A few weeks ago, after I posted Lemon Almond Poppyseed Cake, I am coming to the realization that people WANT easy, easy, easy. Did you notice I made a new category - Seriously Simple? You would not believe how many people sent emails, called or stopped me at church, the gym, school or grocery store to say how much they loved Lemon Almond Poppyseed cake. Hmmm. REALLY? Because, if Marge had not asked me to post it, I never would have. I mean, I love it, and it's a great cake, but I thought it was one of those recipes everyone has. Guess not.
Kind of like this one. I made this a few weeks ago, for a big family dinner so there would be a- slam dunk kid friendly dessert. At that gathering, we only had two other desserts planned. Being food freaks, we always try to have at least three desserts at every dinner. Sick, I know.
Oh, the recipe. I made this cake and a few days later Brookie and Corrine asked me for the recipe. So, usually I make it in a jelly roll pan ( 12 x17, inside measurement). And it feeds a crowd. But my favorite way is to make it in a 9x13 pan, bc I like my cake to be a bit thicker. I've been making this recipe or a variation of it for at least 25, maybe closer to 30 years, it's always a pleaser. And it's simple. You can mix it all up in one pan, cook and frost it in 40-45 minutes. You don't even have to wait for it to cool to frost it.
This particular version comes from the book Miss Daisy Celebrates Tennessee, which I purchased on a trip with Grant, Brett, Di and Sheri to Nashville in 2002. Love that place. Watched Sara Evans perform in the Grand Ole Opry. Stayed in the Opryland Hotel (where I ate some Almond Joy cake that was about half a foot tall, still dream about it). Met up with some of our fave people in the world, Will and Mary Primos. Went to the CM Hall of Fame. Toured some beautiful plantations. Ate a lot. Shocking, I know. Every meal was sauced, gravied and/or fried. Ate until I was sick.
My kind of vaca.
Miss Daisy's Chocolate Cake
1/2 pound butter melted
4 tablespoons cocoa, unsweetened
1 cup water *
2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
Grease and flour a 9x13 pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a saucepan, melt butter. Add cocoa and whisk until smooth. Add water and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and sift the flour into the saucepan with the butter mixture. Add the sugar, soda and salt. Add the buttermilk, eggs and vanilla. Whisk until smooth. Pour batter into prepared 9x13 pan. Bake for about 30-35 minutes.
While cake is baking, prepare frosting.
1/4 pound (1 stick) butter, melted
4 tablespoons cocoa
6 tablespoons buttermilk
1 box or about 4 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup chopped pecans, optional
After making cake batter, rinse saucepan. Melt butter, cocoa and buttermilk in pan. Bring to boil. Add sugar and vanilla, stirring until smooth. Pour over warm cake. Sprinkle with chopped nuts.
*I used 3/4 cup water
-This cake has many variations:
1. If you want to cut the amount of fat, without losing flavor, substitute 1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil for one of the cubes of butter in the cake batter.
2. Add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon cinnamon to the batter
3. If you don't have buttermilk, sour cream works.
4. Oven temps from 350 to 400 work. Adjust the amount of baking time.
5. Using milk in the frosting instead of buttermilk works. Any type of milk is fine. For the cake, don't sub plain milk for the buttermilk. Use a buttermilk substitute if you don't have any buttermilk.
6. Most recipes for this cake include using chopped nuts and mixing the nuts right into the frosting while mixing. Personally, I don't like this method/presentation. Whenever we see a cake with the nuts mixed right into the frosting, Grant asks me "who ate this before us?"
I think it's more appetizing to sprinkle the chopped nuts on top of the cake. :)