Monday, March 02, 2015

Mississippi Mud Bars

As part of my ongoing Around the USA baking project, I decided the time had come to make something from Mississippi. The opportunity came while reading The Sharpshooter Blues by Lewis Nordan, set on the Mississippi delta.  I have been exposed to some Southern writers I wouldn't have known otherwise through my participation in the On the Southern Literary Trail group in Goodreads. This was one of the picks for February.

Mississippi mud - the rich, goopy kind that happens when a river meets an ocean. Translated into a cake or a bar, you have to find something that oozes goo - so of course these have marshmallows.  These are very sweet, more sweet than chocolatey. I followed the recipe exactly.

Mississippi Mud Cake Recipe
from Southern Living, June 2004, via

1 cup butter, melted
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
4 large eggs, lightly beaten 
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped pecans, toasted
1 (10.5-ounce) bag miniature marshmallows
Chocolate frosting (see below)

Whisk together melted butter and next 5 ingredients in a large bowl. Stir in flour and chopped pecans. Pour batter into a greased and floured 15- x 10-inch jellyroll pan.

Bake at 350° for 20 to 25 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from oven; top warm cake evenly with marshmallows. Return to oven, and bake 5 minutes. Drizzle Chocolate Frosting over warm cake. Cool completely.

Chocolate Frosting

1 (16-ounce) package powdered sugar, sifted
1/2 cup milk 
1/4 cup butter, softened 
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
Beat all ingredients at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth.

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