Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Best Ever Chocolate Cake with Glaze

I've been making this cake for a couple of years now and it had definitely become a favorite.  It's so delicious and chocolately that you don't even really need frosting but the chocolate glaze adds a little something extra to it.  Enjoy!

1 package chocolate fudge cake mix
1 3.9 oz. package instant chocolate fudge pudding mix
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup coconut oil
4 large eggs
1/2 cup warm water
1/3 cup milk
1 1/4 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a large mixing bowl, combine cake mix, pudding mix, sour cream, oil, water and milk.  Mix on low and add eggs one at a time.  Once eggs are incorporated, mix on med high speed for 2 minutes.  Stir in chocolate chips.  Pour batter in well greased bundt pan.  Bake for 50 to 55 minutes at 350.  I start checking the cake at 50 minutes with a tooth pick to make sure it doesn't over bake.  Cool cake in bundt pan on wire rack for 30 minutes before removing.  Once cooled, place on plate, ready to add the glaze.

Chocolate Glaze
3/4 cups semi sweet chocolate chips
3 tbsp. butter
1 tsp light corn syrup
1/4 tsp. vanilla

In a double boiler over hot, but not boiling water, combine chocolate chips, butter and corn syrup.  Stir until chips are melted and mixture is smooth, then add vanilla. Remove from heat and let cool for 10 minutes, this gives the glaze a chance to thicken up so it doesn't just slide completely down your cake.  Pour the glaze slowly over the cake, letting it drizzle down the sides.

Crock Pot Baked Potatoes

I have seen on Pinterest putting potatoes in a Crock Pot so I was dying to try this because my husband and I love baked potatoes, we eat them as a meal!  This is so incredibly easy, you won't believe it!  The taste is to die for and I'm going to have a hard time making them any other way now!  Enjoy!

3-4 large Russet potatoes
Olive Oil
Sea salt (regular salt is fine too)
Garlic powder
Onion powder
Aluminum foil
Scrub your potatoes to get them nice and clean.  Poke 6-7 holes all around each potato.  Cut sheets of foil big enough to cover each potato completely.  Place a potato on each sheet of foil.  Pour a little bit of Olive Oil on each potato, a little over a teaspoon.  Pick up the potato and rub the oil all over the potato.  Now wash your hands so you don't get oil all over everything :)  Sprinkle seasonings over each potato, as much or as little as you'd like.  Wrap up potatoes nice and tight and place a single layer (if you can) in the Crock Pot.  I cooked mine on low and we had a late dinner that night so after 9 hours they were absolutely perfect but 7-8 hours should be long enough.  I'm sure if you wanted to put them on High they'd be done in about 4-5 hours.  Remove from Crock Pot and unwrap, add toppings and eat!

Peppermint Pretzel Bark

The perfect combination of sweet, salty and pepperminty!  Super easy to make and it will make a big impression at your holiday party!  Enjoy!

1 bag of mini pretzel
2 packages white almond bark
1 package of peppermint candy canes

Line a large baking sheet with foil.  Place pretzels in a single layer on foil, trying not to over lap but keeping them close together.  Next, unwrap candy canes and place in large plastic bag.  Using a heavy spoon or meat tenderizer crush candy canes until they are small pieces (a food processor would work for this as well).  Place almond bark in a large bowl and cook in microwave for a minute, take out, stir, then place back into microwave and cook for 30 secs and stir again.  Repeat this until all the almond bark is melted and smooth.  Pour melted almond bark over pretzel trying to cover each one.  I then used a spatula to gently spread the almond bark around to try to reach all the corners.  Finally, sprinkle the crushed candle canes on top of the almond bark.  Place in fridge to harden for at least an hour.  When completely harden, remove and gently lift bark off the pan peeling back the foil.  Break into bite size pieces.  It will not need to be refrigerated, should stay firm.