My Favorite German Chocolate Cake Recipe

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German Chocolate Cake is one of my family’s favorite desserts for special occasions. I always thought it a little tricky to make because of the use of three layers. But as I’ve gotten older and more experienced in the kitchen I’ve found it’s not difficult at all. There are a few tricks that will help you in the construction of this beautiful 3-layer German Chocolate Cake.

I found this written up in the Dallas Morning News twelve or fifteen years ago and added it to our Family Cookbook. You can find my article here on the pitfalls and successes of publishing our Family cookbook entitled “How to Put Your Family’s Recipes In to a Cookbook Using WordPerfect.”

I use this particular version of German Chocolate Cake when making cakes for a birthday party, a Christmas get-together, a reunion, or other special occasions.

The ingredients are as follows:

1 (4-ounce) package Baker’s German’s sweet baking chocolate

½ cup water

2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

¼ teaspoon salt

1 cup (2 sticks) margarine or butter, softened

2 cups sugar

4 egg yolks

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup buttermilk

4 egg whites

Coconut-Pecan Filling and Frosting (recipe follows)

Preheat your oven to 350° F. Line the bottoms of 3 (9-inch) round cake pans with wax paper and set them aside. In a microwave, heat the chocolate and water in a large bowl on high for 1½-2 minutes or until the chocolate is almost melted, stirring halfway through heating time. Stir until the chocolate is completely melted.

Mix flour, baking soda and salt and set the mixture aside. Beat margarine and sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until mixture is light and fluffy. Add the egg yolks, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.

Stir in chocolate mixture and vanilla.

Add flour mixture alternately with the buttermilk, beating after each until smooth.

Beat egg whites in another large bowl with electric mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form. Gently stir egg whites into batter. Pour into prepared pans.

Bake 30 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched in the center. Immediately run a spatula between cakes and sides of pans. Cool 15 minutes; remove from the pans. Remove wax paper. Cool completely on wire racks. Spread coconut-pecan filling between layers and over top of cake.

Coconut-Pecan Filling and Frosting:

In a large saucepan, mix 1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk, 1½ cups sugar, ¾ cup (1½ sticks) margarine or butter, 4 egg yolks (slightly beaten) and 1½ teaspoons vanilla. Cook and stir over medium heat about 12 minutes or until the mixture is thickened and golden brown. Remove from heat. Stir in 1 (7-ounce) package shredded sweetened coconut (about 2? cups) and 1½ cups chopped pecans. Cool to room temperature.

The Bad News:

The Dallas Morning News reports that each serving has about 848 calories, 51 grams fat and 152 mg cholesterol. But, it sure is gooooood!

Helpful Hints:

If you freeze the layers for 30 minutes or an hour after they cool on the counter it will be easier to spread frosting on them. Lightly brush off any crumbs from the frozen layers and place them on wax paper as you’re working on the frosting.

Place one of the cake layers in the middle of a cake plate, frost with about 1 cup of icing and top with a second cake layer. Frost the second layer and place the third cake layer on top. Frost the third layer with the rest of the icing. This cake typically does not have icing around the edges so if you want to frost the edges you will have to make more icing.

To make perfect egg whites use perfectly clean utensils. Place bowl (preferably glass or metal), electric mixer wire whip, and egg whites in refrigerator to get completely cold before beating.

Buttermilk Substitution

If you don’t have buttermilk, mix up some soured milk to use as a substitute.

To make 1 cup of soured milk, place 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar in a 1?cup glass measuring cup. Add enough low?fat (1% milkfat) milk to measure 1 cup; stir until mixed. Let the mixture stand for 5 minutes in the refrigerator before using.

Hope you try this recipe and use it often!

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