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Snickers Cupcakes

Easily one of the best cupcake recipes I've come across, these chocolate cupcakes have middles that are filled with bits of snickers covered in homemade caramel sauce. What, did your teeth just tell you to stay away from these? You may want to make a dentist appointment after eating them, but they're amazing and will charm the pants off of your everyone at your party when you bring them out!

Chocolate Dump Cake

It may not have the prettiest title, but this chocolate cake is so easy that you'll actually volunteer to bring it to family functions. No kidding! With a shockingly low amount of ingredients, this chocolate cake spans seasons. Need a quick dessert for dinner? Dump cake. Need to bring a cake into work when you don't care enough to bake something for people you don't even like? Dump cake.

Red Velvet Cupcakes + Cream Cheese Icing

You only turn 26 once, and when you do you should celebrate with Red Velvet! These cupcakes come with a long line of recommendations and will not disappoint. Scouts honor.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Easter, Chocolate Bunnies & Cake

There are a lot of things happening in the next few weeks make life on this blog difficult. Starting school again today, finishing our taxes, moving to an entirely different part of PA (not like our 3 minute move from Manayunk to East Falls) and Easter. Easter's been at the bottom of my list these past few days, but I can't deny how much I actually enjoy the holiday. Besides the fact that it's always fallen right around my birthday, it's got some of the best looking candy filling up two aisles at Rite Aid. Two aisles!

Every year I just slink through the aisles looking at it. Marshmellow covered everything. This year I saw orange bunny peeps (I was shocked too). Chocolate in the shape of eggs, eggs made of creme, and carrots filled with reeses pieces. You could get a cavity just looking at all of the sugar, it's amazing. 

I think I love Easter because when I was little I used to occasionally bring home chocolate easter bunnies from winning drawing contests or guessing the right amount of jellybeans or something. I remember that they were always deceivingly hollow. When I'd bring them home, Allyson and I would size them up to see if we could open the box and eat a part of it before my parents got home. It never really worked, but when we were allowed to open it up I remember you could almost see a puff of smoke come out of the rabbit's head when you yanked an ear off. Like in Christmas Vacation when the turkey is too cooked and just explodes completely hollow, these rabbits looked like they were five solid pounds of chocolate but they were just a thin shell of a bunny. So disappointing. 
We'd ration the bunny, hunger games style, so we'd be able to eat it over the course of a few days. Easter always treated us well, and chocolate bunnies always seemed like they'd be around forever. But an ear here, a bunny leg there and then it was gone.

Because Easter is this Sunday, and because I'm still obsessed with chocolate rabbits, I've been looking for a recipe to create one from chocolate cake. The following recipe boasts of having the best chocolate cake recipe ever, so even if you don't want to create a cake that looks like a rabbit (because besides Easter and hunting season it's probably not appropriate) you can still bookmark this post to come back to this chocolate cake eventually. 

The recipe link is pretty lengthy, so I'll give you the link to take a look at the website and just post the ingredients and directions for the cake below. If you make it, good luck and happy easter!

Chocolate Bunny Cake

Ingredients for Chocolate Cake
2 sticks (1 cup) butter
2 cups water
1 cup canola oil
4 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup dark cocoa powder
1/2 cup regular cocoa powder
4 cups flour
4 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 tbsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tbsp. vanilla extract

Directions for Cake
1. (You'll have extra batter, enough for 1 round 8 inch pan) Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9x13 pan with nonstick cooking spray and line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper. Set aside.

2. In a small saucepan over medium heat, cook the butter, water, and oil until butter is melted. Remove from heat and set aside. In a separate bowl, stir together the sugar, cocoa powders, and flour. Whisk in the butter mixture until completely smooth. Then whisk in the eggs one by one, followed by the buttermilk. Finally, whisk in the baking soda, salt and vanilla. Pour into the rectangular pan until 3/4 full and pour excess batter into a round 8 inch cake pan sprayed with nonstick cooking spray and lined with parchment paper.

3. Bake the rectangular cake for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. You may bake the extra round cake as well, if you're using it. Cook on wire racks for an hour then carefully invert the cake onto a cutting board lined with wax or parchment paper. Let cool completely.

4. Make the bunny template for the cake by using parchment paper and a pencil to draw the shape. The bunny should be ear and tail less so you can use the scraps or second cake to create the ears and tail. 

5. Once the cake is cool, carve out the shape. When it's completely carved out, remove the pattern and pull away the scrap edges. 

The website where I found this has really great instructions (and even a video!) for how to make the cake and all of the icings that they used. If you're a fan of buttercream icing, the site has a great chocolate buttercream icing recipe too.

Source: The Smart Cookie Cook


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