Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Bliss, thy name is Chocolate

I have come to the conclusion that God was in an exceptionally good mood the day He created chocolate. I don't know if He felt like rewarding Himself for a job well done on that first day of rest or what, but He couldn't have made anything more perfectly sinful (note the irony) than chocolate. Just the word itself causes the salivary glands to go into overdrive. I am pretty positive this is how it happened;

God (speaking to Jesus, the Holy Spirit and any angels hanging out): "Pardon me for tooting my own horn here, but I didn't do such a bad job creating that whole earth, skies, seas, man thing.....oh who am I kidding, It's PERFECT! I'm worn out. I deserve a treat. Something that will melt in my mouth and make my eyes roll back in my head."

The heavens rejoiced!!!

Chocolate was born. We eat chocolate on the day we celebrate the resurrection of Christ....coincidence? I think not my friend.

The fact is chocolate is full of anti-oxidants, has about as much caffeine as 1/2 a cup of coffee or a cola. Antioxidant-rich diets have been linked to a lowered risk of heart attacks, stroke, cardiovascular disease, cancer, high blood pressure, cholesterol problems, arthritis, asthma, Alzheimer's and more. So it stands to reason that if chocolate is chock full of antioxidants, it's actually good for you...that's all I'm sayin'. True, chocolate can be addictive, maybe not physically but certainly mentally. It's not surprising that so many people choose chocolate as a sacrifice to give up for Lent every year. Also, I can count on both hands and feet the number of people I personally know who, when stressed, turn to a bit of the chocolately goodness as a mood enhancer and a deterrent to killing anyone within arms reach. We all know someone who should wear a medic alert bracelet reading: In case of emergency, administer chocolate immediately!

My friend Michael is a self-described chocolate addict. The man eats a Hershey bar for breakfast every morning. He's also an Executive Chef. So, when I made him my "Make You Slap Yo' Mamma" Chocolate Cake and he raved about, I felt honored. I'm sharing it with you so if, in fact, you are one of the people who have given up chocolate for Lent, let me apologize now. If not....stop wasting time and get baking!

Shelley's "Make You Slap Yo' Mamma" Chocolate Cake

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup HERSHEY'S Cocoa
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water
1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 9-inch round baking pans.

2. Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pans.

3. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely. Frost with chocolate frosting (recipe follows). 10 to 12 servings.

Chocolate Frosting

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine
2/3 cup HERSHEY'S Cocoa
3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Melt butter. Stir in cocoa. Alternately add powdered sugar and milk, beating to spreading consistency. Add small amount additional milk, if needed. Stir in vanilla. About 2 cups frosting.


  1. It's ON, woman! We're having a chocolate cake bake-off. My Nana Ree's Dump-Together Cake will prevail, I gah-RAWN-TEE it!

  2. Chocolate has to be the most sublime food on earth after bacon. I'm not a sweets person, but God did better on chocolate than just about anything else. Really, he could have stopped at chocolate, but insisted on us just so we could salt-cure pig flesh. Makes one suspect your God is a foodie.