Monday, April 19, 2010

Black Russian Cake

I made this cake on Sunday in honor of our Good Shepherd’s Garden Party (Week II) celebration.

Black Russian Cake

This is not to say that anything remotely resembling a booze cake was on the original menu but rather, that those bottles of Kahlua and vodka were calling out my name (loudly) from the cupboard.

Black Russian Cake II

“Maggie? Oh, Maaaagieeeee....”

“We taste really good together.”

It was then I recalled seeing a recipe in one of my favorite church lady cookbooks--a recipe that called for both vodka and kahlua (gosh, I love those church ladies) and that is so easy-peasy, rice-n-cheesy that you will be lovin’ me for posting it.

Plus it tastes really, really good.

Here you go. Forgive me for naming it after me.

Maggie’s Black Russian Cake

1 box white or yellow cake mix
1 small box instant chocolate pudding
4 eggs
¾ C. water
1 C. oil
¼ C. Kahlua
¼ C. vodka
(not the el cheapo kind, please)
Nuts, optional

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Spray your bundt pan with nonstick cooking oil (you do have a bundt pan, right?) and line it with nuts if you’d like. I used coarsely chopped pecans and strew them around the bottom of the pan.

Isn’t “strew” a lovely word?

Mix all your ingredients together and beat at low for 30 seconds, then at medium for 2 minutes. Pour into your prepared pan and bake for 45-50 minutes or until a swizzle stick comes out clean. Remove from oven and let sit for 10 minutes, then invert and cool completely.

(You don’t have to let it cool completely, by the way. You do, however, have to serve it with fresh whipping cream or ice cream.)

(in moderation)

PS. The liquor in this recipe bakes out, not to worry. Don’t believe me? My husband was a chemistry major and he says so.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Maple Pecan Scones

(from The Pioneer Woman Cooks)

Maple Pecan Scones


3 C. all purpose flour
1/3 C. sugar
5 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
½ lb. (2 sticks) butter, chilled
¼ C. pecans, plus more for sprinkling
1 large egg
¾ C. heavy cream

Maple Icing

1 lb. powdered sugar
¼ C. milk
4 T. butter, melted
Splash of strongly brewed coffee
Dash of salt
2 tsp. maple flavoring (You could substitute vanilla or almond extract if you want, but then you’d have to change the title of your recipe.)

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

2. Stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.

3. Cut the cold butter into the flour mixture until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

4. Finely chop the pecans and stir into the flour mixture.

5. Mix the egg & cream together and stir into the flour mixture until just combined.

6. Turn the mixture onto a cutting board and push it together into a large ball. Don’t knead too much—only until it sticks together.

7. Gently roll the dough into a 10-inch circle and cut the round into eighths. PW recommends that in order to have perfect eighths, you could first cut an X and then cut a plus sign. I agree!

8. Transfer your wedges to a baking sheet that has been lightly sprayed and bake for 22 to 26 minutes, or until golden brown.

9. Allow the scones to cool completely.

10. Meanwhile, whip your glaze together and pour generously over each scone. Sprinkle with chopped pecans if you want but above all...