We moved to Texas in August 2005, and until this August I just didn’t understand Texas Sheet Cake. To me it was simply chocolate cake with frosting. No big deal. It showed up at parties sometimes, and I saw it at the grocery store, but nothing drew me to it. I furrowed my brow in confusion every time a friend talked about how wonderful it was. It’s just cake.
But then, I made it for myself. Y’all. There are certain things in life that can only be fully comprehended once you experience them for yourself, and I now believe that Texas Sheet Cake is one of those things.
Maybe it’s because I went through the process myself, or maybe it’s because I was able to taste that first piece, still warm from the oven, with ever-so-slightly gooey frosting dripping down the side. This cake is both fluffy and moist, not at all like the mushy ones I’ve had before. This is still cake-cake, and perhaps it’s because I used a smaller pan than the standard sheet-cake pan, but I think it’s better this way.
Don’t confuse this with a healthy cake, of course — it’s still a special-occasion cake, something you will want to share with others lest you be tempted to eat a square here and a square there, each one successively larger. Be sure to serve it up with a tall glass of cold milk (a scoop of vanilla ice cream wouldn’t be remiss here) to cut through the chocolate flavor.
Be sure to pour the icing on while everything is still warm, or it will be harder to spread and you’ll miss out on that softened layer of cake that is created when the icing coats it.
And, for all you pecan haters, trust me when I say you can’t skip them in this cake. I mean, you could, but then it wouldn’t really be Texas Sheet Cake, and then what’s the point?