Today, July 13th
Recipes are never actually invented, they evolve over time. The Mud Cake is a fairly new species which seems to have sprung off the American parental tree in the early 1970’s, along with its cousin, The Mud Pie. Its ancestors are the Brownie (a mud cake is a more sensible sized brownie, that is all) and Fudge, but there must be a few rogue genes in there too, as the early 1970’s recipes for Mud Cake also contain marshmallow. This particular type of Mud Cake either never migrated to
Every family has its black sheep, and at some time after the birth of the Mud Cake there sprang up something called Dirt Cake. I have never come across a live specimen, but in the interests of culinary history, sought out a recipe for you. It has an ingredient called ‘chocolate pudding mix’ in it, as well as broken up commercial biscuits (Oreos, which I believe are quite revered in their homeland), and I confess I could go no further. I am not sure what ‘chocolate pudding mix’ is, but I am pretty sure I wouldn’t like it, and I am very sure it has no place in a cake. Call me a purist. Call me a snob. Just don’t call me to the table and make me eat chocolate pudding made from a mix.
I would, however, be more than willing to sample this recipe, from a 1972 American newspaper cooking column.
2 sticks melted butter*
2 cups of sugar
1 ½ cups of flour
⅓ cups cocoa
½ teas salt
1 ½ cups pecans (chopped)
1 teas vanilla.
Cream butter and sugar, add eggs and sift flour, cocoa, salt, and add to cream mixture. Add vanilla, nuts shredded in flour, and pour in 9 x 12 square pan. Bake 30-40 mins at 350 degrees. Remove from stove and cover with marshmallows and brown, then while still warm pour frosting over cake and let cool. Cut into squares.
1 cup of powdered sugar
½ stick of butter
½ cup of evaporated milk
⅓ cup of cocoa
½ teas vanilla
Sift powdered sugar and cream with butter, Add evaporated milk, cocoa, and vanilla. Pour over cake while still warm.
*A ‘stick’ of butter, for those of you ‘elsewhere’, is 4oz, which is near enough to 125gm.
The newpaper article was called ‘Unusual Recipes’, and I cant resist also giving you the recipe that came after the the mud cake. It is worth it for the name alone.
1 stick of butter melted in pan.
1 cup of graham cracker crumbs
1 package of semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 can of angel flake coconut
1 cup of chopped pecans
1 can of Eagle Brand milk.
Place in pan by layers, in order as written. Bake 300 degrees for 30 minutes. Cool in refrigerator several hours before slicing and taking out of pan.
I’d love some information or stories on ‘After That’, if you have any to share.
American, British, Canadian and Australian cup and spoon measures are different, which can make converting some recipes a bit tricky. For this sort of recipe, it seems to work OK just using your own country measures, as everything is in proportion, more or less. It would be a whole lot easier if we all just used weight measurements.
I briefly and bravely experimented with posting the conversion charts for cookery that I use myself, but it was beyond my technical skills to make them stay formatted in Blogger. There are plenty of them online, but if you email me, I’ll send you mine.
Monday’s Story …
Napoleon or Neapolitan?
Quotation for the Day …
As with most fine things, chocolate has its season. There is a simple memory aid that you can use to determine whether it is the correct time to order chocolate dishes: any month whose name contains the letter A, E, or U is the proper time for chocolate. Sandra Boynton.
P.S. Yesterday I told you that today's story was to be called "Heg Peg Dump". I was getting ahead of myself. That is the title of the story next Friday.