Saturday, September 12, 2009

Devils Food Cake

When we go out to eat (which I'm sure one can imagine is not very frequent due to several things, David's allergy being but one of them) we like to share an appetizer, entree and dessert. This way we get to taste everything but not eat too much and have a reasonable tab at the end of it all. Since David has been diagnosed, however, desserts are pretty much off the list of options for him. Nearly all desserts have some form of corn or soy. Vegetable oil (soy), chocolate chips (soy), powdered sugar (corn starch), baking powder (corn starch) and on and on the list goes. David LOVES chocolate desserts. Pies, cookies, cakes ...

Yesterday was a difficult day. When I got home I decided baking was in order. Something about baking is calming, soothing, familiar. Similar to cleaning I suppose (something I also enjoy doing particularity when stressed out or nervous). NONETHELESS there is a point!

I chose to make a Devil's Food Cake for David. The recipe is as follows, taken from my Pillsbury Best Desserts cook book, and surprisingly, UNSUBSTITUTED!! All of the ingredients are available in safe brands so it was simply a matter of mixing it up.

*2 cups all purpose flour
*11/4 teaspoons baking soda
*1/2 teaspoon salt
*11/2 cups sugar
*1/2 cup butter, softened
*1 teaspoon vanilla
*2 eggs
*4 oz unsweetened chocolate, melted
*1 cup milk

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour (OK so I did substitute this. Since it's chocolate cake I dusted my pans with cocoa powder rather than flour) two 8 or 9 inch round bake pans.

In medium bowl combine flour, baking soda and salt. Mix well.

In large bowl, combine sugar and butter. Beat until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and eggs. Blend well. Stir in melted chocolate. Alternately add dry ingredient mix and the cup of milk. Beat well after each addition. Pour batter into grease pans.

Bake at 350 for 27-35 mins or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool 10 mins in pans. Remove from pans and cool completely, about an hour.

(I used 9 inch pans and they needed the lower end of that cooking time est.)

For the frosting I used some of the organic powdered sugar I had purchased that was made with tapioca starch rather than corn starch. I just sliced a bit of butter into the powdered sugar and mashed it with a fork. Then added some milk and vanilla. I mixed it a little with the fork to prevent it from flying all over when I used my little hand held mixer on it. Then I whipped it until it was all mixed thoroughly adding a little milk or powdered sugar as needed to reach my desired consistency. There's a recipe out there, I am sure, with the specific measurements to make a butter-cream frosting but I don't use one. I like to make it to taste. =) And it tasted good.

Powdered sugar
Milk or cream (I used some 1/2 & 1/2 because we have one percent milk which isn't really rich enough)

I'd say about a cup of the sugar (you HAVE to use powdered or finely ground granulated or your frosting will be gritty) to 3 TBS or so of butter, 1 tsp of vanilla and a TBS or 2 of milk depending on desired consistency. But I really don't know the measurements. I just dump it in and mix things until I like it. For chocolate frosting just leave out the vanilla and add some cocoa powder. The vanilla can be substituted with any kind of flavored extract to give the frosting a little kick. I personally like plain white frosting for the most part on my chocolate cakes but I have used almond extract, mint extract, lemon extract and Bailey's Irish Cream liqueur in my frosting on occasion. Each adds a unique flavor to the item frosted.

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