I’ve read enough blogs while digging through Pinterest recipes to know that I like the stories, and I like the recipes. But sometimes I don’t feel like reading about a writer’s latest obsession or purchase. Sometimes I just need to make dinner! I’m gonna take a different route and try (Try being the operative here) to keep stories and food adventures in separate posts.
If you saw my last post, you’ll know that I’m embarking on my first ever ‘fitness challenge’ or whatever you want to call it. So this is my last hurrah before I give up sugar for 6 weeks (eep): German Chocolate Cake.
First, I already had almost every ingredient, and that never happens.
I even had buttermilk and cream to use. And a friend wanted me to bake, and this is where we landed.
With my broken-in copy of The New Best Recipe, and my trusty assistant (the Little, home from pre-k), we set out to make some cake!
First hurdle is the chocolate. Instant espresso?? I see so many recipes call for it, but I’ve never seen it! Have you? Usually I skip it, but this time I had a couple packets of Starbucks Via. And how will it taste? I love coffee but I don’t know that I want it in my kids’ cake!
Introducing the Little. She loves having the super important job of holding the ‘handle’ of the mixer. She takes her work very seriously and I know she’s not in the way, holding the thingy where you add on those attachments – everyone’s happy!
Can anyone tell me why my chocolate batter always comes out looking curdled and gross? I’ve made a handful now, and every time. Every SINGLE time! Blech. Luckily it does look better after the oven.
I learned from a friend to add a bit of cocoa when greasing the cake pans. No chalky looking cake – especially since this one doesn’t have frosting on the sides – eek. Check it out!
Now we’ve got the cakes in the oven and I have quite a mess to clean up. In the meantime, the Little keeps an eye on the cake. Usually she’ll stick a step stool or one of her chairs, but not this time. This time she chose a more casual stance. I mean, I can’t think of a better way to pass 23-25 minutes. Can you?
On to the frosting while the cake cools. Pecans, coconut, eggs, butter and sugar. If you ever make one of these ‘cooked’ frostings, pay attention to consistency, not time. I got the temperature and the time right. But it was supposed to get puffy, and I got sick of the constant stirring. Rookie mistake – I didn’t even know how badly I’d messed up till it was too late!
Here it doesn’t look too bad. The recipe basically wanted me to pile it on thick and only on the tops of the layers. Then again, it wanted me to cut the two rounds in half and make a FOUR layer cake!! No way, no how. If I wanted to do that, I’d go buy two more cake pans. So the frosting applied easily enough.
See all that drippy frosting? Not supposed to do that! My friends are darlings and said they thought it looked more bakery level that way, and we all agreed it tasted divine. But next time, if ever, I will have to carve out at least another oh, 10-70 minutes to ‘stir constantly’ until I get puffy frosting. I guess I won’t need an arm workout that day? Happy eating!