My dad was very patient and exact when he was baking. He used to make his own sour dough starter. When we were children, that container of starter would find its way out of the refrigerator almost every weekend. He would bake biscuits, pancakes and an assortment of breads from his pint-sized jug. We enjoyed everything that he made. I guess I don't have the patience and exacting nature my father had. Most cooking goofs can be fixed, but not baking goofs. The homegirlz for some reason are asking me every weekend to bake a cake or a pie. I made a chocolate sheet cake that was good enough to post.
Chocolate Sheet Cake - In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, melt two sticks of butter. When butter is melted stir in 1 cup of water and 1/4 cup cocoa mix, bring to a low boil and remove from heat. In a large mixing bowl, add 2 cups all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1-1/4 cups firmly packed dark brown sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 2 large eggs and cocoa mixture from sauce pan. Mix at medium speed for about two minutes, then fold in 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract and 1/3 cup of condensed milk (use a 14 oz. can and reserve the rest for the frosting). Pour into an ungreased 10x15 pan and bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes (until middle of cake springs back to the touch). Remove from oven to cool for 20 minutes.
Frosting - In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, melt 1/2 stick of butter. When butter is melted, add 1/4 cup cocoa mix and remaining condensed milk, 1 cup powdered sugar. Whisk until smooth and pour over warm cake. Sprinkle 1 cup of coarsely chopped pecans and dust with powdered sugar.