German Chocolate Cake and some cake tips

Happy Birthday Honey! Here is your favorite cake…

IMG_3258My hubby just has a birthday (again! This keeps happening, every darn year.)

His favorite cake happens to be German Chocolate cake. Okay then, sweetie,, just for you. (and about 8 other people).

I started with a devils food cake mix, got out my Cake Mix Doctor Book and went to work.

A little buttermilk, a bit of cocoa, eggs, oil and I made 2- 8″ round cakes. Funny, but most of the recipes called for 3- 8″ rounds. The thing is, on at least 2 recipes I reviewed, it said to grease 2 cake pans, but then, when it came time to frost the cakes, you were to add the 3rd cake! Hmmm. Tricksie people.So I suggest when you make it, break it into 3 pans.

Since I did not catch on to that on time, I made the 2 cakes, and after freezing them, sliced them with a long thing bread knife. Now I know the best way to do this is to put toothpicks all around the middle of the cake, to guide the knife.  I dont have a picture because I was out of toothpicks!  So I just crossed my fingers and tried my best. It did not come out too terribly crooked, not perfect, but not too bad.

The frosting is the tricky part here. It is not your standard frosting, far from it.You make a caramelized type of frosting. It is much better than the canned stuff and worth it.

So here you go, to make for your favorite birthday guy or gal.

German Chocolate Cake with Coconut Pecan Icing


  • 1 box favorite chocolate cake
  • 3 Tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 1/3 cups buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • For the Icing:
  • 3 egg yolks (save whites for something else)
  • 1 cup white or brown sugar
  • 1 stick butter (1/2 cup)
  • 1 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/3 cup flaked coconut
  • 1 cup diced pecans

Cooking Directions

  1. Prepare 3- 8″ round cake pans by putting a piece of parchment or waxed paper cut to the size of the pans, in the bottom of each and oiling. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Empty the box cake mix into a large mixing bowl, adding the rest of the cake ingredients and mixing with a hand or standing mixer until well mixed.
  3. Pour evenly into the 3 pans, shimmying them around to level them. Put in the oven and plan on rotating them after about 15 minutes baking, for even cooking. Bake until done, 25 minutes or so.
  4. (If you have them, use baking strips around each cake pan to keep them from doming.)
  5. When the caked bounce back from a touch or you use the straw method and the cakes are done, remove from the oven and set on racks to cool.
  6. At this point, when cool, I usually cover them with plastic wrap and freeze for at least 30 minutes. This makes for easier frosting. The cake doesn’t tear as easily.
  7. For the icing:
  8. In a saucepan, stir the egg yolks, sugar, butter and evaporated milk until well mixed. Cook over medium low heat, stirring frequently, about 12 minutes, until thick and bubbly.
  9. Stir in the vanilla, coconut and pecans. Let cool about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally until it is nice and spreadable.
  10. When ready, remove the cakes from their pan. (Cut around the inside of the pan to loosen the cake.Usually a good tap upside down over a rack does the trick.)
  11. Set the first cake on your cake plate. Frost the top. Repeat with the next two layers. Use a soft pastry brush to brush away the crumbs from the plate. The sides of the cake remain bare. (Unless you want to cover them with some chocolate frosting???)
Covered frozen cakes
Covered frozen cakes
See cake strips to help with even baking. These are soaked in water before pinning around the pan.
See cake strips to help with even baking. These are soaked in water before pinning around the pan.
Pops right out. (when lined with parchment or waxed paper).
Pops right out. (when lined with parchment or waxed paper).
IMG_3250 (1024x765)
Excuse me! Can I have a little privacy while I undress?
Oops, how many cakes did I need? Well, better make it 4 now.
Oops, how many cakes did I need? Well, better make it 4 now.

IMG_3252 (1024x765)IMG_3253 (1024x765)IMG_3255 (1024x765)


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