Munchie Monday: Chocolate Layer Cake

Try this 19th century recipe from the Macculloch-Miller family handwritten cookbook for chocolate layer cake and filling. The recipe concludes with the family initials “F.H.K.” which may refer to Frances Hitchcock Keasbey (1862-1939) who was a great-granddaughter of George and Louisa Macculloch and the daughter of Anthony Quinton Keasbey (1824-1895) and Edwina Louisa Miller (1826-1888).

Original Recipe –Chocolate Layer Cake

Two cups of sugar

¾ cup of butter

1 cup of milk

Whites of four eggs

3 cups of flour

3 teaspoonfuls of baking powder, mixed well with flour

Butter your tin well & line with paper. Cream butter & sugar. Add milk and flour gradually. Lastly, fold in the whites of the eggs.



Melt over hot water 2 squares of chocolate. Mix a cup of sugar with a little milk on the stove, & when thoroughly dissolved, add to the chocolate. Beat one egg lightly & add to the mixture. When cool, flavor with vanilla, spread between layers & over the top of cake. (Family Initials: F.H.K.)


Adapted Recipe—Chocolate Layer Cake

2 cups of sugar

¾ cup of butter, softened (1 ½ sticks of butter)

1 cup of milk

Whites of four eggs

3 cups of flour

3 teaspoons of baking powder, sifted with flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 9-inch round cake pans. Cream butter and sugar. Sift flour and baking powder. Add milk and dry ingredients gradually to the butter and sugar mixture. With hand mixer whip four egg whites until they form peaks and fold into the cake batter until combined. Pour batter into cake pans and bake for 28-30 minutes until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Chocolate Filling*

2 squares of baker’s chocolate (2 oz), grated

1 cup of sugar

2 tablespoons of milk

1 egg (optional)

1 teaspoon of vanilla

Grate chocolate. In one pan mix a cup of sugar with a little milk on the stove (2 tablespoons or less) on low heat. Stir until dissolved. This should be a thick consistency. Using a double boiler, with a metal pan over a pot of boiling water, heat water until boiling. Turn off heat and melt grated chocolate. Add thick sugar mixture and egg one lightly beaten egg (optional). Let cool. Once cool add one teaspoon of vanilla. You many even want to refrigerate the icing for 30 minutes to one hour.

When cakes are cool, spread filling between layers and over the top of the cake.

*The filling is thinner than a frosting or icing that we typically use today.

An iced cake is on a yellow plate.

Topic: Munchie Monday
Age / Level: High School, College, Life Long Learner

Munchie Monday: Chocolate Layer Cake Photo Gallery

An iced cake is on a yellow plate. A slice of yellow cake with chocolate icing is on a plate.