Cracker Barrel Chocolate Coke Cake

I will be the first one to admit that I am not a cake person. That being said, every once in a while, I can be persuaded to try a piece. I tried this cake at Cracker Barrel, and I knew that I had to see if I could find the recipe for it.

Original Recipe is here: http://www.allfreecopycatrecipes.com/Dessert-Recipes/Copycat-Cracker-Barrel-Coke-Cake

What You Need

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

2 cups sugar

1 tsp baking soda

1 cup unsalted butter

1 cup Coca Cola

5 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder

1/2 cup buttermilk

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

Topping:

½ cup unsalted butter

3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

9 tbsp Coca Cola

1 tsp vanilla

4 cups confectioners’ sugar

 

And Here’s What You Do

1. Preheat oven to 350°F and prepare a 9×13 baking pan using your favorite meathod. In a mixing bowl, whisk together flour, granulated sugar and baking soda and Set aside. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt 1 cup butter with 5 tablespoons cocoa and 1 cup Coca Cola. Bring to a boil, whisking together as it melts.

2. Pour the chocolate mixture over the flour mixture and stir until combined. Add the buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla, stirring well until combined

3. Pour the batter into the prepared 9×13 pan and bake for 40 minutes (mine was done at 30 minutes).

4. For the topping, sift 4 cups of confectioner’s sugar into a large mixing bowl. In a small saucepan over medium heat melt 1/2 cup butter, 3 tablespoons cocoa powder and 9 tablespoons Coca Cola. Whisk together and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and whisk in 1 teaspoon vanilla. Pour the warm chocolate mixture over the sifted confectioners’ sugar. Whisk together until completely combined.

5. Remove the cake from the oven once it is done and poke with a fork all over the top. Slowly drizzle the warm chocolate frosting over the cake. Allow to cool completely before serving.photo 2(2)

 

What I Did

This recipe originally calls for a marshmallow fluff layer between the cake and the frosting. However, this was already turning out to be a pretty sweet cake, so I decided to omit the marshmallow and just go

with the frosting. I don’t think it is lacking anything. And the cake that we had at the restaurant didn’t have the fluff either.

Reaction

I think my coworkers really needed the chocolate cake today. Maybe it’s due to the fact that it is Monday, and Mondays around the office tend to be pretty hectic. But, it certainly was welcome.

I think the next time I make this cake, I will remove some of the sugar in it.  The cake had a bit of a grainy texture, but perhaps that was just the frosting.  Perhaps I didn’t cook it long enough…In any case, definitely worth another try!

Until Next Time,

Peace, Love, and Cupcakes

Cinnamon Brown Sugar Cookies or, Attack of the Cinnamon Monster

I am not an ingredient snob.  I don’t need the finest ingredients to add to my baking.  I like a good deal the same as the next person.  So, when I was on a recent shopping excursion to the big blue box store (I do hate shopping there, but the prices are reasonable), I found a certain spice brand was selling for about 67 cents per container.  Score!  I picked up two containers of cinnamon since I knew that I was nearly out.  I was very happy with my find, almost as if I had been smiled down upon by the baking gods.

Life was good.

Fast forward about two weeks when Scott is clearing out the spice cupboard, and finds the three (three?) containers of cinnamon that we owned.  Yeah, I have a habit of not looking thoroughly through the cupboard before assuming we are out of something.  Its how we’ve ended up with enough peppercorns to last us for about five years.  (But Honey, I’m sure that don’t have any.  I looked!)

So, we have a lot of cinnamon to use.  This week, I threw together a “French Apple Crumble” to take to work and use up the last bit of apples from the family’s visit (It turned out strange.  I wanted more of a crispy apple…thing.  May or may not do a post on that… And I made more apple oatmeal muffins for breakfast (those will warrant a blog post.  They’re delightful).  And I made this recipe.

Original Recipe is here: http://thewednesdaybaker.blogspot.com/2013/11/brown-sugar-cinnamon-cookies.html

What You Need:

1 cup butter, softened
1 ½ cup brown sugar
1 egg
2 ¼ cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
¾ tsp cinnamon
10 ounces cinnamon chips (Hershey makes these. I can usually find them year round)

And Here’s What You Do:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Add the egg and mix until well combined.  In a separate bowl whisk together the dry ingredients except for the chips
  3. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and combine thoroughly. Stir in the cinnamon chips.
  4. Drop dough by rounded spoonful onto a cookie sheet. Bake for 8-10 minutes and allow to cool on the cookie sheet for a few minutes before moving to a wire rack.

What I Did

I use any excuse to buy something baking related that I haven’t used frequently in the past.  When Scott said yes to my suggestion of these cookies, I jumped at the chance and didn’t let him change his mind.  Luckily, I was able to find the cinnamon chips without any trouble.  And I didn’t see any reason to change the directions as they were.

There was a funny incident with my mixer, which nearly always ends up like this:

mixer shit

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Scott was peering over my shoulder as the first pans came out of the oven.  He waited about 60 seconds before snatching one up and devouring it.  To which he said, “These don’t suck.”  (Scotty speak for, “Dang, these are good!”).  So, going to keep this recipe for the future!

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Until Next Time,

Peace, Love, and Cupcakes

Peanut Butter Apple Bars

The holiday season has come and gone once again, and “Frosty the Snowman” has been replaced with Jenny Craig and Weight Watchers commercials on tv.  Ugh, so depressing.  Makes a person just want to eat more to overcome the sadness of the holidays being over.

In an effort to get back on the wagon, lots of fruits and vegetables have appeared at our house.  Granted my mom came to stay and she loves fresh fruit, but I like to think that she was a good influence.  So, we have a lot of fresh apples around.  Now, I like apples.  Actually, I like granny smith apples, and apples that have been baked in the oven with cinnamon and sugar and butter.  I know, not exactly a combination of healthy alternatives.

In my crazy efficiency, I was putting cinnamon apple oatmeal muffins together for breakfast this week when I got a little chop-happy.  Which led me to having about a cup of leftover chopped apples.  I knew I had to get them baked into something quickly before they got all brown and yuck.  So, thanks to Google, I discovered the following recipe.

Original recipe is here: http://www.twopeasandtheirpod.com/peanut-butter-apple-bars/

(I really need to spend more time on that website)

What You Need

For the bars:

½ cup butter
2 cups brown sugar
½ cup creamy peanut butter
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 ½ cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 cup diced and peeled apples (I used Honeycrisp)

For the peanut butter glaze:

1 ½ cups powdered sugar
¼ cup milk
¼ cup creamy peanut butter
½ tsp vanilla extract

And Here’s What You Do

1. Preheat the oven to 350. Prepare a 9 x 13 pan with cooking spray or butter.

2. Melt the butter and brown sugar in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly until smooth. Remove from the heat, and stir in the peanut butter until creamy and combined. Set mixture aside to cool.

3. In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients.

4. Add the eggs to the peanut butter mixture one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add the vanilla extract and stir. Pour the mixture into the prepared dry ingredients, and stir until batter is smooth. Carefully fold in the apples.

5. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan, spreading the batter evenly to the edges of the pan. Bake for 30 minutes or until the top is golden and the edges are slightly browned. Remove bars from oven and place them on a wire rack to cool.

6. While the bars are cooling, make the peanut butter glaze. In a medium bowl, combine the powdered sugar, milk, peanut butter, and vanilla extract. Whisk until smooth. Drizzle the glaze over the cooled bars.

What I Did

I think I turned the heat up a little too much on the brown sugar and butter because it had started to stick to the bottom of the pan and it was slightly grainy.  After mixing in the peanut butter, the wet ingredients never really got smooth until after the eggs were added

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I was a little concerned that the batter was so dry.  It was a little harder to press smoothly into the pan, but I was hoping that the fresh apples would add a lot of moisture to the bars.  Luckily, I was right!

I added a little more milk to the glaze since I like it a little thinner.  My experience with glaze tends to run on the thick and gloppy side, and I can never make it pretty when it is that thick.

 Reaction

Scott really likes these little babies.  He has a sweet tooth, but he likes that these bars aren’t terribly sweet.

photo 2(1)

I like them because I can fool myself into thinking that they are halfway healthy because of the apples.

Until next time,

Peace, love, and cupcakes