Friday, July 12, 2013

snickers ice cream cake party!

Go ahead, handcuff me and take me to jail. I'm guilty! This recipe is pretty much assault with a deadly weapon! It's got two layers of chocolate brownies, RICH peanut nougat ice cream, layered with chopped Snickers bars and drizzled with hot fudge and caramel sauce.

My daughter found the recipe on Pinterest & requested it. I happily accepted the challenge. Just a word of warning, it needs to be frozen for at least 6 hours. I tried to serve it after 2 hours because I am very impatient when it comes to dessert & it was a mess. We stuck it back in the freezer overnight & it was perfect! I'll make it a day ahead the next time. I'm pretty sure I've never used the word "decadent" on my blog. I was saving it for THIS!

Seriously, these ingredients could only mean...DANGER!!
Snickers Ice Cream Cake
recipe from

Brownie Layer
1 boxed brownie mix, mixed according to directions, batter divided in 2 and baked separately, in 2 layers in 8 inch springform pan.

Nougat Ice Cream
1/4 cup milk
8 ounce cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups peanut butter
8 ounce Cool Whip, thawed

Other Layers
1 16 ounce jar of hot fudge sauce, divided
1 16 ounce jar caramel sauce, divided
1 11.5 ounce bag mini Snickers, chopped and divided for 3 layers

You need to bake the 1 brownie mix into TWO layers. I only have one 8" springform pan so I divided the batter, baked half the batter in the pan, removed the baked brownie, washed the pan & then prepared the pan and baked the 2nd half of the brownie batter.


1. Grease an 8 inch springform pan & line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper, cut into an 8 inch circle. Also grease the parchment paper.

2. Mix the brownie mix according to directions on box. Divide batter in half & bake 1/2 of the batter in an 8 inch springform pan. Set the other batter aside to bake when the first brownie is baked. Bake at 350 for 18 to 20 minutes.

3. Let brownie cool for a few minutes & remove sides from springform pan & place brownie on cooling rack. Wash springform pan. Grease pan, layer bottom with parchment paper, grease parchment paper and bake 2nd half of brownie batter for 18 to 20 minutes. Remove to cooling rack. Wash the springform pan again so it's ready to assemble the cake in.

4. Mix milk, cream cheese, sugar and peanut butter with electric mixer until combined.

5. Fold in cool whip.

6. Line the sides of the springform pan with parchment paper. The parchment paper needs to be higher than the edge of the pan because the cake will be taller than the rim of your pan. It was tricky for me to get the parchment paper to stay where I wanted it on the sides of the pan and it was a easier after I put the first layers in the pan. The brownie held the paper in place after I placed the first layer.

7. Place an 8 inch round cake board in the bottom of the pan. This is optional but I recommend it if you plan to move the cake off of the bottom of the springform pan to serve. If you don't care about moving the cake off the bottom of the springform pan to serve, you won't need the cake board.

8. Place a brownie layer in the bottom of the pan.

9. Pour 1/2 cup hot fudge sauce and 1/2 cup caramel sauce over the brownie. Top with 1/3 of the chopped snickers.

10. Top with half of the nougat ice cream.

11. Repeat steps 8, 9, and 10: layer brownie, caramel sauce, hot fudge sauce, nougat ice cream.

12. Place cake in freezer for a minimum of 6 hours but can be made several days in advance, if wrapped well.

13. When ready to serve, remove cake from  springform pan and remove parchment paper from sides of cake.

14. Top with remaining chopped snickers and additional caramel and hot fudge sauce. Allow cake to sit out for 15-20 minutes before serving or it will be difficult to cut through. Cut with a hot knife. I heated a glass of water in the microwave, dipped my knife in the glass of hot water, wiped it dry & cut.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

coconut cream cake party!

Happy birthday to my husband, Mark! I won’t give away his age but I’ll tell you that he robbed the cradle when we got married 23 years ago. :) July birthdays are THE BEST! His is the 1st & mine is the 16th. We love celebrating our birthdays together & typically celebrate all month. German chocolate is Mark’s go-to birthday cake but I decided to change it up this year since I just made him a German chocolate cake for Father’s day a few weeks ago.
I got this recipe from our family cookbook that I compiled many years ago. It’s from my sister & it was her father in law’s favorite cake. The Graham family cookbook is one of my most special treasures. It includes recipes from my Grandma, like Granny's Sunday Possum (she’s a jokester, it’s BEEF!), my mom’s FAMOUS holiday dinner rolls and peanut butter chocolate chip oatmeal cookies and LOTS of other delicious recipes from my siblings, aunts, uncles & cousins! I’m so lucky that my family LOVES to cook!

I think this coconut cream cake is going to become a tradition in our family too! It's super easy & delicious AND VERY RICH and starts with a cake mix. This is my favorite white cake mix & I used it for this recipe.
If you’ve never bought a can of cream of coconut, the stuff is AMAZING! Make sure you buy CREAM OF COCONUT and not coconut milk.  You can buy it at WalMart or the grocery store & it’s sold by the drink mixers, right by the margarita salt & the bloody mary mix. It may be somewhat solid (& alarming) when you open the can, don’t worry, after one bite you won’t care how it looks, go ahead have a taste, it's tropical paradise! You may need to liquify 1 cup of it to pour over the cakes by placing it in a bowl & microwaving it on low for a short time. If it’s solid, keep 1/2 cup solid for the frosting.
Coconut Cream Cake


1 15.25 ounce extra moist white cake mix
3 egg whites
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 1/3 cup whole milk
2 cups sweetened flaked coconut, divided (1 cup in cake mix, 1 cup to garnish frosted cake)
1 can sweetened cream of coconut, divided (The can contains 1 1/2 cups. 1 cup will be used to drizzled on the baked cakes and 1/2 cup will be used in the frosting)
3 cups coconut buttercream frosting, see recipe below OR your favorite buttercream frosting

1. Grease and flour two 8 or 9 inch round cake pans. I used 9 inch but recommend 8 inch pans. Preheat oven to 350.

2. In a mixing bowl, beat cake mix, egg whites, oil and milk on low speed 30 seconds, then on medium speed for 2 minutes.

3. Stir in 1 cup flaked coconut.

4.  Pour into prepared pans.

5. Bake for 24-29 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 5 minutes before removing from pan.

6. Place cakes on waxed paper or parchment paper. While cakes are still warm poke holes in the cake. I used a wooden chop stick.

6. Slowly pour 1/2 cup of cream of coconut onto the holes of each cake. If your cream of coconut is solid put it in a bowl and microwave it on low for 30 seconds to liquify it. DON'T pour it all in the middle of the cakes, pour it near the edges of the cake also and in all of the holes.You want it to be evenly distributed and not all soaked into the middle of the cakes. Allow the cake to completely cool. 

7. Place one cake layer on your cake plate. Spread 1 cup of frosting onto the cake. Place the 2nd cake onto the frosting and spread 1 cup frosting on the top and another cup of frosting on the sides of the cake. Garnish with additional cup of flaked coconut.
8. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Coconut Buttercream Frosting
adapted from Wilton

1 cup Crisco, solid vegetable shortening
1 cup butter, I use salted butter
1/2 cup cream of coconut, it's best if it's more solid than liquid. If it's liquid refrigerate it for awhile
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
8 cups confectioners sugar (approximately 2 pounds)
** 2-4 tablespoons milk

Cream butter, shortening & cream of coconut with electric mixer. Add vanilla. Gradually add powdered sugar, one cup  at a time, beating well after each addition on medium speed. Start mixer on slow speed after each addition to avoid a powdered sugar explosion/mess. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl often. ** If frosting is dry, add milk, as needed and beat at medium speed until light and fluffy.

You can also make this recipe without the cream of coconut & plan to use the milk.

This recipe makes more frosting than you will need to frost this cake. Refrigerate the extra frosting in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks. Re-whip leftover frosting before using.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

lemon blueberry muffin pound cake

I truly, madly, deeply LOVE summer and what says summer more than juicy blueberries and lemon
This quick bread/cake is really bursting with sweet blueberries. The lemon zest and lemon juice provides a subtle lemon taste but it definitely brings out the fresh flavor of the blueberries. This recipe is scrumptious! If you love blueberries you will love it too!

Lemon Blueberry Muffin Pound Cake
inspired by:

2 cups all purpose flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 cups blueberries
zest from 1 lemon, or to taste
½ cup vanilla yogurt
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

For Glaze:
       1 cup powdered sugar
       1  tablespoon fresh lemon juice


1.    Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2.    Spray a loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray AND line the pan with parchment paper AND spray the parchment paper. Set pan aside. Sometimes blueberries stick to the pan so don’t skip the parchment paper, if at all possible. Trust me. The narrow sides of the pan are not lined with parchment paper & it's fine with just the spray in that area.

3.    In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and lemon zest. Add the blueberries and carefully toss to combine.

4.    In a separate mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in the yogurt. Stir in the dry ingredients, mixing only until incorporated and being careful not to crush the blueberries.

5.    Scoop batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for 1 hour 10 minutes, until golden brown. If it browns on top too quickly just set a piece of aluminum foil over the top for the last 10 minutes or so. I need the full 1 hour and 10 minutes for it to cook through. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes before lifting out by parchment paper or inverting gently onto a plate.
 6.    Stir powdered sugar and lemon juice together and drizzle over cooled bread.

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