Monday, April 28, 2008

Spring Fling

We have an annual Spring Fling at work which is basically our company picnic. It's a day of volleyball, ping pong, barbecue, door prizes, visiting with our co-workers, etc. We always have a bake-off also and this year's category was chocolate cake. I realize now that I could never compete in a real bake-off as I am hypercritical and want things to be 'just right'. This is my 'go-to' recipe for chocolate cake. I started out making it a 3-layer cake. That looked atrocious and was very lop-sided. So I scrapped that and decided to make it in my heart-shaped pan which I have done before (see here). This one stuck to the pan. It was about midnight by now and I decided to heck with it, but I could not sleep so got up and made this AGAIN like the picture above. Well, all efforts paid off as I won FIRST PLACE!! Yeah! I won a gift card to a grocery store. It was a fun day for sure.


1-3/4 cups flour
2 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup oil
2 eggs
1 cup whole milk (I used buttermilk this time)
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup boiling water
1/2 cup toasted almond slices

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and dust with cocoa a 9 x 13 pan. Set aside. In a large bowl, combine sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir until blended. Add eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla and beat will until combined, about 2 minutes. While beating, heat water to boiling. Stir water into cake batter and stir well.

Pour the thin batter into the prepared pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes. Cool 5 minutes then remove from pan and cool completely on wire rack.

1/2 cup butter
2/3 cup cocoa powder
4-1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/3 to 1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

In a saucepan, melt together butter and cocoa. Stir until smooth. Using a mixer, alternately beat in powdered sugar and milk until frosting is smooth and creamy. Stir in vanilla. Frost cake as desired. Garnish with toasted almonds.


Emiline said...

Congrats on your first place win! That's great. I'll bet the card to the grocery store will come in handy.

I can't believe you made the cake three times! That's crazy. I think I would have done the same thing. You little perfectionist.

Anj said...

Thanks, Em. Yes, I'm crazy. Thank goodness it is an easy cake to make!

Carla said...

Congrats on winning! With prices these days, that grocery card must be like gold.

Bellini Valli said...

Congratulations on winning...that is just so much fun:D

jj said...

Your cake looks marvelous! I prefer to use buttermilk all the time, too. It truly does seem to make a difference for the better. Thanks for sharing this recipe!

Anj said...

JJ: I agree that buttermilk is good for cakes. Thanks for stopping by.