Ready Up for Holidays – 12 Desserts!

Southern Living has just the best holiday cakes, pies and desserts. Each year I make at least one of theirs. My favorite is their Ambrosia Cheesecake which I will post following next. This is one that I will make during the holidays this year. Check out the link for their 12 cakes (easy) for some delish ideas for your holiday desserts.

Chocolate, Bourbon and Pecan Cake

Chocolate Velvet Cake Batter
Bourbon Buttercream Frosting
2 3/4 cups chopped pecans, toasted
1 (4-ounce) semisweet chocolate bar, chopped

Spoon batter evenly into 3 greased and floured 9-inch square pans. Bake at 350° for 25 to 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire rack 10 minutes. Remove from pans, and let cool completely on wire rack.Spread Bourbon Buttercream Frosting between layers and on top and sides of cake, sprinkling 1/4 cup pecans on top of frosting for each of the layers. Press remaining 2 cups pecans into sides of cake. Sprinkle chopped semisweet chocolate bar over top of cake.

Yield: Makes 12 servings

Chocolate Velvet Cake Batter
The addition of hot water at the end of this recipe makes for an exceptionally moist cake.

1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate morsels
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 (16-ounce) package light brown sugar
3 large eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 (8-ounce) container sour cream
1 cup hot water
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Melt semisweet chocolate morsels in a microwave-safe bowl at HIGH for 30-second intervals until melted (about 1 1/2 minutes total time). Stir until smooth.

Beat butter and brown sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer, beating about 5 minutes or until well blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Add melted chocolate, beating just until blended.

Sift together flour, baking soda, and salt. Gradually add to chocolate mixture alternately with sour cream, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat at low speed just until blended after each addition. Gradually add 1 cup hot water in a slow, steady stream, beating at low speed just until blended. Stir in vanilla. Use immediately, following directions for desired cake.

Yield: Makes about 8 1/2 cups

Bourbon Buttercream Frosting
This recipe goes with Chocolate-Bourbon-Pecan Cake

1 cup butter, softened
2 (16-ounce) packages powdered sugar
1/3 cup bourbon
1/3 cup milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; gradually add powdered sugar alternately with bourbon and milk, beating at low speed until blended after each addition. Stir in vanilla extract.

Yield: Makes about 6 cups

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