Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Another successful cake baked!

This last weekend was my husband's birthday. I asked him what type of cake he would like, and he mentioned a German Chocolate cake. My immediate response was no way...pick again. His second choice was a coconut cake. That was a little better.

If you've been following my blog, you know that I'm a "from scratch" baker when it comes to fancy desserts. It's really one of the only ways to bake when you are trying to avoid processed foods and have to cook for a peanut allergy.

After doing some recipe research online, and remembering that I had successfully pulled off the chocolate marble cheesecake he requested last year, I re-considered the German Chocolate cake.  Especially since I found this great recipe that started with a boxed German Chocolate cake mix.  Yes, I was willing to "cheat" just a little, especially this time of year when I'm on over-load.  Well, the problem was, that I couldn't find a German Chocolate cake mix that I was willing to purchase given the list of ingredients.  I did find a Dr. Oetker** organic vanilla cake mix, and after comparing the ingredients thought I'd take a chance.  I also purchased Baker's German Sweet Chocolate bar (unfortunately, no other organic or peanut risk free option in site) to turn my vanilla cake to chocolate.

I mixed the box mix with the buttermilk, oil & eggs per the recipe I found on Barbara Bakes and then had to figure out how to add the chocolate.  The recipe that came with the chocolate instructed to melt the chocolate in the microwave with 1/2 cup of water.  No sooner did I do that when I realized that I just added an extra 1/2 cup of liquid to the recipe.  Already committed, I poured very thin cake batter into my pans and held my breath as I watched my cake layers in the oven through the glass. The cake layers turned out beautifully, but how would they taste?

I did use pecans in the frosting.  Abigail does not have a tree nut allergy, but given the high risk of cross-contamination, the peanut clinical trial guidelines require that tree nuts be removed from the participants diet.  My parents have several large pecan trees in their backyard.  We've talked to our doctor at Duke, and because there is no risk of cross-contamination, Abigail is allowed to eat pecans from their trees.

Here's how the cake turned out.

And how did it taste?  Incredible.  It's the most moist chocolate cake I've had in a really long time!  Yeah, another successful cake baked!  Happy Birthday to my wonderful husband!

**Just a note about the Dr. Oetker cake mix.  There was no allergen cautionary label on the box, and I haven't been able to find any information on their website.  In hindsight, I shouldn't have allowed Abigail to eat a piece until I knew for certain. It's a Canadian company, and they're usually really good about labeling. I'll contact them and find out.