If you’re single and made it through Saint Valentine’s Day without slitting your wrists, I’m sure you’re looking forward to a more social holiday – Saint Patrick’s DAY! Wahoo! This month for me started out in Ireland and to continue celebrating my Irish heritage, I thought I’d devote this post to one of my favorite treats from this time of year: The Shamrock Shake. Since I don’t ever eat anything from the likes of a McDonald’s, it’s hard for me to look forward to something so delicious at a place that serves filler and chemicals and calls it food. Since a SMALL Shamrock Shake is well over 500 calories (EEEK!!!), this is a treat that I get once a year at best – but really only once every two years since I will only drink half. YUM.
The thing about the shamrock shake is that it has a sweet yet minty flavor combined with the fat in ice cream that makes everything better. So if fat+mint+sugar=everything better, then what would we need to add to make everything better=everything awesome. There is one clear answer – chocolate cake. So I whipped up my standard chocolate cake in two 9in round pans. (recipe below) I like this recipe because it turns out really moist with a deep flavor. I used to omit the coffee and just use water but I think the coffee really does add an interesting note to the flavor – you can also use a flavored coffee for a slight change. Anywho, while the cake’s a-bakin it’s time to make a minty green frosting.
I used a standard buttercream frosting with about 2 tsp of peppermint extract and a smidge of green food color. Then I chopped up some bittersweet chocolate for the chips in the frosting. The only issue with this frosting is that the chips make it almost impossible to pipe. The only way to really do it is to put it in a piping bag without a tip. When in doubt, you can always pipe a dot border. Mmmmm…minty green frosting dots.
The cake turned out looking good and the frosting went way beyond my love of shamrock shakes – there are no bittersweet chips in the shake – take that McD’s! Nor are there jimmies - I added the jimmies for dramatic effect - I think I got it.
2 c. sugar
1 3/4 c. flour
3/4 c. cocoa – dark cocoa is better if you can find it
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. black coffee
1 c. buttermilk
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla
Combine first 6 ingredients and set aside.
In large bowl combine all other ingredients, mix. Add flour mixture a bit at a time until just combined, batter will be thin.
Beat at medium speed for 2 minutes. Pour into greased and floured 9 x 13 inch cake pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes.