February 27, 2009
It can’t decide if it wants to be Winter or Spring here in St. Louis. One day it’s in the 20′s and the next day it’s in the 60′s. Our two cats don’t understand why it’s ok to be let out on the screen porch one day, and not ok the next. (Did I ever tell you about the bell on the back door? When we got our dog as a puppy, someone told me to hang a bell on the back door and teach the dog to ring it whenever she needed to go out. It was GREAT advice, and Casey quickly learned to do just that. No matter where we were in the house, we could hear it and knew that she wanted to be let out. Then the dog apparently taught that to the cat. After we’d had Zoe for about 2 weeks, I was in the kitchen and watched her walk to the back door. She reached up and swatted the bell and then turned around and looked at me expectantly, waiting to be let out. Cracked me up! She still uses that method regularly. Gracie, the other cat, has never caught on. Or chooses not to.)
The Elves made dinner for WH and I this week and it was such a nice thing for them to do! (Birthday dinner. Tomorrow is my birthday.) This chocolate cake that Karen contributed to the meal was so good that I asked her if I could share the recipe with all of you. I hope you like it.
1 pkg chocolate cake mix, any variety
1 pkg (4-serving) Jell-O Instant Chocolate Pudding
8 oz. sour cream
1/2 cup flavored coffee, cooled (any variety)
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup water
8 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips (Karen uses Ghirardelli)
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease and flour a 12 cup bundt pan, or a 10″ tube pan.
Beat all ingredients together on low speed, except the chocolate chips. Beat until just moistened, scraping the bowl often. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes or until well blended. Stir in chocolate chips and then pour into prepared pan.
Bake 50-60 minutes or until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes. Loosen cake from sides with spatula and turn the pan onto a wire rack, easing the cake out gently. Cool completely.
Top with Chocolate Glaze (below) or sprinkle with powdered sugar. Garnish with fresh raspberries or strawberries. Serves 12-16.
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 Tbl. butter or margarine
2 Tbl. corn syrup
1-2 tsp. hot water
Heat chocolate chips, butter and corn syrup over low hear, stirring constantly until chocolate is melted. Cool slightly. Stir in water 1 tsp at a time, until desired consistency. Drizzle over the cake.
Can’t you just imagine how wonderful this smells while it’s baking? I think it’s twice as nice to then give the whole cake away, without even getting to taste it. Thank you again, Karen!