I’m a little blue today. One reason is tonight our family is gathering to say goodbye to a friend who is leaving for a teaching position on the West Coast. We might not ever see him again. This is a good friend I met at Franciscan University of Steubenville twelve years ago. After he finished grad school there, he went to Catholic University and just completed his Doctorate degree.
Steven became an adopted member of my family in a way. He started off as my friend in our circle at school, but when he visited my family in Virginia they welcomed him with open arms. My husband and brothers-in-law also consider him a friend. Over the years he’s shared with our family holiday meals and get togethers. The meals have been fewer lately due to busy schedules, but it is sad to know that this is one of the last.
Having just celebrated the feast of St. Bartholomew yesterday, I find Jesus’ description of Bartholomew (Nathaniel) “He has no guile” is perfect for Steven. He’s an honest, sincere, just, and holy man. He’s always a pursuer of Truth. It is a blessing to call him a friend.
His “last supper” request was a dessert I made regularly while at FUS, Kahlua Cake. My nickname for this cake should be “Ladies’ Helper”–whenever I needed some help that required extra muscles, I would promise this cake as an exchange for help and I always had willing volunteers.
This recipe from a housemate in college. I know, it’s not homemade, and gasp! requires a boxed cake. I was always going to work on tweaking a homemade chocolate cake recipe, but that was B.F.A. (before food allergies). This recipe hasn’t been made in a while because it is definitely not allergy friendly.
While mixing and smelling the aroma during baking, a flood of memories came rushing back. How much has happened in twelve years! I’m looking forward to having a little piece of chocolate consolation tonight.
1 package Devil’s Food Cake mix (Duncan Hines my preference)
1 cup Kahlua (may substitute non-name brand of a coffee liqueur)
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup sour cream
6 ounces semisweet chocolate chips (mini-morsels work best)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease and flour a Bundt or tube pan.
Mix all ingredients except chips together and beat 2-3 minutes.
Add chocolate chips and beat 1 minute.
Pour into a greased and floured Bundt or tube pan and bake for 50-55 minutes. It’s okay to undercook — better moist. If toothpick inserted has a few crumbs but not liquid, cake is ready.
Before serving (after cooled) sprinkle with confectioner’s sugar.
I’ve also drizzled melted chocolate over top and garnished with strawberries in the center hole and dipped strawberries around the side of the cake. Presentation is important — but the taste is even better. This cake is moist, rich, chocolate-y and unbelievably good.