Lemon Pistachio Cake With Special Topping

I have, over the past gazillion years, done a lot of baking. This one is a cheater though, so bear with me on this. (I don’t always cheat). It is one of the tastier cakes with the special topping and I know you will make it….over and over again.

  • 1 Betty Crocker lemon cake mix
  • 1 pkg. pistachio instant pudding
  • approximately 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup coffee cream (50/50)
  • 1/2 cup Crisco oil
  • 3 eggs

Beat this together in your electric mixer until completely smooth. Let sit for a couple of minutes. Pour this into a well oiled 8″x 11″ cake pan and place in a 350 degree oven for 45-50 minutes. Check for doneness with a cake tester. Then remove from oven and let completely cool down.


  • 3/4 cup mascarpone cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tbsp, whipping cream
  • 1 lemon, grated for zest
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2-1 cup chopped toasted pistachios

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl until smooth, being careful not to over mix as this will curdle the icing, and ice the cake. Sprinkle the cake with the pistachios.

Serve right away or cover and place in the fridge. I put toothpicks in the 4 corners and covered with plastic wrap. It is such a darned tasty and moist cake to serve your family, company or for a celebration. We did this for Don’s Father’s Day dinner at Kelly’s.

Yup! Now say “damn I can do this”.


Marshmallow Icing

When I was growing up, I would walk past a bakery where, in the display window, they had chocolate cake iced with this marshmallow icing and then poured a chocolate ganache over that and let it set. It was so yummy. You have the cake now so why not take it to the next level?

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 egg whites, stiffly beaten
  • 1/3 tsp. cream of tartar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. clear vanilla (if you have it on hand) or regular will do

Boil and sugar and water and slowly add the egg whites. While still warm, add the cream of tartar and vanilla. Beat this until completely cool in your food processor.

Ice your cake and, if you wish, add the ganache.

OMG! Everyone will want this one for their birthday…every year,


Blueberry Plum Upside Cake

The berries and plums are appearing in the grocery stores now and this is an oldy but goodie. Daughter Suzanne loves this one and so do we.

  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 3 tbsp. butter
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 4 black plums, pitted and thinly sliced
  • 3/4 cup blueberries, washed and drained.

Preheat over to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 inch cake pan. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt and set aside.

In the greased pan, combine 3 tbsp. butter and brown sugar and set in the oven until the butter has melted and begins to bubble. Set aside.

In a large electric mixer, cream together the butter and white sugar until really light and fluffy. Beat in the egg and stir in the vanilla. Add the flour mixture, alternatively with the milk just until incorporated.

Arrange the plum slices around the edges of the cake pan. In the centre of the pan add the blueberries. Carefully add the cake batter, covering the fruit completely being sure not to dislodge any. Bake in the oven for 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool at least 15 minutes before serving with a generous dollop of freshly whipped cream.

Oh yeah it is yummy.

Ginger Almond Cake

Here is a nice cake to serve when special guests will be at your table (yes, this means family as well). Get ready to tickle your taste buds.

  • 7 tbsp. butter, room temperature
  • 2/3 cup plus 1 tbsp. sugar, divided
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 2/3 cup full fat sour cream
  • 2 tbsp. milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. almond extract
  • 1 cup cake flour
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tbsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 cup candied ginger, diced
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp. Baileys liqueur (or water)
  • 1 1/2 cups dried cranberries
  • 2/3 cup icing sugar
  • 1/2 cup toasted sliced almonds

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9 inch springform pan and place a parchment paper disc on bottom.

In your mixer, cream together the butter and 2/3 cup sugar on high until light and really fluffy (about 3-4 minutes). Now add the eggs, sour cream, milk, vanilla and almond extracts. Mix for a full 60 seconds to blend and set aside.

In a separate bowl mix together the flours, baking soda and baking powder. Add this carefully to the egg mixture and combine. Add the ginger and 1 cup cranberries and blend.

Pour this batter into the pan and bake for 40-45 minutes, until tested in the center and it comes out clean. Set on a rack and cool completely. In a bowl, mix together the 1 tbsp. sugar and remaining berries to coat.

In a small bowl, mix the lemon juice, liqueur and icing sugar into a thick glaze and drizzle over the cake surface. Sprinkle the candied berries on top.

Slice and present to your guests….the ones with the eyes popping at the sight of your dessert. Yup! you made it…damn!


Elvis’ Pound Cake

I kid you not. This came about as I had leftover whipping cream and didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do with it. I googled around, found this one, and I don’t remember exactly which one it was, but thank you.

I have been baking for many, many years and I can honestly say this has to be one of the best ones I have made. It is beyond belief. The texture, colour, taste is beyond it. Try it, if you haven’t already and you will see what I mean.

  • 3 cups sugar
  • 1 cup butter
  • 6 large eggs
  • 3 cups sifted flour
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 tbsp. good vanilla

In your electric mixer, put in the sugar and butter all at once and beat on a medium speed for about 2 minutes to get it light and fluffy.

Add the eggs, ONE AT A TIME. It will make a huge difference if you just dump them in. Don’t be tempted please.

Carefully add the flour and whipping cream alternately, starting with flour and ending with flour. The texture is so different even now. Beat for about 2-3  minutes to ensure it is completely smooth. Add the vanilla and mix until incorporated.

This batter is really dense but do not despair.

Generously spray with Pam or like product your Bundt pan. Spoon in the batter making sure to level out the top. Place in a 325 degree oven and bake for 1 hour and 25-28 minutes. Do not be concerned about the browning colour.

Remove from the oven and do not touch for 1/2 – 1 hour. You may have to tap it to remove from the pan and place on a pretty plate.

When you first try it, you will think you can hear him sing. The proper title of this cake is: Elvis Presley’s Whipped Cream Pound Cake.

Nanaimo Soft Chocolate Cakes

This is a super recipe both for chocolate lovers and company. Take a read and you will see.

  • 1 stick of butter (1/2 cup), more for the molds
  • flour for dusting the molds
  • 2- 2 1/2  tsp. flour
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 1/4 cup Nanaimo Bar Liqueur (Forty Creek)
  • 2 whole large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1/8 cup sugar

Butter really well 4-4 oz. ramekins or custard cups, dust with flour and repeat both the butter and flour. Tap to remove excess flour. Set aside.

Place the butter, chocolate and liqueur in a heat proof bowl set over a pot of simmering water and heat until the chocolate has melted stirring with a spatula to keep it silky smooth.

In your electric mixer beat together the eggs, yolks and sugar until light and very thick.

Add the melted chocolate mixture, beating to combine and quickly beat in the flour until just combined and divide evenly in the dishes.

Heat the oven to 450 degrees. Place the molds on a baking sheet and bake until the sides have set but the centers are still soft. This should take about 7-8 minutes.

Invert each mold onto a plate and let sit for 10 seconds. Unmold by lifting one corner of the mold and the cake should fall out onto the plate. Be sure to serve immediately with a generous dollop of whipped cream and a little drizzle of the liqueur.

Serve with a fresh, hot cup of coffee or……

Believe me, you will think you hear the angels singing.


An Irish Pudding Cake

Okay, so I am a little silly sometimes, but being as I am of Irish heritage, I thought this would be a nice dessert to have…anytime you want it.

It is far too easy but it is delicious and besides, you still can proclaim “Damn I did this” just because you did.

  • 1 pkg. Jello Pistachio instant pudding
  • 1 large white cake mix
  • 4-5 drops of green food colouring
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/3 cup salad oil

Now for the hard part: Place all the ingredients into your mixing bowl and beat of a medium speed for about 2-3 minutes.

Grease and flour your favourite 10 inch tube pan and gently pour the batter in, levelling off for a nice finish.

Bake in a 350 oven for about 55-60 minutes. Check the center of the cake for doneness and let cool on a rack for 20 minutes. Remove from the pan. If you wish to be really fancy, use a buttercream icing and sprinkle with a little green sanding sugar.


*Note: you can change the cake mix and pudding to Chocolate, Cherry, Lemon – whatever you feel like. It will be tasty for sure.

Christmas Trays 2021

Anyone who knows me or has followed me over the years, knows at this time of year, I do up trays for give away.  Don makes his Tourtiere pies and sausage rolls and I do the baking on Nov 11. We also pause at 11 a.m. in respect for our freedom then keep going.

This is the list this year. When done, pictures will appear.

  • Christmas Gumdrop cake
  • Whipped Shortbread
  • Pecan Shortbread
  • Butter Tarts
  • Citrus Cocada
  • Citrus Lace Cookies
  • Raspberry Meringues
  • Pralines
  • Spiced Nuts
  • Nuts and Bolts
  • Belem Tarts
  • New Christmas Cake
  • Lemon Shortbread
  • Mincemeat Tarts


Apple Pecan Cake With Your Salted Caramel Sauce

Our dear neighbour brought us a cake like this, only using a different nut, and it was gorgeous. Well, here is our version. Give it a try, you may love it like we do. Just sayin’

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/3 cup butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp. half and half cream
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 – 2 1/2 cups Granny Smith apples, peeled and cut in 1/2 inch cubes,
  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans
  • Pam spray

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place  the first 6 items in a bowl and gently whisk to combine.

In your electric mixer, add the butter, sugar and vanilla and beat for about 3 minutes so to make it light and fluffy (more if needed). Now lightly beat the eggs together adding to the mixer, along with the cream. Mix this really well.

Add the apples and pecans to the flour mix to coat them well and then add this to the wet mixture and mix only until the batter is thick.

Spray a 9 inch springform pan with oil spray. Spoon the batter into the pan, spreading with a spoon to even it all out. Bake in the middle of your oven for 30-35 minutes until it springs back when GENTLY touched in the very centre of the cake.

Set an on a rack to completely cool and run a knife around the outer edge of the cake ring and remove.

Cover the cake until you are ready to serve this to all the drooling mouths at the table.

Salted Caramel Sauce

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream, divided
  • 2 tbsp. room temperature butter
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 tsp. kosher or coarse salt only. Do not use regular table salt.

Put the sugar and water in a medium pot. It will look almost too thick, but will thin out as it cooks. Do not stir this until it becomes golden in colour. This should take about 12-13 minutes.

Remove from the heat and very, very slowly whisk in 1/4 cup of the whipping cream. If you add this too quickly, it will bubble over. Now whisk in the remining cream until all is absorbed then whisk in the butter and vanilla. Now whisk in the salt.

Serve this warm over the cake, adding whipped cream or Chapman’s vanilla ice cream on the side.

Store any remaining sauce (haha) in a jar in the refrigerator and when wanting to use it again, simply warm it up.

The Very Best Pound Cake

I can’t explain to you the unbelievable flavour of this cake. We have company coming and I wanted to add this type of cake to a dessert I am also making.

It is super easy to make but WOW!

  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup sour cream (not the light kind)
  • 2 tsp. lemon flavour (or almond)
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a 9 x 5 inch baking loaf pan.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder and just set aside.

In your electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until really light and fluffy. Scrape the bowl down and then add the eggs, one at a time, making sure to incorporate well.

Add the sour cream and flavouring. Mix until well combined and again, scrape the bowl down.

Add the flour mixture and mix well together, scraping down a few times. Use your spatula to transfer to your baking dish. Carefully smooth the top down.

Bake for about 40-55 minutes (depending on your oven).  Should have a light, golden colour. Test with a skewer.

When done, transfer to a rack to cool down completely. Cover with wrap before the family dives in and eats it all. Will keep in the fridge for a few days.

Bring to room temperature to slice and serve.


Saskatoon Cheesecake Brownies

I have to put this recipe out and tell my son-in-law it is for him. He is the only person we know who goes crazy for saskatoons. Victor, this is for you.

Brownie Batter

  • 1 1/2 cups salted butter
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups cocoa powder
  • eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups flour

To make the brownies, melt the butter in a saucepan over low heat until thoroughly blended.

Remove from the heat and stir in the sugar until well mixed. Add the cocoa powder, stirring until smooth.

Add the eggs and stir well. Now add the flour and stir just until combined. Do not over mix. Pour into a prepared 9 x 13 pan.

Cream Cheese Topping

  • 2 pkgs. cream cheese, softened and cubed
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

In electric mixer, place all n ingredients in the bowl and beat until smooth.

Drop by generous spoonfuls on top of the brownie mixture, followed by the sauce (recipe following). Take a butter knife and swirl the cream cheese mixture and sauce together, creating a pretty marbled look.

Saskatoon Sauce

  • 2 cups fresh or frozen saskatoon berries
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 tbsp. cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice

In a saucepan place the berries an 3/4 cup of water and bring to a slow boil over a medium heat, cooking for 10 minutes. Stir occasionally so as not to burn the bottom the saucepan.

Whisk briskly the cornstarch with the remaining 1/4 cup of water and then rapidly whisk into the berries.

Stir in the lemon juice, cooking until it thickens. remove from he heat. This should be the consistency of a pie filling. If you must add a bit more cornstarch.e for 45-50 minutes until the topping begins to brown  at the edges. The center will still be a bit wobbly. Remove from the oven and let set and cool for about 5 hours.

Store any leftovers in a covered container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days or in the freezer for about 3 months.


*Note. this recipe was in the Look magazine so enjoy.



Cinnamon Loaf With A Streusel Topping

Always looking for new and wonderful things to try, here is one you will probably really like to try….again and again.

  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • pinch of salt
  • 2/3 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a 9″ x 5″ loaf pan with parchment paper. Set aside.

In a large bowl, beat the butter with the sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, 1 at a time, beating to incorporate each one well. Beat in the vanilla.

Whisk together in a large bowl the dry ingredients and alternating with the buttermilk, add the egg mixture. Set aside while you prepare the streusel.

Streusel Topping

  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup cold butter, cut into chunks

In a small bowl, stir together the sugar, cinnamon and flour and, with a pastry blender, cut in the butter until it looks like a bowl of large crumbs.

Now scoop one half of the cake batter into the prepared pan and smooth out, Add a layer of the streusel and then top with the remaining batter. Sprinkle the remaining streusel on top and bake in the oven for about 60-65 minutes. Test to make sure a tester comes out clean.

Cool, in the pan, for about 5 minutes before turning it out on a rack to cool completely.

The streusel running through the center of this loaf is what really makes it so perfect.