Readers, I can hardly believe there is only one day left until we launch Fall Into Romance!!! I'm so excited for you to read about Mike and Katie and their furry companions as well as the awesome characters and animals created by my author friends. Today though, I'm finally sharing a recipe several of my friends (and a few readers) have begged me for:
S'More Cherry Cake
Back when I was still in the writing phases of Katie's Chance for Romance, I came to the sudden realization that Mike needed a killer recipe to bribe Uncle Earl into helping him with some home improvement projects. Since my favorite place to experiment is in my kitchen, I decided it was time for me to get to work. What would a single guy with an incurable sweet tooth want to make that was easy, delicious, and cheap?
My first thought was some kind of cake. Obviously if allergies weren't an issue, he could just grab a box of mix at the store, and then go from there. But in my house, allergies are an issue, so doing a boxed mix wasn't an option for me. When we first discovered our daughter's allergies, I found this amazing recipe for cake that didn't use dairy from Sweet Little Bluebird. It, and its variations, became a staple in our house where finally my two children with allergies could enjoy a cake without rashes and discomfort afterward.
Now a cake is nice, but if it's going to impress Uncle Earl, it needs to be amazing! That's when the idea of combining two of my favorite treats, s'mores and cherries, came to mind. It took a few tries to get it just right. My husband and children had no problem being guinea pigs for me and when I took the recipe to our family reunion, it was a hit there too! So this is a tried and true, amazing cake recipe. If you want to substitute the cake portion with a boxed mix, go for it! Just follow the instructions on the box and then continue on with the instructions in my recipe. This is a great summer or fall treat with all the fun of camping without the mosquitoes.
S'More Cherry Cake
Preheat oven to 350°F
Graham Cracker Crust
1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted
Mix ingredients in a small bowl until well combined. Pour into a greased 13x9 inch cake pan and press mixture flat to create a crust.
1 1/2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
3 T cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla or almond extract
1 tsp white wine vinegar
5 T canola oil
1 cup water
Sift together dry ingredients. Add liquid ingredients. Stir until all ingredients are combined in a batter. Pour over the graham cracker crust. Bake in preheated oven for 35-40 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in cake comes out clean. Leave oven preheated.
1 can cherry pie filling
Appr. 40 large marshmallows
1/4 cup dark chocolate chips
Graham cracker crumbs
Once cake has been baked, spread cherry pie filling over the top. Top with marshmallows placed close together (I always have 8 rows of 5 marshmallows in my pan). Place in oven and bake 10-12 minutes until marshmallows expand and are slightly browned on top. Meanwhile, melt chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl (or on your stovetop in a small saucepan). If using a microwave, heat chocolate chips 20-30 seconds at a time and stir between each cooktime until chocolate is smooth.
Once you have removed the cake from the oven, drizzle melted chocolate over the top of the marshmallows. Sprinkle with graham cracker crumbs.
Delicious warm or when chilled.
Jessica L. Elliott
Author, artist, mom and super-genius