Category Archives: Baking with Ruthie

Pound Cake Recipe

pound cale

 

SPRING
From you have I been absent in the spring,
When proud pied April, dressed in all his trim,
Hath put a spirit of youth in every thing.
(Sonnet 98, 1-3)

 

 

As we all welcome  the warmer weather, we turn from heavy chocolate and hearty stews to a lighter fare,  pound cake.  I have more than one recipe for pound cake and in this article I am sharing Mrs. Taylor’s Pound Cake recipe.  When ever invited to a gathering, I bring this favorite and no one is disappointed.

 

Pound Cake is made from equal portions of butter, egg, sugar and flour. The purest, oldest recipes contain nothing more than that. The recipe originally contained 1 pound each of butter, eggs, flour and sugar (about 8 large eggs weighing 2 oz each), thus the name “pound.”

 

This recipe comes from one of my five sisters, Judy Longstreet, it was passed to her from Mrs. Taylor who lived in the house that backed up to our  family home on Trail Road in Levittown, PA.  We left Levittown for Langhorne when I was two, I never knew Mrs. Taylor, but I sure am grateful she graced my families path and for this recipe. Enjoy this outstanding old fashioned pound cake.

 

Preheat oven to  350 degrees

3 cups flour (sifted)

3 cups sugar

1 tsp vanilla

3 tsp baking powder

6 eggs (large)

1 cup milk (I use whole)

2 sticks butter, softened (you may replace w/margarine)

A pinch of mace (optional)

 

Mix together sifted dry ingredients and set aside.

Cream together  butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla and milk.

Add dry ingredients to wet, mix until completely incorporated.

 

Pour into greased and floured tube pan, you may  use Bakers Joy in a can which is shortening and flour, saves a lot of time and mess.  Bake 45 minutes or until done. Let cool for 15 minutes and turn out onto cooling rack, then when completely cool, turn onto plate or pedestal plate

Slice and serve alone or top with Strawberries Romanoff

 

Strawberries Romanoff

Hull and slice strawberries, place in bowl, pour Gran Marnier over berries to cover and let soak for a few hours or over night, spoon as much as you like onto each slice of pound cake.

 

Be well and keep baking!

Ruthie

 

With over thirty years of experience as a baker, Ruth has been known up and down the East coast as “The Cake Lady Ruth” in recent years.  Ruthie shares recipes and baking tips from the vast array of knowledge she has acquired over the years.  See fokredirvergazette.com for Ruth’s complete biography.

 

 

Baileys Irish Cream for Dessert or Breakfast!

st patrick's day

 

 

 

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

 
You will love these super easy mini cheesecake pastries
 
Irish Cream Croissants

1 package refrigerated crescent rolls  (think Pillsbury in the cans)
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup Irish Cream  (Baileys)
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
Glaze:
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/4 cup Irish Cream

Mix cream cheese and Irish Cream until well blended. Mix in 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar. (Always 10x sugar)

Unroll crescent rolls as directed on package. Spread cream cheese mixture on each triangle, dividing evenly. Roll up and bake as directed on package. Bake on Parchment, there will be over flow of the filling out of the croissant. The parchment will help with clean up.

 
You may want to double the batch, eight will not be enough! Yes, the alcohol cooks out but the flavor remains!Mix Glaze ingredients well. Drizzle over baked rolls and serve warm with a  nice hot cup of coffee or tea.  Oh so delicious!

 
Hint hint…
Best Tea with this dessert,  Cream cheese pastries are great with Darjeelings and Qimens (Keemuns), but can handle the more vegetal notes of Japanese Sencha or Chinese Dragonwell (Lung Ching).
 
Best coffee with this dessert, I like a something dark and rich.  I don’t think you can go wrong with keeping it simple.  My advice is this, if you usually use flavored creamer, skip that this time and just use half and half with sugar and a touch of vanilla in your cup!  The flavor in the pastry is strong and you will erase it if you use a flavored creamer.
 
Enjoy fellow foodies!  Next month we greet warmer weather with a light and perfect buttery pound cake recipe.Be well,

Ruthie

 

Ooops! I  lost my bottom!

 

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This month I am sharing my Hot Fudge Cheesecake recipe with you,  keeping with anti-oxidant theme.

 Have you ever made a cheesecake and left the bottom of your spring form pan somewhere? like the party you took it to?  I have,  now I have four or more spring form rings with no bottom.

Don’t worry, help is on the way!  Don’t throw the ring away, just place it on an over sized piece of parchment paper or wax paper, then under the paper, place an oversized piece of heavy duty aluminum foil.

Hint hint... In order to avoid a crack in the top of your cheesecake bake it in a warm or cold water bath, either is fine. Place your spring form ring pan inside  another pan that comes no more than 1/2 the height of your ring. If you don’t have a bottom, create a new one with the paper and foil noted above.  Grease the sides of the ring, ( I use cooking spray)  pour your batter into spring form pan, place in preheated oven and pour water in the pan your batter filled ring is sitting in.  Bake. More specifics below.

Recipe for Hot Fudge Cheesecake with crunchy walnut crust-

 

Hint hint.. you can omit the walnuts if allergic and just use the other ingredients or make a graham cracker base and crust.  You can also make this a no base cheesecake by keeping the bottom and sides bare.

Hint hint..Always grease your bottom! when you make a base free cheesecake. 

 

CRUST

2 cups crushed saltine crackers

1 cup finely chopped walnuts

2/3 cup butter or margarine, melted

1/3 cup sugar

 

Combine first four ingredients; stir well. Firmly press onto bottom and 2 1/2 ” upside sides of lightly greased 9″ spring form pan.  Bake @ 350 for 8 minutes.  Remove to a wire rack;let cool. Reduce oven temp to 300.

 

CHEESECAKE

12 (1 oz) squares semi sweet chocolate

1 – 1/2 cups butter or margarine

2 (8 oz) packages cream cheese, softened

1 1/2 cups sugar

6 large eggs

 

Combine chocolate squares and 1 -1/2 cups of butter or margarine in heavy saucepan.  Cook over med-low heat until mixture is melted and smooth, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and let cool. 

 

Beat cream cheese at med speed of an electric mixer until creamy. Add 1-1/2 cups sugar;beat well. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Stir in cooled chocolate mixture.Pour into prepared crust.

 

Bake at 300 for 1 hour and 20-30 minutes or until almost set. Turn oven off. Let cheesecake cool in oven 1 hour (or overnight) do not open the door during this time..  Remove to a wire rack.

 

Remove from sides of pan. I like to chill it for a few hours or over night, you can even make this days in advance and keep cold until about an hour before serving. It really depends on the time of year. You want to serve this at room temperature with Hot Fudge Sauce. Garnish each slice with a fresh mint leaf. 

 

HOT FUDGE SAUCE

1 (12 OZ) package semi sweet chocolate morsels 

1 cup half-and-half

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

 

1. Combine chocolate morsels and half and half in a heavy sauce pan

2. Cook over medium heat until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth, stirring frequently.

3. Remove from heat; stir in butter and vanilla. Serve warm.

Yield 2 Cups

Hint hint..Dip the knife in a hot cup of water then quick swipe on a towel to dry between slices. You will get a nice clean slice every time and neat presentation on each plate.

 

Hint hint..Just for fun…You may want to just make the crust up in a bowl and spoon into small paper nut cups/or mini muffin cups and pour melted chocolate (chips/semi sweet) or melting chocolate from the craft store or candy making section (craft store).

let them set, you do not need to refrigerate, it will make your chocolate sweaty. Most delicious candy!

That is it for February my foodie friends! See you next month with a breakout Baileys Irish Cream recipe for March! Perfect for St. Patrick’s Day.  

 

Cosby and (Chocolate) Cake

“I’ve always heard about people having a conniption, but I’ve never seen one. You don’t want to see ‘em. My wife’s face…split. My wife’s face split, and the skin and hair split and came off of her face so that there was nothing except the skull. And orange light came out of her hair and there was glitter all around. And fire shot from her eye sockets and began to burn my stomach and she said ‘WHERE DID THEY GET CHOCOLATE CAKE FROM?’ And I said ‘They asked for it!’ And the children, who had been singing praises to me, LIED on me and said, ‘Uh-uh! We asked for eggs and milk…AND DAD MADE US EAT THIS!’ And my wife sent me to my room…which is where I wanted to go in the first place.” – Bill Cosby

bill cosby

 

 

 

 

These are the immortal words of the great Bill Cosby, chronicling his wife’s reaction to his feeding their children chocolate cake for breakfast. Do you blame him? I certainly don’t, and I’m sure I’m not alone in saying “Sign me up!” You really don’t have to dig that deeply to justify the nutritional value of chocolate cake. There are antioxidants in the cocoa, and then of course flour comes from wheat which grows in a field. Come to mention it, sugar grows in a field, too. The brain and the heart need sugar to survive, right? And where are you going to get that sugar? CHOCOLATE CAKE.

This month I am sharing a blue ribbon-winning chocolate cake recipe with you. It is one of the very best chocolate cake recipes you will find. This recipe makes a rich, dense chocolate cake that is positively luscious. That kind of cake is typically a lot of hard work from scratch, so how about we cheat a little?

Start with a good old boxed cake mix; don’t knock the box! Replace the required water with milk (any % will do), or better yet – buttermilk.  Don’t bother buying buttermilk, save the money and make your own. Just add three teaspoons of white vinegar to your milk after you measure it out, and then let it sit for a few minutes.

Put all of the wet ingredients in the bowl first. Mix it all just enough to break up the egg yolks, and then add in the cake mix. Concerning the cake pan: remember to use parchment paper instead of grease and flour. Bake it low (about twenty-five degrees below what’s listed) and slow (about fifteen minutes longer than listed) to keep from getting a hump on the cake.  See Septembers issue for a more detailed reminder on parchment and low-and-slow baking.

Want an even richer cake? You can displace part of your milk measurement with sour cream to really take your cake to the next level. Measure out 3/4 of the amount of liquid you have chosen in a large liquid measuring cup (this would be your milk or buttermilk). Plop a few teaspoons of sour cream into the milk until it equals out to the required measurement.  Baking is science: measurement counts!  While cooking can be experimented with freely, without consequence, baking is much less subjective. One change in measurement can drastically affect the rest of the recipe – so be careful!

Below you will find the original recipe for the same cake, but made from scratch (if you’re feeling fancy). Stop by next month as we welcome the Great Pumpkin with a delicious pumpkin-themed recipe!

 

 

Grange Fair-Winning Fudgy Cocoa Cake

from Bucks County, PA

 

4-1/3 cups all-purpose flour

3 cups sugar

1-1/3 cups Cocoa (I like Hershey’s cocoa)

3 tsp salt

1-1/2 cups buttermilk (make your own and save $$)

1 cup vegetable oil

1 cup sour cream

4 large eggs

2 tsp vanilla

Heat oven to 350 degrees or lower temp and bake longer for no hump. Grease and flour or line with parchment, 3-8” round pans. Measure all ingredients into a large bowl.  With an electric mixer, blend 30 seconds on low, scraping bowl constantly.  Beat 3 minutes on high speed, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour batter into pans, distributing evenly.  Bake for 30 to 45 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted comes out clean.  Cool and frost, decorate with shavings of dark chocolate of your choice, (I use a Hershey bar, one thing I have in common with Judy Garland, she loved cheap chocolate too)  You may also use 3- 9”  round baking pans if you wish, or a 9×13 sheet cake pan.

 

Cocoa Butter Frosting

1-1/2 cups butter softened

1 cup Cocoa

9 cups confectioners’ sugar (I use 10x) x represents the number of times it has been sifted.

2 Tablespoons of milk, you can use any milk or cream or evaporated milk, the fattier the richer!

Mix butter and cocoa thoroughly, add milk, vanilla, add confectioners’ sugar. Bet until frosting is smooth and of spreading consistency.

Enjoy!

 

Let’s Start At The Very Beginning, A Very Good Place To Start

When you bake a cake do you grease and flour the pan?

I was taught this method “back in the day” that’s my way of telling you how long I have been around.  So let’s take an 8” round cake.  You may be using the traditional 2” high 8” round cake pans for one recipe.  Or you may be using the 8” round 3” high pan, my favorite.  One pan! One recipe.  Place a slick of grease on the sides and one on the bottom.  Line your pan with parchment.  Can you use wax paper?  Yes you can, but it will smoke.  So don’t use wax paper.  You may be tempted to use the wax   paper to cut cost.  Parchment can be found in the        specialty/cake decorating isle or by the plastic wrap and foil isle.  It will be cheaper to buy it in the foil/plastic wrap isle.  Place the pan on a sheet of parchment, trace the bottom of the pan with a pencil, cut it out and place on bottom of pan.  Cut strips 1” higher than the side of the pan, line the sides.  Because you used parchment, when the cake comes out of the oven, let it cool ten     minutes and cover with plastic wrap, keeping the cake in the pan.  Peirce the top with a toothpick pressing it in ¼ of the way.  The cake can stay there for 2 or three days.  Pop it out when you are ready to frost it. Let’s make that cake with a flat top, no hump.   When you bake the cake lower the oven      temperature by twenty five degrees and add twenty to Twenty five minutes baking time. Low and slow.    Your cake will be flatter on top and easier to cut fill and frost.    If you do still have any hump, try lowering the temp more than twenty five degrees and slower next time.   Everyone’s oven is different, you may have to adjust this formula.  Next month a rich and delicious chocolate cake recipe!