Monday, January 21, 2008

Auntie Shar's Chocolate Cake

While Jon and Haley were visiting, we went to Claim Jumper. Jon spied the Motherload Chocolate Cake and it was love at first sight. But love wasn't complete without a glass of milk and some vanilla ice cream.

As we talked about chocolate cake and what makes a good one, Jon told me about "this amazing chocolate cake" that his 72 year old Grandma Elma makes (but she won't claim it as her own and apparently the glory goes to Auntie Shar). The recipe for this legendary cake had to be mine. Luckily, Jon had the recipe on his laptop. Yes, he had it on his laptop, in case of emergency I suppose.

Well, here is it and yes, it is AMAZING. I would even go as far as to say it is the best chocolate cake I have ever had. It also helps when you have a great chocolatey frosting to go with it.

For the cake:
2 1/4 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup cocoa powder
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups boiling water
1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

Set oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13 inch baking pan with non-stick spray and set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda, salt and cocoa powder. Whisk to combine and set aside. In a large bowl, combine eggs, sugar and oil and beat with a hand mixer. Alternating with boiling water, add flour mixture in 3 additions. Stir in vanilla.

Pour into a prepared pan. Bake for 30 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely and spread frosting on top.

For the chocolate frosting:
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla

Combine butter, cocoa powder and powdered sugar and mix until butter is smooth. Add milk and vanilla. Adjust with more milk or powdered sugar if needed.

If making two 9 inch round pans for a stacked cake, double the recipe.

Update 1/2009:
This cake easily can be made into a layer cake. Grease two 9 inch round cake pans and distribute the batter evenly between them. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes. I frosted mine with the perfect vanilla buttercream.

2 16 oz packages confectioners sugar
1 cup butter, softened
3 tsp vanilla extract
8-12 Tbsp milk

In large bowl, with mixer at medium-low speed, beat confectioners’ sugar, butter, vanilla, and 8 tablespoons milk until smooth and blended. Increase speed to medium-high, beat until frosting is light and fluffy, occasionally scraping bowl with rubber spatula. Beat in additional milk as needed for easy spreading consistency.

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