Roger Neel’s retirement cake is making a comeback as a National News Goddess Day cake (minus the paprika, unless you want it).
Roger Neel Paprika ** Chocolate cake (Preparation time about an hour plus icing and decorating time. Serves 8.)
1 C. all-purpose flour
2 C. granulated sugar
¾ C. good quality unsweetened cocoa powder (Mexican is excellent if you can find it)
1 ½ tsp. baking powder
1 ½ tsp. baking soda
1 C. salt
1 T of milk
½ C. of vegetable oil
2 tbsp. vanilla
1 T of boiling water *
Cheese Icing Cream
Preheat the oven to 350. Butter and flour 2 9-inch cake pans. Combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Stir well to combine, breaking up the cocoa clumps as best you can. Add the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla. Start the mixer on low speed until the ingredients are moist, then increase the speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes. While the dough is mixing, you can boil your cup of water in the microwave for two minutes. When the two minutes are up, reduce the speed to minimum and slowly pour the boiling water into the dough. The dough is very thin! Pour evenly into the cake pans and place on the central oven rack. Bake, 30 to 35 minutes, until a toothpick comes out almost clean. It is important not to over mix or overcook.
When the cakes rebound and pass the toothpick test, remove them on wire racks and allow to partially cool in the pans for ten minutes. Carefully turn the cakes out onto wire racks to continue cooling. You may need to run a knife around the edge of the cakes and pat the bottom of the molds to encourage the super soft cakes to come out.
When fully cooled, fill and frost with cream cheese (or buttercream) frosting. You will need 2 containers or double of a standard frosting recipe for adequate coverage.
** When this cake was prepared for Roger Neel, a paprika lover, 2 1/2 Tb of paprika was added to the dough for a little smoky warm feeling. Not as strange as it might sound if you’re brave enough.
*boiling water allows cocoa to “bloom” and release its flavor