The process started with a field trip.  To my parents’ backyard to berry-pick.

The cherries don’t factor into the cake, but aren’t they lovely?

Although I’ve never seen an episode of America’s Test Kitchen (I leave the cooking show viewing to my dad), I trust them.  They gave me the so-far foolproof cake release method: melt a tablespoon of butter, mix in a tablespoon of cocoa, brush over bundt pan (or if, like me, you’re not possessed of a pastry brush, a paper towel will serve).

No unsightly white clumps on finished chocolate cake.  Smoothest release imaginable.

The thing I always forget about this recipe is that it requires a minimum of three bowls.

Here we see Jessmonster’s hope chest in action.  It’s more cupboard, really, and obviously nothing is being saved.  It’s more hope than chest, as in, “I hope this cake turns out because wouldn’t it just kill you if a previously successful recipe fails during photo-documentation?”  Over the years (since I moved out of the dorms senior year of college, although I had some random things before that, too) I’ve acquired a nice hope chest.  Some things from my parents, some things I got myself.  Every girl needs a 9-speed mixer.  And 2 different box sets of Pyrex.  And enough spatulas to serve each bowl.  These are necessities, as I see it.

I invariably mix the dry ingredients in the largest bowl and then have to downgrade them (I think I need more bowls).  They forgive me, generally.  Clockwise from top we have our dry ingredients, our chocolate & boiling water, our sour cream, our butter/sugar/vanilla mixture. Just waiting to be turned into…

Lovely blend of sour cream and chocolate.  From this point on, my fingers were too dirty to photo-document.   Let us fast-forward to…

At which point I abandoned the cake to its cooling, wrote my earlier post,  and left for work.  I am currently decimating this:

The whipped cream has a bit of sour cream and a touch of sugar, to tang it up and balance out the tang.  I don’t know, that’s what America’s Test Kitchen told me to do.  Come on over and I’ll give you a slice, the cake is HUGE.  I’m wishing for a mini bundt pan like Bee for non-occasions such as this.  It will feed a crowd.  It has.