Chef of the Week
By Lauren Cagle
The aroma of fresh baked goods fill the house as fall approaches. This is the smell our Chef of the Week loves the most.
“I like to turn the oven on in the fall and winter. It heats up the house, and the aroma of freshly baked cookies and bread fills the air,” Shannon said.
Shannon Cagle says she loves to cook and has been cooking ever since she was a little girl. She was taught to make some of the yummiest recipes by her mom and grandmother. Shannon got married at a young age. She wanted to venture out and learn to cook her husband’s favorite recipes. She knew that one of his favorite desserts was one his grandmother made. It was her famous chocolate cake. Shannon knew that grandmother wouldn’t be around forever and that no one else in her husband’s family knew how to make this special recipe, so she decided that she would take the time to learn. She spent many Sunday afternoons in the kitchen watching grandmother make her chocolate cake, but because she was older she taught Shannon a different way of measuring, like to take a handful of Crisco about the size of an egg to make her homemade biscuits. Shannon learned so many things from her husband’s grandmother, and she will always cherish the memories she has of cooking with her.
Shannon enjoys cooking the most at Thanksgiving and Christmas, because it is fun to bake and create new things. Shannon also enjoys sharing her homemade baked goods with family and friends especially during the holidays. Baked goods make great presents because it is not only something they can enjoy, but they know it was baked with love in her kitchen. Shannon hopes you find her recipe a tasty and enjoyable treat.
1 box yellow or chocolate cake mix, prepared and cooled
2 cups sugar
¼ cup cocoa
1 (5-ounce) cup evaporated milk
1 stick butter
1 tsp. vanilla
Prepare cake mix and pour pour into two 8 x 8 or 9 x 9 round pans and cool completely. Set aside. In a medium boiler, mix sugar and cocoa until blended. Add the milk and stick of butter and bring to boil over medium heat. Cook until reaching the soft ball stage in a candy thermometer or 240 to 250 degrees. Remove from heat and add vanilla. Let cool about five minutes and slowly ice cake layers being very patient, icing is still very hot and will start to harden as it cools. If you like your icing a bit more chocolaty, you can increase the amount of cocoa to your taste.