box (1 lb 2.3 oz) Betty Crocker™ fudge brownie mix
Water, vegetable oil and eggs called for on brownie mix box
box (4-serving size) chocolate fudge instant pudding and pie filling mix
cup caramel topping
container (8 oz) frozen whipped topping, thawed
cup chopped walnuts
1 Heat oven to 350ºF. Bake brownie mix as directed on box, using water, oil and eggs, in 13×9-inch pan. Cool completely, about 1 hour.
2 Make pudding mix as directed on box for pudding, using milk; refrigerate. Cut brownies into 1-inch pieces. Thoroughly stir caramel topping into whipped topping.
3 In 3-quart glass bowl, layer half each of the brownies, pudding, walnuts and whipped topping mixture; repeat.
4 Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving but no longer than 24 hours. Store covered in refrigerator.
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box (1 lb 6.25 oz) Betty Crocker™ Supreme original brownie mix
Water, vegetable oil and eggs called for on brownie mix box
caramels, unwrapped (from 14 oz)
tablespoons heavy whipping cream
cup chopped pecans
1 Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pan). Line bottom and sides of 13×9-inch pan with foil. Grease bottom only of foil with shortening or cooking spray. Make brownie mix as directed on box. Cool completely, about 1 hour.
2 Using foil to lift, remove brownie from pan. Remove foil. With deep 3-inch heart-shaped cookie cutter, cut 12 brownies.
3 In medium microwavable bowl, microwave caramels and whipping cream uncovered on High 1 to 3 minutes, stirring every minute, until caramels are melted.
4 Arrange brownies on serving plate. Drizzle caramel mixture over brownies. Sprinkle with pecans.
cup butter or margarine, softened
cup powdered sugar
teaspoons grated lemon peel
tablespoons fresh lemon juice
oz (half of 8-oz package) cream cheese, softened
cups Gold Medal™ all-purpose flour
cups granulated sugar
• 1 Heat oven to 350°F. Place mini paper baking cup in each of 60 mini muffin cups; spray paper cups with cooking spray.
• 2 In large bowl, beat butter and cream cheese with electric mixer on medium speed 2 minutes or until light and fluffy. Gradually add granulated sugar, beating until blended. Beat on medium speed 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. On low speed, beat in flour and salt until smooth. Beat in lemon peel and juice. Divide batter evenly among muffin cups.
• 3 Bake 15 to 17 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to cooling racks. Cool completely. Sprinkle cakes with powdered sugar before serving.
- 1Heat oven to 400°F. Unroll pie crusts; use rolling pin to slightly roll dough out.
- 2Use 3-inch diameter round cutter to cut 12 circles from dough. Use small heart-shaped cutter to cut 12 hearts from remaining dough, rerolling scraps as needed.
- 3Press circles into 12 ungreased regular-size muffin cups; fill with pie filling. Top each with heart-shaped cutout.
- 4In small bowl, beat egg and water. Brush over crust on each.
- 5Bake about 20 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly.
box Pillsbury™ Refrigerated Pie Crust, softened as directed on box
can (21 oz) cherry pie filling
Recipe by Karly Campbell
For the sponge
- 100g butter, softened
- 100g caster sugar
- 100g self-raising flour
- ¾ tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 egg
For the mousse
- 500g mixed berry (fresh or frozen)
- icing sugar, to sweeten
- 3 sheets leaf gelatine
- 3 egg white
- 140g golden caster sugar
- 300ml double cream, whipped
- Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Beat the butter with the sugar, then beat in the flour, baking powder, vanilla and eggs. Pour the batter into a lined 24cm loose-based cake tin and bake for 30 mins or until risen and cooked through.
- Remove the cake from the tin and cool on a wire rack, leaving the base paper on the bottom of the cake. When the cake is completely cool, cut it in half horizontally. Clean the tin and line with cling film. Put the top of the cake into the base of the tin.
- To make the mousse, put the berries in a pan over a low heat and bring gently to a simmer, you shouldn’t need any extra liquid as they release juice. Sweeten to taste with icing sugar – you want a slightly tart flavour as they will be later mixed with a sweet meringue. Whizz with a stick blender or pop into a blender and purée, then sieve. You should end up with about 250ml purée. Soak the gelatine in water until floppy, stir into the hot berry purée and set aside to cool.
- Whisk the egg whites to soft peaks, then whisk in the caster sugar in 4 batches. Continue whisking until you have a stiff, glossy meringue. Fold in the berry purée followed by the cream. Pour onto the sponge base, then carefully lay the other piece of sponge on top, paper-side up. Freeze until 40 mins-1 hr before you need it, then remove from the freezer and peel off the paper. Remove the tin and cling film. When you are ready to serve, dust the top with icing sugar.
For the biscuit base
- 200g digestive biscuit
- 100g butter
For the mousse cake
- 4 sheets leaf gelatin
- 142ml carton single cream
- 500g carton fromage frais
- 140g golden caster sugar
- finely grated zest 1 small orange
- 4 tbsp orange juice
- 400g raspberries
- 284ml carton double cream
For the sauce
- 250g mixture of strawberries
(chopped) and raspberries
- 3 tbsp orange juice
- 2 tbsp golden caster sugar
- mixture of strawberries
(some halved), raspberries and blueberries
- icing sugar, for dusting
- Put the biscuits in a plastic food bag and crush using a rolling pin. Melt the butter in a medium pan, then stir in the biscuits. Tip this mixture into a loose-bottomed 24cm round cake tin, about 5cm deep and press down evenly. Chill.
- Make the mousse: submerge the gelatine leaves in a large bowl of cold water and leave to soak for 5 minutes. Heat the single cream in a small pan until it just comes to the boil. Take off the heat. Lift the gelatine leaves out of the water and give them a good squeeze to get rid of the water. Stir into the hot cream one by one – they will dissolve immediately. Leave to cool slightly.
- Beat together the fromage frais, sugar, orange zest and juice with a whisk or wooden spoon. Stir in the cooled cream and gelatine mixture and the raspberries. Crush just a few of the raspberries against the sides of the bowl and stir again to ripple through, leaving most whole.
- Whip the double cream lightly to soft peaks, then fold it into the raspberry mixture. Pour into the cake tin and leave to chill for at least 3 hours, or overnight, until set.
- To make the sauce, blitz all the ingredients in a food processor or blender. Chill until ready to serve. (The sauce and the mousse can be made up to a day ahead).
- To serve, run a knife between the mousse and the tin, lift it out of the tin and take it off its base. Put on a serving plate and pile a mixture of fruits on top to decorate. Dust with icing sugar and serve with the sauce.
For the sponges
- vegetable oil, for greasing
- 6 large eggs, separated
- 200g white caster sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 100g plain flour
- 25g ground almonds
- 50g butter
, melted and cooled
For the matcha mousse
- 5 gelatine leaves
- 600ml pot double cream
- 2 tbsp matcha powder (see tip)
- 250g icing sugar, plus a little for dusting
For the matcha & white chocolate glaze
- 150ml double cream
- 150g white chocolate, chopped into small pieces
- 1 tsp matcha powder
and fresh pink cherry blossom flowers, to decorate (optional)
- Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Grease two 20cm cake tins (one should be at least 8cm deep) with oil, and line the base and sides with baking parchment. Tip the egg yolks, caster sugar and vanilla into a large bowl, and the egg whites into a second large bowl. Combine the flour, almonds and 1 /4 tsp salt in a third bowl.
- Using an electric hand whisk, beat the egg whites until doubled in size and holding soft peaks. Transfer the beaters to the egg yolk bowl (no need to clean the beaters first) and whisk until the mixture is thick and pale. Lift the beaters and drizzle the mixture around the bowl – a ribbon should sit on the surface for 2-3 secs.
- With a large metal spoon, transfer a spoonful of egg white to the yolks, and mix to loosen the consistency. Add the remaining whites and gently fold into the yolks, trying to retain as much volume as possible. Stop before the mixture is totally combined. Sprinkle the flour and almond mixture evenly over the surface, then drizzle the cooled butter around the edge of the bowl. Fold everything together until just combined, making sure you scoop the spoon right down to the bottom of the bowl to catch the butter and any pockets of flour. Divide the mixture between the cake tins, level the surfaces, then bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 22-25 mins. Test the cakes are done by inserting a skewer into the centre – it should come out clean. Cool in their tins on a wire rack for 30 mins, then remove the tins and parchment, and leave to cool completely.
- Boil the kettle. Put the gelatine in a bowl of cold water and set aside to soften. Pour 150ml cream and 50ml hot water into a saucepan. Add the matcha powder and whisk over a gentle heat until well combined and steaming. Remove from the heat. Squeeze the water from the gelatine leaves and add them, one by one, to the hot matcha cream, whisking until they’re dissolved. Pour the warm cream into a bowl and put in the fridge to cool to room temperature – don’t leave it too long or the gelatine will set.
- Line the deepest of your 20cm cake tins with a double layer of cling film, ensuring the sides are well covered. Put one of the sponges in the tin, flattest-side down. Pour the remaining 450ml cream into a bowl and add the icing sugar. Whip until the cream is holding soft peaks, then fold through the cooled matcha cream. Scrape the cream into the cake tin and level the surface. Put the remaining sponge on top, flattest-side facing up, pushing the sponge gently into the cream. Wrap the tin in cling film and chill for at least 4 hrs.
- Put the cream, chocolate and matcha powder in a saucepan and heat very gently, stirring until the chocolate has melted and the matcha is well mixed in. Set aside to cool and thicken for 10 mins. Remove the cake from the fridge and unwrap the tin. Invert the cake onto a cake stand or plate and remove from the tin and the cling film. Using a palette knife held at a 90-degree angle to the side of the cake, scrape around the edge to remove any excess mousse and give the cake a smooth finish. Using baking parchment, create a tight collar, sitting about 2cm taller than the cake. Pour the cooled chocolate glaze over the top, smoothing it to the edge – the collar should prevent it from dribbling down the sides. Chill for 30 mins more, or for up to 24 hrs.
- Carefully pull off the parchment collar. Hold a chopping board (or another object with a straight edge) over half the cake and dust the exposed surface with icing sugar. Arrange fresh cherries and cherry blossom or another edible flower on top, if you like, and serve immediately.
box Betty Crocker™ SuperMoist™ chocolate fudge cake mix
Water, vegetable oil and eggs called for on cake mix box
Ganache Filling and Topping
packages (8 oz each) semisweet baking chocolate, finely chopped
cups whipping cream
cup butter (do not use margarine)
cups cut-up fresh strawberries
fresh strawberries, cut in half lengthwise through stem
cup white vanilla baking chips
teaspoon vegetable oil
1 Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pan). Make and bake cake as directed on box for 13×9-inch pan. Cool completely, about 1 hour.
2 Meanwhile, in large bowl, place chopped chocolate; set aside. In 2-quart saucepan, heat whipping cream and butter over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until butter is melted and mixture comes to a boil. Pour cream mixture over chocolate; stir until smooth.
3 Line bottom of 9-inch springform pan with waxed paper. Cut cake into 1-inch cubes. In large bowl, beat half of the cake cubes on low speed until cake is crumbly. Add remaining cake cubes and 1 3/4 cups of the ganache (reserve remaining ganache for topping). Beat on low speed 30 seconds, then on medium speed until well combined (mixture will look like fudge). Fold in 2 cups cut-up strawberries. Spoon mixture into springform pan; smooth top. Cover with plastic wrap; freeze about 45 minutes or until firm enough to unmold.
4 Run knife around side of pan to loosen cake mixture. Place serving plate upside down on pan; turn pan and plate over. Frost side and top of cake with reserved ganache. Arrange strawberry halves on top of cake.
5 In small microwavable bowl, microwave baking chips and 1/2 teaspoon oil uncovered on High 45 seconds, stirring every 15 seconds, until melted. Place in small resealable food-storage plastic bag; cut off tiny corner of bag. Drizzle over top of cake. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Best served the same day.
How to Make Chocolate-Dipped Strawberries
Chocolate and strawberries are better together, and this simple how-to shows just how easy it is to make chocolate-dipped strawberries for Valentine’s Day or any special occasion.
Say good-bye to rock-hard, store-bought chocolate-dipped strawberries. Once you make this recipe, you’ll see these are easy enough to make whenever the mood strikes.
What You’ll Need:
Ingredients for Chocolate-Dipped Strawberries
1. Rinse strawberries and lay on paper towels until completely dry. Line a baking sheet with waxed paper to place strawberries on once dipped.
2. In 1-quart saucepan, melt chocolate chips with shortening or vegetable oil (we used vegetable oil) over low heat, stirring frequently. Be careful not to let the chocolate get too hot, it’s easy to burn. Remove entire pan from heat when melted.
3. Firmly grab the top of the strawberry leafing, but be careful to not rip the greens off! Dip lower half of each strawberry into chocolate mixture; allow excess to drip back into saucepan.
4. Place on waxed paper-lined tray or cookie sheet and wait for chocolate to harden.
5. Refrigerate uncovered about 30 minutes or until chocolate is firm, or until ready to serve. Store covered in refrigerator so chocolate does not soften (if made with oil, chocolate will soften more quickly at room temperature). Serve and enjoy!
350g/12½oz caster sugar
85g/3oz cocoa powder
For the cake
225g/8oz plain flour
1½ tsp baking powder
1½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
For the chocolate icing
200g/7oz plain chocolate
2 tsp vanilla extract
250ml/9fl oz boiling water
200ml/7fl oz double cream
2 free-range eggs
250ml/9fl oz milk
125ml/4½fl oz vegetable oil
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4. Grease and line two 20cm/8in sandwich tins.
For the cake, place all of the cake ingredients, except the boiling water, into a large mixing bowl. Using a wooden spoon, or electric whisk, beat the mixture until smooth and well combined.
Add the boiling water to the mixture, a little at a time, until smooth. (The cake mixture will now be very liquid.)
Divide the cake batter between the sandwich tins and bake in the oven for 25-35 minutes, or until the top is firm to the touch and a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.
Remove the cakes from the oven and allow to cool completely, still in their tins, before icing.
For the chocolate icing, heat the chocolate and cream in a saucepan over a low heat until the chocolate melts. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk the mixture until smooth, glossy and thickened. Set aside to cool for 1-2 hours, or until thick enough to spread over the cake.
To assemble the cake, run a round-bladed knife around the inside of the cake tins to loosen the cakes. Carefully remove the cakes from the tins.
Spread a little chocolate icing over the top of one of the chocolate cakes, then carefully top with the other cake.
Transfer the cake to a serving plate and ice the cake all over with the chocolate icing, using a palette knife.