Flourless Chocolate Cake recipe makes go-to holiday cake

Simple yet sensationalThis is my go-to holiday and special occasion cake - Flourless Chocolate Cake made with a recipe first introduced by Gourmet magazine in November 1997.

The recipe is simple enough for a novice cook, yet special enough, with all its gooey, chocolate-y goodness, for experienced cooks to bake it again and again.

This chocolate all-star is a fixture of my son's birthday parties as well as Thanksgiving and Christmas dessert menus. If I want to make the chocolate lovers in my life delirious with bliss, this is the cake I bake to up their serotonin levels dramatically.

There is nothing not to love about a cake that looks this good, tastes this good and is done, ready to serve in under an hour - including clean up.

I prefer to serve it with vanilla ice cream or freshly whipped cream or seasonal fruits.

Flourless Chocolate Cake Gourmet | November 1997

Can be prepared in 45 minutes or less.

Yield: Makes one 8-inch cake


4 ounces fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened)
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
3/4 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder plus additional for sprinkling

Accompaniment if desired: Coconut Lime Sorbet


Preheat oven to 375°F and butter an 8-inch round baking pan. Line bottom with a round of wax paper and butter paper.

Chop chocolate into small pieces. In a double boiler or metal bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water melt chocolate with butter, stirring, until smooth.

Remove top of double boiler or bowl from heat and whisk sugar into chocolate mixture. Add eggs and whisk well. Sift 1/2 cup cocoa powder over chocolate mixture and whisk until just combined.

Pour batter into pan and bake in middle of oven 25 minutes, or until top has formed a thin crust. Cool cake in pan on a rack 5 minutes and invert onto a serving plate.

Dust cake with additional cocoa powder and serve with sorbet if desired. (Cake keeps, after being cooled completely, in an airtight container, 1 week.)

Easy and delicious Fruit Cake Bars recipe for Christmas

For more yummy bar cookie recipesfrom Eagle Brand click here

I love Fruit Cake - not the hard as a brick stuff you could use for a door stop, but moist, rum-soaked, candied fruit and nut rich cake. 

My early experiences with fruit cake were less than stellar - waxy, indigestible stuff bought from the store.

I really appreciated my Mom's dense and rich cakes, chock full of candied fruits. I know it comes as a big surprise that I loved the cherries best.

Fruit cake ought to be made a few weeks out from Christmas to allow for a good dousing with rum, but I usually wait until the ninth hour.

Fortunately, I have this really good fruit cake bar recipe adapted from Eagle Brand sweetened condensed milk which makes up for my procrastinating ways.  It makes a moist, rummy Fruit Cake Bar - perfect for parties or for shipping to your beloveds near and far.

Old Fashioned Fruit Cake Bars

makes about 4 dozen bars

  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 (27 oz.) jar Mincemeat
  • 1 (14 oz.) can Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk>
  • 2 cups (1 lb.) mixed candied fruit (1/2 cup coconut optional)
  • 1 cup pecans halves
  • 2 tablespoons spiced rum

HEAT oven to 300ºF.

1. Stir together flour and baking soda. Combine eggs, mincement, sweetened condensed milk, candied fruit, nuts and spiced rum in large bowl. Blend in dry ingredients. 

2. Coat 15 x 10-inch jelly roll pan with no-stick cooking spray. Spread batter evenly in pan. Bake 40 to 45 minutes.

3. Cool. Glaze if desired with heated pureed apricot preserves.

Note: This recipe can be used to make a cake using a 10-cup fluted bundt-type pan and baking for 1 hour and 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. You can also make cookies using the drop method (a rounded teaspoon full approximately 2 inches apart on prepared cookie sheets) or even cookies and baking for 15 to 18 minutes.

It's time for the great pumpkin - pie, that is!

Tired of the same old, same old pumpkins pie? Me, too!

That's why I love this great recipe from Zabar's - Pumpkin Mousse Cheesecake. The gingersnap crust is a deliciously different touch. You can use canned pumpkin or puree your own.

If you want to make your own pumpkin pie filling, has tips for picking, baking or boiling fresh pumpkin for your harvest baking.

It's easy as pie!

Triple chocolate-cookie trifle cake easy to make

This no-bake cake is so-good and so-easy

There is nothing I like better than a delicious dessert which looks fabulous and makes me look like a kitchen genie. 

I don't know about you, but I love looking like I slaved over a dessert when really I barely spent an hour mixing and stirring and molding. 

This is that cake.  It's gorgeous. Anyone - no matter your expertise in the kitchen - can make this creamy, dreamy dessert.

The Triple Chocolate-Cookie Trifle Cake is a keeper.

Key ingredients

Adapted from a recipe in Southern Living.

Yield Makes 10 to 12 servings

Triple Chocolate-Cookie Trifle Cake


* 4 cups heavy cream, divided

* 1 1/2 (4-oz) bittersweet chocolate baking bars, chopped

* 1 (4-oz) white chocolate baking bar, chopped

* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

* 1 (12.5-oz) package assorted Pepperidge Farm cookies

* 1 (18-oz) package Oreo cookies

Crushed Oreo cookie crust

* 2 tablespoons Kahlua  (optional)

* 1 (6-oz) container fresh raspberries


Let cream come to room temperature before preparing the cake's filling.

Microwave 1/2 cup cream at HIGH 30 seconds to 1 minute or until hot (do not boil). Place bittersweet chocolate in a large bowl. Pour hot cream over chocolate, and stir until smooth.

Repeat procedure with 1/4 cup cream and white chocolate.

If chocolate does not melt completely after stirring, microwave at HIGH for 10-second intervals until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth.

Melting white chocolate for the cake filling

Stir 1/2 tsp. vanilla into each chocolate mixture until well blended. 

Beat remaining cream at medium-high speed with an electric mixer until medium peaks form. Gently fold one-half of whipped cream into cool bittersweet chocolate mixture. Fold remaining whipped cream into cool white chocolate mixture.

In food processor, crush half the package of Oreos. Sprinkle crushed cookies on the bottom of a lightly greased 9-inch springform pan, then spread half of bittersweet chocolate mixture over the crushed cookies. Arrange Pepperidge Farm cookies around sides of pan (about 19 cookies). Note: You might wish to buy an extra package of cookies in case of damage or breakage. 

Process the remaining Oreos and spread over the bittersweet chocolate, then spread the white chocolate

Mixing up the chocolate cream filling

mixture over this layer. Drizzle with liqueur, if desired.

Spread the remaining bittersweet chocolate mixture over the crushed cookies.Cover and chill 8 to 24 hours.

Remove sides from pan. Mound raspberries in center of trifle. Raspberries may be brushed with a glaze.

Raspberry Glaze: Combine 3 Tbsp. seedless raspberry jam and 2 tsp. water in a small glass bowl. Microwave at HIGH 10 to 15 seconds or until smooth.

Creating the cookie crust

Layering the chocolate cream filling.


Ready to chill for 8-24 hours.

Unmolding the finished product

Finished Triple Chocolate Cookie Trifle Cake

The ultimate gourmet marshmallow: Plush Puffs

Caramel swirl Plush Puffs dunked in so-good chocolate fondue

If your notion of marshmallows is old school bags of semi-soft sort of bland Campfires, then we have some serious good news for you.

Plush Puffs are plump all natural marshmallow pillows packed with flavor from Vanilla Bean to Caramel Swirl (my personal favorite) to Peppi Mint and Chocolate Chipetta. 

The plush bags of gourmet marshmallows retail for $6 for 16-18 i -inch cubes of gooey deliciousness.

Eat them straight out of the bag plain, toasted, dunked in chocolate fondue, or afloat in your hot chocolate.

Need more inspiration? Plush Puffs' website has recipes.

Red Velvet Cake perfect recipe for a rainy evening

Find a recipe for red velvet cake here

Yesterday I was feeling like a bit of cake, so I made this Red Velvet Cake. 

I wanted savory with my sweet, so I sprinkled a little Soul of the Sea Haleakala Red salt on top for a pretty natural garnish that added terrific flavor.

While I was savoring this treat last night (and again this morning for breakfast), I started dreaming about re-inventing my Red Velvet Cake.  I've always loved the spicy heat of chiles and chocolate, so I think next time I make this cake I'm going to experiment with increasing the cocoa content and adding a little heat with chiles, maybe some Datil pepper.

But for now I have a whole old-school Red Velvet Cake to consume.  Cake anyone?

Lakers jello is just plain wrong

Pretty Jello treats. WRONG colors.

Even if The Food Librarian roots for the WRONG team, I love her spirit. 

And these are some pretty awesome Jello Treats despite being the WRONG color.

But they're in the Finals and the Knicks aren't.

So I guess NY sports fans have a whole off season to dream up something appealing to eat that's royal blue and orange. 

Get busy, Kinickerbockers fans.  Making an edible in that palette is not going to be easy.

Simple and Sinful summer ice cream recipes

Simplicity is the key word to how I like things to operate in my world.  I like complications as much as the next woman.  Complexity keeps life interesting, but drama -- in the kitchen or the street -- I can do without. 

Summer time, synonymous with vacation, means giving yourself a break in the kitchen without giving up any of the perks or punches of full flavor. Fresh fruits are in abundance, semifreddos are simple, ice cream is everywhere. 

Here are a couple of favorites that keep me cool and satisfied when the heat is on.

Cantaloupe and Vanilla Ice CreamEverybody_loves_ice_cream

1 well-ripened cantaloupe (the stem end should be fragrant and the melon should have a nice **thunk** to it when tapped)

I pint of any premium vanilla ice cream (I've been having a love affair with vanilla for some time now)

1 pint of fresh berries (blueberry, raspberry, blackberry)

1/4 cup Grand Marnier

2 Tbs. granulated sugar

Rinse the berries and set to rest in a sieve. After thoroughly drained, pour Grand Marnier and sugar over the berries and gently mix.  This can be prepared a day or two ahead of time so the berries absorb the liqueur.

Slice the ends from the melon, just enough to provide an even surface.  The cut the cantaloupe in half (not lengthwise).  Scoop the seeds and pulp out, then discard.   Scoop a nice dollop of vanilla ice cream into the cantaloupe's cavity.  Garnish with berries and serve immediately.

Serves 2 generously

Ginger Biscuit Ice Cream Sandwiches

1 package of Botham's Shah Ginger Biscuits

1 pint premium vanilla ice cream, slightly softened

Place 1 scoop of ice cream on cookie. Press second cookie on top until scoop flattens.  Serve immediately or wrap and freeze for later.

Makes 5 sandwiches.