• Dessert,  Sweets

    “Ring ding” inspired cakes

    Isn’t it crazy how things come about? My husband and I were watching Transformers, a movie we have seen a million times before, and there is a part where the president asks one of his staff members on the plane to “rustle him up some ring dings”. Well that turned into a whole debate about what snack cake was the best, and how much they have changed, how much smaller they are and how they no longer taste as good as they used to.

    I knew what was coming next….

    My husband turns to me and asks “can you make me some ring dings?” How could I say no? Admittedly I should have said maybe another time… as I started these at 8:30 at night, but I have made this chocolate sheet cake so many times that I can do it in my sleep. And as it turns out all of the ingredients were already in my pantry.

    Now my problem is that he is making a mental list of all of the other snack cakes he used to love that he wants me to recreate. Once again I have created a monster. LOL!


    Home made “ring dings”

    A home version of a childhood treat
    Course Dessert, Snack
    Keyword Cake
    Prep Time 30 minutes
    Cook Time 15 minutes
    cooling 1 hour


    • 2 sticks unsalted butter
    • 1 cup coffee
    • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
    • 2 cups granulated sugar
    • 3/4 cup sour cream
    • 2 lg eggs
    • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
    • 2 cups AP flour
    • 1 tsp baking soda
    • 1/2 tsp salt

    marshmallow butter cream

    • 1 1/2 sticks unstalted butter softened
    • 2 cups powdered sugar
    • pinch salt
    • 1 tsp vanilla extract
    • 1 tsp heavy cream
    • 2 cups marshmallow fluff

    chocolate ganache

    • 2 cups semi sweet chocolate chips 1 package
    • 3/4 cup heavy cream


    • Prepare your pan, spray with pan spray and lay a sheet of parchment on it. In a small bowl combine sour cream, eggs and vanilla. In another bowl combine flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
    • in a medium pot over medium heat add butter, cocoa, sugar and coffee
    • Whisk until melted and it just begins to bubble then take it off the heat
    • dump in the flour, baking soda and salt and begin whisking
    • Then add sour cream, egg and vanilla mixture and whisk to combine it all
    • Pour into prepared pan and even out as best you can and place in the oven.
    • It takes about 12-14 minutes and I rotate the pan half way to prevent one side from being higher. Let cool.

    Marshmallow Frosting

    • While the cake is cooking make your frosting. Whip your softened butter until it lightens, about 2 minutes, scraping down the bowl occasionally. Then add powdered sugar and a pinch of salt. Mix to combine. Then add vanilla and heavy cream and whisk until fluffy 2-3 minutes. Add 2 cups of fluff and whip just to combine.
    • Cut cake in half and add frosting on half of the cake and spread.
    • Then flip the other half onto the frosted side. Freeze for 15 minutes to set up.
    • After cake starts to set up, its time to cut. I used rounds, which does leave a lot of scraps that the people in my house were more than happy to take off my hands, but you can easily cut into squares.
    • once again after you have cut out your rounds (or squares) return to the freezer to set up another 15-20 minutes.


    • Take your package of chocolate chips, I used nestle this time because that is all I had in the pantry. Place into a bowl. Heat heavy cream until just scalded (bubbles start to form on the edges but its not to a boil). Dump the cream over the chocolate and let it sit for a minute. Then whisk it smooth. It will be thick almost a pudding consistency.
    • Time to glaze up the cakes. Remove the cakes from the freezer and place about 2 tsp of ganache on the top. Smooth it out and using an off set spatula or spread ganache on the sides.
    • Add sprinkles and place in the refridgerator to set up. ( I placed it in the freezer so I can let it set up quicker in order to cover with plastic wrap for the net day)


    You can use milk chocolate or even white chocolate if you prefer. Both would be yummy!
    I use this chocolate sheet cake recipe for a lot of things, its rich and dense and works well with layering. I’ve been known to keep one made in my freezer for quick dessert….
  • Dessert

    Tropical bananas foster

    When I think of bananas foster, I think of… no not New Orleans… I think of friends, gatherings, perfect endings to perfect days. Lobster boils and smells of the ocean, laughter and tall tales, kids running around way past their bedtimes and the promise of another amazing day ahead. I have so many memories associated with this rich, sweet, boozy dessert that is both warm and cool, smooth and full of texture at the same time, that it just wouldn’t be summer without it.

    So of course I couldn’t let the Fourth of July pass without sharing this dessert that is a go-to of mine during the summer. It never gets old, and it can be as elegant as you want to make it or casual for a week night treat.

    Now that you have this little recipe… play with it. Change the fruit, I’ve done this with apples and brandy and served it over ice cream with nutty granola. Or peaches and grand marnier with crumble topping. I can go on. I hope you add this to your summer entertaining. Enjoy!


    Tropical Bananas Foster

    A tropical twist on a classic new orleans dessert.
    Course Dessert
    Keyword bananas foster, ice cream, Sweet things, Sweets
    Prep Time 10 minutes
    Cook Time 10 minutes
    Servings 4


    • 1 cup shredded coconut
    • 1/2 gallon vanilla ice cream
    • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
    • 1/2 cup brown sugar
    • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
    • pinch of kosher salt
    • 2 bananas
    • 1/4 pineapple peeled, cored, sliced
    • 1/4 cup dark rum I used Bumbu but you can use: bacardi, meyers, captain morgan… (you can also sub with orange juice if you don't want to use alcohol)


    • Pre heat oven to 350 degrees. Spread the shredded coconut on a small sheet tray and place it in the oven and cook for 5-10 minutes. Check after 5 and move around to evenly brown. (don't forget its in there…I've done it LOL) Cool and set aside. I usually do this a day ahead.
    • This is totally optional but looks great. Scoop out about a cup of ice cream and shape into a ball.
    • Roll ice cream into toasted coconut and place into the freezer to firm up.
    • (I am showing picture on 1/2 of the recipe so you can see it better) Place your butter, sugar, cinnamon in a skillet and place over medium heat.
    • Once the butter and sugar start to melt sprinkle in a pinch of salt.
    • Add your bananas and pineapple, cook for about 2 minutes and then flip
    • once flipped get ready to add your rum
    • I used Bumbu, because that is what we had. But a dark bacardi, meyers, captain morgan or whatever your favorite dark rum is fine. You can also sub with pineapple juice or orange juice if you do not want to use alcohol
    • Add you rum. Off the heat if you have a gas stove. Then flame. I did this inside (not recommended be careful) and used a lighter. I usually do it outside at night and my guests always get a kick out of it. Cook until the flames die out and serve.
    • Time to plate it up. I like to place the fruit at the bottom and plop the ice cream on top with a little bit of whipped cream and mint, or a strawberry for extra color. And of course… I love to eat it outside.
  • Dessert,  Sweets

    Quiet Easter this year.

    This year Easter will be quiet. It will be myself and my husband at home. We will be missing the kids, grandkids and family. But we know that this is only temporary and we will be together again soon.

    Until then, we are trying to keep a sense of normal. So we will have our Easter dinner, and our sweets. We will have family together…on FaceTime. We will make plans for the good times ahead and we will know that someday soon we will get those warm hugs from the ones we love the most.

    Today I’m sharing with you a little bit of our normal. A warm hug from me to you. Please enjoy the carrot cake recipe.

    Happy Easter!


    Carrot Cake

    warm spicy carrot cake with cream cheese frosting
    Course Dessert
    Keyword Cake, Sweets
    Prep Time 30 minutes
    Cook Time 40 minutes


    • Stand mixer
    • box grater
    • off set spatula


    • 2 cups AP flour
    • 1 1/2 cups Canola oil
    • 4 lg eggs
    • 1 cup brown sugar
    • 1 cup granulated sugar
    • 2 tsp baking soda
    • 1 tbsp cinnamon ground
    • 1 tsp ginger ground
    • 1/4 tsp cloves ground
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1 tsp vanilla extract
    • 3 medium carrots peeled and grated
    • 1 1/2 cups walnuts chopped

    Cream cheese Frosting

    • 8 oz cream cheese softened
    • 8 oz unsalted butter 2 sticks
    • 3 1/4 cups powdered sugar
    • 1 cup heavy cream
    • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

    Decorating frosting

    • 8 oz unsalted butter 1 stick
    • 1 cup powdered sugar
    • 1/2 tsp vanilla
    • pinch of salt
    • 1 tsp half and half
    • food coloring


    • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare your pans. Spray and line with parchment.
      Gather your ingredients together
    • In a large mixing bowl add, oil, eggs, sugar, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and vanilla. Mix for about 2 minutes until well combined.
    • Add flour and mix
    • Add carrots and walnuts and mix in by hand.
    • Split batter between 2 pans and bake. 350 for about 40 minutes. Rotate pan after 20 minutes.
    • Remove from oven, cool in pan for 5-10 minutes then transfer to rack to cool.
      Make frosting.

    Cream cheese frosting

    • Add cream cheese and butter in mixing bowl with paddle attachment and mix on medium for about 2 minutes, scraping down half way.
    • Add 3 cups of powdered sugar, 1 tsp vanilla and mix for another 2 minutes until light and fluffy. Remove from bowl and set aside.
      In the same bowl add heavy cream, 1/4 cup powdered sugar and 1/2 tsp vanilla and with the whip attachement whip until stiff peaks.
      Fold whipped cream into frosting.

    Decorator frosting

    • place stick of butter into mixing bowl with paddle attachment and whip until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes scraping down half way through.
    • add cup of powdered sugar, pinch of salt and vanilla and whip until well combined and fluffy. Seperate into seperate bowls to add colors.
    • Add desired colors and mix well, set aside.
    • Place one of the cakes on a cake board, or plate. Use a little frosting as glue so the cake will not move. Frost and stack.
    • Once coated place in freezer or fridge to set up.
    • Using colored icing, I piped out "carrots" onto wax paper and froze them for 15 minutes.
    • Once they are frozen, you can pop them off and use to decorate your cake
    • Have fun with it!