Two for One

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Nashville’s NewsChannel 5 gave me the chance to do a “Two-for”….two recipes on one show for Talk of The Town. Click here to view. Since it was Valentine’s Day of course I made desserts! It made sense to pick my guys favorites and feature them. The first was Fudge Pie – Ireland’s Style. In my college and high school days I worked as a waitress at the legendary old Ireland’s Restaurant. Steak and biscuits were the claim to fame, but the Fudge Pie was what kept people coming back. I won’t even pretend to have the original recipe, but I ate it often enough to think my recipe is pretty darn close. The secret is the chocolate – if you use the unsweetened kind and add sugar the pie has that fabulous little sugar crunch.

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The second dessert I made was my Mom’s Strawberry Cake. She made it for us every year on Valentine’s Day. The recipe is probably a throwback to the 60’s or even 50’s with the pink color coming from jello. I know that sounds weird, but the cake is moist and delicious and the icing is made with strawberry juice! Unfortunately, when Meryll and I made it together on air she ended up “wearing” a bit of icing. But the pink was very fetching – it could have been worse! I love cooking on Talk of The Town, it’s the friendly place to be. I’d make them a cake any day – but I’d rather make it with them. In case you missed it – here are the two recipes. Don’t wait until next Valentine’s Day to give them a try. Delicious!

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Strawberry Cake (Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

 1 box white cake mix

1 box (3 oz) strawberry jello

3 eggs

½ cup oil (I used canola)

½ cup water

1 pkg frozen strawberries - defrosted

For Icing

1 box (16 oz)  confectioners sugar

6 Tbsp butter, softened

Reserved juice from strawberries

5 to 6 Tbsp milk or half &  half to thin icing to spreadable consistency

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Drain strawberries reserving juice.

Cut or mash the strawberries into smaller pieces, again reserving any juice.

In a large bow, combine cake mix, jello, eggs, oil and water. Mix at medium speed or hand mix for about 2 minutes to thoroughly combine.

Gently mix in strawberries. Reserve juice.

Spray two 8 inch round cake pans with baking spray.

Divide batter evenly between pans.

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes.

Let cakes cool completely before icing.

To make icing

In a mixing bowl combine sugar, butter and strawberry juice. If the icing isn’t a spreadable consistency add milk or half & half 1 Tbsp at a time.

* Frozen berries must have contained more juice in the past – I only got about 2 Tbsp and had to add about 4 to 5 Tbsp of half & half to make icing spreadable. My mother’s recipe said to pour any remaining juice over the cakes after making the icing, but there certainly wasn’t any!  Still moist and so very delicious!

Fudge Pie (Printable Recipe)

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 This pie has always been the gold standard in our house. My mom made it without a crust and is fairly appalled that I’ve added one, but we like it that way. Crust or not, feel free to adopt this as your “house pie.” It’s best with peppermint ice cream. If you can’t find peppermint ice cream, make your own by mixing crushed peppermint candies in vanilla ice cream.

Ingredients

1 stick butter

2 squares (1 oz each) of unsweetened baking chocolate

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

¼ cup flour

1 tsp vanilla

Piecrust (hint: It’s fine to get the frozen ones in aluminum pans, but the piecrusts that you unroll and place in the pan are better and no more trouble if you own a pie pan. Find them with biscuits and cookie dough in the grocery store.)

Directions

In a double boiler over medium-high heat, melt butter and chocolate. (hint: You can invent a double boiler by putting a small saucepan in a larger one that is filled about 1/3 of the way up with water.)

Remove from heat to cool slightly.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix sugar and eggs together. Add a little of the melted chocolate mixture to the egg mixture and stir together. (You do this to keep from having chocolate scrambled eggs, which happens if you add the eggs to the hot chocolate.)

Add all of egg mixture to the chocolate and stir to combine.

Mix in flour and vanilla.

Pour into piecrust and bake for about 30 minutes, until set.

Serves 6 to 8

© Deer One Publishing 2018