Pumpkin Cake

Pumpkin Cake

This perfect pumpkin cake brings back memories. The tender, moist texture reminds me of the pumpkin cake bars I used to make in junior high. I got the treasured bar recipe from an old children’s cookbook. I lent the cookbook to a neighbor and never saw the book or the recipe again. Through trial and error, I came up with this cake, which I think is even better! It’s so delicious it doesn’t need frosting, but the classic pairing with cream cheese frosting takes it over the top.

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Pumpkin Cake
Course Dessert
Keyword cake, pumpkin
Servings
Ingredients
Pumpkin Cake
Cream Cheese Frosting
Course Dessert
Keyword cake, pumpkin
Servings
Ingredients
Pumpkin Cake
Cream Cheese Frosting
Instructions
Pumpkin Cake
  1. Preheat the oven to 325ºF (165ºC). Line the bottom of an 8-inch round cake pan* with parchment paper**. Grease and flour the insides.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg.
  3. In a large bowl, beat the sugar, oil, eggs, vanilla and pumpkin purée with an electric mixer or by hand with a whisk, until well combined
  4. Stir in the flour mixture, just until combined.
  5. Transfer the batter to the prepared cake pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 38-43 minutes.
  6. Cool the cake in pan for 10 minutes. Remove the cake from pan and transfer to a cooling rack.
Cream Cheese Frosting
  1. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese and butter together with an electric mixer, until creamy.
  2. Beat in the vanilla extract and salt until well combined.
  3. On low speed, beat in the powdered sugar.
  4. On low speed, beat in the heavy cream a little at a time until your desired consistency is reached. Stir with a spatula to smooth out any bubbles.
Recipe Notes

*To find the cake pan I used, click here.

**To find the parchment rounds I used, click here.

Peaches and Cream Loaf Cake

Every peach season, I get excited by the abundance of peaches at my local farmers market and I end up buying way too many. So if you’re like me and you have ripe peaches sitting on your counter, turn them into peach purée. I love adding peach purée to my iced tea or adding it to desserts like this moist, tender cake. This is one of my most popular cake recipes on social media, and for good reason. It does not disappoint! To watch the TikTok video, click here.

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Peaches and Cream Loaf Cake
Moist, tender peach cake with peach cream cheese icing
Keyword cake, peach
Servings
loaf
Ingredients
Cake
Icing
Keyword cake, peach
Servings
loaf
Ingredients
Cake
Icing
Instructions
Cake
  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line the bottom of an 8 x 4-inch loaf pan with parchment paper. Grease and flour the sides.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.
  3. Set aside 2 tablespoons peach purée for icing.
  4. In a large bowl, beat sugar, oil, eggs, remaining peach purée and extracts until smooth.
  5. Add flour mixture and beat just until combined.
  6. Transfer batter to prepared baking pan. Bake until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, about 38-45 minutes.
  7. Let cake cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a cooling rack to cool completely. Spread icing on cooled cake.
Icing
  1. In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese and butter together until smooth.
  2. Add powdered sugar, salt, vanilla extract and 1 tablespoon of peach purée. Beat until smooth. Add additional peach purée, if needed, until desired consistency is reached. Fold in diced peaches.

Pineapple Scones with Cream Cheese Icing

Pineapple Scones with Cream Cheese Icing

I had pineapple smoothies two days in a row. There’s something so vibrant and refreshing about pineapple. It feels sunny and tropical. Should scones ever feel sunny and tropical? I’m going to say yes! Scones deserve a summer vacation too. They can take a break from tea parties and coffee shops and enjoy a little sunshine.

You’ll be pleasantly surprised when you experience your first bite of a scone with a burst of pineapple flavor. I immediately thought, “Why isn’t this a thing?” There are probably other pineapple scones out there in the universe, but they’re definitely not well known, like the very popular blueberry scone for example. I’m going to go so far as to say, pineapple scones are better than blueberry scones. There, I said it. (And this is coming from a person who loves blueberries.)

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Pineapple Scones with Cream Cheese Icing
Servings
scones
Ingredients
Pineapple Scones
Cream Cheese Icing
Servings
scones
Ingredients
Pineapple Scones
Cream Cheese Icing
Instructions
Pineapple Scones
  1. Preheat oven to 375ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
  3. Work butter into the flour mixture with your fingers or with a pastry blender until pea size chunks form.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together heavy cream, pineapple juice and vanilla.
  5. Stir heavy cream mixture into flour and butter mixture until a shaggy dough is formed.
  6. Fold in pineapple.
  7. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead briefly, by folding dough over onto itself a few times. Do not overwork dough.
  8. Pat or roll dough into a 7-inch round. Cut dough into 8 wedges.
  9. Place scones about 2 inches apart onto prepared baking sheet. Brush scones with egg wash.
  10. Bake until golden brown, about 18-22 minutes.
  11. Transfer scones to a cooling rack to cool completely. Drizzle with icing.
Cream Cheese Icing
  1. In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese and butter together until smooth.
  2. Add powdered sugar and pineapple juice. Whisk until smooth.

Lemon Scones

Lemon Scones

Yellow is the color of happiness and sunshine. These adorable Lemon Scones will bring you a burst of lemony brightness even on the grayest day. The pretty, vibrant yellow sparkling sugar adds a pleasant crunch to the tops. It’s a nice contrast to the soft, tender interior of the scones. These little gems would shine on any breakfast or brunch table. I served them with blueberry jam and green tea, which was so delightful, I’m still smiling.

Print Recipe
Lemon Scones
Course Breakfast, Brunch
Keyword lemon, scones
Servings
scones
Ingredients
Lemon Scones
Icing
Course Breakfast, Brunch
Keyword lemon, scones
Servings
scones
Ingredients
Lemon Scones
Icing
Instructions
Lemon Scones
  1. Preheat the oven to 375ºF (190ºC). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar.
  3. Work the butter and lemon zest into the flour mixture with your fingers or with a pastry blender until pea size chunks form.
  4. Stir in the heavy cream and lemon juice until a shaggy dough is formed. If your dough seems too dry, you can add 1-2 more teaspoons of heavy cream.
  5. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead briefly, by folding dough over onto itself a few times. Do not overwork the dough.
  6. Pat or roll the dough into an 8-inch round, about 3/4-inch thick. Cut out rounds using a 2" or 2 1/4" inch round cutter.**
  7. Place scones about 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheet. Brush scones with heavy cream. Sprinkle generously with sparkling sugar.
  8. Bake until edges are golden brown, about 16-19 minutes.
  9. Cool completely on a wire rack. Decorate with icing.
Icing
  1. In a small bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, heavy cream and enough lemon juice to form a stiff icing.
  2. Transfer icing to a piping bag or a plastic zip bag. Snip off the tip of the bag. Pipe lines in a spoke pattern onto the scones.
Recipe Notes

*To find the sparkling sugar I used, click here.

**To find the cutter I used, click here.

Lavender Shortbread Sandwich Cookies with Honey Buttercream

Lavender Shortbread Sandwich Cookies with Honey Buttercream

Lavender and honey go so well together. Bees know it, fairies know it, princesses know it. The flavor combination is so delightful in these cookies, that I decided to share them with you. In addition to delicious, compatible flavors, these cookies have a divine texture combination. The shortbread cookies have a tender, melt-in-your-mouth texture. Together with the silky, smooth honey buttercream, they’ll make you feel fancy and regal. You’ll hold your head up higher, ring for your tea and declare that you do indeed deserve fine things!

Some people are nervous about baking with lavender because they don’t want their baked goods to taste like soap or perfume. That can be a concern if the lavender flavor is too pronounced. However, if you don’t use enough you won’t be able to taste it at all. There’s a fine balance. If you use the right amount, it will taste pleasant and have sweet undertones. I used two teaspoons of culinary lavender in these cookies, but you can adjust the amount to your tastes. You can start out with one teaspoon, bake a small sample of dough and taste it, to customize the flavor.

Speaking of tasting, my grandmother always said, “taste as you go.” This is also helpful when making the honey buttercream. Typically, when making other flavors of buttercream, you add more powdered sugar if your buttercream is too thin. In this case, adding more powdered sugar can make the buttercream too sweet. Once you have added the amount of honey that tastes good to you, you can add a little cornstarch if you need to stiffen it up a bit.

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Lavender Shortbread Sandwich Cookies with Honey Buttercream
Tender lavender scented cookies with silky honey buttercream filling
Keyword cookies
Servings
Ingredients
Lavender Shortbread Cookies
Honey Buttercream
Keyword cookies
Servings
Ingredients
Lavender Shortbread Cookies
Honey Buttercream
Instructions
Honey Buttercream
  1. In a medium bowl, beat butter and sugar together until smooth. Add honey, one tablespoon at a time until desired sweetness and consistency is reached.
  2. Mix in a pinch of salt to taste.
  3. Mix in cornstarch, if necessary, to firm up buttercream. *See notes below.
Recipe Notes

*The addition of cornstarch helps to firm up buttercream without adding additional sweetness.

To find culinary lavender, click here.

Strawberry Rose Pancakes


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Strawberry Rose Pancakes

Pink pancakes made with strawberry purée and rose petals, topped with strawberry syrup and pink whipped cream

Course Breakfast, Brunch
Keyword pancakes, strawberry

Servings


Ingredients
Strawberry Syrup

Pink Whipped Cream

Strawberry Rose Pancakes

Course Breakfast, Brunch
Keyword pancakes, strawberry

Servings


Ingredients
Strawberry Syrup

Pink Whipped Cream

Strawberry Rose Pancakes


Instructions
Strawberry Syrup
  1. Purée the strawberries in a blender or small food processor. Pass the purée through a mesh sieve into a small saucepan. Stir in the sugar and 1/2 cup (118ml) of water. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat. Turn the heat down to low and simmer until the sugar has dissolved and the syrup thickens, about 10 minutes. Set aside to cool. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Pink Whipped Cream
  1. In a large bowl, beat the whipped cream to soft peaks with an electric mixer at high speed. Add the powdered sugar, strawberry extract and food coloring in 3 separate additions. Continue beating just until stiff peaks are formed. Set aside in the refrigerator until ready to use.

Strawberry Rose Pancakes
  1. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt together until well combined. Set aside.

  2. Purée the strawberries in a blender or small food processor. Pass the purée through a mesh sieve into a medium bowl. Add the egg, milk, melted butter, vanilla extract and food coloring (if using) and whisk until well combined. Stir this mixture into the flour mixture just until combined. A few lumps are okay. Stir in the rose petals.

  3. For each pancake, scoop 3-4 tablespoons of batter onto a hot oiled griddle. Flip the pancakes when bubbles form on the surface. Continue cooking until the pancakes puff and are lightly browned.


Recipe Notes

*To find the gel food coloring I used, click here.

**To find culinary dried rose petals, click here.

 

Blackberry Oatmeal Cookies

Blackberry Oatmeal Cookies by Brownie Mischief

We’ve all heard our parents telling their childhood stories of walking miles to school and suffering worse hardships than we ever had to. My mom used to tell me stories like that, but she had a sense of humor, so her stories were always fun to listen to. She used to tell me about her friend’s mother, who would make big, delicious oatmeal cookies. My mom would trade her baloney sandwich nearly every day to get one of those cookies from her friend. She reminisced about those cookies so much, that I set out to make her some when I learned to bake. She and my grandmother would taste test batch after batch of my cookies over the years. I have probably baked enough oatmeal cookies to circle the earth. Okay that’s an exaggeration, but seriously I have baked quite a few. Of all the oatmeal cookies I’ve baked, these are one of my favorites!

Most of the time when you see fruit added to an oatmeal cookie, it’s dried fruit, like raisins or cranberries. That’s mostly because if you just dump fruit into your cookie dough, the fruit releases water, leaving soggy spots in your cookies. To solve that issue, for this recipe, I macerate the blackberries before baking. The purple blackberry juice that’s released from the berries is used to make a beautiful lilac icing to drizzle over the cookies.

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Blackberry Oatmeal Cookies
Course Dessert
Keyword cookies
Servings
cookies
Ingredients
Brown Butter
Macerated Berries
Oatmeal Cookies
Icing
Course Dessert
Keyword cookies
Servings
cookies
Ingredients
Brown Butter
Macerated Berries
Oatmeal Cookies
Icing
Instructions
  1. In a small, light colored saucepan, melt 1/2 cup (4 oz or 113g) of butter over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until dark golden and fragrant. You will see brown particles sink to the bottom. Keep a close eye on it. It can go from toasted to burned very quickly.
  2. Remove from heat and immediately transfer the brown butter, including the brown particles, to a small bowl. Refrigerate until solid, about one hour.
  3. Place the blackberries in a medium bowl. Sprinkle with granulated sugar and toss to coat. Let sit for 30 minutes until the berries release their juices.
  4. Drain the blackberries and reserve the juice.
  5. Preheat oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Line two large cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  6. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Set aside.
  7. In a large bowl, beat brown butter, softened butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.
  8. Add eggs and vanilla extract in three separate additions and beat until well combined.
  9. Stir in the flour mixture just until combined.
  10. Stir in the oats just until combined. Gently fold in the blackberries.
  11. Scoop 1/4 cup sized portions of dough, about 2 inches apart, onto the prepared cookie sheets. *I used a #16 2 ounce scoop.
  12. Bake until the cookie tops are set and the edges are golden brown, about 13-15 minutes. Transfer the cookies to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  13. Pass reserved blackberry juice through a sieve to remove the seeds.
  14. In a small bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, heavy cream and one tablespoon of the reserved blackberry juice until smooth. Add more blackberry juice, a little at a time, until desired consistency is reached.
  15. Drizzle the icing over the cooled cookies.
Recipe Notes

*To find the portion scoop I used, click here.

Pink Lemonade Cake

This cheerful little loaf cake feels like a spring or summer picnic with lemonade and sunshine. It’s similar to a pink lemonade cake that my elderly neighbor used to make when I was growing up. She made it for all the neighborhood kids and we always gobbled it up. When I was about eight years old she taught my friend and me how to make it. She used a yellow cake mix in a large baking pan and poked holes all over the cake, then drenched it in a pink, sugary lemon icing. I transformed that happy pink lemonade memory into a delightful loaf cake made from scratch.

To watch the TikTok video, click here.

Print Recipe
Pink Lemonade Cake
A tender, moist loaf cake that tastes just like pink lemonade
Course Brunch, Dessert
Keyword cake, pink lemonade
Servings
8 x 4-inch loaf
Ingredients
Pink Lemonade Cake
Lemon Syrup
Icing
Course Brunch, Dessert
Keyword cake, pink lemonade
Servings
8 x 4-inch loaf
Ingredients
Pink Lemonade Cake
Lemon Syrup
Icing
Instructions
Pink Lemonade Cake
  1. Preheat oven to 325ºF (163ºC). Line the bottom of an 8 X 4-inch loaf pan with parchment paper. Grease and flour the sides.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together the milk and sour cream.
  4. In a large bowl, beat the sugar, oil, eggs, lemon zest and strawberry extract until smooth.
  5. Stir in the flour mixture in two additions, alternating with the milk mixture. Stir just until combined. Stir in food color a little at time until your desired shade is achieved.
  6. Transfer the batter to the prepared baking pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted into center of the loaf comes out clean, about 45-50 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare lemon syrup.
  7. Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then remove from pan and transfer to a cooling rack. Poke holes all over the top of cake with a skewer.
  8. Brush the warm cake generously with the lemon syrup. Let the cake cool completely, then top with icing.
Lemon Syrup
  1. In a small saucepan, combine the juice of one lemon with enough water to equal 1/4 cup. Add sugar and stir over medium-low heat until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat.
Icing
  1. In a medium bowl, beat the butter, powdered sugar, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, the strawberry extract and a pinch of salt, until smooth. Add more lemon juice until your desired consistency is reached. Mix in gel food color.
Recipe Notes

*To find the gel food color I used, click here.

Raspberry Rose Shortbread Cookies

I don’t think I’ve ever created a recipe that delighted all of my senses as much as these cookies. If you decide to embark on this journey, you’ll start with your sense of smell. Whether you purchase dried rose petals or make them yourself, they’re pleasantly fragrant. I used dried rosebuds, but you can also use dried rose petals. To find dried rose petals, click here. To find dried rosebuds, click here. I pinched the calyx and stem off of the rosebuds to avoid large crunchy bits in the cookies, then I crushed the roses with a mortar and pestle. You can also place them in a plastic bag and roll over them gently with a rolling pin. Your sense of hearing will be satisfied with the crunching of the delicate, dried rose petals. Next, you’ll use your sense of touch to experience the fun rolling cookie dough into balls and maybe even trigger some childhood memories.

The finished cookies have a rustic, almost shabby chic look with their cracks, rose-speckled dough and beautifully imperfect dried roses. You’ll gaze at your beautiful handiwork. And of course, you’ll sample a warm cookie, before you’re supposed to. The cookies will taste tender and slightly sweet with a hint of rose. I like a more subtle rose flavor in my baked goods. But if you prefer a stronger rose flavor, feel free to add a small amount of rose water to your dough. Start with 1/8 teaspoon or 1/4 teaspoon, because a little goes a long way.

If you’re like me, you’ll taste a spoonful of the raspberry ganache because you can and should. Speaking of the raspberry ganache, please use a good quality white chocolate! In some recipes, it’s fine to use white chocolate chips or candy melts if you prefer, but NOT this one. In my humble, yet educated opinion, you should never use chocolate chips to make ganache. I studied chocolate in culinary school with a master chocolatier. I never use chocolate chips for ganache because they contain stabilizers that keep them from melting completely, which prevents you from having the smoothest ganache possible. They also contain less cocoa butter and tend to have a waxy mouth feel.

For this recipe, when it comes to butter, you should also be a little bit picky for successful baking. Low quality butter tends to contain more water and your cookies may spread too much. So make sure to use good butter. Your butter should be room temperature, but not warm. If the butter is shiny, it’s too warm. Don’t try to speed up the softening of butter with your microwave. That’s not a hack, in spite of what you may hear on the internet. Microwaves heat unevenly and will potentially melt your butter. The best way to speed up the softening of your butter is to simply cut it into cubes. By the time you get the rest of your ingredients ready, the butter should be soft enough to use. My last, but most important success tip, is to weigh your ingredients. U.S. Imperial weights are shown in parenthesis on the recipe.

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Raspberry Rose Shortbread Cookies
Rose petal shortbread cookies filled with white chocolate raspberry ganache
Course Dessert
Servings
cookies
Ingredients
Cookies
Filling
Course Dessert
Servings
cookies
Ingredients
Cookies
Filling
Instructions
Cookies
  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper
  2. In a large bowl, beat the butter, with an electric mixer on medium speed, until smooth. Add the rose petals and beat on low speed until combined.
  3. Add the powdered sugar, vanilla extract and salt. Beat until well combined.
  4. On low speed, mix in the flour in two additions. Beat just until combined.
  5. Roll the dough into 1 1/4-inch balls, about 1/2 ounce (14g) each. Place the dough balls about 2 inches apart onto the prepared baking sheets.
  6. Bake for 7 minutes, then remove from the oven. Press indentations into each cookie with a 1-inch diameter pastry tamper or with the flat top of a 1-inch diameter bottle cap.
  7. Return the cookies to the oven and continue baking until the edges are light golden brown, about 5-6 more minutes.
  8. If the indentations in your cookies lose definition, press again with the tamper or bottle cap while the cookies are still hot on the baking sheet.
  9. Transfer the cookies to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Filling
  1. In a small saucepan, bring the pureéd raspberries to a simmer over medium heat. Simmer until the purée is reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Transfer the raspberry reduction to a small bowl and set aside.
  2. Place the white chocolate in a medium heat safe bowl and set aside.
  3. In a small saucepan over medium heat, bring the heavy cream to a simmer, just until bubbles form around the edges. Do not boil. Stir in the raspberry reduction and heat just to a simmer again. Do not boil.
  4. Pour the hot cream mixture over the white chocolate, making sure all of the white chocolate is submerged. Let it sit for 2 minutes, then stir with a spatula until smooth.
  5. Let the ganache cool until slightly thickened. Spoon about 1/2 teaspoon into the indentation of each cookie. The ganache will continue to firm up as it sits.
  6. When the ganache in the cookies has firmed up, decorate with dried rosebud or rose petals, if desired.
Recipe Notes

*To find dried rose petals, click here.

**To find dried rosebuds, click here.

Blueberry Earl Grey Tarts

Blueberry Earl Grey Tarts

These Blueberry Earl Grey Tarts have three individual components, which, when combined together, are absolutely delicious. I experimented with each separate component of this recipe until I perfected them individually. The tart crust is flaky and tender, yet sturdy enough to hold the filling. The filling is just sweet enough for my sweet tooth and the whipped cream has just enough Earl Grey flavor.

This recipe makes enough whipped cream to cover the entire tops of the tarts or you can be like me and try to be artistic and avant-garde with your whipped cream. To make the Earl Grey infused whipped cream, use your favorite Earl Grey tea, whether it’s loose leaf tea or a teabag. We don’t discriminate here. All forms of tea are welcome! I do have a favorite Earl Grey tea. If you want to check it out, click here. The tea will make your whipped cream a dull pale yellow. This issue is purely aesthetic. I added a tiny bit of violet gel food color which brightens the whipped cream. You can add more if you want a lavender shade.

Print Recipe
Blueberry Earl Grey Tarts
Course Dessert
Keyword blueberries, tarts
Servings
4-inch tarts
Ingredients
Tart Crust
Blueberry Filling
Earl Grey Whipped Cream
Course Dessert
Keyword blueberries, tarts
Servings
4-inch tarts
Ingredients
Tart Crust
Blueberry Filling
Earl Grey Whipped Cream
Instructions
Tart Crust
  1. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, powdered sugar and salt.
  2. Work in butter and egg yolk, with a pastry blender or with your fingers, until pea sized pieces are formed.
  3. Add ice water one tablespoon at a time until dough comes together.
  4. Form dough into a disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill in refrigerate for at least one hour or up to overnight.
  5. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough to scant 1/4-inch thickness.
  6. Cut dough into six 5-inch rounds. Press rounds into six 4-inch or 4 1/4-inch tart pans
  7. Dock the bottoms of tart crusts with a fork. Freeze for 30 minutes.
  8. Heat oven to 375ºF. Place tart pans on a large baking sheet.
  9. Line tart shells with 6-inch parchment rounds. Fill with pie weights. (You can use dried beans or rice if you don't have pie weights)
  10. Bake tart shells for 12 minutes. Remove parchment paper and pie weights. Continue baking until tart shells are light golden brown, about 4-6 more minutes.
Blueberry Filling
  1. Set aside 1 cup blueberries. Combine the remaining 3 cups blueberries, sugar, corn starch and lemon juice in a medium saucepan.
  2. Simmer over low heat, stirring occasionally, until blueberries are softened and sauce is thickened, about 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in the reserved 1 cup of blueberries during the last minute of cooking.
  4. Remove from heat and let cool completely.
Earl Grey Whipped Cream
  1. Combine heavy cream and tea leaves or tea bag in a small saucepan.
  2. Heat just until bubbles form around the edges.
  3. Transfer to a small bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let cool.
  4. Pass through a sieve to strain out tea leaves or remove tea bag.
  5. Cover surface with plastic wrap and place in refrigerator to chill.
  6. Transfer chilled cream to a large bowl. Whip with an electric mixer until thickened.
  7. Add powdered sugar and food color in separate additions and continue whipping at high speed just until stiff peaks form.

Vintage Chocolate Cake

Dark Chocolate Cake with the Best Chocolate Frosting

If you love chocolate cake, this is the post for you! Chocolate cake is one of the best comfort foods there is. I’ve tasted many over the years, but my all time favorite was one I had growing up. I’ve spent years trying to duplicate the moist, nostalgic cake from my childhood. I noticed that nearly every chocolate cake recipe on the internet is a variation of the century-old recipe from the Hershey’s Cocoa tin. I think many people have passed it down as a family recipe, each grandmother adding her own personal touch. Even some celebrity chefs have claimed it as their own. It’s an easy, delicious, moist recipe and its popularity is well deserved. You can tweak the flavor additions a bit to make it your own too. It’s a recipe that’s hard to mess up.

This cake is topped with the ultimate silky, smooth, deeply chocolate frosting. I developed this recipe mostly because I couldn’t find a chocolate frosting recipe that didn’t taste gritty and/or look speckled from the cocoa powder. Swiss meringue buttercream with melted chocolate added is one alternative. But, while it is smooth, silky and perfect for piping, it’s missing that deep chocolate richness. Another option is chocolate ganache. It looks rich and creamy in those viral videos, but it’s a little too rich and overpowering to use as frosting in my opinion.

I think this frosting is the one! It has the best of both worlds, velvety but not too rich. You’ll notice that this frosting contains maple syrup. The syrup gives it a very subtle maple flavor in the background, but mostly, it helps to make the frosting silky and gives it shine. You can adjust the sweetness level of the frosting by choosing the chocolate you prefer. I used bittersweet chocolate, which I think is just right. This recipe makes enough frosting to frost a 2-layer 6-inch cake. You can easily double the recipe for larger cakes.

Print Recipe
Vintage Chocolate Cake
Course Dessert
Keyword cake, chocolate
Servings
2 layer 6-inch cake
Ingredients
Chocolate Cake
Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
Course Dessert
Keyword cake, chocolate
Servings
2 layer 6-inch cake
Ingredients
Chocolate Cake
Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
Instructions
Chocolate Cake
  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Line the bottoms of two 6-inch cake pans with parchment paper. Grease the insides and dust with a mixture of equal parts flour and cocoa powder. Wrap the cake pans with damp cake strips if you have them.
  2. Sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a medium bowl. Add the sugar and stir util well combined.
  3. Combine the the egg, egg yolk, buttermilk, vegetable oil and vanilla extract in a small bowl. Whisk lightly to combine.
  4. Add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients and mix on low speed with an electric mixer, until combined. Stop the mixer. Scrape the sides and the bottom of the bowl with a spatula. Turn the mixer up to medium speed and beat for 30 seconds.
  5. Add the hot coffee and stir until well combined.
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared cake pans, dividing batter evenly between the pans. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cakes comes out clean, about 25-28 minutes without cake strips or about 28-32 minutes with cake strips.
  7. Let the cakes cool in the pans for 10 minutes then remove the cakes from the pans and transfer to a cooling rack.
  8. Trim the cake layers to your desired thickness, from 1-inch to 1 1/2-inches thick. Fill and frost with chocolate buttercream frosting.
Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
  1. In a small saucepan over low heat, whisk together the maple syrup, water, cocoa powder and espresso powder until smooth. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
  2. Melt the chocolate in a medium bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water, making sure the water doesn't touch the bottom of the bowl. Remove from heat and set aside to cool to lukewarm.
  3. In a large bowl, beat the butter with an electric mixer at medium speed, until smooth and light in color. Add the powdered sugar and salt and continue beating until smooth and well combined.
  4. Gradually add the the cooled maple syrup mixture and beat on low speed until combined.
  5. Stir in the melted chocolate until well combined. Smooth out any air bubbles by stirring gently with a rubber spatula.
Recipe Notes

*For smoothest results, use chopped bar chocolate and make sure chocolate is completely melted.  Do not use chocolate chips. Chocolate chips do not melt completely and can make your frosting lumpy.

 

The Best Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Dark Chocolate Cake with the Best Chocolate Frosting

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This is the ultimate silky, smooth, deeply chocolate frosting. I developed this recipe mostly because I couldn’t find a chocolate frosting recipe that didn’t taste gritty and/or look speckled from the cocoa powder. Swiss meringue buttercream with melted chocolate added is one alternative. But, while it is smooth, silky and perfect for piping, it’s missing that deep chocolate richness. Another option is chocolate ganache. It looks rich and creamy in those viral videos, but it’s a little too rich and overpowering to use as frosting in my opinion.

I think this frosting is the one! It has the best of both worlds, velvety but not too rich. You’ll notice that this frosting contains maple syrup. The syrup gives it a very subtle maple flavor in the background, but mostly, it helps to make the frosting silky and gives it shine. You can adjust the sweetness level of the frosting by choosing the chocolate you prefer. I used bittersweet chocolate, which I think is just right. This recipe makes enough frosting to frost a 2-layer 6-inch cake. You can easily double the recipe for larger cakes.

Print Recipe
The Best Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
Silky smooth chocolate frosting with an intense chocolate flavor
Course Dessert
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Dessert
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. In a small saucepan over low heat, whisk together the maple syrup, water, cocoa powder, and espresso powder until smooth. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
  2. Melt the chocolate in a medium bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water, making sure the water doesn't touch the bottom of the bowl. Stir gently until smooth. Remove from heat and set aside to cool to lukewarm.
  3. In a large bowl, beat the butter with an electric mixer at medium speed, until smooth and light in color. Add the powdered sugar and salt and continue beating until smooth and well combined.
  4. Gradually add the cooled maple syrup mixture and beat on low speed until combined.
  5. Stir in the melted chocolate until well combined. Smooth out any air bubbles by stirring gently with a rubber spatula.
Recipe Notes

*To find my favorite Dutch process cocoa powder, click here.

**For the smoothest results, use chopped bar chocolate and make sure chocolate is completely melted.  Do not use chocolate chips. They contain an ingredient which prevents them from melting completely and may make your frosting lumpy.