1/30/17

White Sour Cream Cake

This is my go-to white cake recipe for making a decorated cake or cupcakes. This cake works especially well if you need to stack several layers. It's a dense cake and holds together well. I used this recipe for a family 90th birthday celebration, and it was versatile enough to use in mini-cupcakes, regular cupcakes, mini-loaves, and a three layer cake. My family prefers this cake over bakery cake or cupcakes.

This recipe has been around since the days when cake mixes came in 18 ounce boxes. The smaller boxes short-change recipes like this, so an extra cake mix has to be used to supply the missing ounces. I keep a box of cake mix in the freezer to use as a supplement for such recipes.

Quite some time ago I did a post about these shrinking cake mixes. Check your box to determine the current number of ounces in a mix and measure accordingly.






Print Recipe

White Sour Cream Cake

1 (18 ounce) box white cake mix (cake mix no longer comes in an 18 oz. box, so you will need to measure enough of a second cake mix to make up the difference)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups water
1/8 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup sour cream
4 large egg whites

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Prepare pans with cooking spray or by greasing and flouring. Use paper lines if making cupcakes.
In a large bowl, combine cake mix, flour, sugar, and salt; whisk together. Add water, oil, extracts, sour cream, and egg whites to dry mixture. Beat at medium speed for 2 minutes. Pour into prepared pans, filling each one a little over half full. Bake until cake tests done. Cooking time varies according to type of pan used. The times on the cake mix box can be used as a general guide.



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1/26/17

What Makes You Grouchy?

My sister makes the best cakes. She doesn't do them professionally, but she could. She makes them for family birthdays and other occasions. These grouch cupcakes are adorable, and she makes sure all her cakes taste good too.






These cupcakes made me think about the things that make me grouchy. I've even made a list. Read the 5 Things That Make Me Grouchy here. Cupcakes are not on the list. What makes you grouchy?

1/16/17

Cucumber Cream Cheese Appetizers

I'm a fan of appetizers, and I sometimes enjoy them as much as an entire meal. I can only describe these cucumber appetizers as tiny bites of freshness. The colors are eye-catching, and they remind me of miniature salads. They're light, easy to make, and will make an attractive addition to any event.




Cucumber Cream Cheese Appetizers

4 large English cucumbers
1 pint grape tomatoes
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 (5.3 ounce) container plain Greek yogurt
3 tablespoons fresh dill, minced
1 tablespoon powdered ranch dressing mix

Cucumbers can be prepared with the skin on, peeled, or partially peeled. Slice into rounds. Slice tomatoes into halves; set aside. In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese, yogurt, dill, and dry ranch dressing. Blend together with an electric mixer, mixing well. Fill a piping bag with the cream cheese mixture. Pipe a dollop onto each cucumber slice. Top with a tomato half. Refrigerate until ready to serve.



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1/10/17

Baked Sliced Apples

One way to enjoy apple pie without indulging in all the calories is to substitute baked apple slices for the pie. A sprinkle of brown sugar adds a bit of sweetness, oats add texture and crunch, and cinnamon contributes flavor and aroma. For even more crunch and flavor, add a sprinkling of chopped walnuts to the mixture. This is a two-serving recipe, but it can be doubled if you need a larger amount.






Print Recipe

Baked Sliced Apples

2 baking apples, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon butter, melted
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons oats
1/2 tablespoon flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare a small baking dish with cooking spray. In a medium bowl, pour melted butter over apple slices, gently stirring apples and butter. In a separate small bowl, mix together sugar, oats, flour, salt, and cinnamon. Add sugar mixture to apples, toss to coat. Place apples in prepared baking dish. Add water. Cover with aluminum foil. Bake for 30 minutes, or until apples are tender.

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1/5/17

Chocolate Kiss Bundt Cake

At holiday time I am often desperate for help in the kitchen. If you stop by to visit while I'm cooking, you may find yourself wearing an apron, and I'm not picky about age or gender. I handed the recipe for this chocolate bundt cake to an eleven-year-old boy. I was up to my neck preparing casseroles, and I was running out of time to finish the baking. He had never baked a cake before, and he did an amazing job. He's my official sous chef now. His cake was the centerpiece for the dessert table. I think it has everything that makes a cake perfect. It's easy, it's pretty, and it's chocolate.






Print Recipe

Chocolate Kiss Bundt Cake

1 box chocolate cake mix
1 (3.9 ounce) box instant chocolate pudding mix
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup sour cream
4 eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla
14 chocolate kisses, unwrapped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Use vegetable shortening to grease a bundt pan, then dust pan with flour. In a large bowl, combine cake mix, pudding mix, sugar, sour cream, eggs, oil, water, and vanilla. Mix for 2 minutes, scrape bowl sides, then mix for 1 additional minute at medium speed. Pour batter into prepared pan. Place chocolate kisses evenly around the top of the batter. Bake for 40 - 45 minutes, or until cake springs back to the touch. Cool in pan 3 minutes, then remove from pan to a cooling rack.

Cream Cheese Frosting

8 ounces cream cheese, softened
3 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Additional chocolate kisses

In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla. Beat until smooth and creamy. Use a piping bag to pipe frosting in rows over cooled cake. Place a chocolate kiss on top of each row of piped frosting.



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