Thursday, June 10, 2010

Easy Chocolate Cake

The kiddos had a cake walk at the school carnival last week, so last minute we decided to make this chocolate cake from AllRecipes.com. I changed a couple things based on some comments and what we had, so here's my version:
  • 1 (18.25 ounce) package yellow cake mix
  • 1 (3.9 ounce) package instant chocolate pudding mix
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips (we used Hershey's Raspberry Chocolate Chips)
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour a 10-inch Bundt pan. Stir together the cake mix, instant pudding and sugar. Add the water, oil, eggs, and yogurt, mix until well blended. Finally, fold in the chocolate chips. Pour into the prepared Bundt pan.
  2. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes in the preheated oven. Cake is done when a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely.
So we actually ended up making this cake twice. Why? Apparently because I, being the Kitchen Catastrophe that I am, cannot grease and flour a pan properly. Other Half cautioned me about over-flouring the pan and I think I totally under-floured it in my fear. Happily for them, my kiddos had to consume Cake #1 as it came out of the pan as a crumbled mess.

So, while I was teaching my adult Spanish class, the rest of the family mixed up Cake #2, shown in the pictures above-- if you look closely, you can see all the excess flour on the cake as Other Half didn't want to risk repeating my error in the 11th hour. Since the cake came out of the oven after the kiddos were in bed, they got to decorate it in their jammies before school the next morning. This cake certainly doesn't need anything as it is moist and yummy and very chocolaty all by itself, but Bug had her heart set on sprinkles. So, first Other Half whipped up a basic chocolate glaze, and Bug drizzled on Layer #1. Then it got a good dusting of powdered sugar to cover up the flour, chocolate glaze Layer #2 (with help from Mugger who wanted in on the decorating action), and finally some pink sprinkles. Bug decided that the pink sprinkles would be a little clue that the chocolate chips were raspberry chocolate chips, making her cake extra special.

And special it was -- she won the award for Most Unique in the Pre-K class. As for the cake itself, it was yummy and yes, I'd make it again. I'm usually a from-scratch baker as I'm getting more conscious about what's in my food, but for a quick dessert to be made out of things I can keep in the pantry, this yellow cake mix and chocolate pudding mix combo can't be beat. Actually, a reviewer on AllRecipes gave several other variations she had tried and I think it won't be too long before I'm swapping in lemon pudding and blueberries.

Anybody got any no-fail desserts for me to try? Bug is certainly game for another round, especially if sprinkles are involved...

6 comments:

  1. That looks really yummy. I have a hard time with cakes too! I feel like I hardly ever get the greasing/flouring just right and I often have problems getting it to come out of the pan. Pam used to make a cooking spray called "Pam for baking" or something, and it was always perfect, but I guess they discontinued it, because I can never find it anymore.

    I think brownies are my no-fail dessert. Just as easy to whip up out of pantry ingredients (even from scratch) and just as delicious as cake--but no worries about having to get them to come out of the pan looking pretty.

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  2. Yeah, Jen, anything I have to wrestle out of the pan is not my preference! But it had to be a cake for the decorating contest and cake walk -- oh well! I do much better with cookies -- and pie if I use a frozen crust!

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  3. Mom (aka Nonnie)June 10, 2010 at 2:47 PM

    You can use cocoa powder instead of flour to prep the pan when making chocolate cakes.

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  4. Thanks for the tip, Mom! Cocoa powder it is!

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  5. Michelle DurheimJune 10, 2010 at 4:11 PM

    I took the Wilton cake decorating classes after our second daughter was born. I have found that the Bake Easy spray makes everything come out of any pan without sticking! It's the best!

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  6. Thanks, Michelle -- I'll look for the Bake Easy spray!

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