Monday, March 28, 2011

Deep Dark Chocolate Cake

Well hello... ummm... how about we not talk about the excruciatingly long pause between posts and the string of EPIC FAILS at the recipe attempts... and just get right to the next attempt?
I swear I will post Fail or NOT!
So I shall attempt to blog while cooking.

Today is the Thunderous One's Birthday!
He is now a Teen!
I set out today to make this cake BEFORE anyone gets home from school.
I was shocked and horrified to discover I have no chocolate in the house aside from an almost empty can of special dark chocolate cocoa powder.
That rather limits my options on the cake... but lets do it!

Deep Dark Chocolate Cake
2 cups sugar
1 3/4 c. ap flour
3/4 c cocoa or European style cocoa
1 1/2 teaspoon backing powder
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water
one bowl buttercream frosting

  • Heat oven to 350F. Grease and flour two 9-inch round baking pans or one 13x9x2-inch baking pans
  • in large mixer bowl, stir together sugar, flour,cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla; beat on medium speed of electric mixer 2 minutes.
  • Remove from mixer; stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pans.
  • bake 30 to 35 minutes for round pans, 35-40 minutes for rectangular pan or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
  • cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely. (Cake may be left in rectangle pan, if desired.) Frost with one bowl Buttercream frosting 8-10 servings.
One Bowl Buttercream Frosting
6 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened
2 2/3 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup cocoa or European style cocoa
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • In small mixer bowl, beat butter. add powdered sugar and cocoa alternately with milk; beat to spreading consistency (additional milk may be needed). Blend in vanilla. ~about 2 cups frosting
Shockingly after typing all that I did find the recipe on the Hershey's Site... The link is as follows: LINK
Go figure... I have had the worst time finding the old recipes in the book we are using and they have this one listed as a beginner level cake. They also have a different picture then the one in our book.

The first task is the adventure of finding my spring form pans. He would like a round 2 layered cake. We haven't even talked about if it would be decorated!
I found some spring forms... but only have 2 of the 10 inch ones and one each of 2 other sizes so we decided to do 3 layers...
The dry ingredients look really cool as you mix them and everything blends.
As I worked I thought "What Would Alton (Brown) Do?" and thought, "I need to mix my wet ingredients together before I add them to the dry..." and then screwed that up when I added them and forgot the eggs so had to add them next.

I recommend starting your water to boil after you get the dry ingredients mixed in. I decided to use my hot chocolate machine to get the water to boiling-ish. Again I deviate from the directions. The eldest had arrived home as I was mixing the wet & dry together so I recruited her to turn the bowl and use the spatula while I held the mixer. We have yet to buy a good replacement mixer so I have been using a hand help one. When I was measuring the ingredients I had to laugh at my measuring utensils... a 1/2 cup a 1/4 cup a half a teaspoon...
maybe I'll ask for nice metal ones with the measurement stamped in the handle for my birthday!
My mind wanders.
Where were we?
Oh yes!
With Eldest help we added the boiling-ish water and stirred it to mix.
I know the recipe says the batter will be thin, but WOW it is really thin. Eldest was optimistically supportive and told me I had messed it up, there was no way it meant this thin.
*sigh* I guess we will see.
We started to pour the mix into the pans.... and THAT was when I discovered that the middle sized pan with the bend in the frame was too bent... It started leaking all over the counter! Quickly we poured the batter into the other 2 pans.
*sigh* well, he did want 2 layers of cake, right?
Now we wait.
It is cooking and I may have gotten some batter on the burner because it smells like burnt cake in here...trying, really trying not to *sigh* again.
Aaanndd the cake was burning... kinda.
The other two pans...well, I guess I didn't put them together well enough or maybe the batter was just too thin for a spring form....they leked out of the pans and about half the batter is on the bottom of the oven!
They are so thin Thunderous just asked if I was making him brownies.
While waiting for the cake to bake I went ahead and put 1/4 gallon of vanilla ice cream into the bent pan. It is hardening in the freezer. The currant plan is to layer the cake and ice cream together and frosting it as one piece.
Let's cross our fingers shall we?

Lets keep the FAIL going, shall we?
They did not come out of the pans.
No, no *sigh* this time.
*head desk*
I greased them. I floured them.
I let it cool for 10 minutes!
What am I doing wrong?!?
This is what happened when I tried to make a snow flake shaped cake at Christmas!
It would not come out of the pan! I thought perhaps it wasn't really silicone and never meant for the oven... Figured it was my lack of knowledge that did it in there. But now I am not happy.
I let it cool!
I guess it needed to cool more?

And now lets see how we can mess up the frosting!


I suppose this is a case of All's Well that Ends Well.
Everyone like the cake.
Thunderous said it was a Mesa!
the taste was good the ice-cream really was a perfect center to it.
I guess you could say it is a fool proof recipe.
I mean really, How many more ways could I have fouled that one up?

Here is a shot of the 'Mesa"

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