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Red Velvet Cake with a Twist

1 box red velvet cake mix
1 large box chocolate pudding
1 1/4 cup water
1/2 cup raspberry syrup (coffee or tea flavoring)
1/3 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
1 1/2 cups raspberry jam, seedless
Whipped Fluffy White Frosting, ( Canned Duncan Hines is what I will probably use)

Mix together the cake mix and pudding. Add the water, raspberry syrup, oil and eggs. Mix in mixer for 3 minutes on high.

Pour into two 9-inch greased and floured cake pans. Tap gently on the counter 3 times to release air bubbles.

 Bake in preheated 350F oven for 30 minutes. (DO NOT OVERBAKE)

Let cake cool 10 minutes in the pan. Remove from pans and let cool completely on wire rack.

 To assemble the cake: Cut both layers of cake in half. You should have 4 cake layers now.

Place 1st layer of cake on a plate. Place 1/3 cup of jam on the cake. Spread to 1/2 inch from corners. Place next layer of cake on top. Repeat with jam and cake layers, ending with a cake layer on the top.

Refrigerate for approximately 2 hours.

Frost all the outside of the cake with white frosting.

Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Eclaire Cake

1 c. water
1 c. plain flour
1/2 c. butter or margarine
4 eggs
8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1 large pkg. instant or cooked vanilla pudding
(mixed as directed)
1 large container of Cool Whip
Chocolate syrup

Bring water to a boil and add butter.  Mix in flour and cool.  Add eggs and beat with mixer.  Spread in a long casserole dish (9 x 13") and bake in 400 degree oven 20-25 minutes.  Mixture will puff up and up the sides of the pan while in the oven.  When removed from the oven, prick with fork.  Let cool.


Mix pudding as directed.  Blend in softened cream cheese.  If cooked-style of pudding is used (I prefer the taste of the cooked pudding), blend in the cream cheese while the pudding is hot and let mixture cool before spreading on the eclair dough.  Spread pudding/cream cheese mixture over the baked, cooled eclair dough.  Spread Cool Whip over pudding mixture.  Then swirl with chocolate syrup.  Refrigerate until firm.

Slow Cooker Chocolate Peanut Butter Pudding Cake

1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup whole milk or chocolate milk
2 tablespoons canola, peanut or walnut oil
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup smooth or chunky peanut butter
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups boiling water
Vanilla ice cream, for serving

Coat slow cooker with butter-flavored nonstick vegetable cooking spray. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, 2 tablespoons cocoa, sugar, baking powder and salt. Make a well in the center and add milk, oil and vanilla. Stir until well blended. Continue stirring in widening circles, gradually incorporating the dry ingredients until you have a smooth batter.

Stir in the peanut butter (warm it in the microwave if thick and sticky from refrigeration); the batter will be thick. Stir in chocolate chips. Spread batter evenly in the cooker.

For topping: In another medium bowl, combine 3 tablespoons cocoa and sugar. Add boiling water and whisk until smooth. Gently pour over the batter in the cooker; do not stir.

Cover and cook on high until puffed and the top layer is set, 2 to 2 1/2 hours.

Turn off the cooker and let stand, covered, at least 30 minutes before serving.

To serve, scoop cake into individual bowls. Add a scoop of vanilla ice cream, if desired. Spoon some of the fudgy pudding over the cake and ice cream and serve.

*****I substituted Spenda for the sugar in this recipe. The taste was still delicious, so if you have a diabetic in your family you may want to do this also.



This is what the first layer just spread into the slow cooker.



This is the liquid layer poured on top.



Here it is done. Since my cooker is large and oval, I only cooked mine 2 hrs. not 2 1/2 hrs. If you cook it too long it will dry out.




Served. You can see how moist it is. This moist part is the bottom layer of the cake. I served mine with a scoop of homemade vanilla ice cream and a sprig of mint.




Baked Pasta Cake


The pasta  you use should be short and sturdy, with a hole in the middle; you want to see a mass of little holes when you slice into it. Ditalini and tubettini are good choices.

(Serves 6 or 7 as a dessert or a midafternoon snack)

2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
3/4 lb ditalini pasta
3/4 c. heavy cream
1 c. milk
3 large eggs, plus 1 egg yolk
1/2 c. sugar, plus 1 tablespoon sugar
2 Tbsp. rum
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract (Madagascar vanilla, if you can find it)
A big pinch of ground cinnamon
A big pinch of ground nutmeg
The zest from 1 small lemon
1/4 c. of homemade, dry breadcrumbs

Preheat the oven to 325 F.

Set up a large pot of pasta cooking water and bring it to a boil. Add a generous amount of salt. When the water comes to a boil, start cooking the ditalini.

Use about a tablespoon of the butter to grease a large baking dish.

Pour the cream and milk into a small saucepan and bring it to a low boil over medium heat.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs together with the sugar until well mixed. Slowly pour the milk mixture into the eggs, whisking the entire time. Add the rum, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and lemon zest, and whisk to blend all the flavors.

When the ditalini is al dente (a bit firmer than usual, since it will cook again in the oven), drain it well in a colander. Pour the ditalini into the baking dish. Pour the cream and egg mixture over it.

Bake until the edges are starting to bubble and the middle is just set, about 45 minutes (the top will not have browned much).

Mix the breadcrumbs, the remaining tablespoon of butter, and the remaining tablespoon of sugar together in a small bowl. Scatter this over the top of the pastiera and place under a broiler about 4 inches from the heat source until very lightly golden, about a minute. Let the pastiera cool for at least an hour before serving, so it can firm up.

 Serve slightly warm or at room temperature, cut into squares.


Another Red Velvet Cake

2 cups sugar

2 1/2 cups plain flour

1 cup butter or margarine

1 cup buttermilk

3 eggs

1 1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tbsp cocoa

1 tsp vanilla

1 tbsp vinegar

2 oz red food coloring

1/2 tsp salt


Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and beat until fluffy. Make a paste from cocoa and vinegar and add to the mixture. Sift salt and flour. Dissolve soda into the buttermilk and add alternately with flour to the butter/sugar mixture. Add the vanilla and food coloring. Bake in three 9-inch cake pans at 350 for 30 minutes or until done. Frost with Cream Cheese Frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting

2 3-ounce packages cream cheese
1/2 cup butter or margarine
2 tsp vanilla
4 cups sifted powdered sugar
In a mixer bowl, beat together cream cheese, butter, and vanilla till light and fluffy. Gradually add powdered sugar, beating till smooth. Spread over cooled cake. Cover iced cake and store in refrigerator.