Tag Archive | food

Decadent Chocolate Ganache Cake

Hello Darlings!

February is here and love is in the air. Shops are overflowing with flowers and big boxes of chocolates. It seems as if the whole world is swathed in pink and red hues. Don’t you just love l’amour?

One of my favorite things about the Valentine season is baking up something special for my one true love (who, by the way, has one serious sweet tooth). This year I made him the richest, most decadent, ooey-gooey, chocolate ganache cake. I’d love to share it with you for you to share with someone you love…or just eat it all yourself. It’s that good.


Decadent Chocolate Ganache Cake

Prep time: 25 minutes

Start to finish time: 2 hours 15 minutes

Serves: 12



2 1/4 cups all purpose flour or 2 1/2 cups cake flour

1 2/3 cups sugar

3/4 cup butter, softened

2/3 cup unsweetened baking cocoa

1 1/4 cups water

1 1/4 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

1 tsp vanilla

1/4 tsp baking powder

2 eggs


2/3 cup whipping cream

6 oz semisweet baking chocolate (chopped, chips work as well)


  1. Pre-heat oven to 350* F. Grease bottom and sides of two (9″) or 3 (8″) round cake pans; lightly flour.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat all the ingredients (except for those for the ganache) on low speed for 3 minutes, scraping to bowl constantly. Beat on high speed for an additional 3 minutes. Pour equal portions into pans.
  3. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until each cake passes the toothpick test. Let cool 10 minutes. DO NOT ALLOW TO COOL COMPLETELY IN THE PANS!!! Remove from the pans and allow to cool for 1 hour.
  4. While the cakes are baking, heat the whipping cream in a 1 quart saucepan over low heat util hot, but not boiling.
  5. Add in chocolate and stir obsessively, do not let it burn (chocolate can burn quickly). Once the chocolate is melted, remove from heat. The ganache will thicken as it cools. It’s ready when it mounds slightly when dropped from a spoon.
  6. Spoon cooled ganache between the cake layers. Pour over the top layer and allow it to drip over the sides of the cake. Spoon as much as you like to cover the cake.

**Tip: for an extra gooey cake, pour the ganache between the cake layers whilst it is still relatively thin, allowing the cake layers to absorb the moisture. Top the rest of the cake once the ganache has thickened up a bit.

Serve warm with a scoop of homestyle vanilla ice cream and a glass of cold milk.



Dolly Marlowe


Atomic Pasta Salad

Hello Darlings!

Well, summer is finally upon us. It’s time for BBQs, picnics, and all sorts pot-luck of frivolity. Being a vegetarian, the ubiquitous summer gathering always poses a bit of a challenge. I love food, and I do not eat like a bird. There is nothing worse than smelling bbq and watching everyone stuff themselves while I gnaw on carrot sticks and mellon balls. Mama wants to EAT! Well, I’m sure there are some things worse than that (war, cancer, reality TV), but starving at a bbq is up there. I also feel it is bad form to expect the hosts to arrange their party around my dietary needs. Yes, that is part of good party planning, but when I am a guest, I need to be prepared.

So, I came up with this little dish to fill any veggie voids left by my carnivorous hosts… Atomic Pasta Salad. Tasty, filling, and always a welcome addition to any summer soirée. Don’t worry it isn’t spicy. The name “Atomic” doesn’t come from the flavor, but from the atomic age. In the 1950’s convenience foods were all the rage, bottled, canned, frozen… plastic was in! This salad is a reflection of that. It is not organic or “from scratch” by any means, although the recipe can be tweaked to make it so. It’s easy to make last minute with what you’ve got hanging around the kitchen already. I last brought this salad to an Easter bbq and egg hunt, and it was one of the most popular dishes of the party. It’s quite the complement when you go home with an empty dish!

The delish sandwich in the background is a BLT lovingly hand crafted by my Mr. with soy bacon!

Atomic Pasta Salad

Prep time: 10 minutes

Total cook/chill time: 1 hour

Servings: 6 – 8


12oz Rainbow Rotini Pasta

1/2c diced red onion

1/2c chopped red bell pepper

1/2c finely chopped carrots

1/4c green onion

1 tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary

1 tbsp minced garlic

1/4c Olive Oil (light)

2 tbsp Strawberry Basil Balsamic Vinegar

2 tbsp Brianna’s Homestyle Blush Wine Vinaigrette Dressing

Shredded Parmesan Cheese to taste

Salt and Pepper to taste

1/2c Ken’s Steak House Creamy Balsamic Salad Dressing

*optional add ins: I like to add sliced grape tomato and black olives. My Mr. hates both of those things, so I put them on the side and add them to my individual plate.


1) Bring 4 to 6 quarts of water to a rolling boil. Add pasta. Boil pasta for about 9 min. stirring occasionally.

2) Drain pasta and set it aside in a large glass mixing bowl.

3) Mix in olive oil. Be sure to coat all of the pasta to prevent sticking.

4) Add in red onion, green onion, carrots, rosemary, and garlic. Mix well, but be careful not to disturb the shape of the pasta. The spirals will be somewhat fragile until they cool.

5) Fold in the Ken’s Steakhouse Creamy Balsamic Salad Dressing. Be sure to coat every last bit of pasta and veg!

6) Add in the Strawberry Basil Balsamic Vinegar and Brianna’s Homestyle Blush Wine Vinaigrette Dressing. Again, stir well, but carefully.

7) Add parmesan, slat, and pepper to taste.

8) Cover and refrigerate for about an hour or until cold.

Fresh rosemary from my garden. 

I do hope you enjoy!


Dolly Marlowe

Every Day is like Sundae…Shoes

Hello Darlings!

Pardon the bad pun in the title, but I just couldn’t resist. I’m so very excited to share with you a fun make-do-and-mend project. If you’re not familiar with “make-do-and-mend”, it’s just an old fashioned term for DIY, and I love me some DIY especially when it combines sweets and shoes!

This project comes from fellow vintage living blogger, Miss Amy May. If you’re not currently subscribed to her blog or following her on social media, I highly recommend you do so. I had never heard of Shoe Bakery until I read Amy’s post. While their shoes are adorable works of art, they’re a little over the top for my taste. I’m a “less is more” kind of gal. The shoes that I really fell in love with were the ones Amy made herself, and so I decided to take a crack at making a pair.

I don’t wan’t to reinvent the wheel, so I’m just going to link back to the original post here, plus add a few things I did differently, and share my supply list for the American crowd. So, without further adieu, I give you my version of Miss Amy May’s version of Shoe Bakery’s   Ice Cream Sundae shoes.


I love the added texture and color from the jimmies. Maybe the next pair will have rainbow sprinkles?



  • Shoes you’d like to decorate (For an ice cream cone look, you’ll want nude or tan shoes with an exposed platform)
  • Calking gun
  • White silicone calk (I used HDX brand from Home Depot)
  • Wax paper
  • Butter knife or cheese spreader (one you will not be using again)
  • “Chocolate Jimmies” clay sprinkles (I purchased mine on Etsy)
  • Cherries (you can find these at Walmart, Michael’s, or Hobby Lobby)
  • Masking or electrical tape
  • Piping tips (I used the medium star shape. Again, these will not be used for food…ever)
  • Toothpick or bamboo skewer
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Q-tip
  • Modge Podge (Gloss and Outdoor respectively)
  • Fine red glitter
  • Paint brushes with synthetic bristles

Directions Part 1:

I basically followed Amy’s tutorial with a few exceptions:

  • I used wax paper instead of news paper for my work surface.
  • Because I don’t have the most steady of hands (translation: I’m a colossal klutz), I taped off the edges of my shoes where I didn’t want the calking to get to. This made clean up much easier…and I still made a mess.
  • The Q-tips and rubbing alcohol are for clean up. If you smudge, spill, or otherwise get calking where you don’t want it, clean it up before it dries.
  • I also taped my piping tip directly to my calking tube as I was fresh out of pastry bags.
  • When the calk was still wet, I sprinkled on my jimmies and then used a bamboo skewer to gently push them into the calk for a better hold.
  • Finally, I painted over the calked bits with outdoor Mod Podge. I wanted to be sure I could wipe my shoes clean if needed and the Mod Podge helps keep my jimmies in place.

Directions Part 2:


I love the added sparkle and pop of color the glitter adds, but a week later, and I’m still cleaning it up! Though it has stayed on my shoes remarkably well.

For this bit I followed a tutorial for glitter soles I found on Pinterest. There were a lot of them, and they all used the same method. You want to be sure your calking and Mod Podge are completely dry before doing this bit. Once glitter gets onto a wet surface, there’s no going back! I also taped off the “whipped cream” bit to keep it as clean as possible. Or, even better still, do the glitter soles first, then do the frosting part.

One thing I notice was that the glitter and Mod Podge did tend to get a bit clumpy.While I don’t mind how it turned out, next time I think I’ll just do the single coat of glitter without going over it again.


I’m going to be designing a lot more outfits around these shoes.

And there you have it! Adorable custom shoes that will have everyone begging to know where you bought them. How gratifying will it be to say, “I didn’t buy them, I made them”?!

I’d love to see what you come up with. Tag me in your Sundae Shoes images on instagram!


Dolly Marlowe






Cherry Coke Cupcakes

Hello Darlings!

It seems that lately I’ve been inundating you with cooking posts. I promise I will widen our horizons in the very near future, but I always like to share a sweet treat on Valentine’s Day. So today I submit to you delicious Cherry Coke Cupcakes! These little beauties are all over Pinterest, but none of the recipes really worked for me. They either didn’t taste like cola or they were too mushy. I took the best of what I tried and combined it into the recipe I have for you today. Fair warning, we are using boxed cake mix. While I do love baking from scratch, I have too much going on at the homestead right now to mess with such things (also, I’ve never made cupcake batter from scratch. Time to call Grandmama!). On to our recipe.


Cherry Coke Cupcakes

Prep time: 15min  Cook time: 25 min  Servings: 24



  • Boxed Devil’s Food cake mix (plus the required ingredients, omitting the water)
  • 1 cup Coca Cola
  • 1/3 cup maraschino cherry juice
  • 24 maraschino cherries without stems

Buttercream Frosting:

  • 1 1/4 cups unsalted butter softened
  • 5 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • 2tbsp Coca Cola (or more)
  • 1tbsp maraschino cherry juice
  • 24 maraschino cherries with stems
  • red food coloring


  1. Preheat the oven to 350*.
  2. Prepare a muffin tin with cupcake liners.
  3. Prepare the cake batter according to the box instructions, substituting the water for the coke and cherry juice. Do not over mix!
  4. Fill the cupcake liners about 3/4 full and plop a cherry into the batter (don’t push it in, the cake will rise around it).
  5. Bake as directed, let cool completely. You can put them in the Frigidaire to cool faster.


  1. Whip butter, coke, and cherry juice together.
  2. Gradually add in the confectioner’s sugar.
  3. If the frosting is too dry, add more coke as needed (be careful! I spilled a bit and my frosting, though delicious, was far too wet).
  4. Stir in red food coloring (I used somewhere between 5 and 8 drops).
  5. Frost as desired. Use a pastry bag with a piping tip or cut a hole in a plastic baggie.
  6. Top with a cherry and enjoy!

*an additional option is adding chocolate sprinkles or gummy coke bottles.

There you have it. A quick and easy treat on St. Valentine’s Day. I hope you love it.


Dolly Marlowe ♥


Beer Bread the Way Grandma used to Make… Well, sort of

Hello Darlings!

The weather has decided to be unreasonably cold today. It seems as though Mother Nature is thinking of snow, but hasn’t made up her mind just yet. I’d really appreciate it if she would. Two days ago we enjoyed temperatures in the low 70’s, torrential downpours yesterday, and icy winds in the 30’s today. Needless to say, tonight is a comfort food kind of night. I thought I would dust off this recipe for one of my favorite quick breads inspired by my grandmother.

One of my fondest memories as a wee lass was visiting my grandmother’s beautiful home. It was always tastefully decorated (especially around Christmas), the gardens were full of the seasons best flowers, fruits and veggies, and the smell of freshly baking bread wafting from the kitchen seemed to permeate everything! My grandmother was, and still is, the most elegant woman I’ve ever known. Glowing porcelain skin, a vast knowledge on everything from organic gardening and cooking to the most fashionable make-up techniques and beauty routines, she can do all! She has the fragrance of an English garden and the most delicate and graceful mannerisms to match! I was always fascinated, if not a little intimidated by her. She is, for me at least, the feminine ideal.

My beautiful grandmother in her garden

Now that I have my own home, I catch myself looking back and referencing my childhood memories for things my grandmother use to do. One thing that has always vexed me was the smell of freshly baked bread! Being a vintage gal in a thoroughly modern world is no easy task. Between running my on-line boutique, raising my family, charitable obligations, and if I’m lucky, my own hobbies and pursuits, how on Earth will I ever find the time to bake fresh bread?!

I am not a woman easily daunted. Through trial, error, and just a pinch of cheating (stealing the ingredient list from some premixed breads and throwing in some bits from my other quick bread recipes), I’ve got a fool-proof recipe for fresh baked beer bread that is not only delicious, but will leave your home smelling just like grand-ma-ma’s! And it wont take you all day, either!

Beer Bread

Prep time: 5 min

Cook time: 60 min


3 cups flour (I like to mix white and whole wheat)

1/3 cups granulated sugar

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon of salt

12-oz of your favorite beer (my mother swears by cooking with the cheap stuff, but I can’t bring myself to do it. I use whatever gourmet/microbrew My Mr stocks in the icebox. I highly recommend a lemon shandy).

3 tablespoons melted butter (optional)

**For a prohibition approved loaf, one may substitute ginger beer for the real thing. Remember to subtract the sugar from the recipe.

Preheat your oven to 350* and set the rack to the center setting.

Combine the (sifted) flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar together in a large mixing bowl. Gently fold in the beer. Mix until all of the dry ingredients are wet. The batter will be sticky… REAL sticky. Lightly grease a standard size (5×9, I think it is) bread loaf pan, and plop the batter in. Do not attempt to smooth it out, the bread will fill out as it bakes. Also, the rustic appearance is part of its charm! Pour the melter butter on top and pop it in the oven for about 60 min (or until it is golden brown and it passes the clean toothpick test). Let it cool and then serve it up OR make the most amazing grilled cheese sandwich known to man! My Mr just rips hunks out of the loaf and snacks on it all day.

Garlic and Parmesan Beer Bread Grilled Cheese Sandwich and a side of French Onion Soup.
The perfect winter luncheon.

So, while this recipe is decidedly more lazy than what my grandmother crafted, it does the job nicely. I do hope you enjoy!


Dolly Marlowe

Pumpkin Banana Bread… Happy Autumn, Darlings!

Hello, Darlings!
I just wanted to pop in and share a quick treat with you. Autumn is my absolute favorite time of year. I love everything about it: crisp, cool air; sweaters, hay rides, cider, bonfires, football games, the pumpkin patch, apple picking – good heavens, I could go on forever! But, I especially love the food. I love to bake (and all other manner of vintage house-wifery), but haven’t much patients for complicated preparations. This quick bread is easy enough for even the most novice of cooks to impress the mother-in-law. So, here is one of my favorite fall recipes.
Enjoy, my little kitchenistas!

A loaf lasts all of 3 days in my house. I used chocolate chips in this one.

A loaf lasts all of 3 days in my house. I used chocolate chips in this one.

Banana Pumpkin Bread
Prep Time: 20 Minutes
Cook Time: 50 to 55 Minutes
Servings: 12


  • 2 or 3 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 2 eggs *(substitute 1/4 cup apple sauce to make  it vegan)
  • 1/4 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 1/3 cups canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1/2 cup honey *(substitute 1/2 cup brown sugar to make it vegan)
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon all spice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup golden raisins, candied ginger, or chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the mashed bananas, eggs, oil, pumpkin, honey, and sugar.
  3. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices together.
  4. Stir the dry mixture into the banana/pumpkin mixture until just combined.
  5. Fold in the raisins, ginger, or chocolate chips.
  6. Pour batter into the prepared pan.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 50 to 55 minutes or until the top is crisp and a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.
  8. Cool the loaf in the pan for 10 minutes before  moving to a wire rack to cool completely.

I do hope you enjoy this recipe. Please let me know how it turned out for you.


Dolly Marlowe