October 24, 2013

A Maple and Candied Walnut Layer Cake

 What better way to celebrate the autumn than with walnuts and maple syrup. I just looooove maple syrup. So when I saw this recipe for a maple and candied walnut cake in my new issue of Taste of Home magazine I fell head over heels for it!

For the cake...

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp maple syrup
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup of buttermilk

To make the candied walnuts...

1 tsp. unsalted butter, 
1 1/2 cups of coarsely chopper walnuts
1 tsp. maple syrup
1/4 tsp. salt

For the frosting...
2 1/2 cups of butter (Salted), softened
6 cups confectioner's sugar
1 tsp maple syrup
1/4 to 1/2 cup of half-n-half
1 T maple syrup divided

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and line the bottom of 3 cake pans with parchment paper cut to fit. Spray the parchment and pans with cooking spray and set aside. In a large bowl, cream the butter with the brown sugar until blended then add the 3 eggs, beating well after each one. Then add the maple syrup.

In another bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Then alternating the flour and the butter milk, add them to the butter mixture again beating well after each addition. Pour the mixture evenly into the prepared cake pans and bake in the oven for  13-15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes our clean. Cool the cakes in their pans for about 10 minutes and then move them to a wire rack to finish cooling.

In a large heavy skillet, melt the butter for the candied walnuts. Add the walnuts to the butter and cook while stirring constantly until nuts are toasted. Add the maple syrup and salt and cook for one more minute. Remove from heat and transfer to  a heat proof bowl to let cool.

For the frosting beat the butter in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Begin to beat in the confectioner's sugar and the half-n-half, alternation the dry with the wet. Add enough of the liquid until you get the desired consistency for your frosting. Add the maple syrup and beat for one more minute.

Place one cake on your plate or cake dish and spread about a cup of frosting on top. Sprinkle on top of the frosting 1/2 cup of the candied walnuts, then drizzle with 1 T. of maple syrup. Repeat layers. Top with the last layer and then frost the top and sides of the cake. Sprinkling with the remaining walnuts and drizzle with the last of the maple syrup.


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October 21, 2013

A Positively Perfect Pumpkin Russian

Here's another super delicious way of celebrating Autumn with one of my favorite flavors of the season, pumpkin. Only this time it is in  liquid form. Look at that fabulous pumpkin color...don't you just want to pick up the glass and take a sip right now?

This tasty adult treat was made with both pumpkin and coffee liqueurs, plus some pumpkin vodka and light cream.

Here are the amounts you need to make a perfect Pumpkin Russians.

1 part coffee liqueur
3 parts Pumpkin liqueur
1 part vodka
1 part light cream ( I used fat free and it still tastes yummy)

I then put it in my cocktail shaker with some ice and shook my little heart out!. But you can easily mix it and then pour it over some ice...either way it is still scrumptilly-ishes!

You can even go ahead and garnish the drink with a spicy cinnamon stick!

This is definitely on my radar for a very Happy Halloween night!


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