My sister made the cakes pictured above. She also made a cowboy hat cake for a grandchild’s birthday but I could not find the picture. She has a house full of people who can help her eat these cakes. I want to make cakes, fancy cakes, but I don’t want to eat the whole cake! And I would!
Someone at work brought in a Rachael Ray cooking magazine and I naturally looked through it. And there was a picture and recipe for a German Chocolate Cake. I love German Chocolate Cake. I have it for my birthday each year. But it is a fussy cake to make so I usually have someone pick one up at a bakery for my day. But here was this cake and I was having a day off on Wednesday and I have one of those ½ year birthdays coming up this week so I made a cake.
A lot of people think this cake has its origins in Germany. It does not. It is made with a blend of chocolate with sugar already added developed by Samuel German in 1852. Recipes using this chocolate abound. It is all American and has the classic caramel pecan coconut frosting between its layers. Apparently the original recipe was published in a newspaper or magazine in the 1920s and it has been a classic American cake ever since.
In looking up the history of this cake I find that the recipe gets tweaked as in the number of eggs, whipping the egg whites separately or not, using cake flour, and even messing around with the type of chocolate used. The recipe from the magazine that I am using doesn’t call for German Sweet Chocolate but for semi-sweet and cocoa powder. But all the same, it is chocolate cake.
1 ¾ Cup flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ Cup cocoa powder. Whisk dry ingredients together. Melt 4 ounces semisweet chocolate with ½ cup water. Separate 4 eggs.
Cream 2 sticks (1 Cup) butter in the mixer until pale. Add 2 cups sugar and beat until fluffy and light. This takes 3-4 minutes. Add egg yolks one at a time. (This is a fussy part.) Now beat in the melted chocolate and 1 ½ teaspoon vanilla. Then add the flour mixture alternately with 1 Cup buttermilk. (This is how my Mom always mixed her Best Ever Chocolate Cake recipe, so this is not really fussy.) Mix that up all together until nicely blended. Good job.
Now wash the dishes.
Make the frosting: 4 large egg yolks, 12 ounce can of evaporated milk, 2 teaspoon vanilla, 1 ¼ Cups sugar, 1 ½ sticks butter, 14 ounce pkg of flaked coconut, 1 ½ cups chopped pecans. Whisk egg yolks and milk. Add the rest and cook over medium heat stirring constantly until golden and thickened. This will take about 12-14 minutes. Add nuts and coconut, remove to a bowl, let cool stirring occasionally for about 30 minutes. Frost cake.
I don’t know why I think of seven minute frosting as too fussy; here I’ve stood over the stove for twice that long stirring and stirring and stirring! While doing all this stirring, I think that I could have used the cold coffee from this morning to melt with the chocolate instead of water. I also wonder if I should have used my 8 inch pans. The recipe said the cakes may flatten some and they absolutely did. I’m also wondering what to do with leftover frosting because this sure looks like a lot, turns out I use it all after all.
The next cake I bake will be a rainbow sprinkles with white frosting. I am making this from scratch this year instead of from the box. This will be one of the desserts for our Thanksgiving Eve Steak and Cake Family Feast. It is the favorite of my son-in-law and we celebrate his birthday then.
Let us eat cake! Then it will be back to cookies!