Harry Potter Thunder Cake [RECIPE]
Good Morning Everyone!
Happy Sunday! How are you today? I hope you’re relaxing in with your loved ones. Around here I’ve been having a case of the “baking bug”. It usually happens as Fall sets in. The weather turns cooler and I find myself heating up our little house with all kinds of goodies. Case in point: Harry Potter Thunder Cake. I admit it, I wanted to bake a cake “just because”. It wasn’t a birthday or a holiday. Let’s say that I made it for a Very Merry Un-Birthday, okay? 🙂 (Yes, feel free to sing the “Alice in Wonderland” song now if you’d like 😉 no judgment here!).
This cake rolled around in my brain for several days until I took the plunge last night. You see, my daughter used to love reading Patricia Polacco books. She loved reading “Pink and Say” and “The Blessing Cup”. She giggled at “Mrs. Katz and Tush” and adored the vibrant pictures in “Rechenka’s Eggs”. Yes, Patricia Polacco is an incredible children’s author and when my daughter finally moved on to chapter books, I’ll admit that I was a bit sad. One of her favorites though that stuck with us was Thunder Cake. If you’ve never read the book I’ll give you a basic synopsis: a child comes to spend the night with their grandma and while there a thunder storm occurs. Initially the child is afraid until the grandma suggests making thunder cake. They rush around gathering all the ingredients, (which distracts the child), and hurry to bake it before the storm hits so that while all the booming and flashing is overhead… they are tucking into a giant wedge of chocolate cake. Pretty cool, right?
Well, we made that thunder cake a while ago and it is a choco-holics dream. This time around I decided to put our own spin on it. Yes, thunder cake is special because we only see rain here about 2-3 times a year. And in the off chance that we do get a thunderstorm we are all pressed up against the windows in amazement. Now my little family isn’t big into super sweet things. So I swapped out chocolate frosting for homemade whipped cream. And I decided to decorate the top with a couple of Harry Potter symbols since that is what my kiddo is reading these days. (Who knew making a lightening bolt would be so tricky!). As we all bustled in the kitchen together baking and mixing, we laughed and reminisced at how much our little one has grown. Sure, she isn’t into picture books anymore… but still, thunder cake lives on.
This chocolate cake is light and just sweet enough without being too rich. The tomato sauce is a wonderful, not-so-secret ingredient that uses acidity to cut through the sugar to make it perfectly balanced. (I promise you can’t taste it!). I hope you all love this cake as much as we do. You can easily use the cake recipe with your own frosting variation for the next holiday or birthday that rolls around…. or heck, have a Very Merry Un-Birthday! 🙂 Have a wonderful Sunday everyone and as always, keep on cooking! ❤
Harry Potter Thunder Cake
For the Cake:
- 1 cup shortening
- 1 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 3 eggs, separated
- 1 cup cold water
- 1/3 cup tomato puree
- 2 1/2 cups cake flour
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
For the Whipped Cream:
- 1 cup cold heavy whipping cream
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (F) and grease two round cake pans.
- Cream together the shortening and sugar.
- Beat in the vanilla and egg yolks.
- Add in the cold water and tomato puree.
- Beat the egg whites until stiff and fold into the batter.
- Add in the cake flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.
- Mix the batter until evenly distributed and smooth then pour into the cake pans.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes, then take out of oven and let them cool completely on wire racks.
- Once the cake is completely cool it’s time to make your whipped cream. Pour the whipping cream into a stand mixer. (Note: I use aluminum foil to make a makeshift cover around my bowl so it won’t splatter). Turn the stand mixer on HIGH and let it mix through the cream for 7-8 minutes or until stiff peaks form. Keep an eye on it.
- Smoothly spread the whipped cream over the cake and decorate with whatever Harry Potter symbols you wish! I chose his eyeglasses since they were simple.
- Eat and enjoy!