Monday, June 01, 2009
Prize-Winning Peppermint Chocolate Cake
Since posting pictures on facebook of the cake I made for my brother's birthday, I have received several requests for the recipe (in just one evening!). So, I decided to post the recipe and some instructions on decorating it. I really did win a prize for this cake (although the winning cake was a slightly different version than what is pictured below). I won 3rd place in the baking contest for the Mother Daughter Extravaganza at Harvest Baptist Church on Mother's Day weekend. I wonder how the cake would have fared in the current dark chocolate version? The simple version: Buy a chocolate cake mix and chocolate frosting (I recommend Betty Crocker). Bake the cake. Mix in about 1/2 to 1 tsp of mint extract into the frosting (could be chocolate or vanilla). Frost the cake. I swirl the frosting rather than try to get clean, flat planes (swirled frosting hides a multitude of errors). Decorate the cake with white chocolate curls and chopped up Andes Mints. The harder version: Bake a chocolate cake from scratch and make frosting from scratch. Then frost and decorate as described above. For Zeke's cake, I followed the recipe on the back of the Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa container. Hershey's "Especially Dark" Chocolate Cake 2 c. sugar 1 3/4 c. all-purpose flour 3/4 c. Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa 1-1/2 tsp. baking powder 1-1/2 tsp. baking soda 1 tsp. salt 2 eggs 1 c. milk 1/2 c. vegetable oil 2 tsp. vanilla extract 1 c. boiling water Heat oven to 350. Grease and flour two 9-inch round baking pans. Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Poor batter into prepared pans. Bake 30-35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely. 10-12 servings. Especially Dark Chocolate Frosting 1/2 c. butter or margarine 2/3 c. Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa 3 c. powdered sugar 1/3 c. milk 1 tsp. vanilla extract Melt butter. Stir in cocoa. Alternately add powdered sugar and milk, beating to spreading consistency. Add small amount of additional milk, if needed. Stir in vanilla. About 2 cups frosting. For mint flavoring, add about 1/2-1 tsp. mint extract (basically, until the frosting tastes minty enough to you). Tastes great with vanilla ice cream. Enjoy!