Waneta, my neighbor did it to me again! When I told her I was making red beet buns (see previous post) she pulled out a recipe she had cut out of the Omaha World Herald for Red Beet Chocolate Sheet cake.
Waneta and Wayne used to live in Omaha, NB, and Waneta still really misses it. They take the Omaha World Herald to keep up with the politics and the friends they left behind. I’ve met a few of their friends who have come out to visit and can see why they miss them so much!
Matter of fact I have a ball with Lee and Mardel when they come out. I even got Mardel making bread from the Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day book. Mardel also gave a copy of the book to her granddaughter as as a gift. Good things do travel from region to region, and cook to cook!
Anyhow, one of the regular articles in Waneta's paper, The Amish Cook's Baking Book By Rhonda Stansberry, a World Herold Staff writer, features some good recipes! Just click on the following link to see more! http://www.omaha.com/article/20100127/ENTERTAINMENT01/701279935
The recipe Waneta handed me was a great way to use up the extra beets I had grated up for the Red Beet Buns! And frankly, tasted better than the Red Beet Buns I had made! (see previous post)
There is one note about the recipe...although it is called a sheet cake, you bake it in a 9" by 11" cake pan.
Red Beet Chocolate Sheet Cake
1¾ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
1½ cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
1½ cups cooked and puréed fresh beets (or 12-ounce jar)
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Sifted powdered sugar for sprinkling
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-by-13-inch cake pan and set aside.
Mix together the flour, salt and baking soda and set aside. Combine the sugar, eggs and oil in a large bowl. Stir vigorously (those who use electric mixers can use one here on medium speed for 2 minutes). Beat in the beets, melted chocolate and vanilla.
Gradually add the dry ingredients to the beet mixture, beating well after each addition. Pour into the prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean — 40 to 45 minutes. Cool in the pan. Cover and let stand overnight to improve the flavor. Dust with powdered sugar.
Let the cake cool completely and store in a sealed container or cake safe. The cake will stay fresh for three or four days.
Test kitchen notes: I used whole pickled beets, draining and discarding the juice and puréeing the beets in a food processor.The chips can be melted in a micro- wave-safe bowl about 1 minute, stirring quickly afterward until they are smooth.
I found the recipe a bit confusing as you don’t see the directions to melt the chocolate until you read the test kitchen notes!
I had already shredded the beets since I was using left over beets from the Red Beet Buns recipe. So I cooked them in the microwave. I found I needed to add some water to the beets to puree them. But that made no difference to the cake flavor or texture. Very delicious!
We were in the middle of the big snowstorm of Feb 6th when I was baking this. Chip, another one of our neighbors, was a gem to use his snowblower to clear out the walkway to Waneta and Wayne’s front door. So I had to take some of this cake over to him before I took the rest to Waneta and Wayne!