While attending Blackburn College in Carlinville, Illinois, was my first experience tasting German Chocolate Cake. It was made by Mrs. Wiese when several of us attended an MSM meeting. It was love at first bite and a favorite I learned to make.

This recipe from the St. Francis Inn in St. Augustine, Florida, brings back wonderful memories.

It is wonderful to share such a terrific recipe and I’ll tell you a little bit more about the Inn that I know from Leigh Cort, below the recipe.

St. Francis Inn’s


Ingredients for cake


3/4 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder

3/4 cup hot water

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 1/4 teaspoons coarse salt

1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter

2 1/4 cups sugar

4 large eggs, room temperature

1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 cup sour cream, room temperature




Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 2 9 inch round pans. Whisk together cocoa and hot water until smooth. In another bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

Melt butter with sugar in a saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring to combine. Remove from heat, and pour into a mixing bowl. With an electric mixer on medium-low speed, beat until mixture is cooled, 4 to 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Add vanilla, then cocoa mixture, and beat until combined. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture in two batches, alternating with the sour cream, and beating until just combined after each.

Pour batter into prepared pans, bake for 20-35 minutes, until set.  Let cool on wire racks.


Coconut Pecan Frosting


Ingredients for frosting


1 cup evaporated milk

1 cup of white sugar

3 egg yolks (mixed with one tsp of water)

1/2 cup melted butter

1 tsp vanilla


2 cups shredded coconut

1 1/2 cup chopped pecans


Combine milk, sugar, eggs, butter and vanilla in a sauce pan, bring to a boil stirring constantly.  Boil for about 5 minutes, remove from heat them mix in the coconut and pecans.


Spread on top of cake.

Cool and enjoy. I’ve also made this in a 9″ x 12″ pan. It does not look as pretty, but tastes as good and serves more if taking to a picnic. ~MDH

Here is some additional information on this lovely property from Leigh.







Leigh Cort Publicity



Representing: www.StFrancisInn.com

St. Augustine, Florida (September, 2012)      In 1985, Joe Finnegan and his wife Margaret bought the St. Francis Inn (circa 1791) believing “If you want a successful business in the hospitality industry, everything you do is for your guest’s pleasure and comfort.” Nearly 30 years later, they still believe in their philosophy along with a dedicated professional staff, many of whom have been employed at the Inn nearly as long.


Today, there are numerous ways the Finnegan’s please their guests:


  • ·         Comfortable accommodations on quiet residential St. George Street, two blocks from the Bayfront view of the St. Augustine Lighthouse, the famed Bridge of Lions and bustling historic downtown. Fresh flowers and sherry too!


  • ·         Extensive culinary surprises and ‘farm to table’ Breakfast, afternoon Social Hour hors d’oeuvres, Late Night homemade baked desserts, night time snacks, fresh fruit and cookies served all day and a Specialty Coffee Bar – PLUS special attention paid to every guest’s dietary needs.

 Florida-inspired gardens and koi pond on the inn’s property recognized with a Wildlife Habitat Certification


  • ·         Island beach cottages where guests can leave the inn and spend a day at the beach with thoughtful amenities at their fingertips


  • ·         Complimentary amenities for which the St. Francis Inn is known ~ including bicycles to tour the city, solar-heated swimming pool, admission to the local fitness club and off-street Inn parking


“We have maintained the historic ambiance of this old Inn while also providing all of the comforts expected by today’s savvy travelers” Finnegan states in 2012.


The St. Francis Inn mirrors the Old City – as a vibrant historic place that grows more beloved year after year.

**2012 Winner TripAdvisor Excellence Award **

Member of ‘Select Registry’

Maralyn D. HillThe Epicurean Explorer

President, International Food Wine & Travel Writers Association

Editor-at-Large, CityRoom

Blogs: Where and What in the World & Success with Writing


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