Midnight Cake

Serves: 8Hands-on: 25 minutesTotal: 55 minutesDifficulty: Medium

Serves: 8


  • ½ cup vegetable shortening
  • 1¾ cups granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2½ cups sifted cake flour
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1½ tsp. baking soda
  • ½ cup butter
  • 1½ cups buttermilk
  • 2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 lb. confectioners’ sugar
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line the bottom of 2 round cake pans (9") with parchment paper and grease the sides.
  • In a large bowl, stir the shortening to soften. Gradually add 1 cup granulated sugar, creaming together until light and fluffy. Add the salt and vanilla. In another bowl, combine ⅓ cup water and the cocoa, mixing well. Beat into the creamed mixture. Add the sifted flour to the shortening mixture alternately with 1 cup water, beginning and ending with the flour, and beating well after each addition.
  • Beat the egg whites until soft peaks form; gradually add the remaining ¾ cup granulated sugar, beating until stiff peaks form. Fold into the batter. Dissolve the baking soda in ⅓ cup water; stir into the batter, mixing thoroughly. Pour into the prepared pans.
  • Bake for about 30 minutes, or until a knife comes out clean. Cool on racks.
  • Meanwhile, make the frosting: Put the butter, cocoa, and buttermilk in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat and add the confectioners' sugar, salt, and vanilla, mixing well. Frost cake.