My whole life I grew up eating this cake. It was a staple for most all grown-up birthdays. Have to admit, I always thought it was called Sheath cake until I started cooking and realized you make it in a cookie sheet, hence the name! This cake might still be my favorite cake. It is so delicious. And even though, it is a chocolate cake it is not all that sweet or chocoloate-y. The touch of cinnamon and Mexican vanilla are a little reminiscent of Mexican hot chocolate but its really the sweet, rich icing that takes it to the next level. The perfect celebratory dessert to take to our friend Kristie and Jakes’ tonight for dinner. It’s steak night and they are showing off their new home.
Makes 1 – 15″ X 10″ X1 ” cake or 1- 13″ X 9″X 2″ cake
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 large eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk or sour milk
1 1/2 teaspoons Mexican vanilla
1 cup water
Chocolate Sheet Cake Frosting
1/2 cup butter
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
6 tablespoons buttermilk
4 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
1 teaspoon Mexican vanilla
1 cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put a layer of parchment in the bottom of your pan (if you plan to serve it out of something other than the pan). Grease and flour bottom and sides of pan. Set aside.
In a sauncepan over medium heat melt butter with water and cocoa. Keep stirring until it is completely incorporated and smooth. Turn off. Mix dry ingredients (cinnamon, flour, sugar, salt and baking soda) in the bowl of a stand mixer on lowest setting until incorporated. Add in the chocolate/ butter mixture slowly. Mix completely. Add eggs one at a time, bumping the speed up slightly. Mix in buttermilk and vanilla. Bet one more minute. If you are into licking the beaters, now would be a good time to do that. This is cake perfect for it.
Pour mixture into your prepared pan. Bake for 20 minutes in a sheet pan or until toothpick comes out clean, bake for 30 minutes in the smaller pan.
Bring butter, cocoa and buttermilk to a boil over medium heat. Stir constantly. The mixture may separate. Don’t worry, its fine. Just make sure butter is completely melted and ingredients are as combined as possible. Pour the cocoa/ butter mixture into the sifted sugar. Add vanilla, beat until combined in your stand mixer or with a electric hand-held mixer. Beater lickers, you know what to do.
Cool cake and icing slightly if turning the cake out. If not pour the frosting on warm. Great with vanilla ice cream!