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The Wall Ice Cream Cake

It was my birthday recently and I wanted to  make myself a delicious birthday cake. While watching Game of Thrones I realized I had the perfect idea: The Wall Ice Cream Cake! I looked online and I couldn’t find anything like what I had envisioned.

I am a little obsessed with Game of Thrones. I geek out hard over anything GoT related. I even own the graphic novels!

For those who are unfamilar with Game of Thrones, The Wall is basically a huge wall (think Great Wall of China) that is made of rocks and ice.

So, I decided to make an ice cream cake with toffee balls covered in a hard candy shell. The result was delicious!

 

Lets start with the toffee balls (these are amazing and could be used in many different recipes for a flavorful result).

I took a basic toffee sauce recipe and modified it to use healthier ingredients:

3/4 C + 1 tbsp dark brown sugar

2 tbsp raw organic honey

3 tbsp coconut oil

3 tbsp butter

2/3 C heavy cream

1/2 C cake mix (I used a yellow cake mix)

12 graham cracker squares

 

Cake batter:

1 baked cake mix (white)

2 quarts vanilla ice cream, or homemade vanilla ice cream (see appendix for my recipe).

Hard candy:

2 C sugar

2/3 C corn syrup

2/3 C water

1/2 tsp flavoring oil

 

1. Add sugar, honey, coconut oil and butter to a pan, slowly bring to a boil. The butter will melt and the sugar will dissolve. Allow it to boil for a couple of minutes before adding in the heavy cream. Boil for another couple of minutes until it is a thick, creamy sauce.

2. I made the toffee sauce the night before, so I stored it in my refrigerator in a glass container overnight.

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3. Combine 1/2 C toffee sauce, cake mix and graham crackers in a food processor mix until smooth.

4. Using your hands make small DSCF1593[1]balls. Place in a sandwich bag in the freezer.

 

 

Now for the cake base:

1. Bake a white cake mix following package directions, allow to cool. Mix with an electric mixer until a combination of small and large crumbs form:

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2. Divide the cake crumbs into two separate portions. Mix the first portion with the first quart of ice cream on med-low speed. Gently fold in half of the toffee balls. Use spatula to place it in a pre-frozen 9×13 glass dish. Place the dish in the freezer and repeat the process. DSCF1595[1] DSCF1596[1]

 

3.Let freeze for at least an hour. Remove from freezer and divide the ice cream mix into quarters. DSCF1600[1]

4. Carefully stack the quarters and place crushed caramel candies between each layer if desired.

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5. Use whipped cream as a “caulk”.

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6. Now you could stop here with a beautiful snow themed ice cream cake (this could even work for Frozen!) but I really wanted to add in a little something extra that looks like ice so I decided to create a delicious vanilla butternut flavor hard candy topping.

Hard candy topping: (This recipe is based upon one found in the beautiful SprinkleBakes: Dessert Recipes to Inspire Your Inner Artist cookbook

2 C sugar

2/3 C corn syrup

2/3 C water

1/2 tsp vanilla butternut flavor oil (this flavor was great but in the future I probably would have chosen a clear flavor).

1. Stir the sugar, corn syrup and water in a saucepan.

2. Boil over high heat until the hard crack stage is reached (302 F) DSCF1608[1]

3. Stir in the flavoring oil, (carefully!)

4. Using a wooden spoon gently glide the hard candy mix over the top of the ice cream. It will harden rapidly.

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Place back in the freezer before you cut it up to enjoy!

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Appendix: Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream

I doubled this recipe to make enough ice cream for the wall

1 2/3 C heavy cream

1 1 /4 C almond milk

1/2 C sugar

1 1/2 tbsp vanilla extract

Combine ingredients in a glass bowl. Place into ice cream maker as usual. Repeat to make enough ice cream for the wall.

 

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Devil’s Trap Brownies

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I have been completely enthralled with this  season of True Detective. Matthew McConaughey is amazing as Detective Rust Cohle. Normally it would be impressive just to see an actor convincingly play one character as complicated as Rust but to see the differences between 1990s Rust and present day Rust left me in awe of his talent. Where is the Matthew I remember from How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days?! haha.

In honor of my latest obsession I have decided to create a special treat:

Devil’s Trap Brownies!

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The base of the brownie is spiced up a bit with some good ol’ Jameson Whiskey. I figured Rust would appreciate that. The frosting is also, guess what??! , flavored with Jameson. The result is a delicious, unique taste that I’m sure our favorite detectives would appreciate.

I made the Devil’s Trap but sculpting with caramel! I am in LOVE with the final result.

My favorite part of this project? It doesn’t have to look perfect, in fact it isn’t supposed to! So, each one of my Devil’s Traps looks different but that is how they are on the show, they don’t all look the same.

Ingredients needed:

Caramel Devil’s Trap

  • 1 1/14 C sugar
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt (I used Himalayan Salt)
  • 3/4 C cold water

Brownie

  • 2/3 C unsweetened baking chocolate
  • 1/3 C semi sweet chocolate
  • 1 C butter
  • 1/4 C Jameson whiskey
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 C cocoa powder
  • 1/3 C cake flour

Smooth as Whiskey Chocolate Frosting

  • 1/2 C heavy cream
  • 1/4 C Jameson whiskey
  • 1/4 tsp instant espresso powder
  • 1 C semi sweet chocolate chips

Normally I guess you could finish my making the caramel sculptures but they are a little labor intensive so I decided to start with those

I used a silicone baking mat with cooking spray on it but you could also use parchment paper.

1. Combine the sugar, salt and water in a medium saucepan. Stir on low until the sugar is absorbed. Then increase heat to high until it starts to boil. I then dropped down the heat to about a 6 or 7 on my oven. I gently swirrled the pan a couple of times while it was boiling. Do not stir.

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2. Once the caramel is a golden amber color I placed the bottom of the pan in another pan full of very cold water (be careful with this step!) to stop the cooking process. Then, I returned the pan to the stovetop on a low heat setting to where the caramel was melted but no where close to boiling. This gave me ample time to work with the caramel.

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3. There are three basic shapes you will need to draw with the caramel:

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Through much trial and error I found it easiest to take the caramel in a spoon and slowly drag it across my mat to make the desired shapes, going over the same area several times as needed.

4. Once the pieces have cooled hold together piece 1 and 2 to where the portions circled in red are touching each other. Then (being very careful not to touch your hand!) use the caramel to “wrap” around those joints and once it is cooler gently press the caramel to really get those pieces snug.

The nice thing is that any extra “strings” just make it look more real!truedet2

5. Finally, take piece three and repeat by making it the last joint in the trap by joining it to the other ends that are circled on my diagram.

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Brownies

1. Preheat over to 300 F. Grease a 9x 13 inch pan.

2. Combine chocolate, Jameson, and butter in a pan. Turn heat to medium low and allow ingredients to melt stirring constantly. Remove from heat once melted.

3. In a large bowl, add eggs and beat with an electric mixer on medium until the eggs turn light yellow. This process will take about five minutes. Add sugar and mix on low.

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4. Add sugar and melted chocolate mix to the egg/ sugar group. Blend on low until smooth. Add the cocoa powder and flour and mix on low until completely combined.

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5. Pour batter into pan and smooth with spatula. Bake for about 35 + minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.

Smooth as Whiskey Chocolate Frosting

1. Bring heavy cream and Jameson to a boil. Pour on top of the chocolate and espresso powder. Stir until melted. I gave it a few minutes to cool and thicken. Then, I poured it over the brownies. The frosting was still liquid enough that I could smooth it out but tipping the pan. Sprinkle with cocoa powder to add a “dirt” look.

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2. Place in refrigerator for several hours.

 

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Hawktails and Hawkdogs!

I decided to make a special drink for the game and of course it had to have Skittles.

For this drink you will need:

1 bottle of vodka

1 bottle of tonic water

Blue and green Skittles (about 20 each)

Fun Dip (optional)

1. Split the bottle of vodka into two bottles. Soak the blue and green Skittles in separate bottles overnight.

2. Strain the drink through a cheesecloth.

3. Rim the martini glass in blue fun dip

4. Add in the vodka and tonic water.

5. Enjoy!

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Another fun idea I had was to take a basic bun recipe and add food coloring in to make those a part of the theme as well

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Seahawks Caramel Popcorn

Caramel popcorn is one of my favorite treats so I decided to make a special treat just for the big game. My favorite part? I decided to add in mini marshmallows to the mix and it combined with the caramel in such a way that it was easy to eat and didn’t leave you worried you were about to lose a filling!

You will need:

Popcorn

1 cup cashews

1 cup team color M&Ms

1 cup mini marshmallows

2 tbsp sprinkles in team colors

For the caramel:

1 cup butter

2 cups brown sugar

1/2 cup light corn syrup

1 tsp salt (I LOVE the taste of Himalayan salt)

1 tsp vanilla extract

1. Pop the popcorn (I made enough to fill a large bowl). Place in a large baking dish.

2. Toast the cashews on medium heat with a little bit of oil until they turn golden and start to smell wonderful.

3. Preheat the oven to 250F

4. Make the caramel. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan. Add in the corn syrup, brown sugar and salt. Stir continuously as you bring it to a boil. Then allow it to boil for about 4 minutes without stirring it. Remove from heat and add it the vanilla and baking soda.

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5. Pour the caramel over the popcorn, add in the marshmallows, M&Ms, cashews and sprinkles. I sprinkled on about another teaspoon of Himalayan salt on the top for added flavor. Stir is all together, but it doesn’t have to be perfectly mixed yet. Place in oven.

6. Remove from oven every 15 minutes to stir until it has been baking for about an hour. (Some of the M&Ms might melt but for the most part they stayed together for me). Place in a large bowl and enjoy!

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Gushers Ice Cream

Ever since I found out Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman is a huge fan of Gushers I decided to make a dessert in his honor. I finally decided on Gushers Ice Cream and, after tasting it, I am really glad I did! Fresh out of the ice cream maker it is delicious but, surprisingly, it gets ever better after a day or two in the freezer! The Gushers start to absorb a little bit of the moisture so it completely changes their texture! The outside becomes softer and chewier while further towards the center it has more of a bite to it. I loved this because this texture change is one of my FAVORITE things about peppermint ice cream.

This ice cream is easy to make. I don’t mess around with boiling the ice cream, because I get delicious results without wasting my time on that.

So, Richard Sherman, I think you are awesome AND the best cornerback in the NFL and this delicious ice cream is dedicated to you!

For this recipe you will need:

1 2/3 cup heavy cream (one 16 oz container should have just a little bit more than you need)

1 1/4 cup milk (I used soymilk)

1/3 cup sugar

1/3 cup cake mix

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

About 20 Gushers

Sprinkles (optional)

Instructions:

1. Place Gushers in the refrigerator (I put mine in for an afternoon)

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2. Mix the heavy cream, milk, sugar, cake mix and vanilla extract.

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3. Pour into ice cream maker

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4. Add in Gushers and sprinkles once the desired creaminess is achieved. And NOT BEFORE. The ice cream won’t cream with a bunch of heavy stuff in it!

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5. Enjoy fresh and frozen! When it is fresh be sure to chew the Gushers slowly, they can be a little hard before the soak up the moisture in the freezer.

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Suprise Team Spirit S’mores Cupcakes

 

For the Superbowl I made a bunch of delicious treats that I am really proud of. So, I apologize in advance but I guess the next few posts from me will be like a victory lap for the Seahawks.

Before the game some people told me they would be rooting for the Broncos. I knew most of the food I would be making would be blue and green. Therefore, I decided OF COURSE I had to make something that looked neutral but was actually a sneaky way of incorporating blue and green. But, I promise, these are so good people won’t stay mad at you for long. How can you go wrong with graham cracker crust, chocolate frosting and a marshmallow filling?

You will need:

For the graham cracker crust:

1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 30 crackers)

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 melted butter

One bag of semi-sweet chocolate

For the cupcakes:

1 1/4 C cake flour

1/2 C graham cracker crumbs

2 tbsp cinnamon

2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

3/4 cup milk

2 tsp vanilla extract

3/4 cup white sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

2 egg whites, 1 whole egg

Marshmallow frosting

2 tbsp butter

1 jar (7 oz) marshmallow creme

2 cup powdered sugar

2 tbsp milk

Chocolate frosting

1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate

1/2 cup heavy cream

1. Preheat oven to 350F and place cupcake liners in the muffin tin.

2. Mix 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs, 1/4 cup brown sugar and 1/4 melted butter together.

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3. Use a small glass to press the crumbs down into the tin

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Do you like my football nails? :)

4. Place 2 tsp chocolate chips in each cupcake

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5. Place in oven and cook for about five minutes until the edges of the crust turn golden (note: the chocolate will not melt)

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6. While the crust is cooking prepare the cake mix. Sift the 1 1/4 C cake flour, 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs, 2 teaspoons baking powder, 2 tbsp cinnamon, and 1/4 tsp salt.

7. Combine 3/4 cup milk and 2 tsp vanilla extract

8. Cream the 3/4C white sugar, 1/2 C brown sugar and 1 stick of butter until fluffy

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9. Alternate with the flour mixture and the milk mixture and mix well. DSCF1249

10. Beat in 2 egg whites and 1 whole egg into the mixture.

11. Fold in 1/4 cup mini marshmallows and pour the mixture  into the cupcake liners.

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12. Bake for about 15 to 20 minutes until they test done with a toothpick.

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13. Allow them to cool completely. While you are letting them cool prepare the marshmallow filling:

Marshmallow frosting:

1. Combine 2 tbsp  butter, one 7 oz container of marshmallow creme , 2 C powdered sugar, 1 tsp vanilla. Beat until well blended. Add in the milk until desired consistency is reached. (It should flow easily). Add your team colors and mix until desired color is achieved.

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2. Using the appropriate tip insert the frosting into the cupcakes once they are completely cooled

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Chocolate frosting:

Place 1/2 cup chocolate in a medium bowl. Bring 1/2 cup heavy cream to a boil. Pour it over chocolate and stir until smooth. Wait about two minutes while it thickens. DSCF1276 DSCF1278

Place in the refrigerator to allow the frosting to set up

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Enjoy!

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Seahawks Skittles Cookies

I have a whole list of desserts I plan to make for the Superbowl. I decided to make these a bit earlier, because I find there are just a few too many Broncos fans at my work. (I mean seriously, I work in Washington!)

I wanted to make a special treat in honor of one of my favorite players, Marshawn Lynch. As every Seahawks fan knows, he loves his Skittles.

WARNING RANT STARTING

OKAY YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED…

I love watching him play, he makes the game worth watching for me. And I even have more respect for him now after his “non-interview interview”. For those of you who don’t know, Lynch was required by the NFL to talk to the media for 45 minutes. People in the media were upset because he only talked for six of those minutes. They insinuated all sorts of things about him after that, but as far as I’m concerned he has stated before he doesn’t want to talk to the media and he doesn’t enjoy doing it. So, whats the problem? There are plenty of other players who love the spotlight so let them have it. Let Marshawn let his playing speak for itself.

RANT OVER

Okay, back to his delicious cookie recipe.

When I came up with this recipe I had no idea how it would taste. I didn’t know how the Skittles would hold up in the oven and I didn’t know how the flavor would combine with the brown sugar shortbread base. But I was pleasantly surprised with the result. JUST KIDDING, I was SHOCKED. Hot out of the oven they are AMAZING, they taste like my favorite blueberry toaster pastry. Yum!

I texted by BF “OMG! Best cookies EVER! Fake sick and come home early!”

Not even kidding. These will be a hit at your Superbowl party! Looks like I will have to make more for my party!

 

What you will need for this recipe:

  • One large package of Wild Berry Skittles to get 1/4 cup blue/green skittles
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt ( I almost always use Himalayan salt
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup butter (room temp. I left mine out for 25 minutes)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • blue and green sprinkles (optional)

1. Separate Wild Berry Skittles into Seahawk and non-Seahawk colors. By using the wild berry package you avoid the green apple skittles which I think would not go well in this recipe.

 

(I deny that there are less Skittles in this bowl than there should be!)

 

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I found this sprinkles pack at Fred Meyer that had the perfect colors (just be sure to throw out those nasty Broncos colors… haha!)

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2. In a medium bowl whisk together the flour and salt

3. Use an electric mixer to cream the butter and brown sugar on medium speed. DSCF1162

Umm seriously… doesn’t that just look delicious?… mmm… sugar and butter!

4. Add in egg and vanilla and continue on medium speed until it is well mixed

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5. Add in flour one 1/2 cup at a time, scraping down the mixture with a spatula each time.

6. Add in sprinkles (I used 1 tsp each color) and Skittles

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AHHHH WHAT IS THAT BRONCOS COLOR DOING IN THERE?!?!?!? OUT! OUT! OUT!

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Okay I cheated and tried the dough… so good!

7. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for one hour.

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8.Preheat oven to 325 F

9.Roll out dough into Skittles thickness on a floured surface. (By that I mean you will find as you are rolling it out that at a certain point the Skittles will want to pull and move around, that is the thickness I left it at). Cut into football shapes if desired. Adding in more sprinkles and Skittles as needed.

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10.  Bake for about ten minutes (I stopped once I noticed the Skittles starting to melt), and allow to cool on a cooling rack.

11. Enjoy while cookies are still warm!

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UPDATE! I made these again for the Superbowl and this time I decided to cut them diagonally, like so:

First I cut them into straight one inch rows:

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Then I cut them diagonally:

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These turned out great and were much easier to cut!

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The final product

Peppermint Barkspawn

I have another Dragon Age themed recipe for you!

Another?! Yes, I know I should expand my horizons or whatever but when I read this book:

 

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I came up with a huge list of possible dessert ideas! Now you know you can expect many more Dragon Age posts in the future.

Honestly, I mainly made this dessert because I loved the name. Peppermint Barkspawn. Teehee

For those of you that don’t know, darkspawn are basically tainted humanoid creatures that worship an Archdemon. Or, as I like to think of them, the Foot Soldiers of Evil.

I figured out the name for this recipe before I figured out what I wanted to do. I could have made a recipe that looked like darkspawn. But, seriously, look at them, they look disgusting:

darkspawn

Instead I decided to making the dessert look like the ground that they sometimes seem appear to come out of in the video games. Which I always thought was funny because it isn’t actually true.

Yes, I know this recipe is a bit of a stretch in terms of relationship to the video game, BUT the name is awesome and the dessert is delicious! And I promise you won’t get tainted by eating it!

The recipe is basically peppermint bark but the bottom layer is a smooth fudge layer that really brings simple peppermint bark to the next level. Also, I love textures and this one is really cool with a crumbly, creamy top layer, and crisp middle layer and a smooth fudge bottom layer.

For this recipe you will need:

  • 1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter
  • 1/3 C + 2 TBSP evaporated milk
  • 1/4 C brown sugar
  • 12 oz semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 12 oz white chocolate chips
  • 2 C powdered sugar
  • 1/2 C crushed peppermint
  • 5 graham cracker squares
  1. Use a silicone baking mat, or line a 9-by-16 inch pan with foil and butter the foil.
  2. In a medium saucepan melt together the butter, 1/3 C evaporated milk and brown sugar. Bring to a boil while constantly stirring. Bring heat to about med-low (the mixture should be boiling gently. Do not stir for five minutes. (Okay, okay I couldn’t resist and I stirred it a couple of times!) Here is what the gentle boil looks like: DSCF1054
  3. Remove from heat and stir in semi-sweet chocolate and powdered sugar (1/2 cup at a time). Whisk until smooth:                               DSCF1057                                                                            You’ll notice I got some liquid separation, which is fine. As it cooled more of the liquid absorbed.
  4. Spread into the pan, it should look like chocolate ice cream at this point:DSCF1059
  5. Refrigerate overnight or for at least three hours. You’ll notice now that it has cooled there was still a little bit of liquid separation. Trust me, it still tastes great. Sorry, if it bothers you, but I’ve always been more of a “taste before beauty” person myself. DSCF1060
  6. Crush peppermint candies in a food processor until they are about this consistency: DSCF1063
  7. Melt white chocolate in a microwave safe bowl for 2 to 3 minutes until you achieve a nice, creamy, melted consistency. Be sure to stir every 20 seconds. DSCF1070
  8. WHILE you are melting the chocolate, cut off about one inch strips from each end of the fudge, and mix that together with 2 tbsp evaporated milk and 4 graham crackers in the food processor.                                           DSCF1065DSCF1066
  9. Add in peppermint candies to the melted white chocolateDSCF1071                                                                          (Pro tip: use a wooden spoon instead of a spatula so you can’t get all of it out so you “have” to eat the delicious leftover melted chocolate with your finger)
  10. Spread the peppermint chocolate mix in an even layer over the fudgeDSCF1075
  11. Sprinkle, then press, the crumbled fudge topping into the white chocolate.DSCF1077
  12. For an extra “dirt” look grind up another graham cracker in the food processor and press in                                                               DSCF1080
  13. Enjoy while playing your favorite video game!

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Oghren’s Favorite Rock Cakes

I decided to do my first blog post about my favorite video game, Dragon Age. It will always be my first love, because before I played Dragon Age, I didn’t think it was possible for me to enjoy playing a video game. And Oghren was an awesome, hilarious, badass character so I thought I would make a recipe in tribute to him.

Oghren

This recipe is like a basic rock cake, except it uses chocolate instead of fruit and I added in beer to really add to the flavor. The end result tastes like the combination of a cookie and bread, so it has the versatility of being used as either dessert or as breakfast with some tea. (Or ale if you are Oghren.)

Now I know what you are thinking, “hold up, hold up, hold up… Oghren would never approve of wasting beer in baked goods.”

I admit you are probably right, but know this, this recipe only uses 1/3 C of beer so there is plenty left to hand him before he goes “beserker” all over you with his badass battleaxe.

So, back to the recipe. I had just woken up from a cat nap, and I decided to do something productive (ie bake delicious chocolate goods ready for me to consume all week.) So, I came up with this recipe, and went back to being lazy. DSCF1002 Look at how pissed my cat is that I left him!

For this recipe you will need:

  • 1 1/2cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 C butter
  • 1/3 C brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1/2 C semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 C dark beer
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Either use a silicone baking mat or grease two baking sheets
  2. In a large mixing bowl, sift together flour and baking powder. Cut in butter and mix on a low setting to start, then mix with your hands you get the texture of fine breadcrumbs.                                                                    DSCF1008DSCF1010
  3. Stir in brown sugar, cocoa powder, and chocolate.
  4. Add in beer and egg and mix until it just starts to bind together to form a moist but firm dough. (Add flour or beer as needed to get the right texture). DSCF10122
  5. Form dough into about one inch mounds and place onto cookie sheet
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  6. Bake for about 15-20 minutes until they appear darker and firm. DSCF1025
  7. Enjoy remaining beer!                   DSCF1022

 

This recipe made about 20 rock cakes for me.