CHOCOLATE MINT POKE CAKE

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Winter, we are so over you!  Fricking move aside already! You’ve never been a fan of ours anyways, except on Christmas Day…I sound bitter, but I hate being cold. I can’t seem to function! 

Anyhoo, let’s bring on St. Patrick’s Day and Easter.  Anything to get us closer to warmer weather and the ideas of rejuvenation, renewal, and regrowth to make everything fresh, bright and beautiful again.

Don’tcha think mint is so refreshing?

It just wakes up the senses and when you pair it with chocolate, OMGosh, you get one of the best combinations of decadent and indulgent flavors you could ever imagine.

I would normally have called this Chocolate Mint Poke Cake by it’s more fun name, a better than… cake. But…it wasn’t appropriate, I didn’t think. You see, today is Jordan’s 8th birthday, and this is her birthday cake!

I cannot believe my baby is 8 years old today. Where has the time gone? The last eight years have seriously been a total whirlwind. I almost feel like she’s eight going on 16. I think this is one of those cusp years; one where we are on the bridge to change. I can already see her changing from her little girl ways – even though she’s still little! She’s gone from being obsessed with princesses and Barbie to asking for a guitar and rock star clothes for her birthday.

I look at Jordan and I see so much of me but it’s weird, because I see so much of my husband too. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a person who is so much 50% of each parent – but she’s totally it. She’s my little twin…and she acts just like her daddy. A pretty good combo, I think.

Anyway, I’m going to shout it from the rooftops for a second…

INGREDIENTS
For the Cake

  • 1 Box Chocolate Cake Mix
  • Ingredients listed on the box (eggs, oil, water)

For the filling

  • 1 pkg (3.4oz) Chocolate pudding mix
  • 2 cups Milk

For The Whipped Cream

  • 1 3/4 C Heavy whipping cream
  • 3/4 C Powdered sugar
  • 1/8 tsp Mint extract
  • Green food coloring (optional)
  • 15 Andes candy bars, crushed
  • Mini Chocolate Chips (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Combine cake mix according to the ingredients on the box. Beat on medium speed until well combined.
  3. Bake cake in 9×13” for 20-22 minutes. Check for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the middle of the cake. If the toothpick comes out clean, you cake is done. Allow to cool for 10 minutes.
  4. While the cake is still warm, take the end of a wooden spoon or another round object and poke holes all over the top of your cake.
  5. When the cake has cooled, prepare the pudding layer by mixing a package of instant dark chocolate pudding with 2 cups of cold milk. Before the pudding sets, pour it over the top of the cake and put the cake in the fridge to let the pudding set, about 15 minutes.
  6. Prepare the whipped cream. Put the bowl and whisk attachment in the freezer for 5-10 minutes to get them really cold (this step is optional, but a common practice I use.). In cold mixing bowl, pour in heavy whipping cream and beat on medium speed for about 3 minutes. Add powdered sugar and mint extract and increase speed to medium high. Beat until stiff peak form. If desired, add a drop or two of green food coloring.
  7. Spread whipped cream over the top of cake. You can top you cake with a hot fudge drizzle and some crushed Andes Mints and mini chocolate chips.

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