Over the weekend, in addition to our usual Halloween tricks, our family gathered to celebrate a very special aunt's 97th birthday. A grand occasion deserves a grand cake, and this Smitten Kitchen recipe received so many raves that it seemed a sure thing. Not to mention, it reminded me of the "Johnnie Walker" of family legend, a chocolate/peanut butter/ice cream concoction that the birthday aunt invented for her nieces and nephews long before Dairy Queen was churning out Blizzards.
|Trick or treat, give us something good to eat...|
Sometimes I enjoy baking a cake more than I enjoy eating it. I'd rather have a nice slice of pumpkin pie, or maybe some tea and a scone. Cakes laden with frosting so sweet your teeth hurt are not my thing. But I do enjoy the engineering and, dare I say, artistry that go into a big layer cake, so I try to find recipes that taste as good as they look.
This three-layer chocolate peanut butter cake is a perfect party cake (so long as your guests aren't allergic to peanuts--in our house, the peanut allergies have thankfully been outgrown). It's achingly rich, so whether you make it in 8 or 9 inch pans, you'll have enough to serve at least two dozen people. It looks sophisticated, but it tastes like an over-the-top peanut butter cup. The chocolate cake may be the moistest I've ever made (which also makes it fragile--if you make it, don't skip the part about freezing the layers before you stack them). If you're lucky enough to have some cake left over, it keeps nicely in the refrigerator for several days so you can carve slivers off it between meals.