Underneath tasty "tombstones," ghosts, pumpkins, "worms" and "soil" that make this dessert a conversation piece, you'll find a delectable chocolate cake made from scratch in a few simple steps. It's a recipe I use year-round with different frostings. —Vicki Schlechter, Davis, California
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup butter
- 1 cup water
- 1/4 cup baking cocoa
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 2 large eggs
- 1/4 cup butter
- 3 tablespoons milk
- 2 tablespoons baking cocoa
- 2 cups confectioners' sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 18 Oreo cookies
- Black decorator's icing or gel
- 9 cream-filled oval vanilla sandwich cookies
- 1 cup whipped topping
- Pumpkin candies and gummy worms, optional
- In a bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda and salt; set aside. In a saucepan, combine butter, water and cocoa; bring to a boil over medium heat. Add to flour mixture; beat well. Beat in sour cream and eggs.
- Pour into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan. Bake at 350° for 35-38 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a saucepan, combine butter, milk and cocoa; bring to a boil. Remove from the heat; stir in sugar and vanilla. Pour over warm cake. Crumble chocolate cookies; sprinkle over frosting while still warm. Cool completely.
- For tombstone, use icing to decorate vanilla cookies with words or faces; place on cake. For ghosts, make mounds of whipped topping; use icing to add eyes and mouths as desired. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Just before serving, add pumpkins and gummy worms if desired. Yield: 16 servings.
Originally published as Graveyard Cake in Taste of Home October/November 1998, p37
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