peanut butter glazed chocolate cake

can we just talk about how relentless cold and flu season seems to be this year for a minute?

i mean for reals.

i heard on the news about how the nation is having this crazy epidemic but that didn’t make me rush out on a sunday night to get a flu shot that hurt like bejezus. no what made me rush out was figuring out that MY OFFICE was having a flu epidemic. oh.my.geez.

see i don’t do sick.

so i finally got a flu shot.

and i think a shot deserves a treat…. maybe like a cake.

this is another treat that i made for an office birthday. i knew when this birthday was coming up it would have to be something chocolate and peanut butter. see i’ve been friends with the birthday boy and his wife for a while now, in fact before they got married. and at their wedding, his wife has his groom’s cake made to look like a giant reeses. so i didn’t even really have to ask what the request would be.

so chocolate and peanut butter…. what do you make? gah there are so many options so i started scouring the blogs and found this cake from jessica. first off, i knew if jessica made it, it was bound to be delicious. second, a chocolate bundt cake that is basically just glazed with peanut butter. double win.

i mean we all know part of why i love bundt cakes so much….

so this cake is basically a chocolate sour cream cake but jessica studded it with chocolate, covered it with chocolate and then covered it again in peanut butter. i mean hello. i did make the minor adjustment of studding the cake with peanut butter chips to up the peanuttiness of it all. i also covered the cake in a dark chocolate ganache instead of milk chocolate. i mean i just love the depth that dark chocolate gives something.

peanut butter glazed chocolate cake

chocolate peanut butter bundt cake

  • 2-1/2 c flour
  • 1/2 c unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 c whole milk, room temp
  • 1/2 c sour cream, room temp
  • 1 c unsalted butter, room temp
  • 1-1/2 c sugar
  • 4 large eggs, room temp
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 c peanut butter chips
  • sprinkles (colored or chocolate)
  • chocolate ganache (see below)
  • peanut butter glaze (see below)
  1. preheat oven to 325F. spray your bundt pan with nonstick spray.
  2. in a large bowl, mix together the flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt. in a small bowl, mix together the milk and sour cream. set both of these aside.
  3. beat the butter until creamy; add in sugar and beat together until light and fluffy. add in the vanilla extract and one egg. beat until combined. add the remaining eggs, one at a time, making sure that each addition gets combined. add in half of the flour and beat on low until just combined; add in the milk/sour cream mixture, beating until combined again. add in the remaining dry ingredients and beat until it it just combined. stir in the peanut butter chips.
  4. bake 45-50 min until the cake is set and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. remove to a wire rack and let cool 30 min before inverting to cool completely. make your ganache and then peanut butter glaze (they each need to sit about 20-25 min before use).
  5. once the cake is cooled, cover with ganache followed by the peanut butter glaze and sprinkles.

chocolate ganache

  • 5 oz dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1/3 c heavy cream
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla
  1. place the chopped chocolate in a heat proof bowl. set aside. place the heavy cream in a small saucepan set over low heat; heat the creamy until its warm and bubbles begin to appear around the edges. pour the warm cream over the chopped chocolate and whisk until smooth; whisk in the vanilla. let set 20-25 min before pouring completely over the cooled cake. place in the fridge to firm up before pouring the peanut butter glaze over top.

peanut butter glaze

  • 1 c creamy peanut butter
  • 1 tbs vegetable oil
  • 1 tbs powdered sugar
  1. place peanut butter in a microwave safe bowl and microwave in 30 sec intervals until melted. stir in the vegetable oil. whisk in the powdered sugar until smooth. let sit 15-20 min before pouring over the ganache topped cake. you want it pourable but not runny. cover in sprinkles.

if you’re still scrambling for a super gras recipe, this would make a good dessert addition.

just saying.

kisses.

recipe barely adapted from: how sweet eats

this post is also featured over at these link parties: taste and tell thursdays and what’s cooking wednesdays

12 super gras foods

so i hear you right now…

“super gras? ummmmm emily i think you’re going more cuckoo than you already are.”

and to that i say, “negative ghost rider.”

see in case you didn’t know, i live in south louisiana and this is the time of year for mardi gras. which also just so happens to be coinciding with a little football game at the same time. so apparently everyone around here decided to start calling the three weeks that mardi gras and the superbowl span, “super gras”.

original i know.

so while everyone is telling you about their dishes perfect for a superbowl party, i’m going to one up that… these dishes would work perfectly for a superbowl party OR a parade party. i’ve tried to narrow them down to 12 manly and/or really easy dishes.

appetizers / mains

superbowl appetizers / mains

  1. baked potato dip – so super simple and so freaking addictive.
  2. chela’s corn dip – again, so super simple and bonafide crack.
  3. spicy dr. pepper pulled pork – although this might take a little bit of time, simple, delicious and totally party worthy.
  4. aunt leah’s cole slaw – if you’re going to have pulled pork, one of staple sides is cole slaw, and this is one of my favorites.
  5. pulled pork nachos – again, if you’re going to be making pulled pork, do yourself a favor and make some nachos. trust me.
  6. baby back ribs – these are made in the oven so you can set it and forget it.

drink / desserts

superbowl drink / desserts

  1. cherry lemonade – so far the only drink to make it to the blog but damn delicious. spike it with some vodka if you so desire (and you totally do).
  2. chocolate stout cookies – ummm the superbowl is a football game so what better than beer and chocolate?
  3. orange cream cookies – seriously. about the easiest cookies EVER and your new most requested cookies.
  4. s’mores bars – really is there anything better than melty chocolate and marshmallow creme? i think not.
  5. bacon caramel brownie – the most manly brownie. i mean chocolate and bacon are meant to be best friends.
  6. salted caramel shortbread crumble – using store bought caramel makes these super yummy and easy.

there you go!

12 dishes to get you through super gras.

are you going to watch the big game? who are you pulling for?

oh and most importantly…. what’s your favorite party food??

kisses.

this post is also featured over at these link parties: taste and tell thursdays and what’s cooking wednesdays

bornge: a review

i figured i was going to mix this up a little bit….

almost every post i’ve ever written has been accompanied by a recipe. not this one.

this one is going to be dedicated to a restaurant. i figure it’s good to try something new…..

plus i absolutely loved dinner and i really want the world to know about!

this past weekend, i went with my mom and stepdad to see jersey boys play in new orleans at the mahalia jackson theater. since we were going in town for all of our respective january birthdays, we decided to make a special occasion out of it and do a nice dinner. normally, i’m the one that makes the suggestions / reservations for dinners. i am slightly food obsessed so that’s my job. this time, i actually had little to do with the final pick. my mom starting making suggestions and she made the final decision.

although i do have to say, i did bring up borgne in our discussions…. just saying.

back to the point….

so my mom made the final decision to make the reservation at borgne and i can’t begin to say how pleased i am that it won out.

first off… i’m pretty sure that my obsession with john besh is quite evident. if not… let’s just say i’m obsessed with him and want to visit all of his restaurants before i die (and let’s be frank…. i’m 5 for 7 right now.) so i was already pumped because borgne is the latest restaurant he’s opened. but just because a “celebrity” chef opens a restaurant, doesn’t mean it’s going to live up to your expectations (i’m looking at you emeril) but oh.my.geez did this one.

the food was out of this world. we arrived earlier than our reservation and during happy hour which worked out so well. as with most restaurants, they didn’t just have drink specials during happy hour but they also had some appetizer specials which meant i wasn’t going to have to make a decision between two of them that i wanted to try out… we ordered the crabmeat croquetas and the smoked pork empanadas. both were excellent but my favorite was the empanadas. i could have stuffed my face with them.

like for real, i’m going to need someone to smoke me some pork so i can try to recreate them.

next up my stepdad and i each ordered the green salad and my mom ordered the garlic soup. the salad has baby greens with manchego (one of my favorite cheeses ever!), pear and hazelnuts tossed in a hazelnut vinaigrette. it was absolutely delicious and i adored the crunch from the hazelnuts.

then we ordered our entrees…. my mom ordered the black drum a la plancha which was served with brown butter, pecans and lump crabmeat. my stepdad ordered the flounder which was stuffed with a seafood stuffing and served whole. i tasted both of these dishes and i would order them in a heartbeat. in fact, one of the only reasons i didn’t order them is because they did and i knew i could taste them!! i ordered the pork cheeks.

i can hear you now…. yes… pork cheeks are literally the cheeks of a pig. might not sound like something you want to eat but trust me, they are. the pork cheeks were really tender and paired perfectly with a parsnip flan, some brussel sprout leaves and sauteed apples and carrots. i honestly cannot complain about a single thing that was on my plate. my only complaint is my stomach isn’t double the size so i could have eaten about 10x more.

but for real.

i feel like parsnips are an underrated veggie and their slight sweetness paired beautifully with the richness of the pork. and i’m not a huge fan of brussel sprouts but these may have been my favorite piece of the dish. they were done perfectly and make me want to try to make some brussel sprout dishes in my own kitchen. no joke. and the apples and carrots… well normally i’m not a fan of the texture of cooked apples so i wasn’t planning on eating them but i trusted chef landry and tasted one. and then another. and then another. they were basically just warmed in the pan and still had the crunch of a good apple.

pork cheeks!

pork cheeks!

and then we did dessert.

again… i wish my stomach was bigger because i wanted to clear my plate and lick it clean but i didn’t have the room. we ordered 2 desserts for the table: the blackout cake and the lemon olive oil cake. the lemon olive oil cake was amazing as expected but i know it surprises no one that i went after the blackout cake like it was my job. it was rich and dense and delightful. and i know that some people expect a very sweet cake when it comes to chocolate but it wasn’t. it was perfectly mildly sweet which was balanced with the coffee and chicory in it.

blackout cake

blackout cake

all in all, dinner at borgne was almost perfection. the service was great and they even brought all of us a shot of honey rum to celebrate our birthdays! i would HIGHLY recommend someone making reservations at borgne for their trip to new orleans. i know that new orleans is a food town and there are SO MANY restaurants to choose from but this was by far, one of the best meals i’ve had there.

if you go, let me know what you think!!

have you been to any restaurants that have completely blown you away??

kisses.

mexican meatball soup

straight up…

i love soup.

like i have an entire pinterest board dedicated solely to soup.

oh and i love mexican food.

which i’m sure my “mexican” food isn’t what is traditional mexican food but i don’t live in mexico but i love me some chips and salsa.

that all being said it should come as no surprise that when i saw this recipe floating around on pinterest, i knew i had to try it. my love of soup combined with some salsa for flavor and kick. oh.my.geez. it was so good. and it warmed you like a good soup should plus it gave you a little extra warmth from the heat of salsa and chipotle…. and since the weather in the rest of the country is supposed to be no fun, you should totally make this now to warm yourself up.

mexican meatball soup

mexican meatball soup

  • 2 hard taco shells
  • 1/2 lb ground turkey breast
  • 1/2 lb ground turkey
  • 2 scallions, chopped
  • 1 tbs ground cumin
  • 2 tbs chili powder
  • 1-2 chipotle peppers in adobo
  • 2 tbs tomato paste
  • 2 c fresh salsa
  • 1 quart chicken stock
  • cilantro, for garnish
  • cojita cheese, queso fresco, etc. for garnish
  1. grind the taco shells in a food processor until crumbs; add to a mixing bowl with turkey, scallions, cumin, chili powder and salt and pepper to taste. mix together and roll into small meatballs; you should get about 20.
  2. in the food processor (or a blender), combine the chipotle and salsa; blend until liquid.
  3. in a large dutch oven over medium heat, cook the meatballs until brown all over. set them aside.
  4. add the tomato paste to the dutch oven and cook for 1 min. add the salsa and chicken stock; bring to a boil. add the meatballs and lower the heat to simmer. let the soup and meatballs simmer for 15 min.
  5. divide into bowls and top with cilantro and cheese.

for real… this dish is super warming for cold days, or to have a mexican style soup fix.

oh and don’t be like me and buy hot hot salsa. you might actually do well to buy a heat level lower than what you normally eat since you’re adding the chipotles. trust me.

kisses.

recipe from: bev cooks

overnight breakfast casserole

true story…

i’m not a morning person.

and i’m actually not really a night owl either.

i’m a “let me get up when i feel like it and go to bed when i feel like it” kind of girl. i like my sleep what can i say?

i’m also not necessarily a breakfast person. i mean i can go for a good muffin or some french toast but traditional breakfast foods? not my thing. i think it has to do with the fact that i don’t eat eggs. i mean i’ll totally use eggs in baked goods and mac & cheese but straight up eggs. not.a.chance. gag.

(and by the way… my mom would like you to know i used to eat eggs. i loved them. but now i don’t. trust me when i say that’s all that matters in this story.)

anyways…

i see you looking at the title of this post and saying to yourself… “if she’s not a egg eating breakfast kind of person, WHY is she posting a breakfast casserole that contains eggs?” simple answer. it is one of my most requested recipes at work. remember how i told you all about me making birthday treats for my co-workers? well one of my co-workers ventured off the sweet path and requested breakfast. so i did a lot of looking and found this one. it was a hit. so much of a hit that some other co-workers bought me an insulated pyrex dish (THANKS GUYS!) so the casseroles could continue on after my dad took his with him when he moved. i’ve made this dish several times since that first morning and even brought some home with me around christmas, where i was asked for the recipe. and now i’m sharing it.

this casserole is super simple to put together, even if it requires a little forethought. in fact, you put it together and then just let it hang out in the fridge overnight before you bake it off. it would be a perfect lazy saturday / sunday breakfast… ya know if you’re into mornings and breakfast. 🙂

overnight breakfast casserole

breakfast casserole

  • 1 lb breakfast sausage
  • 1 package (12 oz) bacon, sliced in small pieces
  • 4 c frozen southern style hashbrowns, thawed
  • 1-1/2 c pepperjack cheese
  • 1-1/2 c cheddar cheese
  • 1 bunch green onions, chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 2/3 c milk
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp cajun seasoning
  1. place the sausage in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. brown the sausage until cooked through; remove from the skillet and set aside. in the same skillet, cook the bacon until brown and crispy. remove to a plate with a slotted spoon leaving the bacon grease to cook off the green onions. cook the green onions until tender.
  2. while the sausage and bacon are cooking, spread the hashbrowns evenly in an 11×7 dish (or you could you a standard 9in pie plate). mix the cheeses together and spread evenly over the potato mixture.
  3. after the green onions have cooked, spread them over the potatoes and cheeses. next add the sausage and bacon. whisk together the milk, eggs and seasonings; pour evenly over the casserole. cover and place in the fridge overnight, 7 – 8 hours.
  4. when you’re ready to bake it off, preheat oven to 350F. bake uncovered 40-45 min or until the cheese is bubbly but not browned (don’t be like me and let the green onions get dark!). allow to stand 15 min before cutting into it.

if you’re making this for people, be prepared for them to harass you to make it for them all the time.

kisses.

recipe adapted from: our best bites

spiced vanilla cream cupcakes

ok….

so the cookbook these came out of really call them eggnog cream cupcakes but i feel like no one drinks eggnog after christmas. so we’re going to go with spiced vanilla cream cupcakes.

true story… i’m not a huge fan of eggnog. maybe it’s because it has the word “egg” in it or maybe because it reminds me of thick milk / runny milkshake…. none of that appeals to me. so when i was looking for a recipe to bring to our office christmas lunch, i looked hard at these. i realized that these cupcakes were really nothing more than a boozy spiced cupcake with a boozy semi-homemade vanilla pastry cream. i can go for that.

and i’m totally glad i did. they were delicious. the cupcake had just the right spice to make you feel like you could be all homey and warm by a fire and the boozy pastry cream…. oh.my.geez.

spiced vanilla cream cupcakes

eggnog cupcakes

cupcakes:

  • 1/2 c (1 stick) butter, room temp
  • 1 c sugar
  • 2 eggs, room temp
  • 1/4 c dark rum, such as myer’s
  • 1/2 c milk, room temp
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 1-3/4 c flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp allspice
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg
  • spiked pastry cream (recipe below)
  • spiked whip cream (recipe below)
  1. preheat oven to 350F. line one 12 cup cupcake pan with paper liners.
  2. whisk together flour, baking powder, allspice,cinnamon and nutmeg together in a large mixing bowl. set aside.
  3. cream together butter, sugar and salt until light and fluffy, about 3 – 5 min. beat in eggs. mix in rum, milk, vanilla and almond extract. add the dry ingredients to the batter, beating until just combined.
  4. fill the cupcake liners 2/3 of the way full. bake 20-22 min, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. remove from the oven and let cool completely on a wire rack.
  5. once the cupcakes are completely cool, use a sharp knife to cut a hole 2/3 deep into each cupcake. fill each center with pastry cream. top each cupcake with whip cream and garnish with shaved chocolate, if desired.

spiked pastry cream

  • 1 3.3oz box of french vanilla instant pudding
  • 1-3/4 c milk
  • 2 tbs light rum
  • 3/4 c heavy cream
  1. beat the pudding mix and milk together on high speed for 2 min or until it starts to thicken. stir in rum. in a separate bowl, beat the heavy cream until stiff peaks form. gently fold the whipped cream into the pastry cream. cover and chill for at least 1 hour.

spiked whip cream

  • 1/4 c brown sugar
  • 3/4 c heavy cream
  • 3 tbs rum, light or dark
  1. beat together the brown sugar and 1/4 c of the heavy cream on high speed. gradually add the remaining heavy cream and rum until stiff peaks form.

aside from this being a boozy cupcake, which we all know i love… the second best part of this is that it can all be made the night before and assembled the next day, although i would recommend making the cupcakes the day of.

kisses.

recipe from: booze cakes

chocolate red wine cake

i don’t know about where you are but the weather here is miserable.

i mean like really really really miserable.

not only is it hot… ok maybe not hot but i consider the high 70s in january hot…. but i feel like the rain is never going to stop. we’re pretty much just going to float away here.

but that’s ok. i’ll just make this cake and everything will be dandy while i’m floating.

this cake…

oh this cake.

i pinned it a while back because we all know i like cake and i like booze so it was like a natural fit. i didn’t really know when i was going to make it but then it was christmas eve and the time was right. it was calling. plus i had discovered my new favorite buttercream so it was like destiny or fate or something like that.

lindsay makes this cake with blackberry wine and uses some blackberry preserves between the layers. i’m not an exceptionally huge fan of blackberry and even less of a fan of jam (or preserves) in between my cake layers. other than changing the wine to a sweet shiraz, discarding the the jam and using marshmallow buttercream, i stayed true to her recipe. and it didn’t disappoint. this cake is definitely a show stopper!

chocolate red wine cake

chocolate red wine cake

  • 2 c sugar
  • 1 & 3/4 c flour
  • 3/4 c cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 c buttermilk
  • 1 c sweet red wine
  • 1/2 c vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 batches of marshmallow buttercream
  • 1 batch chocolate glaze (below)
  1. preheat oven to 350F. spray 3 9in round cake pans with baking spray (cooking spray with flour).
  2. combine the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a large mixing bowl. whisk to combine. add eggs, buttermilk, wine, oil and vanilla to the dry ingredients and beat until all are just combined. divide evenly among the 3 pans. bake 30-35 min or until a toothpick comes out clean. remove from the oven and place on a cooling rack for 10-15 min, or until cool enough to handle. turn the cakes out on the a cooling racks and cool completely.
  3. once the cakes are cooled completely you can assemble them. if they have domed up during the baking process, cut them level so you have a nice even top. add about 1/2 c  of the buttercream to the top and spread evenly. press the second layer on top; add another 1/2 c of buttercream and spread evenly. add the final layer of cake on top. add a thin layer of buttercream to “crumb coat”  the cake. stick the cake in the fridge for 15-20 min for the crumb coat to set.
  4. once the crumb coat has set, frost the cake with the remaining buttercream. stick the cake back into the fridge for another 30 min while you prepare and cool the glaze.
  5. once the glaze has cooled slightly, spread it on the top of the cake, letting it drip over the sides until you like the way it looks. you may not need all the glaze.  stick the cake back in the fridge until set.

chocolate glaze

  • 3.5 oz dark chocolate, chopped
  • 2 tbs heavy cream
  • 4 tbs powdered sugar, sifted
  • 4-5 tbs warm water
  1. place the chocolate and heavy cream in a double boiler; stir until melted and smooth. remove from heat and whisk in the powdered sugar until smooth. add 1 tbs water at a time until the glaze is a good pouring consistency. let cool at least 10 min before pouring on the cake.

you might notice that my cake doesn’t quite have the noticeable buttercream layer between each cake layer. that’s because i only made 1 batch of buttercream and wish i had doubled it.

trust me on this.

kisses.

recipe slightly adapted from: love and olive oil