January 12: National Curried Chicken Day, and a Recipe for Chocolate Cake

January 12 is National Curried Chicken Day. I am going to tell the truth: I do not care about this national holiday at all, so instead I am going to be posting a chocolate cake recipe.

Listen. It's not that I am directly opposed to curried chicken; in fact, if you said "hey, let's go to this place that has the best curried chicken in the world!" I'd be calling shotgun and jumping in the car. But as a holiday, not so much. So having acknowledged that it is a date of note for curried chicken, I am going to go ahead and share a chocolate cake recipe with you.

This is a chocolate cake that I have tweaked slightly from Hershey's packaging, and I think it's a swell one. While my primary chocolate cake love is a dense, rich, flourless chocolate cake, sometimes you need a cake that is well suited for layering and frosting. This is that cake. Easy to make and devoid of any hard to obtain ingredients, it's a good one to keep on file. 

I actually cut these cakes into mini cakes and made homemade Ring Dings - the recipe for that will come soon. But in the meantime, the basic chocolate cake recipe! 

Basic Chocolate Cake

Makes one 2-layer chocolate cake - printable recipe here 

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup dark cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1-2/3 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla 
  • 1 -1/3 cups whole milk
  1. Make the cakes. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease, flour, and line with parchment paper two round cake pans.
  2. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Set to the side.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar on medium speed for about 3 minutes--to make it nice and fluffy. Pause mixing. Add the eggs, one at a time, pausing to mix on low for a few moments before adding the next egg. Scrape the sides of the bowl as needed. Stir in the vanilla. 
  4. Add the flour mixture alternately with the milk, in 2-3 additions each. Mix until the batter is smooth and lump-free. Divide the batter between your two prepared pans. 
  5. Bake for 25-30 minutes (rotating the pans at the 15 minute mark), or until a cake tester inserted in the center of each cake comes out clean. Remove the cakes from the oven, and loosen the edges of the cake with a sharp knife. After a couple minutes, invert the cakes on to wire racks and let cool completely.
  6. Once cooled, level the cakes. Frost as desired. 

This cake can be made in advance. Simply bake, level, and cover in plastic wrap then stick it in the freezer for up to 3 weeks. Let thaw before frosting. 

How will you celebrate National Curried Chicken Day?