Welcoming the Holidays with a Hostess Cake!

So, I know I’ve been a way awhile and you’re probably wondering, “Where in the world is Brooke?”  Okay, okay, so you’re probably not that interested, but I’d like to just to give you a quick breakdown of what I’ve been up to, so I don’t feel as bad about my little hiatus!

Since the beginning of the year I’ve been juggling two jobs and going to school full time.  I am one blessed girl with all these amazing opportunities and to be quite honest, I enjoy being a busy bee, as it makes my down time that much more enjoyable, although I do miss baking, a lot!  With that being said, I’ve decided to find time in my crazy weekly schedule to do a little of what I love so that I am finding a nice balance to school, work, and fun time!  I’ve also realized how much I miss blogging as I loved writing a piece or two every week, connecting with my followers, and just plain sharing recipes and other yummy or cute things!  So, here I am.  Back where I started over 3 years ago and I couldn’t be more excited to continue my blogging journey on The Sweet Prima Donna!

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For my first post back I’ve decided to share with you a holiday themed post to get The Sweet Prima Donna in holiday mode!

Well, of course the winter holiday season for most in the States is started off with Thanksgiving, which is definitely one of my favorite holidays!  I love getting together with family and friends to simply enjoy one another’s company, indulge in delicious food, and just relax!  As a college student, I found the short Thanksgiving break I had as such a treat and as a catalyst to get me through the last couple weeks of the semester. I started school this week refreshed from last week’s festivities!

photo 1

(My sister, cousins and myself)

photo 3

(The kids table)

photo 2

(My Mom and I)

photo 4

(Thanksgiving Ready!)

This Thanksgiving was fabulous, as always, spent with my sweet family at my Aunt’s house.  I often feel blessed, but this year was especially special as I felt extra blessed.  I have an amazing family, great friends, educational opportunities that will allow me to do great things in the world, and a sweet boyfriend who means the world.  All and all, I would say this year has been awesome and I couldn’t ask for more!

Let me rephrase my last sentence actually.  I couldn’t have asked for anything more except for more cake, there is never enough cake.  Especially HOSTESS CAKE!!!!  I honestly scrolled through hundreds of hundreds of cake ideas I could make and out of those hundreds I just knew I had to make a Hostess Cake because what is more delicious than rich chocolate cake with sweet marshmallow filling all topped with creamy milk chocolate buttercream and indulgent semi sweet ganache… um, yum!!!

Without further ado, here is the most glorious cake.  Enjoy!

 

photo

(Hostess Cake – Photo by Me)

Hostess Cake

Chocolate Cake Recipe (One of my favorites!)

Original recipe – here at Portuguese Girls Cooks

2 cups sugar

1 3/4 cups all purpose flour

3/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup buttermilk (1 cup reduced fat milk mixed with 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar. Allow to sit for 10 minutes before using)

1 cup hot coffee

1/2 cup canola oil (I used vegetable oil)

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Flour pans using flour and vegetable shortening.  Set aside.

2.  In the bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, add sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  Mix until well combined.

3.  Add buttermilk, hot coffee, oil, eggs, and vanilla.  Mix on medium speed for 1-2 minutes until well combined.

4.  Divide batter amongst cake pans and bake for 30-35 minutes or until tooth pick is clean.  Let cake cool in pans for 20 minutes before removing cakes from pans and setting on cooling rack.

I used two 9″ cake pans and it took about 30 minutes. 

Marshmallow Filling

Original Recipe – Sally’s Baking Addiction

1/4 cup salted butter, softened to room temp

2/3 cup marshmallow creme (or fluff)

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

3/4 cup confectioner’s sugar

2 tablespoons heavy cream

Directions

1.  Using a handheld or standing mixing with paddle attachment, beat butter, marshmallow creme, vanilla, and cream on medium speed until completely smooth.

2.  Add confectioner’s sugar slowly on low, then increase to high and beat for one minute.

3.  Add more confectioner’s sugar if needed.  (I didn’t need to, but I would recommend if you want a thicker consistency to add it a tablespoon at a time)

4.  Set aside.

Milk Chocolate Buttercream (Click here for recipe)

Semi Sweet Chocolate Ganache

My recipe

1 bag (12 oz) semi sweet chocolate morsels

1 cup heavy cream

Directions

1.  Pour chocolate morsels and heavy cream into a heavy bottom pan.  Turn stove top on low/medium.

2.  Continue to stir chocolate and cream until fully melted, combined and smooth.

3.  Take off stove and allow to cool.  Cool until it has thickened a bit, but still thin enough to pour over the top.  (For this cake I used only half the amount of ganache I made)

To put the cake together simply top one of the cakes with the marshmallow filling, then put the second cake on top.  Frost the entire cake with the buttercream frosting and then pour the ganache over the top.  Remember, go slow on the ganache!  It can run a little fast and get all over the place if you’re not careful.

I also dislike the fact that I have to make everyone aware this is NOT low calorie or healthy, but hey, it’s the holidays and you should enjoy yourself and eat only the most scrumptious food, so indulge my friends!

I hope you enjoy and I’ll see you back here soon!

sugar

P.S- Stay tuned for next week!  Starting The Sweet Prima Donna Holiday Series with some yummy cookies that will be perfect for your Christmas gatherings and festivities!

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