Chew This! Macy’s Favorite Biscuits

Macy Chloe Doubman

Thank you to all of those who pick up a copy of “The Courier-Times” on the first and third Sunday’s of each month to check out my newest “CHEW THIS!” column features and recipes. Really means a lot to me. I appreciate your support and dedication. My newest column, last Sunday, was a recipe for “Macy’s Favorite Biscuits”!

The following “Chew This!” column has been reprinted from “The Courier-Times”, Sunday, April 15th 2018 edition. By: Blaise Doubman

Dog Love, Biscuits and a Broken Heart…
Blaise Doubman

It has taken me countless attempts at this column and I am still writing through tears. Never did I imagine that I would be creating a column “in memory” of my little fur baby Macy. For the past 12 years Macy has been such a strong part of my family that I can hardly remember life before her. Of course, before Macy, came my first fur baby, Chloe. Both Shetland Sheepdogs and both have taught my family and I so much about life. Chloe was a huge part of my childhood, Macy a huge part of my young adulthood. Chloe seen so much life. She seen my brother Damon and I through Elementary School and even into High School. She was a huge part of my brother’s Senior photos and a huge part of my beginnings into real responsibility. So much life happened those 12 years we had Chloe and so much happened the 12 years after that we had Macy. Macy got to see my brother and I both graduate college with Bachelor’s Degrees, watch as my parents and grandparents grew, struggled, celebrated and learned new normals. There was so much life, so much living in those 24 years. 24 years! A lifetime of memories, both good and bad, but always with either Chloe or Macy right by my side. But now, neither.

I always told people that Macy was like my child. Why? Because she really was! She was my “fur baby”. I felt like she was a part of me just as much as I was a part of her. We went though everything together, the good and the bad. When “Blaise the Baker” first really took off I would get messages and comments about what a beautiful baby she was, so gorgeous, glamourous even. People from all over the Country would comment to me when I would post her picture online and talk about how she looked almost like a “living doll baby”. People would send her gifts for her Birthday and Christmas, but that was nothing unusual for her, because for 12 years I had thrown her a Birthday party, complete with cake and presents. She loved the attention. Chloe had more of my brother Damon’s personality. Macy had mine. She always wanted to be center of attention, laughed a lot, smiled, very rambunctious, barked a lot, never wanted to be left by herself and was full of nothing but love…and perhaps was a little bit of a troublemaker.

She was spoiled rotten to the very core. Around her 11th Birthday my family and I noticed the aging process starting to take its toll on her. She started having more and more trouble until on March 31st, 2018 she passed away. My heart will never be the same. I am heartbroken. I still look for her. Listen for her. Worry about her. My family and I are devastated. Things will never be the same I am sure and the only thing getting me though this is my family, friends and the good memories I will always carry with me of my sweet little Macy. So many friends have reached out to me, thank you. So many of my readers, followers and fans have reached out also, thank you. Thank you also to “Country Acre Animal Clinic” of New Castle and thank you to Veterinarians Rob and Nathan Rich who extended the life of Macy and helped her anyway that they could and were always there for us, day or night. As I type this the tears are flowing. I am not sure how my family and I will get through this, but we will. Together. If you are reading this and have a fur baby of your own, please stop right now and give them a hug from me – and from Macy. I love you Macy and I will never forget you. Thank you for everything.

Macy’s Favorite Biscuits

These biscuits can be made ahead and stored in an air tight container for up to two weeks. Feel free to use any type of cookie cutter design you would like, even using special ones for Holidays. If you do not own a cookie or biscuit cutter just use the bottom of a drinking glass. Be sure to flour the cutter, or glass, for easier cutting of biscuits. You can replace the vegetable oil with bacon grease for a richer biscuit. When adding in the broth feel free to use whatever style broth you wish – such as chicken broth or beef broth. The color of the dough will vary slightly.

1 ½ cups instant oatmeal
¼ cup vegetable oil
½ cup white all-purpose flour
½ cup broth

Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees F.

Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl combine with clean hands, the instant oatmeal, vegetable oil, white all-purpose flour and broth. Once the dough comes together and forms a ball, transfer to a clean and slightly floured surface. Knead a couple of times and then allow to rest for about 5 minutes.

Using a floured rolling pin, roll the dough carefully into about ½-inch thickness.

Cut out shapes, using desired cutters, and place carefully onto the prepared baking sheets.

Bake, one sheet at a time, in preheated oven for 30 minutes until firm and slightly dry.

Remove from oven and allow to cool at room temperature before removing.

Ask and Answer: I received a question about why I specify in my recipes, that my sticks of butter, salted and unsalted, are “4 oz”. The reason I specify this is because not all stick butter is 4 oz. Some European or Amish butters are slightly more or less ounces per stick.

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Chew This! Funfetti Cake Balls

Funfetti Cake Balls

Thank you to all of those who pick up a copy of “The Courier-Times” on the first and third Sunday’s of each month to check out my newest “CHEW THIS!” column features and recipes. Really means a lot to me. I appreciate your support and dedication. My newest column, last Sunday, was a recipe for “Funfetti Cake Balls”! So fun!

The following “Chew This!” column has been reprinted from “The Courier-Times”, Sunday, March 18th 2018 edition. By: Blaise Doubman

Funfetti Cake Balls Bring Big Smiles
Blaise Doubman

Recently I announced publicly on my social media pages, that for the past 18 months I have been secretly writing my second cookbook! The responses I got back were overwhelming! So many people were just as enthused and excited as I was sharing the news! After I wrote my first cookbook, I never did think I was “finished” with writing and sharing recipes in that way. At the same time though, I could not really tell you when my second cookbook would come together, if at all. People would ask me about it and I would just shrug my shoulders and tell them to stay tuned. I guess in the back of my mind, I knew after the first cookbook was published, that I was not done with things because I had so many more family recipes and stories to share. Developing recipes, testing recipes and sharing recipes is something that I truly love. When I find something good, read something I love, taste something out of the ordinary, see a movie I think is fascinating or hear a song that puts me in a good mood the first thing I want to do is share it! I want to share it with anyone and everyone I know, and sometimes, more often than not, share it with people I do not know! Ha! I love to share the things I love with people.

I love it too, when I bake something and immediately it puts a big smile on people’s faces! This is exactly what happened with my newest creation, “Funfetti Cake Balls”! Cake balls and even cake pops for that matter, are nothing new, but my newest creation combines one of America’s most loved cakes, Funfetti, with a delicious white almond bark coating and a sprinkling of rainbow sprinkles, just for fun. These are perfect for birthday parties, baby showers, wedding showers, anniversary parties, pitch-ins, get togethers, anything and everything you name it! Sprinkle the tops with rainbow sprinkles or even get creative with crushed up chocolate cookies, chocolate sprinkles or different flavors and colors of sanding sugars. Most often when making cake pops, or even brownie pops, you first must bake the cake, or brownies, allow to cool, crumble in a bowl, add frosting, and on and on. Not these! These are simple, foolproof and fun to make. This recipe would be a perfect hands on activity for children in the kitchen. And as far as my second cookbook, it will be released sometime in 2018, still not sure on an exact release date, but once I know more about it I will share the details here with all you.

Funfetti Cake Balls

These are best eaten the day they are made but can be kept covered, at room temperature, for 48 hours. The leftover white almond bark can be used in a variety of ways such as dipping wavy-style potato chips, pretzel rods or a vast array of cut fruits. Simple dip away your desired edible and immediately sprinkle with rainbow sprinkles. Allow to set up at room temperature for several minutes before serving and enjoying.

1 stick (4 oz) unsalted butter, melted
1 ½ cups Funfetti cake mix
½ cup white granulated sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Rainbow sprinkles
2 boxes white almond bark candy coating
1 tablespoon solid vegetable shortening

Start by lining a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl combine the melted unsalted butter with the Funfetti cake mix, white granulated sugar and pure vanilla extract. Feel free to mix in a few heaping tablespoons of the rainbow sprinkles to the mix if you want sprinkles throughout the cake balls.

Once the ingredients are combined and a dough is formed, roll into balls slightly smaller than a tablespoon. Place the rolled balls onto the parchment lined baking sheet.

Place the baking sheet into the freezer for 15 minutes.

Prepare the candy coating by placing both boxes into a large microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds. Towards the end of the melting process, add in the tablespoon of solid vegetable shortening and stir well to combine. Continue microwaving until the candy coating is smooth and glossy, being careful not to scorch the coating.

Remove the balls from the freezer and start to dip them in the melted candy coating. This needs to be a fast job because the candy coating starts to harden quickly. What you need to do is place a couple of the frozen balls into the melted coating, roll around using two forks to ensure even coating, carefully remove excess candy and place balls back onto the parchment lined baking sheet. Immediately sprinkle over the rainbow sprinkles.

Continue with this method until all the balls are dipped and adored with sprinkles.

Allow the coating to set up completely before serving and enjoying, about 15 minutes.

Ask and Answer: Inga Brown Neal, of local “Temptations” fame, had a suggestion with my previous column for “Mini Baked Apple Pies”. She said that she would fill the pies with apple butter and she wouldn’t use glaze, instead she would use just sugar. I thought this was a fabulous idea and promised her if I used the recipe I would credit her, so here it is! Shout out and special thanks to Inga for the suggestion. Also, some special thanks go out to Inga for delivering some of the best potato soup I have ever had from her business “Temptations”. Thanks again Inga!

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Temptations

HUGE ANNOUNCEMENT!!! My debut cookbook, “Blaise the Baker Dessert First” will now be featured and available to purchase at TEMPTATIONS in New Castle! Temptations is located at 535 N Memorial Drive and opened Monday through Friday 11-2! Check out their wide variety of home cooked food and help spread the word about this fabulous local business! Inga is well known for her delicious made from scratch food and successful catering business and I am so grateful and thankful for this opportunity!

Blaise

BIG ANNOUNCEMENT

BIG ANNOUNCEMENT!!! I am SO EXCITED to finally be able to announce that for the past 18 months I have been working on my SECOND COOKBOOK!!! There are SO many more recipes and stories that I CAN NOT WAIT to share with all of you! I am talking with a publisher now and my cookbook will be released later this year! I AM BURSTING with excitement and have SO MANY new and fun ideas planned for this one but will keep the surprises secret – for now! Stay tuned HERE and to http://facebook.com/blaisethebaker for updates! I am so thankful for this opportunity and I am so thankful for all of YOU who have made this journey possible! ROUND TWO – here we goooooooo!!! AND yes – you will still be able to buy my first cookbook for those wondering – which is officially in a NEW PRINTING SEASON!!! So thankful and grateful. Love you all!

Blaise

Chew This! Cindy’s Colossal Cookies

Pick up a copy of “The Courier-Times” TODAY to check out my newest “CHEW THIS!” column featuring my friend Cindy and the recipe for “Cindy’s Colossal Cookies”! Also my “Ask and Answer” features my answer to your questions about my peanut butter brownies! Thank you all for your continuous support and dedication! Enjoy!

The following “Chew This!” column has been reprinted from “The Courier-Times”, Sunday, February 18th 2018 edition. By: Blaise Doubman 

Friends Sharing Recipes…
Blaise Doubman

People always talk about the good and bad aspects of social media, Facebook for example, and really wonder if we have progressed because of this, or perhaps been taken back. I can see the good, as well as the bad, that social media presents, and I can see how some people will never fully understand what social media is capable of. I would like to think that social media is a tool best used in business and marketing development, as well as keeping close contact with family and friends who may live afar. I believe it is also a strong factor in forming friendships and strong bonds that without it, may have never existed. Take my friend Cindy Shelton and I for example. Both of us have lived in Kennard all our lives, yet only on occasion would see each other, wave across the street, then go about our busy lives, not really getting the chance to know one another. About 5 years ago though, that all changed when we became friends on Facebook. One thing led to another and before long we were like long lost friends. I consider Cindy to be one of my best friends today. She is one of the sweetest people I know, one of the most caring, compassionate and giving individuals that I have ever met. Ask anyone that knows her and they will mention her warmth, her smile or her infectious laugh. She is a devoted friend and a true gem of a woman and I have learned so much from her, including being a better and more understanding Christian person. Her husband, Pastor Danny Shelton and their family has become more like family than friends to my family and I and we cherish them so.

It is an ongoing joke that Cindy and the kitchen just do not get along, but let me tell you, I have seen, tasted and heard from many people that she is a good cook, just maybe lacks the confidence. So, imagine my surprise when she presented me with a handwritten recipe for part of my Christmas gift last year! It was a recipe handed down to her from a colleague she used to work with in Shirley, Indiana. The recipe was for “Colossal Cookies” and they sounded delicious! I could not wait to try them and within a week, I did. They were extraordinary! I usually pass out my treats and goodies, one reason being if not I would eat them all, but these cookies could not be shared! I simply had to eat every single last one! Ha! I am sharing this recipe with everyone here today and encouraging you to make these the next time you have a “cookie craving”! I am also naming them after my best friend Cindy and I want to give her a special shout out and thank you for allowing me to do so. Thank you Cindy!

Cindy’s Colossal Cookies

This dough can be made ahead, covered and refrigerated for up to 3 days. Refrigerating the dough turns the baked cookie into a thicker style cookie that is crispy outside and chewy on the inside. This dough also freezes well. Just take the dough and roll into tablespoon size balls and place on a baking sheet. Place into the freezer for one hour, until the dough balls are frozen solid. Pack away the frozen dough balls into freezer safe plastic storage bags and place in freezer. When ready to bake, remove however many you wish and bake in preheated oven!

1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1 ½ cups white granulated sugar
1 ½ cups light brown sugar, packed
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 ½ teaspoons baking soda
2 cups chunky peanut butter
6 cups quick cooking oats
12 oz bag semi-sweet chocolate chips

Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees F. Line several large baking sheets with parchment paper. In a large bowl combine the softened unsalted butter, white granulated sugar and light brown sugar and beat until light and fluffy.

Beat in the large eggs, pure vanilla extract and baking soda.

Beat in the peanut butter and combined until all ingredients are well mixed.

Add in the quick cooking oats, followed by the semi-sweet chocolate chips. This will take a little effort and can be done in batches if you wish. Just be sure to have the ingredients mixed well.

Drop the dough by rounded tablespoons onto the prepared baking sheets, leaving plenty of room between each cookie. Bake one baking sheet at a time, in preheated oven, for 12 minutes. Remove and allow the cookies to cool slightly before enjoying.

Ask and Answer: I have been getting a few questions concerning the peanut butter brownies I posted to my social media networks a couple of weeks back. People are anxious to know how I made them, so I thought I would share my technique here. Start with your favorite brownie recipe and pour that into a prepared pan. In a bowl combine 1 cup peanut butter with ¼ cup powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract. Dollop the peanut butter mixture all over the top of the brownies and then gently swirl together with a knife. Bake as directed.

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FOUR YEARS

FOUR YEARS TODAY I officially launched my website “Blaise the Baker”! Thousands and thousands of followers, hundreds of recipes, so many extraordinary opportunities, my “Chew This!” column, my cookbook “Blaise the Baker Dessert First” and all of your amazing feedback and dedication has made this one awesome journey!!! Through everything – new things, changes, difficult decisions, surveys, taste and recipe testers, and on and on – your dedication and unwavering support and feedback has meant everything to me! Thank you to my friends, my fans, my readers, my followers, my subscribers and my family. Thank you for everything. I am SO EXCITED for so many projects I have open and going at the moment – most I can’t really talk about yet – I think the best is still yet to come and without you – none of this would have been possible.

THANK YOU for everything – I truly love you all!

Blaise

My Cookbook – Refresher

COOKBOOK REMINDER: My cookbook, “Blaise the Baker Dessert First” is still available to purchase in a variety of ways! I’ve been getting lots of questions / emails about this so I’ll post a refresher –

You can also order my cookbook directly through me by sending $15 total ($12 for the cookbook / $3 shipping and handling) to Blaise Doubman / Box 47 / Kennard, IN 47351. You can also pay online through http://paypal.com Use the email blaisejdx@gmail.com when sending money. You can also send me your mailing address and I’ll send you a copy along with an invoice that would need to be paid 30 days after receiving your order. If ordering 4 or more cookbooks – shipping and handling is FREE!

My cookbook is available for purchase in a retail setting in the following shops –

“The Book Nook” in New Castle, Indiana. Located at 1325 G. Ave. Call ahead for hours – 765-521-2188

“Carousel Flowers and Gifts” in Shirley, Indiana. Located at 205 Main Street. Call ahead for hours – 765-738-1500

“Glen Oaks Health Campus” in New Castle, Indiana. Located at 601 W. CR 200 S. Visit Room 112 and buy your copy from my Grandma Deloris. She loves seeing everyone and selling them for me. She’s a good business woman! Ha! Stop in and chat awhile and taste test some of my fresh goodies while you’re there.

“Warm Glow Candle Outlet” in Centerville, Indiana. Located at 2131 North Centerville Road. Regular hours are daily 9am-7pm. Come and find me in their “Artisans and Java” storefront area.

“Temptations” in New Castle, Indiana. Temptations is located at 535 N Memorial Drive and open Monday through Friday 11-2.

All copies available to purchase outside of my personal address are already pre-autographed with my signature as well as Grandma Barbra’s and Grandma Deloris’. Copies can be personalized by request.

Message me, text me, call me, email me for any further questions. Thank you all again for the dedication and support!

Blaise

What kind of recipes are inside my cookbook?

Take a look below –

Chew This! Chocolate Banana Bread Bars

Pick up a copy of “The Courier-Times” TODAY to check out my newest “CHEW THIS!” column and recipe for my “Chocolate Banana Bread Bars”! They are deliciously simple, effortlessly easy and unbelievably scrumptious! My taste testers went wild for these – and I think you will too! Enjoy!

The following “Chew This!” column has been reprinted from “The Courier-Times”, Sunday, February 4th 2018 edition. By: Blaise Doubman 

A New Take on Banana Bread…
Blaise Doubman

I love banana bread and I have experimented with countless recipes over the years. There has been banana bread with nuts, without nuts, with sour cream, with extra butter, melted butter, softened butter, a combination of butter and vegetable shortening, brown butter banana bread, banana bread with raisins and even a banana bread made with a yellow cake mix. If you think that is a lot, consider the fifty other versions I have tried but did not want to mention in fear of readership boredom and lack of room. Seriously though banana bread, to me, always needed something extra. No, not cinnamon and no, not extra bananas, that only makes the finished loaf tough in the end, I have tried it! I have always thought it was missing… chocolate!

Chocolate! Yes, chocolate. I am a registered chocoholic and proud of it. Anything and everything, to me, is better with chocolate and this recipe is no exception! It took a few rounds in the kitchen with this recipe before it was perfect but the finished result was well worth the extra time and extra work. My taste testers, shout out to Tiffany at Glen Oaks, loved this so much that they encouraged me to bring it again – that next day! Ha! The bread is baked in an untraditional way, in a 9×13-inch baking pan, but does so because you cut this bread into bars! The combination of the moist flavorful banana bread with the chocolate version is pure and utter heaven for banana and chocolate lovers! I highly recommend you stir up a batch of these!

Chocolate Banana Bread Bars

These really stretch when it comes to cutting serving sizes, so cut the bars small and serve for a large gathering! If you want to freeze the leftover bars, do so by wrapping tightly in plastic wrap, then aluminum foil before placing into a freezer safe zipper bag. Once frozen, bring to room temperature over night to gently thaw before eating.

1 stick unsalted butter, soft
1 cup white granulated sugar
4 large bananas, peeled and mashed
1 large egg
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 ½ cups white all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9×13-inch baking pan with aluminum foil and spray with a non-stick spray containing flour.

Beat together the soft unsalted butter with the white granulated sugar until light in color and fluffy in texture. Add in the prepared bananas, large egg and pure vanilla extract. Beat well.

Finally, fold in the white all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

Measure out a little less than 2 cups of this mixture and drop by large spoonful’s erratically around the inside of the prepared pan.

Add the unsweetened cocoa powder to the remainder of the batter in the bowl and beat well.

Place the now chocolate banana batter in spoonful’s around the batter that has already been placed in the pan. Do not worry about being neat with this. You will see why in a minute.

Now, with the back of a spoon, carefully spread out all of the dollops so that they gently form together and come together into one large even batter service. Next, take a knife and gently swirl the batter together making a marble effect on the top.

Place in preheated oven for exactly 25 minutes.

Remove and allow to cool slightly before cutting, serving and enjoying.

Ask and Answer: I heard from so many of you with my previous column of my chocolate mayonnaise cake and I love and appreciate your feedback! To answer a few of your questions, yes you can use water instead of the coffee, yes you can make the cake in 2 9-inch circle cake pans, the baking time will not change and you may frost the cake with whatever frosting you desire, or simply sprinkle over some powdered sugar and serve alongside a bowl of fruit. I loved hearing your memories of growing up with a cake very similar to mine in your household.

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Chew This! Sweet Surprise Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake

Happy “CHEW THIS!” Sunday! I am SO EXCITED to share this recipe with everyone today! My “Sweet Surprise Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake” may not be what you expect! Pick up a copy of “The Courier-Times” TODAY and let me know what you think! My Grandma Deloris LOVES this cake and I think you will too! Also my “Ask and Answer” feature, features some answers to your questions about my baked spaghetti! Enjoy!

The following “Chew This!” column has been reprinted from “The Courier-Times”, Sunday, January 21st 2018 edition. By: Blaise Doubman 

Mayonnaise is sweet secret ingredient…
Blaise Doubman

My very first post on my blog was a recipe for chocolate mayonnaise cake. It started with a cake mix and detailed instructions on what to do and how to achieve the perfect cake. That post was nearly four years ago now, believe it or not, and I still refer to it for inspiration. Over the course of four years, since posting that original piece, I have come to find that the best mayonnaise cakes always start with a cake mix! I know, I am not the biggest fan of premade boxed mixes myself and I hardly ever use them, but you must understand that in the world of mayonnaise cakes, you simply must start with one. I have tried mayonnaise cakes from scratch, for instance I am sharing a “from scratch” version in the comments to this column, and they are delicious do not get me wrong, but there is something in the boxed mix you can not find or duplicate anywhere else. Believe me, I have tried and tasted my fair share of mayonnaise cakes. Ha!

In developing this recipe, I wanted to take the flavor to another level, so I added freshly brewed coffee to the cake instead of water and decided to bake the cakes a little less than I had previously. The result was a fabulously moist cake with deep chocolate flavor! If you are not a fan of coffee, do not despair, you can honestly hardly taste it! Coffee, when added to chocolate, does not overpower, but instead adds to the overall flavor. My Grandma Deloris is a huge fan of this cake and whenever we have something to celebrate together, I bring this cake along with me. The frosting is simple too! Simply sift together 3 ½ cups powdered sugar with ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder and a pinch of salt in a large bowl. In another bowl combine a stick of melted butter with 4 tablespoons milk, 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract and 2 tablespoons light corn syrup. Gradually add the powdered sugar and cocoa mixture to the melted butter mixture and stir until everything is smooth and combined. Add a splash or two of milk if the frosting needs to be more spreadable. For special occasions I will make a separate vanilla buttercream frosting that goes in the middle of the layers, and in a circle on top of the cake. Then I sprinkle the top with chocolate sprinkles. It is fun, festive and delicious!

Sweet Surprise Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake

If you prefer to make the recipe from scratch, stir together 3 cups white all-purpose flour, 1 ½ cups white granulated sugar, 6 heaping tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder and 3 teaspoons baking soda. In a separate bowl combine 1 ½ cups mayonnaise with 1 ½ cups warm water and 1 ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract. Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and blend together until smooth. Pour into a greased and floured 13×9-inch cake pan. Bake in preheated 350-degree F oven for 25-30 minutes. Remove and allow to cool before frosting. You can also make this cake using 2 9-inch round cake pans if you desire or about 18 medium sized cupcakes.

1 Duncan Hines “Devil’s Food” cake mix
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup brewed coffee
3 large eggs

Start by spraying 2 9-inch round cake pans with non-stick cooking spray containing flour and preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line each cake pan with parchment paper and spray again if you want to take extra precautions, which is never a bad idea.

In a large bowl beat together the cake mix, mayonnaise, brewed coffee and large eggs until the mixture is combined, smooth and glossy with a few air bubbles.

Pour this mixture evenly between the 2 cake pans. Take each pan and wrap steadily on your counter top to release the air bubbles and to ensure even baking.

Place in preheated oven and bake for 25 minutes exactly.

Remove and allow to cool before frosting.

When ready to assemble, gently remove one of the cakes from their pans and place onto a plate. Place some frosting on the top and smooth evenly. Remove the other cake from its pan and place on top. Place frosting on top of cake, smooth and gently bring down the sides of the cake to ensure an even coating around the perimeter of the cake.

Ask and Answer: I received a few emails about my column prior to this one for “Baked Spaghetti” and thought I would answer your questions here. The dish can be made ahead, wrapped in aluminum foil or plastic wrap, and refrigerated until ready to bake. You can also substitute diverse types of pasta, such as whole grain, etc. Also, there was a reader that said she had made my baked spaghetti for her husband and added a pinch of red pepper flake and sea salt to the top of the baked dish and it was a huge success! Sounds good to me!

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Grandma Mary’s Chocolate Brownies

My friend, Theresa Pierce, gave me this recipe awhile back and I have made it several times. I am not sure why I have not featured it before now, but here we are. Theresa said she thinks the original recipe came from one of Grandma Mary’s “Delco Plant 3” cookbooks but was not for sure. I am giving credit here to Mary and naming them in her honor regardless.

These are fabulously delicious, different than most brownie recipes and can feed a crowd! The recipe calls for 1 can of “Hershey” syrup, or one pound, which is equal to 1 1/2 cups in a liquid measure. The recipe also says you can include nuts but I have never included them and neither has Grandma Barbra when she has made these. If nuts are your thing, please add them. Also a final note on the frosting. The frosting tends to harden quickly, like candy, so be aware and spread evenly – fast!

These are moist, slightly chewy and have a taste all of their own. They do however remind me slightly of Ina Garten’s “Chocolate Ganache Cupcakes” but in brownie form and without the Ganache. Highly recommend that you try these!

Grandma Mary’s Chocolate Brownies

For the brownies…
1 stick (4 oz) margarine, melted (not butter)
1 cup white granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1 1/2 cups “Hershey” chocolate syrup
1 cup + 1 tablespoon white all-purpose flour
Nuts, if desired

For the frosting…
6 tablespoons butter (not margarine)
6 tablespoons milk
1 1/2 cups white granulated sugar
3/4 cup (6 oz) semi-sweet chocolate chips

Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a regular sized baking sheet (cookie sheet) with non-stick cooking spray containing flour.

In a large bowl beat together the melted margarine, white granulated sugar and large eggs. Stir in the “Hershey” syrup and white all-purpose flour. Add nuts here if desired.

Pour onto the prepared baking sheet and spread evenly. Place in preheated oven for exactly 22 minutes. Remove and cool.

To make the frosting, combine the butter, milk and white granulated sugar over medium heat. Stirring occasionally, bring to a boil. Stir constantly for 90 seconds.

Remove from heat and stir in the semi-sweet chocolate chips. Continue to stir until the mixture is smooth and glossy. Immediately pour the frosting over the cooled brownies and quickly spread evenly. Allow to sit for a couple of minutes, then cut and serve.

Enjoy!

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