Classically Chocolate Cake for Daniel

.  Unlike my regular posts, which I try to keep upbeat, it is with a saddened heart I write this.

If you've stopped by LSM occasionally, you will know that I participate in a monthly group called the Secret Recipe Club (SRC).  Well a week or so back, the members received an e-mail from one of the SRC leaders explaining to us that Daniel, from The Haggis and the Herring, had unexpectedly passed away, leaving behind his wife, two sons, and soon to be third child.  Further on in the e-mail, SRC members were informed that as a tribute to Daniel, we were all welcome to choose a recipe from Daniel's blog and create a post to air on October 1.  So here we are.

I browsed through the numerous recipes from The Haggis and the Herring and decided upon this lovely chocolate cake, which Daniel's son and wife prepared for his birthday back in 2009.  Nevertheless that this classic, dense, rich, and moist chocolate cake truly is splendid, I'm fairly certain this recipe held a special place in Daniel's heart because his family made it just for him on his special day.  So making this cake seemed fitting.

Obviously I did not know Daniel personally, and in all honesty, I had never visited his blog before this.  But as is probably the case with many of the other SRC members, that tid bit is irrelevant.  Instead, SRC members are illustrating the wonders of the blogging world in that regardless of who you are, we are all supporters of one another.  Though many of us most likely did not know Daniel and his family, we are here now to send our thoughts, prayers, and deepest sympathy to those he left behind.

Many of us can not even begin to imagine such a painful time, but then it's times like these when we remember what matters most.  Now that may be different from person to person, but the moral of the story remains universal.  

Take a breathe, take time for those you care for most, and don't ever let them go without them knowing how much you love them.  Sadly, you may not get a second chance.

In his post for this chocolate cake recipe, Daniel expressed his opinion rather simply:

"Jacob and Meredith made me the best birthday cake ever."

So I hope you enjoy this cake as much as Daniel did .

My Notes:
  • Since this is a truly classic chocolate cake, you can let your imagination run wild.  Next time around I may try adding in mini chocolate chips to the cake batter and/or frosting, or you can try some nuts, fruit, or different types of chocolate.  A milk chocolate frosting sounds deeelicious, too!

3/4 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
1-3/4 c. all purpose flour
2 c. sugar
1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
1-1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 c. vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 c. milk
1 c. boiling water
2 tsp. vanilla extract

Rich Chocolate Frosting:
1 c. heavy whipping cream
12 oz. semisweet chocolate chips

  1. Heat oven to 350°F.  Grease 2 9x9-inch pans; set aside.
  2. Combine cocoa powder, flour, sugar, baking powder, and baking soda in a large bowl.  Add vegetable oil and beat to combine.  Add eggs, one at a time, until combined.  Add vanilla extract and milk and beat on medium speed until batter is smooth.
  3. With mixer on low speed, add boiling water and beat until combined.  Pour half of batter into each prepared pan.  Bake 25 to 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean.  Cool cake completely before icing.
  4. For frosting, in a medium saucepan, bring heavy whipping cream just to a boil over medium heat.  Remove from heat and add chocolate chips.  Without stirring, let sit 5 minutes.  Stir until smooth and let cool 15 minutes.
  5. Place one piece of cake serving platter.  Spread half of frosting onto cake, letting some drip down the sides.  Place second cake on top and spread remaining frosting, also letting some drip down the sides.  Cut and serve.
Yield: 12 servings

post signature


  1. What a wonderful post! And your pictures (and top quote) are perfect! This cake looks so amazing!

  2. Great post. Great pictures. Great cake. So decadent! Nice being in SRC with you.

  3. So sweet - what a lovely tribute.

  4. A lovely tribute and cake.

  5. That cake looks dangerously good. And lovely tribute to Daniel and the beauty of the SRC community.

  6. I wanna come over for afternoon tea and some cake after looking at those photos. :)

  7. The cake looks so decadent - what a wonderful way to honor Daniel

  8. Nice tribute to Daniel. This looks like truly a fabulous recipe

  9. this chocolate cake is absolutely amazing and delicious! wonderful tribute to Daniel!!

  10. What a dark, rich, beautiful looking chocolate cake. And your post is so nicely written - honest, heart-felt and a perfect tribute.

  11. Beautiful post, sad but beautiful. Like you, I cannot imagine the pain of losing a special someone. Too tragic, too sad, too horrible.

  12. What a lovely choice for the tribute Jess :)

  13. Your words were beautifully written. It is rare indeed when I let a day go by without telling a loved one that I love them. Great job on the chocolate cake, it looks delicious.

  14. Your words were beautifully written. It is rare indeed when I let a day go by without telling a loved one that I love them. Great job on the chocolate cake, it looks delicious.

  15. What a beautiful tribute to Daniel! I have only had a chance to visit a few of the tribute posts but when I saw this was most popular, I had to stop by. Like you, I never visited Daniel's blog before his death but I too had to join the tribute, especially after reading his wife's eulogy. Life is so precious, and I love your note about making sure not to let go of anyone without letting them know how well they are loved. You never when each goodbye will be the last. I love your photos, and especially the one with the pretty table setting. You did a wonderful job and the cake looks positively scrumptious.

  16. Jess,
    What a beautiful tribute to Daniel. This cake is beautiful and delicious looking. Thanks so much for linking up to Creative Thursday. Can’t wait to see what you share this week! Have a wonderful week.

  17. With all the sweetness and love that you’ve shown to Daniel, I’m sure he’s now at peace. I’ve been following his blog, and the foodstuff he created are just incredible! I especially like the Vermouth Chicken and this Sweet Sadie’s Chocolate Cake. =)


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