Thursday, September 23, 2010

let them eat (birthday) cake.

Last week my much older (by three years) brother turned the big four oh, (which did more to make me feel old than it did him.  Go figure.)  Although I cook a lot, I am not much of a baker (anymore*), but to commemorate the special day I made my very first chocolate cake from scratch (and not a Duncan Hines cake mix.)  I also made chocolate buttercream frosting from scratch.  I have to toot my own horn and say they were both delish.  The cake was moist perfection, and given that the dial on my 26 year old oven has only sharpie marks for its temperature settings, I was a bit in shock over it. The five year old happily decorated it.

Happy Birthday Denny!  I love you more than you'll ever know.  

Although there was plenty of frosting to ice the cake, I'll be doubling the recipe the next time I make this; there certainly wasn't enough for the girlies and me to eat big spoonfuls while we watched the cake bake!
(I apologize for the quality of the photos.  Battery was dead on the Canon, and all I had handy was my iPhone.)
Just after "helping" to blow out the candles.  (That's chocolate frosting on the corner of the five year old's mouth.) 

Kathy's Chocolate Cake

1 ¾ cup flour

2 cups sugar
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa
1 ½ teaspoon baking soda
1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
½ cup vegetable oil (I use canola oil)
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup boiling water

Preheat oven to 350.  Grease and flour two 8 inch cake pans.  Combine all of the dry ingredients.  Add everything else except the water and beat for 2 minutes.  Stir in the water and then pour into the prepared pans.  Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean.  Cool in pans and then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.  Frost with chocolate buttercream frosting, below (put out butter to soften while making cake).

Chocolate buttercream frosting  (Don't forget to double this, if frosting is your favorite part of cake eating!) 

3 cups powdered sugar
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa
1/8 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons milk
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/3 cup butter, softened

Combine all ingredients except the butter, then mix in the butter. 

*The reason I no longer bake is because I have no self control; I eat too much of what I bake,  I get a tummy ache, (gain 5 pounds,) and end up on a sugar detox. :(


  1. Looks Delicious! A pat on your back for leaving Duncan and Betty on the shelf.

    ...and your brother is 40???? Doesn't look too bad himself (sorry, I know it's your brother, but he is very 'nice looking'- to put it politely):).

  2. Yes, he is very "easy on the eyes" as they say. =)

  3. It was a great cake and a great party.. I'm so grateful I have such a wonderful sister, a loving family and loyal friends. Thank you, Stephie. I love you so much.

  4. This is adorable and yummy! Happy birthday Denny!

  5. Not only is he 'easy on the eyes' but incredibly sweet????

    Seriously- I love seeing when brothers and sisters are close (when they "grow up"). My kids' relationship is one of my main priorities (not that they don't fight- constantly:). I want them to love and respect one another and realize that even though they're different in age and gender, they can still have a tight, close bond for life! In fact, I'm showing them this post. Of course, I'll tell them that it's because of the "cake" (because, after all- that, and your daughters are super cute too:).

  6. that cake is awesome. you did so well with the writing too. its just a mess when i try that.

  7. ah he is quite a handsome guy! I have a very single sister :)
    are those your adorable kiddos? they are too cute. ok well welcome to blogging and have a great weekend stephanie. naina

  8. what a lovely cake! i love how youthful it looks...

  9. You're brilliant. and you're brothers a hottie.. he's not an 'artist' is he? ;)
    xx tash