Thursday, February 23, 2012

Very Simple (Wacky) Birthday Cake

We had a birthday here a little while ago...a two cake birthday. ;-)  That means one cake on the day our family celebrated and one cake on the day the friends came over to celebrate.  This birthday boy knows just what he wants for a cake and it mostly has to do with a lot of whipped cream. He specified a very certain look.  Two layers of chocolate cake.  Whip cream in between.  LOTS of whip cream on top piled in a dome shape.  And since it's not for me to question why (?!?!), I just went ahead and made one. 
 (same birthday boy wanted whipped cream along with peach butter and blueberries for his birthday breakfast waffles)

And since he liked that cake so much I made another one exactly the same for the second cake day.  One of the things that he liked about it was that I put something special in between the layers along with the whipped cream - his very own strawberry jam that he made in the summer.  It added just an extra touch of deliciousness.
The cake recipe is an old favourite.  I've been making it since I was about 8 years old.  I always called it Wacky Cake but I've seen it with all kinds of names.  I'm sure you'll recognize the recipe (if so, I'd love to know what you call it) but I was visiting with my friend yesterday (an experienced baker and wonderful cook) and was surprised to hear she hadn't heard of it - even when I described the 3 holes and the vinegar, vanilla and oil part!!  So...obviously I have to share the recipe with her (poor deprived girl) and thought I'd share it here too.

Wacky Cake

•1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

•1 cup sugar

•3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa

•1 teaspoon baking powder

•1 teaspoon baking soda

•1/2 teaspoon salt

•1 teaspoon vanilla

•1 tablespoon vinegar

•5 tablespoons melted butter (or melted coconut oil or grape seed oil)

•1 cup warm water

Mix dry ingredients in 8X8 pan.  Make 3 holes in mixture.  Put the 1tsp vanilla in one hole, 5 Tbsp melted butter in other hole and 1 Tbsp vinegar in another hole (that bit was always the exciting part because it starts to fizz a bit).  Then pour 1 cup of water over the whole lot and mix well.  Bake for 35-45 minutes at 350. 
That was how I always made it and then quite often I used to ice it too.  Since then I've learned that chocolate chips in the batter make a delightful addition.  And these days I no longer mix it in the pan because I'm usually doubling the recipe and then making it in two pans (or you can double it and make it in a 9x13).
At any rate it is a simple-to-make and delicious-to-eat cake - a very good "starter" cake for a new baker but also the kind of cake that one never gets tired of.  So there you are M-S...make it with your family and let them eat cake!


Laeli said...

Wacky cake is my very favourite cake to make..and eat! Your post has got me craving some right now. I love your birthday boy's style!

Mary-Sue said...

YAY!!! thank you! i've requested it for my birthday cake, and sent the link to daughter. YUMMO! can't wait to dive into it! i wonder if you could make one bath-tub size :o)

Reginas Cottage said...

mmmh the cake makes me very hungry!
looks delicious,
have a nice weekend,
love regina

AMOffenwanger said...

Heh- I didn't know about the three-hole thing. I just mix the dry stuff in the pan, the liquid in a measuring cup, dump them together, stir and bake (as per the instructions in "Whole Foods for the Whole Family", the LLL cookbook). The whipped cream- oh yummm...

Honey and Me said...

Hi Heather! I haven't made a wacky cake for ages! I'm so glad you posted this! I'm going to make one this week with my granddaughter!

daisy g said...

I have a similar recipe with the vinegar. It's the best chocolate cake ever!

Happy birthday to the birthday boy!

W-S Wanderings said...

Wacky Cake is our go to cake recipe. No other chocolate cake tastes quite right. I love how moist it is.

Happy belated birthday to your boy.

Green Gal said...

Looks delicious--I'll have to try this one sometime!

Erin said...

birthdays are joyful, celebrate fully, your boy and you to!!

this cake, yes , my mom made it, though i somehow never did. it is wacky cake, I have the recipe and everything. i LOVE how he requested it, it looks about perfect.

~erin xo

cargillwitch said...

my mom used to make this one often when we were kids- great memories of birthdays passed for me.
And the mention of "Whole Foods for the whole family" - my favourite cookbook, stained, ripped on a page or two and well loved. Never tire of the recipes even after 22 years

The Artsy Oils Girl said...

This cake looks so yummy! I might try for my oldest sons birthday this summer! Thanks for the recipe!