This recipe has lived on a wrinkled half-sheet of paper in my binder for as many years as I can remember. At this point, I have no idea where it originated. But I’ve kept it because it produces a wonderfully moist cake every time. This is not a complicated recipe, and chances are you already have everything in your pantry that you need. So ditch the boxed cake mix and give this one a try.
1 3/4 cup unsifted all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup cocoa
1 1/2 TSP baking powder
1 1/2 TSP baking soda
1 TSP salt
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 TSP vanilla
1 cup boiling water
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and begin heating at least 1 cup of water on your stovetop. Prepare two 9″ cake pans by buttering the bottoms & sides & adding a round of parchment paper in the bottom of the pans and buttering the top of the paper. Flour lightly. This cake is moist, so trust me, you’ll want to add that parchment paper to your pans. It’ll ensure that your cakes release easily.
Stir the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. In a separate smaller bowl, lightly whisk the eggs, milk, vegetable oil and vanilla. Pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients and mix on medium speed for two minutes. Pour 1 cup of boiling water into the batter & stir, making sure to incorporate completely. The batter will be thin.
Pour into your prepared pans and bake for 30-35 minutes. Test the cakes at 30 minutes by inserting a knife into the center of each. If the knife comes out clean, the cakes are done. Let them rest for five minutes on cooling racks, then remove the cakes from the pans to cool completely.
Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
1/3 cup butter at room temperature
3 cups of powdered sugar
3 ounces of unsweetened baking chocolate, melted & cooled
2 TSP vanilla
3-4 TBSP milk
In a medium bowl, beat the the butter and powdered sugar with a spoon or a mixer on low until blended. Stir in the chocolate and vanilla. Gradually beat in enough milk to make the frosting smooth and spreadable. If the frosting is too thin, add more powdered sugar. If it’s too thick, add more milk.
Frost your cooled cakes and be prepared to forego boxed cakes forever.