Douphrate’s Chocolate Cake

Since I can remember, this cake has been present at every birthday, holiday or special occasion.  It’s a member of the family!


When present, my brother David fights for the end pieces. (more icing) Although he’s the baby, he’s the biggest of us all, and normally gets his way!


One Christmas, my mother gave all four of us kids a specially-sized baking pan so we could continue the tradition. Actually, I think she gave them to us so she wouldn’t have to make “the cake” as often. When my grandmother, Mimi, was alive, she was always the baker. We all knew that she was the maestro, and none of the rest of us held a candle to her baking expertise. 


It takes a long time to make so it’s definitely a gift of love. 

And oh, so yummy!



2 sticks of butter
1/2 Crisco
3 cups sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cocoa
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup buttermilk
5 eggs




  • Cream together butter, Crisco and sugar.

  • Sift floor, cocoa, baking powder and salt.

  • In a separate bowl add 2 tsp vanilla to 1 cup buttermilk.  

  • Add 5 eggs to mixture, beating well after each addition. 
  • Starting and ending with flour mixture, alternately add with buttermilk and vanilla to sugar mixture, until all ingredients are blended.

  • Butter and flour pan.

  • Pour batter into pan.

  • Bake at 325 for about 1 hour and 15 minutes or until tests done.

  • Cool completely prior to icing.


I made the Douphrate cake for my mom’s 75th birthday.

Douphrate Cake Icing


2 cups sugar

1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup cocoa
1 stick butter
1 tsp vanilla
Pinch of salt




  • Combine first 4 ingredients.

  • Boil 1 minute ONLY

  • After coming to a rolling boil, remove from heat.

  • Add vanilla and salt.

  • Beat until ready to spread. (It needs to begin thickening before you start to spread.)

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