Queenie Cooks: THE Best Chocolate Cake

By: Terry Harris | Email: Click Here
Posted: Feb. 17, 2018 | 1:10 p.m.

When I started thinking about what to share this week, my first thought was, “Hey! It’s Valentine’s Day, so it has to be chocolate.” No problem. I have tons of chocolate recipes. Then, I thought, “Well, it needs to be pretty.” Again, simple, right? Bake most any chocolate pound cake-type recipe in a heart-shaped pan and dust it with powdered sugar and you’ll have a real stunner. But … for THE “Chocolate Day” of the year, it has to be special. So today, as my Valentine to you, I’m skipping my usual “historical perspective” or “interesting side notes” or “anecdotes” part and just sharing my often-requested but never before released recipe for the most popular cake I’ve ever made – my bodacious Hershey Chocolate Cake!

Let me begin by saying this is NOT a pretty cake. It occasionally kind of droops in the middle. (But you can disguise that with some extra nuts and icing!) And it isn’t fancy, because it only works in a 9×13 pan. But here’s the secret – you have to keep/serve it in the same pan you bake it in because it’s SO moist it doesn’t “cut pretty” – due to the sixteen ounces of Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup that go into the batter. That’s right. The same yummy stuff you used to use to make chocolate milk is baked into this wonderful cake. But that’s STILL not the REAL secret. Ready? Once you get the cake itself made, you top that with a boiled icing into which you melt three regular Hershey Bars. Just pour that all over the top of the cake, and the result? Seriously, I long ago lost count of the number and types of cakes I have made and served and shared and this one never, never, never lasts long enough for me to even know how leftovers taste. I’ve never had any. Period.

It’s truly not hard to make. In fact, it’s a simple, one-bowl, cake. It even uses self-rising flour! It is a little challenging the first time to tell when it’s done, but here are a couple of tips. If you rely on just the toothpick test, A) you don’t want to wait until there are no crumbs on the toothpick because it will be dry and B) if you stick a toothpick in the cake too soon, the cake will fall – so don’t just randomly start checking it halfway through. (Yeah, I’ve done that, too, but don’t tell!) The recipe says 30 minutes, but ovens vary, and for mine – which runs hot – I have to reduce the heat and cook it longer. So in my wonky oven, it usually takes closer to 45 minutes. Just use your middle rack and begin watching it through the little oven window at about 30 minutes or until the top looks like it’s almost dry around the edges. Do not open the oven before 30 minutes are up no matter what, because if you do, it probably will fall. BUT… if it does, it’s not the end of the world. Like I said, just sprinkle a bunch of pecans on top – mostly toward the center, cover them with a DOUBLE batch of the icing, and tell everyone it’s supposed to be that way. It will taste soooo good no one will care what it looks like. I promise.

And don’t let the old-fashioned boiled icing intimidate you. This one’s EASY. It’s also one of the best things I’ve ever put in my mouth. And when you add that to the cake, the total package is so moist and delicious – well, again, it’s not pretty, but anyone who likes chocolate will love this. Even chocolate snobs (which I can be myself) will find this old-fashioned cake really special. Hope you do, too! Let me know at smilinatyanow@aol.com?   Happy Valentine’s Day! Enjoy!


Queenie’s BEST Chocolate Cake

  • 1 C Flour self-rising flour
  • 1 Cup sugar
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla
  • 1 stick butter
  • 4 eggs
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 – 16 oz can chocolate syrup

Cream butter and sugar; add eggs, one at a time, and beat well after each addition. Add flour, baking powder and salt, vanilla and chocolate. Beat well. Bake in sheet pan 30 minutes at 350.

ICING

  • 1 C sugar
  • 1 stick butter
  • ½ C canned milk
  • 3 Hershey bars (small)
  • 1 Cup (or more) Coarsely chopped pecans

Bring to a boil over low heat; boil 2-3 minutes. Take off heat and stir in 3 “regular” size Hershey bars. Pour over hot cake as soon as it comes from the oven. Sprinkle with chopped nuts.


Look for Queenie Cooks weekly for recipes that are generally simple to prepare, require relatively few (and easy to find) ingredients, and usually budget friendly as well. We all have to eat. Let’s have some FUN with it!  

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