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If you're looking for a frightfully good chocolate cake for your Halloween party, then look no further! Layers of chocolate cake are filled and frosted with Death Wish Coffee ganache, which will keep specters dancing until dawn. Botanical icing sheets and a gold-covered chocolate skull make this cake hauntingly beautiful.

Vanitas Chocolate Cake with Death Wish Coffee Ganache

Halloween is next week (!!!) and I've been eager to make something special for the occasion. I'm not sure why, but this year I've been really keen on pairing skeletons and botanicals for spooky seasonal decor (see my DIY Skeleton Botanical Art here!). I suppose it stems from my love for vanitas, which is a type of symbolic still life art. It incorporates reminders of the brevity of life, and ephemeral items like the ones shown in the above photo: bones, fruit, flowers, smoke.

Earlier this year I'd tucked away a cache of printed icing sheets for just the right inspired moment, and after digging them out, a dramatic floral caught my eye. It was perfect for this vanitas-inspired confection.
The combination of roasted sweet potatoes and sage gives these scones a sweet and savory flavor profile that makes them a delicious treat for breakfast or dessert.


When fall arrives, it seems that pumpkin reigns as king of pastries, pies and cakes. I love pumpkin too, but my favorite orange-hued veggie to bake with happens to be sweet potato. Compared to pumpkin purée, starchy sweet potato is naturally sweeter and denser which makes it a wonderful addition to quick breads - like these scones!
Cream puff cake has a golden crust that puffs high in the pan as it bakes, which forms the perfect container for creamy custard filling. A drizzle of scratch-made chocolate ganache makes this cake pretty and gives it added richness. What makes it extra delicious? Real butter. Butter gives the ganache a beautiful shine and smooth consistency while keeping the choux batter rich and fluffy.

Cream Puff Cake

Pâte à choux is one my favorite classic pastry elements. It's the base for eclairs, profiteroles, savory cheese puffs, and other delicious bites that are carefully piped on baking sheets. I'd never considered the fast and easy option of spreading an entire batch of choux pastry in a dish and baking it as a crust, but it works marvelously! It makes the fluffiest, airiest crust for this cream-filled cake that slices neatly for serving.
Shark Week Diorama Cake

Hello, and Happy Shark Week! Discovery's week-long shark fest began on July 28th and runs through August 4th. I'm sure by now you've noticed some shark-themed treats swimming through your social media feeds, and I'm adding one more! I'm so excited to share this special cake I made for Food Network in honor of the event.
Ruby chocolate is a brand new innovation in the culinary world made from red cocoa beans, which yields a naturally pink chocolate with mild red berry flavors. In this recipe, dark chocolate cupcakes are covered with a high mound of billowy meringue frosting and then dipped in tangy ruby chocolate coating.

Ruby Chocolate Hi Hat Cupcakes

It's been nearly a year since I first sampled ruby chocolate, which was invented by Barry Callebaut in 2017. It's been my new obsession ever since, and the subject of quite a few experiments in my kitchen. You may remember this Ruby Chocolate Cheesecake from earlier this year.

In my work, I've found that Ruby Chocolate's flavors shine best when closest to its pure form, such as bar or callet. For this reason it makes a fine chocolate coating for all kinds of candies and confections - and certainly for these cupcakes!
These hot dog look-alikes are sure to bring the smiles at your next summer gathering. Homemade golden sponge cakes are filled with chocolate franks and garnished with yellow buttercream 'mustard'.

Hot Dog Snack Cakes

Summer is in full swing and we're adjusting to new routines. Days are long so we're staying up later to enjoy evenings on the patio. The lightening bugs in our backyard glow with near synchronicity which is a simple but awe-inspiring kind of magic. And then there's our renewed zest for spontaneous cookouts, which happens weekly.

The latter was my inspiration for creating these hot dogs in true trompe l'oeil fashion. I think they're a real hoot! They're tasty too, because they are essentially extra-large Twinkie-style snack cakes. They're not hard to make but require a few steps which are all outlined in the tutorial that follows.

Also, I have a fun giveaway today, so read on for the details!
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