The SconeLady (right) enjoys 'The Keck' at her birthday partyWhen Mother was growing up, the family upheld an important birthday tradition, which was: the birthday girl did not have to do the dishes. This tradition was highly valued. No matter that the Depression meant there would be fewer gifts. The girls didn't mind that so much because this one thing was far more satisfactory than a gift. They looked forward to it for months.
When she had her own family, Mother kept the tradition going. One day per year, we did NOT have to do the dishes. Utter joy!
Somewhere along the way a Cake was also developed. It was a Cake of cakes, a jewel of confection, a tasty morsel never to be missed or forgotten. It eventually came to be revered as "The KECK".
We love The Keck (pronunciation comes from the movie Father of the Bride) and may have even written about The Keck in this space before. No matter - I am writing about it again because it is soon to be the lovely daughter's birthday! And so it was time to get out all of the ingredients once more.
For the cake:
1 box of Devil's Food Cake Mix
(follow directions on the box)
For the cream:
1 pint heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 tablespoons white sugar
Semisweet chocolate frosting (recipe below)
- mix and bake the Devil's Food Cake Mix (either 8' or 9' layers).
- let cool completely.
- freeze the two layers for 5 hours
- pour the cream into mixing bowl
- add vanilla
- whip the cream until somewhat thick, then add the sugar
- continue whipping until stiff peaks form
- remove cake from freezer
- slice the layers in two (see photograph below), giving you 4 layers
- spread the whipped cream between the layers
- place the cake in the freezer
For the frosting:
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
6 tablespoons softened salted butter
6 tablespoons hot coffee
1 pinch salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 box confectioner's sugar
- mix together the cocoa, butter, coffee, salt, and vanilla.
- add the confectioner's sugar, and whip until all ingredients are smooth
- take the cake out of the freezer, and spread the frosting on the top and sides
- return to the freezer until 1 hour before use
Some people enjoy the cake with vanilla ice cream, but the SconeLady thinks it is just peachy without that! The slightly frozen whipped cream is just so tasty that ice cream will almost certainly impede upon it. In her opinion, of course.
So happy, happy birthday to the lovely daughter! The loveliest of women, dynamic wife, Mother extraordinaire, and brilliant communicator, all rolled into one dream of a girl.
See you along the way!
P.S. the cake frosting is darker than usual and I think it is because I accidentally added a little too much cocoa powder! But it still tastes great.