German Chocolate Cake

I made this cake on a whim.  I was originally going to make either Banana Cream Pie or Banana Split Pie from Fannie Flagg’s Whistle Stop Café Cookbook, and somehow another, Hubby mentioned that he used to get German Chocolate Cake for his birthday when he was young.  So, I looked at FF’s book again to see if she had that recipe, and I scanned it quickly and decided it was doable to make it.  Not that it was his birthday, but I could make this and if he’s happy with the cake, then I’m happy too!

So I added the ingredients to my shopping list and all thoughts of making Banana Cream or Banana Split Pie flew out of my head.  And when I came across shortening, I decided that I would use butter instead.  I don’t know why.  I have this notion that shortening is this white, greasy looking stuff, and somehow that turns me off as one of the ingredients for cake or cookies.  And I don’t have the same effect with butter.  Weird right?

So I needed sugar, all purpose flour, eggs, buttermilk, butter, well, shortening, but you know the story.  Vanilla, water, baking soda, salt, baking chocolate, and the Coconut Pecan Frosting.

 

Here I melted the chocolate chips and water in a double boiler.  I substituted the sweet baking chocolate since I rarely use it, and I have semi sweet chocolate chips on hand.

 

 

I creamed the butter until soft, and added the sugar a little bit by little bit.

 

Added the egg yolks, one at a time…

 

Then I added the melted chocolate.

 

In this bowl, I had the buttermilk, baking soda and vanilla mixed in together.  The baking soda made the buttermilk bubble a little.

 

Then after mixing the flour and salt, I started adding the flour a little by a little to the batter.

 

Then the buttermilk mixture…

 

Until I finished with the last batch of flour, and I had this light, fluffy chocolate batter.

 

I transferred it to another bowl, since I had to make the meringue.  I washed the bowl really good, and this is when I was pondering if I should spend $50 to get me an extra bowl.  But then, I don’t really use it often…

 

The egg whites were beaten until stiff peaks were formed.

 

Plopped it onto the chocolate batter…

 

Folded the meringue into the batter carefully and slowly…

 
And transferred the batter into two nine-inch baking pans.  Baked it at 350F and I set the timer for 25 minutes.  The recipe indicated that the cake need to be baked for 25 minutes to 30 minutes.

 

So while the cake was baking, I prepared the Coconut Pecan Frosting.  Whip cream, sugar, coconut flakes, butter, vanilla, chocolate chips, egg yolks, and chopped pecans.

 

I put the whipping cream, sugar, egg yolks, and sugar into a medium pan.  Heated it on medium heat.

 

Now, from this point forward, it was a blur.  I was supposed to bring it to a boil on a medium heat, and then cook it for 12 minutes.  The next step was to remove it from the heat, add the vanilla, coconut and pecans.  Stir it well and let it cool completely.   Since I was busy preparing dinner as well, I didn’t take the time to take pictures.  It didn’t help that by the 30-minute mark, my cake was not done at all.  It was all still gooey and definitely not done.  It took me a whole hour to bake the cake.  I just couldn’t fathom what was wrong, but then I figured it out the next day.  The butter!  Butter has more moisture than shortening, hence I just completely changed the chemistry of this cake!  But luckily, it came out very moist, spongy, and definitely buttery. 🙂

 

This is the “cooled” Coconut Pecan Frosting.  In a time crunch, I threw the chocolate into the bowl while it was still a tad warm.  And guess what?  The chocolates were somewhat melted.  So don’t do as I did. 🙂

 

I slathered the frosting between the cakes and basically dumped it on the top, and let it run to the side of the cakes.

 

The result, it was German Chocolate Cake.  It was definitely not a bad cake, even though Granny Anny decided to change ingredients on her own without thinking what would the effect be.  I really like the cake, but the Frosting was way too sweet for me.  The cake freezes well too, since the grandkids gobbled up the rest of the cake, and no one complained about it.  So, maybe Granny will think twice next time, before she decides to substitute a major ingredient!  Until my next cake! 🙂

 

Print recipe here.

German Chocolate Cake
Recipe courtesy: Fannie Flagg’s Original Whistle Stop Café Cookbook

Ingredients:
4 oz package sweet baking chocolate
1/4 cup water
1 cup shortening
2 cups sugar
4 eggs, separated
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 ½ cups sifted all purpose flour
½ tsp salt
Coconut Pecan Frosting

Mix in together the chocolate and water, cook over medium heat until chocolate is completely melted.  Set aside and let cool.
Using a mixer, cream the shortening until soft, and gradually add the sugar.  Add egg yolk one at a time, scraping the side of the bowl with a spatula before adding the next egg yolk.  Add the chocolate mixture and mix well, set aside.
Preheat the oven to 350F.  Prepare 2 9-inch round pans by greasing it with cooking spray and then sprinkle with flour.  In a medium size bowl, combine the buttermilk, vanilla, and baking soda.  Alternatively, add the flour and buttermilk mixture into the batter, starting and ending with flour.
In another bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form.  Fold the egg whites into the batter, and pour into the prepared pans.  Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes clean.
Let cool in pans for 10 minutes before transferring to wire racks.  Cool completely before frosting.

Coconut Pecan Frosting
1 1/3 cups whipping cream
1 1/3 cups sugar
4 egg yolks, beaten
2/3 cup butter
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/3 cup flaked coconut
1 1/3 cup chopped pecans
2 ounces sweet baking chocolate, grated.

Preparation:
In a medium sauce pan, combine the first 4 ingredients.  Cook over medium heat, and bring it to a boil.  Cook for 12 minutes and stir constantly.  Remove from heat, and add vanilla, coconut and pecans.  Let the mixture cool completely, and then put in 3/4 of the chocolate and mix well.  Spread the frosting between cake layers, the top, and the sides.  Sprinkle the cake with the remaining chocolate.

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