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  • Writer's pictureJodi Gillespie

Nannie’s Chocolate Cake

Updated: Mar 22, 2022

When I was a kid, my mom made the most AMAZING chocolate cake, seems like almost every week!! Moist, just slightly sweet, with the most magnificent fudgy frosting that added so very much to the slightly sweet cake.

More times than I would like to admit, this is what we would have for breakfast, in a bowl, covered in just enough milk to make the cake soggy. Then we’d mash up the cake so it was a sweet surprise when your tastebuds hit a piece of that fudgy frosting. A little slice of heaven just before rushing across the street for school🤣

Every once in awhile, for nostalgia sake, I’ll let my kids do the same for breakfast. It’s just as much a delightful for them as it was for me!!

It’s super simple to make with ingredients on hand. I have never had it fail, and it you underbake it, it makes the cakes super fudgy too!!

Nannie is my grandma on my Dad’s side. She was the most kind, generous, giving, sweetheart of a lady ever. The kind of Grandma that every kid dreams of. She always was baking something, never was out of cookies in the cookie jar, brought you comfort food when you you were sick, always had a drawer of surprises, NEVER said a cross word, and ALWAYS had a smile, hug and kiss for you. We never knocked when we came in the house, and all of our friends loved her enough to call her Nannie too❤️

This recipe was hers. I still use the original recipe that I copied when I was probably 11. To look back at my handwriting makes me laugh. I keep it in this special recipe book I got from her…that makes it even sweeter. If I write it down somewhere else I won’t get to see these sweet reminders of my loved ones.

As you can see, I wrote it down EXACTLY as it was😂(Wesson oil)

Nannie’s Chocolate Cake

2c. Flour

2c. Sugar

1/2c. Cocoa (I use raw cacao powder)

2t. Baking soda

1/4t. Salt

Mix well.

Then stir in:

1c. Oil (I use melted butter)

1c. Buttermilk (I use soured milk)

1t. Vanilla

2 eggs

Beat well after adding each egg, but do not over beat!!

Stir in 1c. boiling water.

Bake in a greased and floured 9x13 pan at 350° for 30-35 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean.

Cool completely, then frost:

In a small saucepan over low heat stir until dissolved:

1/2 Stick butter

1c. Sugar

1/4c. Milk

Once dissolved, turn up heat to low/medium and gently bring to bowl. Do not over boil!!

Remove from heat and add 1c. chocolate chips. Stir till melted, then beat till shiny. Spread immediately.


*Edit 3/22/22

I wanted to give a whirl at Ganache. I helped host a baby shower over the weekend and wanted to make this cake into a tier cake.

I divided the batter into 3 8” prepared cake pans. Baked for 20-25 minutes at 350°, then pressed down the hot cake when I took them out of the oven with a plate so the top was even. This makes them extra almost “fudgy” and sooooo moist. Wash and dry your pans, then individually wrap the cakes in plastic wrap. Place into The individual pans, and freeze overnight. This will make the cakes even more moist and super easy to frost as they are hard and you will not risk crumbling your cake or getting crumbs in your frosting.

Then, over super low heat, slowly melt 2c. Hershey’s Chocolate chips (this is the only chocolate chips I use. Nestlé‘s, to me, are so chalky, so I never use them or offbrand chocolate chips). Stir until smooth. Remove from heat, and add 2 cups heavy whipping cream. Stir until smooth. This makes the most divine, soft, melt in your mouth ganache.

Spread a small amount of Ganache on your cake plate, put the first layer on top side up. Spread a thin layer of ganache on it and placed the second layer top side down. Spread ganache on that layer then add the third layer top side up. Alternating the cakes in this way makes them be more level in the end.

Cover the cake and place in the refrigerator.

Cover your ganache pan and place it in the refrigerator for an hour and a half or until cold all the way through. When ready to frost your cake, beat the remaining ganache with a mixer until fluffy. It takes about 3-4 minutes with my KitchenAid.

Frost the sides and top. This cake is super moist and very rich, so a thin slice is best. Cover to store at room temperature, but if your house is anything like mine, there’s no leftovers😜lol

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