Welcome to March, friends!
At the beginning of each month, I set aside a morning with coffee to look ahead and see what's in store for me that month. There’s the not-so-fun stuff that's got to get scheduled, but there's also the really fun stuff like who and what are we celebrating?! For me, March brings birthdays for some of my favorite people. My besties Molls and Hayfa have birthdays coming up, and you all know how much I love to love on people by now. So, I get ahead of myself and plan out their gifts, baked goods, and more. Molls is easy because she lives here, so I get to bake her birthday cake. She’s a vanilla girl (just like yours truly) and I know she loves fruit, so I’ll make the vanilla cake from Wild Rye with some sort of fresh fruit filling like blackberry and lime and finish it with simple vanilla frosting or even a cream cheese frosting. Hayf lives in Denver, so I won’t be baking her bday cake, BUT I’m absolutely boxing up some Wild Rye goodies for her and her man. Her care package will include Wild Rye Almond Flour Pancake Mix, real maple syrup that I get from my local market (Arcadia Meat Market), some of the best jam in the entire world that comes from American Spoon Foods in Northern Michigan, and a lil' love note. I’m sure I'll find a few more things to add into the box before it ships out, but that’s also why I love getting ahead of it! I’ve got time to see what speaks to me and reminds me of my dear friend.
As you can see, Wild Rye is rooted in my life! I use it like I hope you all will use it - as an extension of how I like to show thoughtfulness and celebrate all the moments big and small. It can be a gift you give someone for them to bake and enjoy in their kitchen, or it can be a gift you bake and share. The point is, it's a celebratory act of love to give the gift of Wild Rye Baking Co.
March also brings us St. Patrick's Day! My grandmother loved to celebrate this day with me. She's 100% Irish, and I remember on this holiday seeing just how proud she was of where she came from. Inevitably, some of that rubbed off on me. My husband and I were just talking about planning some international travel to visit the places our parent’s parent’s parents came from; to stand on the land of the Scottish Highlands and find a castle my ancestors lived in or experience the austere beauty of Western Ireland. It seems like a foreign and distant place that somehow I am still bound to and fascinated by. I’m also way into the idea of drinking a Guinness in a proper pub while listening to the voices and the raucous of a place new to me. Inspired by the holiday, my heritage, and my grandma, I created the recipe below. If you feel like baking this Chocolate Guinness Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting, snag a box of our chocolate cake mix and classic vanilla frosting mix and bake along!
Chocolate Guinness Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
This cake was inspired by my grandma. She never baked but she loved Ireland, and on St. Patty’s Day, she was definitely drinking a Guinness. So Hannah, this one's for you.
1 box Wild Rye Chocolate Cake Mix - classic, vegan, or gluten-free
1 ½ cups Guinness
¾ cup oil
3 T vinegar (apple cider, white, or balsamic all work)
1 box Wild Rye Classic Vanilla Frosting Mix
4 ounces cream cheese, softened*
2 sticks butter, softened*
2 T milk, any
*Check out the box for plant-based alternatives - Tofutti makes a great plant-based cream cheese.
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Prepare a 13x9 baking pan with nonstick cooking spray and line the bottom with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, whisk together Guinness, oil, and vinegar.
- Add your Wild Rye Chocolate Cake Mix and whisk until your batter is smooth.
- Pour batter into the prepared baking pan and bake for 35-40 minutes. *Use the trusty toothpick method printed on the box to know when the cake is baked!
Frosting & Decorating Instructions:
- In a stand mixer or with a hand mixer, whip 2 sticks of butter and cream cheese until soft and fluffy, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed to prevent any lumps.
- Add in the Classic Vanilla Frosting Mix and milk and mix until your frosting comes together! Then set aside.
- Once your cake is cooled completely, remove it from the pan and peel the parchment off the bottom. Place it on your serving platter, which oftentimes for me is as simple as a cutting board. But you do you, friend.
- Dollop frosting on your cake and smooth across the top. I like to swirl and swoop the frosting without worrying too much about it being perfect. In this case, imperfection is what I’m going for.
- Slice, serve, and enjoy!