A slow cake that’s worth waiting for

WELL WE HAVE BOTH BEEN AWAY from blog-land for quite some time. Life has gotten crazy for the both of us! Sarah just recently moved into a new house, and I have had the pleasure of experiencing my two and a half year old getting her molars in (not pretty). I finally return triumphant with a recipe that I have wanted to share on here since the first time I made it. That first taste was absolutely pure heaven. Add this to the list of recipes for which a small serving goes a long way – this cake is extremely rich and decadent. If it weren’t, would I love it so much?? I think not. 😉 It is a cake that cooks in the slow cooker, and let me say, before I actually made it, I was extremely skeptical that it would even work. A cake from the slow cooker? Isn’t it going to be too moist in there for it to cook properly? By the time it had been in for a couple of hours, I had completely changed my mind. What a great idea! And how fabulous to do this to make a cake in the summer time without having to fire up the oven when it’s ninety degrees outside. Don’t be fooled by the title; the “pudding” part refers to the gooey texture of the cake when its done (there’s no pudding in the recipe at all). This is definitely for all those cream cheese brownie lovers in your life. Give it a whirl and you will be as amazed as I was!

Enjoy! ~Sam~

Cream Cheese Brownie Pudding Cake

Ingredients:
– 1 18 oz package brownie mix
– 4 large eggs
– 1/4 cup canola oil
– 2 tablespoons water
– 1 8 oz package cream cheese, softened
– 1/2 stick unsalted butter, softened
– 1/2 cup granulated sugar
– 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
– 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
– 3/4 cup milk chocolate chips

Directions:

1) In a medium bowl, stir together brownie mix, oil, 2 eggs and water until batter is smooth. Spoon half of brownie batter into a lightly greased 3-quart slow cooker.

2) Using the stand mixer, beat together the cream cheese and butter on medium speed until creamy; gradually add sugar, beating well. Add 2 eggs, 1 at a time, beating until blended. Stir in vanilla. Fold in flour and chocolate chips.

3) Pour cream cheese mixture over brownie batter in slow cooker. Dollop remaining brownie batter over cream cheese mixture; swirl mixture gently with a knife.

4) Cover and cook for 6 hours. Carefully remove slow cooker insert from heat element; let stand at least 45 minutes before serving.

Note: to store leftovers, I just stick the entire slow cooker bowl in the fridge. This cake reheats beautifully in the microwave.

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Corn Casserole

TRULY, FOOD IS LOVE. The meals we share with our families and friends are just as important to our lives as the relationships themselves. These are the things that unify us all, that each and every human being walking this earth has in common – food and family. Especially at this time of the year, with Thanksgiving and Christmas coming soon enough, and if you’re anything like me, you start to dream of the meals just as much as you do the memories. Here in the great Northeast, when the snowflakes start swirling and the temperatures drop below zero, we all look forward to the richness and decadence that we have come to expect from our holiday meals.
Today’s recipe is one that I have been making for years. When I was first married, I had never really cooked before, so thanks to its ease, it quickly became a staple in our meal rotation. It is so simple and yet so beautiful and delicious. It is truly minimum effort but will reap a maximum reward for you and your family. Also, it’s not going to break the bank! Due to its richness, a little really does go a long way, but if your family is anything like mine, be prepared to make a double batch!
~Sam~

Corn Casserole
Ingredients:
– 1 15 ¼ oz can whole kernel corn, drained
– 1 14 ¾ oz can cream-style corn
– 1 8 oz package ready-to-use corn muffin mix
– 1 cup sour cream
– 1 stick butter, melted

Directions:
1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 9x13x2” baking dish evenly with nonstick cooking spray.
2) In a large bowl, stir together the 2 cans of corn, corn muffin mix, sour cream, and melted butter. Pour into prepared baking dish. Bake for 45 minutes, or until golden brown and casserole is set in the middle. Let stand for at least 5 minutes and then serve warm.

NOTES:
– You can use salted or unsalted butter in this dish. I prefer to use unsalted butter so that I am controlling how much salt goes into my food.
– When you pour the batter into the pan, shake it from side to side a bit to make sure that you have a nice even layer. Otherwise the cooking may not be even on all parts of the casserole.

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