Stir together cocoa and boiling water in small bowl until smooth; and set a side.
Cream shortening and sugar and vanilla in large mixing bowl until light and fluffy.
Add eggs, beat well. Combine flour, baking soda and salt; add alternately with buttermilk or sour milk to creamed mixture. Blend in cocoa mixture. Pour into two 9 inch layer pans or an oblong greased and floured 9 X 13 pan. Bake at 350 degrees F for 25 - 30 minutes or until tester comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes - Remove from pans and frost with Cocoa icing.
* To sour milk: use 4 teaspoons vinegar plus enough milk to equal 1 1/3 cups
Add boiling water to butter - Add vanilla and cocoa. Beat and when well blended add sugar. Beat until smooth and creamy. Add additional liquid if needed for right consistency to spread.
Spread on warm cake. This frosting stays soft for several days.
Yield : about 2 cups
By Great Granny Vi from Moorpark, Ca.
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