My birthday was last weekend. I had a blast. A few days before my birthday Danny and I were driving in the car and he sweetly asked what cake I’d like. Here’s how the conversation went, script style:

Danny: What kind of cake do you want?
Me: Chocolate would be lovely.
Danny: Great. I think I’ll make a French chocolate cake, a flourless dark chocolate creation.
Me: Ummm. That sounds amazing.
[pause for 5 minutes while I gather courage]
Me: Actually Danny, I have to be honest with you. I want a real chocolate birthday cake. I know you are an amazing baker and I know that flourless cake is so fancy. But I am who I am. I want a two or three layer, “thick with chocolate frosting, makes you sick it’s so good All American Chocolate Birthday Cake.”
Danny: Hey baby, whatever you want.

No, he really did say that. He is very very nice to me.
The next day he searched the Internets and came up with a Magleby’s chocolate cake copycat recipe. For those of you who don’t know about Magleby’s, let me enlighten you. Magleby’s is a Provo, Utah Institution. It’s been around since I was in diapers and it’s still going strong today. While I could write several posts about the Magleby’s I willingly mock, their crown jewel quiets all the food snobs in Provo (and trust me, THAT is a growing crowd). Magleby’s Chocolate Cake is their best and most famous dish. People love it so much that Magleby’s sells darling little packages of their cake in each restaurant’s storefront. I’ve been know to grab one occasionally, and DON’T ask why. You may make this and ask me, “What’s the big deal?”. The truth is, I don’t know. I do know that for most of my BYU friends, the big deal is that one of the world’s greatest comfort foods can be found just down the street. And when you live in a dorm or a student apartment and you did poorly on a test or your boyfriend broke up with you or you are really really homesick, a culinary fix (and a gallon of milk) are just down the street…at Magleby’s.

Magleby’s Chocolate Cake
Very meticulously, grease and line with parchment paper 3 9-inch baking/cake pans. Force yourself to do this first so it’s out of the way. I know it’s a pain but you’ll be so glad you did it.

Mix together then set aside:
1 Cup butter (softened to room temperature)
1 Cup water
4 T. heaping cocoa

Sift together the following:
2 Cups flour
2 Cups sugar
1/2 t. salt

Pour chocolate mixture over dry ingredients, gently mix.

In separate bowl combine the following:

2 Eggs, lightly beaten
1 t. soda — dissolved in little water
1 t. vanilla

Combine with chocolate ingredients… then add

1/2 Cup sour cream

Gently mix. Do not over mix.

Divide the batter evenly among 3 9-inch rounds, then bake at 325 for about 1 hour.

Frosting (PS, Magleby’s freeze the cakes before frosting)
1 cup butter — let sit until room temperature
1/2 cup milk
3 T cocoa
4 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla

Alternate ingredients while stirring by hand with whisk or your favorite hard spoon.

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2 Responses to Dessert: Magleby’s Chocolate Cake

  1. Lara says:

    This is exactly what I was looking for, even though Magleby’s is just down the road. I don’t like to just eat the cake when I’ve had a bad day, but I like to bake it myself first. It’s highly therapeutic. Thanks for putting it up!

  2. Jennifer says:

    Cooked for nearly 1/2 the time in 3 9″ rounds. Next time I will try 8″ rounds.

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