Black Forest Cake

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Ingredients

  • 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk 
  • 1/2 cup kirschwasser
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 3 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 pinch sal1 teaspoon strong brewed coffee
  • 2 (14 ounce) cans pitted Bing cherries, drained
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon kirschwasser
  • 1 (1 ounce) square semisweet chocolate

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line the bottoms of two 8 inch round pans with parchment paper circles. Sift together flour, cocoa, baking soda and 1 teaspoon salt. Set aside.
  2. Cream shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Beat in flour mixture, alternating with buttermilk, until combined. Pour into 2 round 8 inch pans.
  3. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Cool completely. Remove paper from the cakes. Cut each layer in half, horizontally, making 4 layers total. Sprinkle layers with the 1/2 cup kirshwasser.
  4. In a medium bowl, cream the butter until light and fluffy. Add confectioners sugar, pinch of salt, and coffee; beat until smooth. If the consistency is too thick, add a couple teaspoons of cherry juice or milk. Spread first layer of cake with 1/3 of the filling. Top with 1/3 of the cherries. Repeat with the remaining layers.
  5. In a separate bowl, whip the cream to stiff peaks. Beat in 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and 1 tablespoon kirshwasser. Frost top and sides of cake. Sprinkle with chocolate curls made by using a potato peeler on semisweet baking chocolate.

Apple Pie

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Ingredients

  • 1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust pie
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 8 Granny Smith apples – peeled, cored and sliced

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Melt the butter in a saucepan. Stir in flour to form a paste. Add water, white sugar and brown sugar, and bring to a boil. Reduce temperature and let simmer.
  2. Place the bottom crust in your pan. Fill with apples, mounded slightly. Cover with a lattice work crust. Gently pour the sugar and butter liquid over the crust. Pour slowly so that it does not run off.
  3. Bake 15 minutes in the preheated oven. Reduce the temperature to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Continue baking for 35 to 45 minutes, until apples are soft.

Caramel Macchiato Cheesecake

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Ingredients

  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 (8 ounce) container sour cream
  • 1/4 cup brewed espresso or strong coffee
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • pressurized whipped cream
  • caramel ice cream topping

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly coat a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Mix together the graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, and 2 tablespoons of sugar until well combined. Press into the bottom of the prepared springform pan, and 1 inch up the sides. Bake in preheated oven for 8 minutes, then remove to cool on a wire rack.
  3. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).
  4. Beat the softened cream cheese in a large bowl with an electric mixer until fluffy. Gradually add 1 cup of sugar, beating until blended. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in sour cream, espresso and vanilla. Pour batter into the baked and cooled crust.
  5. Bake cheesecake in the preheated oven for 1 hour and 5 minutes; then turn the oven off, partially open the door and allow the cheesecake to rest for 15 minutes more. Remove from the oven, and run a knife around the edges. Cool cheesecake on a wire rack to room temperature, then cover the springform pan with plastic wrap, and chill in the refrigerator for 8 hours.
  6. To serve, cut the cheesecake into wedges and garnish each slice with whipped cream and caramel sauce.