Sunday, July 29, 2012

Fudge Truffle Melted Ice Cream Cake

I am a major Choc-O-Holic! I LOVE any and everything chocolate. So when I found the original recipe online, I knew I was going to have to make mine chocolate. This cake absolutely tastes as amazing as it sounds and is really easy to make with only a few ingredients. 
Now the photo is a little deceiving because that's not the ice cream on top. It's frosting. The ice cream is in the cake! Yum Yum!!  

3 Ingredient Cake

1. Cake Box Mix
2. Favorite Ice Cream (1 pint)
3. Eggs

Yep, that's it!! Easy, right? Or so you think. The hard part comes in trying to decide on which ice cream to use. I stood in the ice cream section at the grocery store for about 20 minutes trying to pick the ice cream I wanted to use. After much debate within my head, I finally decided on Ben and Jerry's Everything But The...
Then I made my way over to the cake section and tried to decide which cake mix to buy. After standing in that aisle for another 10 minutes, I finally settled on Pillsbury Fudge Truffle. I mean, if you're going to do a chocolate cake, you might as well do it right! You can't go wrong whenever the cake box promises to have chocolate oozing out of the middle.
Now that the hard part was over, I was ready to make this delicious cake!

 1. Melt your ice cream completely. I dumped my ice cream in the mixing bowl and it melted a lot faster than when it was in the carton.

 2. Once ice cream is melted, add the cake mix and 3 eggs. DO NOT add the oil and water that the cake box calls for. Your ice cream is the substitution for these ingredients. Using the paddle attachment (or a handheld mixer) mix all the ingredients until they are well blended.

3. Pour your batter into a very well greased bundt pan. Make sure the pan has lots of cooking spray on it so your cake doesn't stick to the pan after it cooks.

 4. Since I used the Fudge Truffle cake mix, I had a fudge center that I had to add. Pour your fudge center on top of the batter. (I know this looks kind of gross but it's because I used a piping bag). The fudge will make its way to the middle of the cake when it bakes. If you use a different cake mix, you will omit this step.

 5. Bake your cake according to the instructions on your box. Let it cool a little in the pan.

 6. Place your plate on top of the bundt pan and then flip the cake over.

7. Voila! Perfection!!

 8. I added a glaze to my cake but it's not necessary. The recipe for the glaze is below.


  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
1. In a small saucepan over medium heat, whisk ingredients together until they are smooth.
2. Using a pastry brush, cover the entire cake with the glaze.

 Now on to the final step....the frosting.
It is totally optional but the only thing I love more than chocolate is frosting. Besides, if I'm going to make this dessert, I'm going to do it all the way!


I've made the frosting below several times using granulated sugar like the recipe usually calls for and I've hated it every time. I don't know if maybe I'm doing something wrong with the mixture but it is always very grainy and doesn't taste very good. This time I decided to try it with powdered sugar and I was MUCH happier with the results. After I made it, I refrigerated it for about an hour before using it and it was perfect!
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 5 tablespoons flour
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 sticks butter (room temperature)
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream
1. In a medium saucepan, whisk together your milk and flour. Whisk constantly until the consistency is like pancake batter. Cool completely!

2. In a mixing bowl fitted with the whisk attachment, combine butter and powdered sugar. Mix for several minutes until the mixture looks creamy.

3. Once your flour and milk mixture is completely cool, add it to your mixing bowl and mix all the ingredients for about 1-2 minutes.

4. Add heavy whipping cream and continue mixing for about 1 minute.

There are so many great variations to this cake that you could try! I think next time I'm going to go with Party Cake ice cream and Funfetti cake!

If you try this recipe, leave me a comment and let me know which ice cream and cake you use.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Low Calorie Paula Deen Tomato Pie

A few weeks ago while in Atlanta, my aunt made this amazing Tomato Pie. It was seriously delicious!! So, I found Paula Deen's recipe for it but decided to make a lower calorie version of it. I also substituted a white onion for her green onion because I'm not much of a green onion fan.

  • 3 or 4 tomatoes, peeled and sliced
  • a couple of basil leaves (I don't use as many as Paula)
  • 1/2 white onion (chopped)
  • 1 Pillsbury pie crust
  • 3/4 cup grated reduced fat mozzarella
  • 3/4 cup reduced fat grated cheddar
  • 1 cup Miracle Whip light
  • Salt and pepper
 1. Cut a cross slit in the tomatoes.

 2. Drop them in boiling water for about 30-45 seconds.

 3. Immediately put them in ice water so they will stop cooking.

 4. Peel away the outer skin of the tomato.

5. Slice them and put them in a colander so some of the juice will drain. Then pat them really, really dry with a paper towel. This is a really important step!!! If you don't get the tomatoes dry enough, your tomato layer will be very juicy and your crust will be soggy.

6.  Place the tomatoes on top of the pie crust and add some salt and pepper. (I didn't pre-bake my crust like Paula suggests and it turned out just fine.)

7. Blend together 1/2 white onion and a few Basil leaves.

8. Place onion/basil mixture over the tomatoes.

9. Mix together your cheeses and miracle whip.

10. Top the tomatoes with your miracle whip and cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until the top is brown.

 11. Enjoy your pie!!!

**Nutrition Note: The entire pie has about 1,700 calories. I sliced my pie into about 6 slices so that averages about 280 calories per slice. Not too bad for a meal!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Time with Family

A few weeks ago, Blakely and I had the opportunity to visit my family in South Carolina and Georgia. My brother was deploying to Kosovo (I blogged about that here) and my parents were coming to Atlanta from their home in South Dakota. We were all able to be at Jon's deployment ceremony in Columbia, SC and then we traveled to Conyers, GA for a few days.
Time alone with Granddaddy!
There was a major glare, so we're all a little squinty.
It was a wonderful, relaxing time spent with family. Blakely certainly enjoyed seeing her grandparents and great-grandparents.

with Granny and Pops

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Blakely 13 Months

I've been debating whether or not to keep doing monthly updates on Blakely since she has reached 1 year old. I finally decided to keep doing them until she turns 2 for two reasons.
1. She hasn't hit a lot of her milestones and I want to continue keeping track of her growth until she reaches them.
2. These updates will force me to not get lazy in putting up new pictures of her on a regular basis.

So here we go!

  • She is still crawling everyone she goes but last week she started doing this adorable monkey crawl where she's on her feet and hands. I'm so ready for her to take off and walk but I guess this is a step in the right direction.

  • Her vocabulary is picking up and she's learning some new words. She is now saying dog, please (all the time which makes mommy proud), and yes. She babbles constantly and it is so cute to see her carry on whole conversations in her own little language.

  • She's starting to understand the purpose of a phone and will hold it up to her ear when she gets a hold of one. It's really cute to watch but she also likes to push all the buttons. She has been known to hang up on quite a few people when I let her talk to them.

  • She finally hit 20 pounds (Woo Hoo!!) but is still a little small for her age. She's not the greatest eater (obviously she doesn't have mommy's appetite) and usually just picks at her food. Luckily, she's not real picky in terms of what she'll eat. She'll eat most anything but not large amounts of it.
Go Gamecocks!! (But not really. Mommy is a Clemson fan but we have to support Uncle Jon's Alma Mater.)

  • Bananas are her favorite food. I will give her a whole banana and she'll finish it in about 5 minutes! 

  • She takes two really good naps everyday. She sleeps for about 2-3 hours in the morning and then about 2 hours in the afternoon. Nighttime is also getting better. She still gets up anywhere from 2-4 a.m. and sometimes will go back to sleep in her crib but sometimes will want to sleep with Kevin and me. Of course, we don't mind that extra snuggling with her and are just thankful that she sleeps most of the night in her crib.
Blakely, you amaze me everyday!! I will tell you every day of your life how much I love and treasure you!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes

These cupcakes are AMAZING and the frosting is DIVINE!!  I made them for my 30 birthday party and they were a huge hit. I had to get the remaining cupcakes out of my house before I ate them all.

In addition to the ingredients below, you will need several Reese's Peanut Butter Cups. I bought two packs of the snack size which include about 14 cups per package.

I dropped the PB cup in the bottom of the cupcake liner and then placed the batter on top.
Normally, this recipe makes 24 cupcakes but with the PB cup taking up half of the liner, it should make 40-45 cupcakes.

Dark Chocolate Cupcakes

  • 1¾ cups cake flour
  • ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1¼ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1¼ teaspoons baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1¾ cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • ¾ cup sour cream, room temperature
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 cup whole milk

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.  Line 2 standard muffin tin pans with paper liners, set aside.
  2. Using a fine mesh sieve, sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and kosher salt into a medium-sized bowl.  Whisk together until well combined, set aside.
  3. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on medium-high speed, beat together the butter and sugar until well combined, scraping sides and bottom of bowl as needed.
  4. Reduce to low-medium speed and add the eggs one-at-a-time, and beat until well combined after each addition, scraping sides and bottom of bowl as needed.
  5. Add the sour cream and vanilla and continue to beat on low-medium speed until combined, scraping sides of bottom of bowl as needed.
  6. Reduce speed to low, add the flour mixture in three batches, alternating with the milk, and mixing until just incorporated after each.
  7. Divide batter evenly among the prepared muffin cups, filling each 3/4 full.
  8. Bake about 15-20 minutes depending on how your oven bakes.
  9. Transfer tins to wire racks to cool for a few minutes.  Remove cupcakes from tins and return to wire racks to cool completely.
Peanut Butter Frosting 
  • 3 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 4-5 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 4 tablespoons heavy cream

1. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix together the butter and peanut butter until creamy.
2. Add in the confectioners sugar.
3. Once the sugar is thoroughly mixed in, slowly add in the cream and vanilla.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Big 3-0!

This past weekend I said goodbye to my 20's and hello to my 30's! It wasn't really as bad as I had imagined it would be. I expected to wake up on Friday morning with back aches and memory loss (just kidding) but truthfully, it was just another birthday.
I started my birthday by having breakfast with some lifelong friends in Greenville, SC. I spent last week in Atlanta with family (a post to come on that later) and then spent Thursday night in Greenville which is my hometown. Two of my best friends in the world took me to breakfast to start my birthday and then Blakely and I spent the next several hours driving back to Richmond.
On Friday night, I had dinner with Kevin's family at a local restaurant. It was so great to see everyone again after 9 days out of town.
Blakely loves her Uncle Warren

On Saturday, Kevin and I hosted a cook-out at our house. I made Reese's Peanut Butter Cup cupcakes (definitely posting that recipe later) and had a great time celebrating and catching up with friends. It was wonderful having two days of celebration! All in all, it was a great day and I'm ready for this new decade.
April and Mary Beth, friends from seminary
My sister-in-law Karen and baby Eli
Happy Birthday Mommy!
Thank you to everyone who helped me have such a wonderful birthday weekend!!

Friday, July 06, 2012

We Love Our Soldier

Jon addressing his company.
This week Blakely and I traveled down to Columbia, SC for my brother's deployment ceremony. Jon's a Black hawk helicopter pilot and will be leaving tomorrow for Kosovo with his company. My parents, grandparents, and uncle were also able to be there. We are all so proud of Jon and everything he has accomplished with the army.

This will be his second tour to Kosovo and this time he's the Company Commander! Way to go Jon!!

We will certainly miss Jon while he's gone but our thoughts and prayers are with his company as they complete their mission over the next year. 
Future pilot?
Or maybe just a passenger!

I need my first Krispy Kreme doughnut to finish off the day!

Thank you to all our soldiers and their families for the sacrifices they make to our country each and every day.