Chocolate Cake with Oreo Cream Cheese Frosting

We had a surprise party for my sister-in-law a couple weeks ago and I made this gigantic cake for the party. Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset
I did not realize it was going to be so huge! It was probably 10 inches tall (at least) and weighed a ton!

The benefit to such a big cake is that you can cut the slices thin and the pieces will still be huge! It was a super easy recipe and you could modify the frosting and cake to fit any flavor profile you prefer!

I always struggle when it comes to making birthday cakes because I want to make sure the person being celebrated loves the cake, but that everyone at the party likes it as well. I had a million different ideas but ultimately went with this cake and it seemed to be a hit. I don’t know if I’ve ever met someone who didn’t like Oreo’s in their desserts!

If you remember the Salted Caramel Vanilla Bean cake I made a few weeks ago…you will probably notice a trend in the style of these cakes. It is my new favorite way to decorate a cake. It is way easier and I like the rustic vibe you end up with. I recommend trying this style cake and experimenting with all different sauces, flavors and frostings!

 

 

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Recipe: Chocolate Oreo Cake

Serves 15-20

Ingredients:

For the Cake:

1 Box Devil’s Food Cake Mix (with or without pudding)

1 Package Instant Chocolate Pudding Mix

1 Teaspoon Salt

2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract

3/4 Cup Sour Cream

3/4  Cup Vegetable Oil

3 Eggs

1/3 Cup Warm Water

1 Cup Semisweet Chocolate Chips

For the Oreo Cream Cheese Frosting:

12 Tablespoons Butter, Softened

4 oz Cream Cheese (half a brick)

1 Tablespoon Vanilla Extract

1 1/2 Pounds Powdered Sugar

3 Tablespoons Milk

25 Oreo Cookies, Chopped

Directions:

For the Cake:

Preheat oven 350 degrees.

Grease and parchment line 2, 9 inch cake pans, set aside.

Combine the bag of cake mix, pudding packet, salt, vanilla, sour cream, oil, eggs and water in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat well. Scrape down sides and bottom and mix until completely incorporated.

Stir in chocolate chips and evenly disperse batter into two cake pans.

Place into oven and bake for about 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, or the cake bounces back when lightly touched on the top.

Remove from oven and let cool for about 20-30 minutes in pans, then invert onto a wire cooling rack and cool completely.

While the cakes cool, you can make the frosting.

For the Frosting: 

Cream together the butter and cream cheese.

Slowly add the powdered sugar and the vanilla

Add milk until a desired frosting consistency is reached. If it becomes too runny you can add more sugar until it is a desired thickness.

Fold in chopped Oreo cookies.

Place one cake on a plate and drizzle with a thin layer of chocolate sauce (you can use any type of sauce here, or you can skip this step. You could do a marshmallow, peanut butter, caramel or jam layer here as well). Once drizzled, spread about 1/2 the frosting evenly over the cake, leaving a small space around the edge of the cake. Place the second layer on top of the frosting and repeat with sauce and frosting. Finish off with a drizzle of chocolate sauce and serve! If you want to make this cake ahead of time, you can refrigerate it until needed, but let the frosting warm to room temperature before serving!

 

 

 

Asian Slaw with Ginger Peanut Dressing

This is my favorite side dish/salad of all time.
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I make this slaw at least once a month and Mikey and I usually consume the entire bowl in one sitting…

It is spicy, sweet and salty all at the same time. It has a great crunch from the cabbage, carrots and peanuts and the Sriracha gives it a great kick of heat.

I have made this salad for multiple parties and people are always asking me for the recipe

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Slaw (or coleslaw) was one of the few “vegetable” dishes I liked as a kid. We all know I was very picky when it came to practically everything in life…but creamy coleslaw was one of my favorites. My other fav was the Ramen noodle slaw with sunflower seeds and cabbage (if you don’t know it, I’ll put it up on the blog one of these days. High in sodium, low in nutrition. It’s amazing).

Mikey and I have gotten into many a heated debate over what’s better: Vinegar vs. creamy based coleslaw. I like creamy and he likes vinegar…the same goes for BBQ sauce. I like sweet, tomato based and he likes vinegar based.

Mikey grew up eating at a BBQ place called Russell’s Barbecue…Yes, I know what you’re thinking. “Bethany, that was your maiden name, it must be the best place in the whole world.” Mikey would say it is and so would his entire family. Unfortunately…they have vinegar based sauce and coleslaw…I’m not saying that I won’t eat my face off at Russell’s and soak my pulled pork in their BBQ sauce, I’m just saying that when it comes to vinegar based vs. tomato based…My heart is with the sweeter of the two (that’s not really a surprise for someone with a giant sweet tooth) and I don’t consider that authentic BBQ. (Remember: This is only my opinion, please don’t hate me).

That was a random tangent since I’m not sharing a BBQ recipe or a normal coleslaw recipe…but none the less, I think you should make this Asian slaw the next chance you get.

The longer it sits in the refrigerator the better. The flavors combine and the dressing soaks in to the cabbage and carrots. It is AMAZING.

P.S. It usually has 1-2 cups of  shredded carrots which I did not have on hand. The slaw was still amazing but i recommend you include them. They are listed in the recipe below :)

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Recipe: Asian Slaw with Ginger Peanut Dressing

Makes 4-6 servings 

Ingredients:

Slaw:

2 Cups Shredded Purple Cabbage (or 4 cups prepared cole slaw)

2 Cups Shredded Green Cabbage

2 Cups Shredded Carrots (I didn’t have any, so sadly they are not in my pictures)

1 Red Bell Pepper, Thinly Sliced

1 Cup Cooked Edamame

2 Medium Scallions, Sliced

1/2 Cup Cilantro, Chopped

1/2 Cup Salted Peanuts, Chopped

For the Dressing:

1/4 Cup Honey

1/4 Cup Oil (sunflower, olive oil, vegetable, etc)

1/4 Cup Rice Vinegar

1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce

1 Teaspoon Sesame Oil

1 Tablespoon Fresh Ginger, Minced

1 Large Garlic Clove, Minced

1 Tablespoon Peanut Butter (chunky or creamy)

1/2 Teaspoon Sriracha Hot Sauce (more or less depending on taste/spice level)

Directions:

Start by making the dressing first so the flavors have time to meld together.

Combine all ingredients for dressing into a mason jar or jar with a tight lid so you can shake it before adding to your salad.

Set aside. (You will probably have left over dressing. I never use it all on the slaw).

For the slaw, Begin by slicing the cabbage, carrots and red pepper by hand or with a food processor.

Combine all the veggies for the slaw. Mix well and add dressing. Try a couple bites to see if you need to add more salt/soy sauce.  Stir until completely coated and serve with a sprinkle of cilantro, scallions, peanuts or sesame seeds.

 

Brown Butter Snickerdoodles

I made a cookie with brown butter.

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I am now going to add brown butter to everything. It is so rich and nutty and the aroma that they add to your house/cookie can’t be beat!

These cookies are crunchy around the edges but then gooey on the inside. They are sweet but the brown butter gives them that nutty flavor that keeps you coming back for more…and more…and more…you can easily eat 10 in one sitting.

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Our ginger child, Norman, went under the clippers a couple weeks ago and has the cutest little lion cut (you can’t tell in this picture). But he is still as rambunctious as ever! And apparently he can’t keep his dirty little paws off these Snickerdoodles either!

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Cinnamon Streusel Coffee Cake

There is an unspoken rule whenever Mikey and I go to brunch and that is that I always have to get something sweet for us to share (although I’m usually the one who eats 90 percent of it). Whether it is a doughnut (a hip trend here in Chicago that I won’t complain about) a piece of coffee cake, a cinnamon role or a simple waffle…I always require something sweet to go with my coffee and eggs.

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I grew up with an incredible Mom who always made us amazing breakfasts on Saturday mornings. I would wake up to the smell of pancakes or waffles and although I didn’t eat breakfast during the week, waffles were my weakness and I always found a way to make room for them on the weekend.

We also would have things like cinnamon rolls, monkey bread and coffee cake on occasion and I blame her for my obsession with all things gooey and cinnamon laced.

I wanted to try a new coffee cake recipe, but stick with the classic flavors and texture I love and was really pleased with the way this coffee cake turned out. My favorite is still this Classic Coffee Cake that literally melts in your mouth (and must be consumed warm), although I will keep this coffee cake recipe on the back burner as a quick and tasty brunch option.

 

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How To Make Brown Sugar

I went to make cookies this weekend and realized I was out of brown sugar!

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I remembered hearing that you could make it with granulated sugar, so I did some research and discovered it was the easiest thing in the world to make! All you need is a little bit of molasses and granulated sugar. I needed a cup and  a half of brown sugar for my recipe so I ended up using about 1 tablespoon plus a teaspoon of molasses.

Easy. Peasy.

Apparently it is still winter in Chicago and I am so grateful that I was able to get away to San Antonio with my Mom this past weekend. I’ll share some photos of our fun and more importantly, food, as soon as I can!

 

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Recipe: Homemade Brown Sugar

Ingredients:

1 Cup Granulated Sugar

1 Tablespoon Molasses

Directions:

Pour molasses into sugar and stir until completely saturated and combined. It will be a bit goopy at first but stir as best you can and it will eventually absorb into the sugar.

You can add more molasses or a bit less depending on how rich you want the flavor to be!