Remembering Texas

I lived in Texas while working on my doctorate. I don’t remember Texas sheet cake. I remember Aggie bonfires, the next door neighbor as beautiful as an Egyptian queen, and the kindergarten teacher in the class where I watched kids write.

I also remember finding a scorpion in the apartment once, fire ants, and getting my first speeding ticket. I remember walking across campus on a day so hot I thought I’d catch fire. Texas sheet cake would be a better memory than any of those.

Cooking Light just named Texas sheet cake one of the best chocolate recipes of all time in their 25th anniversary issue. I made it today. It’s memorable.

Texas Sheet Cake (adapted from Cooking Light)

  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa, divided
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla, divided
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 15×10 jelly roll pan and dust it with flour.
  2. Stir together flour, sugar, soda, cinnamon, and salt.
  3. Combine water, butter, and cocoa in a saucepan; bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Pour into the flour mixture. Beat with a mixer at medium until well blended.
  4. Add buttermilk, 1 teaspoon vanilla, and eggs. Beat well.
  5. Pour batter into the prepared pan. Baked at 375 degrees for 17 minutes or until a wooden pick comes out clean. Place on a wire rack.
  6. Combine 1/2 cup butter, milk, and 1/4 cup cocoa in saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Gradually stir in powdered sugar; stir in 2 teaspoons vanilla and the chopped pecans. Spread over hot cake. Cool completely on wire rack.