Dirt Cake

I got this recipe from Janice Schwartzenberger, when we both worked for Arthur Andersen. She flew from Portland to Seattle with an assembled dirt cake, and the entire department was amazed.

A few years later, we fooled Barry’s Mom with this on her 60th birthday. We were sharing a cabin at Stehekin, and Barry and I made it after she and Dave went to bed. In the morning, before she got up, I snuck it onto a side table in the living room. She sat on the sofa, wondering how she could have overlooked this strange plant the previous day. Being a gardening person, she had to go over and look at it — why did the pot have real dirt with plastic flowers? Finally, we admitted that it was her birthday cake!

Last week, she made a batch and served it up to her grandsons. They were completely fooled, too, wondering why Grandma wanted them to eat dirt!

Sharon's dirt cakes This is one of the most decadent desserts I’ve ever eaten. Even if you don’t have a plastic flowerpot to make it in, or a clean trowel to serve it with, or plastic flowers to stick in the top, you have to try it. Make it in a bowl and serve it with a spoon — it’s yummy.

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 (3.5 ounce) packages instant vanilla pudding mix
3 1/2 cups milk
1 (12 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
32 ounces chocolate sandwich cookies with creme filling
Optional: Several gummy worms, for garnish

Chop cookies very fine in food processor. The white cream will disappear.
Mix butter, cream cheese, and sugar in bowl.
In a large bowl mix milk, pudding and whipped topping together.
Combine pudding mixture and cream mixture together.
Layer in flower pot, starting with cookies then cream mixture. Repeat layers, ending with a solid layer of cookies on the top (the “dirt”). Chill until ready to serve.

To serve, put a few gummy worms on top of the dirt and stick some clean plastic flowers into it. Scoop out servings with a new, clean trowel.