero-mom.  I mean, homemade Pizza Pinwheels??  That deserves a good hug, at least *grin* ...

This is MY instagram pic that I just took as I pulled them out of the oven ... I wish I could post how good it smells in my kitchen right now ... 



2 TBSP sugar
2 TBSP cooking oil
2 tsp salt
2 Cups hot 
tap water
4 1/2 - 5 Cups flour
2 TBSP instant yeast (two of those little packages you can buy!)


* Mix in order given, mixing the yeast with a little flour and adding while dough is still very soft. Add enough flour to make a dough that hold together in a ball shape and is not sticky if you handle it with floured hands.

* Let rise until doubled, about 1/2 hour

* As this point you can make french bread, pizza or focaccia bread

For pizza buns:
* Roll out to 12 x 15" rectangle, cover with pizza sauce or spaghetti sauce, parm cheese and any other topping your family enjoys (cold cuts, mozza cheese, peppers, mushrooms, pepperoni, etc). This time I just did cheese!

*Roll up jelly roll style and slice, place in pan and bake at 375* for about 15 minutes.

*These freeze great and work perfect in lunches.