Chocolate Sour Cream Cake – rich and fudgy chocolate sour cream cake with a chocolate sour cream buttercream.
Happy Tuesday, friends! I hope you all had a lovely Memorial Day yesterday. It looks like many of you were busy baking patriotic desserts. Thanks for always sharing them with me on Instagram. It’s so fun to see your creativity!
Chocolate Sour Cream Cake
Today’s new cake is one of my vintage cake revivals. After last week’s citrus cake, I decided to go in the completely opposite direction and make a chocolate cake. Chocolate Sour Cream Cake to be exact.
Similar to the Florida Orange Cake, the chocolate sour cream cake from my vintage cakes cookbooks, was shortening based and didn’t have a lot of liquid or fats, aside from the sour cream. The original recipe also didn’t have very much cocoa – which I understand, because these recipes were created in the 1940s, in the middle of a war when a lot of ingredients were rationed.
In fact, the more I make recipes from this cookbook, the more I appreciate the women’s resourcefulness during this time. While ingredients like shortening and water aren’t my go-to add-ins for cakes, these bakers were able to make do what they had and created beautiful cakes that I have no doubt were the talk of the town!
Just like last week, I baked the cake according to the original recipe. It turn out a little dry and bland, but wasn’t too far off from the texture and flavor I expected. Only a few small tweaks were needed.
- Buttermilk – I added some buttermilk to the recipe to help add moisture. Like sour cream, this acidic ingredient helps to tenderize the gluten in the flour, which gives our baked goods a softer texture and more volume.
- Oil – In place of shortening, I decided to try out vegetable oil. I use it in my chocolate cake and it works great with the buttermilk, eggs and water to create moisture. You can also use butter or another type of oil as a substitute for the shortening.
- Cocoa Powder – to give the cake a slightly richer chocolate flavor, I added cocoa powder to the recipe. I usually use THIS more expensive, dark cocoa powder in my chocolate cakes, but wanted to stay true to the budget-conscious mind of 1940, and used basic, inexpensive Hershey’s unsweetened cocoa.
The end result of round two was a tender, moist and extra rich chocolate cake. The overall texture, of the original recipe and my updated recipe, is slightly more dense and brownie-like compared to my go-to chocolate cake. (Just a heads up).
Note: This cake is baked in an 8″ x 8″ square pan. Be sure to spray the bottom and sides of the pan, add some parchment to the bottom and spray again – just like we do with our round cake pans.