may is birthday month around our home. so, for the 8th this year, i made Martha’s recipe for Texas sheet cake, from her cookbook titled Martha’s American food. the cake is made in an old-fashioned rectangular pan, and is probably a recipe that has been made for 60 or more years.
it is a super easy recipe to make, but be certain to bake the cake thoroughly until well done. i think i may have baked according to the directions, and the cake was more of a brownie texture in the end. still delicious, still sweet, but maybe would be more light if baked longer than suggested.
i used a 9 by 13 pan as suggested by Martha, but i know i have had this cake made by others baked in a true sheet pan, so it is very thin and not as high. perhaps that is the secret to avoiding the brownie texture.
to make the cake: preheat the oven to 375 degrees. spray butter the pan. whisk together the following: 2 cups flour, 2 cups sugar, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 3/4 teaspoon coarse salt, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon.
next, melt 2 sticks unsalted butter in a saucepan, and add 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, then add 1 cup water and boil. add to the flour mixture.
then in a mixer, add 2 eggs, 1/2 cup buttermilk, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. pour batter in the pan and bake until the sides come away from the edges. Martha says 12-14 minutes, but i think longer. pour the icing over the cake while it is still warm and sprinkle with pecans which have been chopped. cool before serving.
Boiled icing recipe
1 stick unsalted butter, 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, 1/2 cup heavy cream, 2 teaspoon vanilla, 2 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar.
bring butter, cocoa and cream to a boil in a small saucepan. stir during this process. remove from heat and add vanilla and sugar. use while warm.