We are celebrating the first birthday of a certain little miss this weekend and I offered to bring a cake. I would make it a few days beforehand and freeze it and we would take it up north so that Kezzie’s Mommy and Daddy could frost it. Of course, such an auspicious occasion called for not just any cake, but, a cake made from scratch, so, scratch I did, itching around in my favorite cookbooks, until I came upon an Ina Garten recipe (she never lets me down).
Cocoa powder and buttermilk and freshly brewed hot coffee all thrown into the mix of ingredients – how easy is that?
I decided to used a twelve inch pan instead of two layers for easier cutting and rummaged around until I found one my grandmother used to use to make karidopeta, a most delectable Greek nut cake, laden with a sugar water syrup that I really must make sometime soon. This time, however, it made Beatty’s Chocolate Cake from Barefoot Contessa at Home.
Ina’s recipe calls for the pan to be buttered, then lined with parchment paper, and buttered again, followed with flour. My mother always made her cakes this way. I used to watch her and wonder as a young girl why she did it this way and prefer to use PAM myself these days, but, the recipe called for parchment and butter, so, parchment and butter it was. The cake came out beautifully. Have you ever used parchment paper? There is something that awakened the child in me as I pulled the paper slowly away from the cake. A finality of a cake well baked? Maybe I was just remembering pleasant times with my mom.
Unfortunately, several hours later, as I went to slide the cake onto a cardboard cake round for freezing and transporting, the cake slipped and was rent in half! Sigh! (Well, actually, it wasn’t a sigh, but a few choice words instead as I chided myself). What was to be done?
I cut the “better half” into two large pieces to freeze, and, well, it was ruined anyways, so, I might just have taken a little slice and then Tom might have taken another and, gosh, Jennifer came by and we both ate a few slivers, just to make sure it would taste good. Oh my! This cake is so rich and moist that it really doesn’t need frosting.
Another big, round cake is cooling right now. Beatty’s Chocolate Cake is a keeper, whether whole or in pieces, and I’m mighty determined to get this one up to Minnesota in one piece real soon.