So, I have to admit my baking record in New Jersey, has not been great. I have slightly redeemed myself as of late, but a few weeks back I decided to make a blueberry bread pudding I found in my Taste of Home magazine. It has won a reader award for goodness sake. Here it is…. Looks pretty right?

Wrong. It was a disaster. The sauce would not completely SOAK UP for anything. I had to cook it like 30+ minutes extra just to make the sauce gel and then the bread got crunchy. Crunchy bread pudding, doesn’t work. Now, I will say, the flavor was amazing, but the texture was all wrong and Jake wouldn’t barely touch it. It had like 4 cups of heavy cream and I had to eat most of it, til I just threw it away, because my husband wouldn’t.
Then a few days later on the 4th of July, I made these cute little cupcakes you might have seen on FB.

I used a recipe from Martha Stewart, whom I love and rarely fails me. It called for a chocolate cake recipe, that I knew was all wrong. I have baked enough times now in my life, that I know the consistency for how a good cake should be. I have found the bests cakes I have EVER made from scratch, call for almost a cup or more of liquid in some form and usually at least half a cup of oil or something like that as well. I’m not saying, there are not good cake recipes that don’t, but as a rule of thumb. Even a box cake, which I hate to admit, but is ALWAYS deliciously moist, calls for a lot of liquid. Well, this recipe had eggs and sour cream and it was like dough. I knew it was wrong, so I added milk. I should have added a lot of milk, but I’m not the greatest at being brave in making my own recipes. Well, the “cupcakes” came out like brownie pucks. Ok, maybe not pucks, but brownies and not very sweet ones at that. Two hours before we were supposed to leave, I threw them in the trash and went to the store and bought a box of red velvet and started over. Jake loved that, let me tell you. 😮

But since then, it’s been better I made this delicious cherry pie
Thank you grandma’s recipe site. This recipe was SO easy!

Then I made a delicious banana bread recipe from Martha, that Jake said was the best banana bread he’s ever had. He was also very hungry when he said this. I had been struggling to find a good one, so I’m glad I found a keeper. There’s no pic, we ate it too quick.
And the cake that is redeeming me back to my former glory was the cake I entered into the bake off at my church Saturday. The cake that took 3rd place and was delicious in my opinion.

If it looks semi familiar, that’s because it was supposed to be a replica of the one I made for Jake’s birthday last winter. “My best cake to date” Jake says and the dessert he thought I should enter. Proudly enough, also a cake recipe that I kind of came up with on my own after looking at some similar ones. Chocolate orange cake with orange buttercream and marshmallow fondant. If you want the recipe, just ask. The fondant of course is more for decoration than taste. I think this is actually why I didn’t do better in the competition, because I usually take the fondant off when serving or just give people a little. The inside was so moist, I just wish I HAD gotten to eat more instead of everyone at the church.