Happy Halloween! The boys and I couldn't decide which Halloween treats we wanted to make this year. Ghosts in the graveyard cake has been our annual tradition for the past thirteen years, or a Boo-tiful Cake that we liked from Martha Stewart. We made both! Ghost in the graveyard cake recipe can be found at www.kraftrecipes.com and for the Boo-tiful cake www.marthastewart.com. I used the cake decorating idea from Martha and made my Mom's perfect chocolate cake recipe along with my buttercream frosting. It's cute, fun and the cake is moist, delicious and has a creamy filling between the layers. Remember Suzy Q's!!
When we are getting ourselves ready for the holidays, I often find myself quietly thanking our mom for giving my siblings and I a fun Halloween! I remember carved lighted pumpkins on the doorsteps, frosted Halloween cutouts on the table, dressing up, school parties, trick-or-treating in our small town and our last stop at the local Fire House. They would have hot cider, popcorn balls and doughnuts. Once home we would sort our candy, trade with each other, dump everything back in our Halloween pumpkin pails and off to bed. Our mom doesn't remember any of this, she is suffering with dementia, but I do. Fun stuff of the past, things I do now to make it fun for our family and hoping our boys will carry on in the future. I often wonder what she is thinking or remembering when I see her. I will not forget you it says in Isaiah 49:15. I know that God has not forgotten her, and when she smiles at someone she recognizes, he has given her a moment. I was surprised to receive a package in the mail containing one of my favorite candies, no one knows that I like this candy, but God knew! He knew that mom and I made homemade taffy for a classroom project together. He remember me with a gift from my past.
Mom's Perfect Chocolate Cake
1 cup unsifted unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups boiling water
2 1/2 cups sifted flour (sift before measuring)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter softened
2 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1cup heavy cream
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
9 cups confectioners' sugar
1 cup butter softened
1/2 cup milk or cream (more as needed)
In a medium bowl, combine unsweetened cocoa with 2 cups boiling water until smooth.
Sift the flour, soda, salt and baking powder. Preheat your oven to 350 and grease and flour three 9 x 1 1/2" layer cake pans. In a large bowl beat butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla till light and fluffy about 5 minutes. At low speed beat in the flour mixture in fourths alternating with the cocoa mixture in thirds. Begin and end with the flour. Do not overbeat. Divide evenly into the pans and bake 25-30 minutes. Knife should come out clean when done. Cool completely.
While cake is baking beat the cream, sugar and vanilla till fluffy. Cover & refrigerate till ready to fill the cake.
To make the frosting, beat the softened butter, confectioners' sugar, vanilla and milk to make a spreading consistency. Usually, it takes just about 5 minutes.
Assemble the cake by placing one layer on plate, 1/2 the filling, the next layer of cake, the rest of the filling and the last layer of cake. Frost top & sides and decorate anyway you wish.
Eat Well, Sonya