Oh my aching arms and back and legs!
I've been working people. Working hard.
As soon as the sun is up and the the weather is warm we hit the yard running. Almost literally.
Winters are hard here. They are long and cold and they linger. Sometimes they linger into April.
This past weekend was the first really nice weather that we've had in awhile. It was a little windy, but hey, you take what you can get this time of year in New England.
So we took advantage of our sunny Sunday by trimming up all the hedges in the front, and then raking up all the hedge clippings in the front (ehhh my aching hands) and then we decided, kinda spur of the moment that we were going to rip out a rhododendron that I've hated since the day I moved into the house over 24 years ago. Guess I wan't in a hurry huh?
So John and our neighbor Tom (who is the best neighbor on the planet) sorry other neighbors, he just is. The man owns an ice cream factory. Come on, you cannot compete. Anyhoo....Tom and John tie a big ole chain on the back of the pick up and after 6 or 7 tugs (and huge tire tracks in my lawn) that sucker is outta here.
Farewell ugly rhododendron! I can't say I'm sorry to see you go.
And now for something completely different - CAKE!
This cake has absolutely nothing to do with the story I just told. Sorry no witty segway into this recipe.
I made this a few weeks ago. It was really good. It was gone the very next day, that's how good it was. I don't even have to tell you how delicious this was. Just look at that layer of cream cheesy goodness, and the frosting. Oh my. No we didn't eat it all, we always share.
Fudge Lovers Cream Cheese Cake
For the cake
1 box devils food cake
1 box (4 serving size) chocolate instant pudding mix
1 cup hot water
¾ cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 package (8oz) cream cheese, softened
½ cup sugar
½ cup semisweet chocolate chips
½ cup chopped nuts (optional)
Oven to 350.
For the cake: Spray the bottom of a 9x13 inch pan with baking spray with flour (ummm that would be Bakers Joy people). In a large bowl beat the cake ingredients with a mixer on low speed 30 seconds, then beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Pour into pan.
For the filling: In a large bowl beat the cream cheese, sugar and 1 egg on medium speed until smooth and creamy. Stir in the chocolate chips. Spoon the filling by the tablespoon full evenly over the top of the batter. Using a table knife swirl the filling through the batter. Sprinkle with nuts if desired.
Bake 40 to 40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely.
1 cup (8 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2½ cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled
Using the wire whisk attachment of your stand mixer, whip the butter on medium-high speed for 5 minutes, stopping to scrape the bowl once or twice. Reduce the speed to low and gradually add the powdered sugar. Once all of the powdered sugar is incorporated, increase the speed to medium-high and add the vanilla, mixing until incorporated. Add the melted chocolate and whip at medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes, scraping the bowl as needed to incorporate all of the chocolate. Cover the cake with frosting. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator.