Annie’s Chocolate Cake

While I was stirring the butter, Crisco, water and cocoa over a low flame letting all of its fattening goodness combine, I started to think about who I could double dog dare to take a sip.  I knew Paul would never take my dare, but my nephew, Flynn, would.  He’ll do anything!  Bummer that I wasn’t baking this cake with him!

This is one of my favorite cakes of all time.  It’s a simple, homemade chocolate cake that is a total crowd pleaser.  It is neither fancy nor pretty.  But how many things made with love from scratch are?  The beauty of this cake is that it tastes like an apron wearing grandmother with flour smeared on her cheek baked it in her warm, lovely kitchen.

I asked my mom for a copy of the recipe and of course she hand wrote it out for me.  She know’s this is one of my favorite cakes so she called it, “Annie’s Chocolate Cake.”  I have no idea where the recipe actually came from or the name of the creator.  But it makes me super happy that my mom named it after me.

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Annie’s Chocolate Cake (recipe care of Day Day Chenoweth, not sure of original source)

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Cake:  2 cups sifted flour (I didn’t sift the flour, much to my mother’s disdain – if you stir your flour quite a bit before measuring, you will release a lot of the excess air and your measurements will be more precise, skipping the tedious step of sifting), 2 cups sugar, 1/2 cup softened butter, 1/2 cup shortening (Crisco), 1/4 unsweetened cocoa, 1 cup water, 1 tsp baking soda, 1/2 cup buttermilk, 2 eggs, 1 tsp vanilla

Frosting:  1/2 cup butter, 3 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa, 1/3 cup heavy cream, 2 cups powdered sugar, 1 tsp vanilla, 1 cup toasted chopped walnuts


Cake:  Butter 9 x 13″ pan and preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Sift flour and sugar together.  Heat butter, shortening, cocoa, and water in a saucepan.  Place in large bowl, and beat in flour and sugar.  Dissolve baking soda in the buttermilk, and add to the mixture.  Add eggs and vanilla; beat until smooth.  Pour into prepared pan and bake for 35-40 minutes.

Frosting:  Combine butter, cocoa, and cream in a saucepan.  Heat until butter melts.  Add powdered sugar, vanilla, and walnuts.  Beat until smooth.  Pour over hot cake and let cool on rack.

*  You know those people who hate frosting and will often choose a piece of cake that has a minuscule amount smoothed over it?  Yeah, that’s not me.  I say pile on the frosting!  So in making the frosting, both my mom and I add extra cream and powdered sugar until we get the consistency we like.  In my mind it’s about the frosting, not the cake.  If that’s wrong, I don’t wanna be right.

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