2019-01-10 / Local & State

Fulton Co. Fair Exhibitor Takes Home First Place In Farm Show Chocolate Cake Contest

SPECIAL TO THE NEWS


Winner of the PA Preferred Chocolate Cake Contest, Tracy Deneen, Fulton Co., is pictured with Dr. Sally Nolt, vice president of Pennsylvania State Association of County Fairs. Deneen walked away with a blue ribbon and a $500 check for her winning cake that also won at the 2018 Fulton County Fair. Winner of the PA Preferred Chocolate Cake Contest, Tracy Deneen, Fulton Co., is pictured with Dr. Sally Nolt, vice president of Pennsylvania State Association of County Fairs. Deneen walked away with a blue ribbon and a $500 check for her winning cake that also won at the 2018 Fulton County Fair. Tracy Deneen of Fulton County took home first place and a $500 prize in the PA Preferred ® Homemade Chocolate Cake Contest on Saturday, Jan. 5, during the 103rd Pennsylvania Farm Show.

The victory was sweet for Deneen, who has been a top 12 contender for years, noted longtime judge Chris Fickes. Deneen entered a salted caramel toffee crunch cake, a recipe that won a blue ribbon at the 2018 Fulton County Fair.

For eligibility to compete in the statewide competition held at the Farm Show, cakes were required to have earned first place at a Pennsylvania county fair. Judges evaluated the cakes on multiple criteria, including appearance, texture, and flavor. After combining the individual criteria scores, the judges determined a winner based on the cumulative scores.

Judges for the 2019 competition included Val Edmiston, assistant plant manager of Asher’s Chocolates from Juniata Co.; Denise Schafer, plant manager of Asher’s Chocolates from Mifflin Co.; Chris Fickes of Franklin, Tenn.; John Landis of Vynecrest Winery, Lehigh Co.; Bill White, recently retired lead columnist at the Allentown Morning Call newspaper, Lehigh Co.; and Dolly Getz, 2018 PA Farm Show Chocolate Cake Contest winner, Lancaster Co.

Karen Dobson, emcee for the competition, noted that the competition had 84 cakes total – one cake short from matching the highest amount of cakes ever entered.

Additional winners:

Second: Jenna Meade, winner from the Goshen County Fair, Chester Co., $250 prize

Third: Sandy Young, winner of the Jefferson County Fair, Jefferson Co., $100 prize

Fourth: Jeanine Kitzmiller, winner from the York Fair, York Co.

Fifth: Sara Clukey, winner of the Butler County Fair, Butler Co.

The recipe for the winning chocolate cake: Salted Caramel Toffee Crunch

Cake

Cake
2 cups sugar
1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa
powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs, room temperature
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup black coffee
½ cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease and flour two 9-inch round cake pans. Set aside.

In large bowl combine sugar, flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Mix to combine.

Add eggs, buttermilk, coffee, oil, and vanilla. Beat on medium speed for about 2 minutes; batter will be thin.

Pour evenly into prepared pans.

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire rack. Cool completely.

Frosting
1 cup butter, room temperature
1/3 cup caramel sauce
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 ½ cups powdered sugar
Pinch of kosher salt
Beat butter on medium
speed for 1 minute.
Add caramel sauce and vanilla, beat for 2 minutes, scraping
down sides of bowl.
Add powdered sugar and
salt, beat on low until powdered
sugar is incorporated.
Increase speed to medium
and beat until smooth and fluffy.
Chocolate Ganache and
Topping
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate
chips
½ cup heavy whipping cream
Heath Candy Bars, crushed
Caramel Sauce
Cake assembly

Place first layer of cake on serving plate and top with frosting, smooth into an even layer.

Add crushed Heath candy on top of frosting and press gently.

Repeat with additional layers of cake and frosting until you add final cake layer.

Spread remaining frosting on top and sides of cake.

Make Ganache: microwave heavy cream until it just begins to boil, then pour over the chocolate chips. Allow to sit 2-3 minutes, then whisk until smooth. Cool completely.

Drizzle ganache over top and sides of cake.

Decorate with remaining Heath candy and frosting.

The Pennsylvania Farm Show draws hundreds of thousands of visitors to our capital city every year for a mid-winter celebration of Pennsylvania agriculture. It is the largest indoor agricultural exposition in the nation, featuring nearly 12,000 competitive exhibits, including more than 5,200 animal competitions, plus 300 commercial exhibits and hundreds of educational, entertaining events. Visitors get a peek into the industry that employs nearly half a million people and contributes $135.7 billion to Pennsylvania’s economy every year.

The 2019 show runs January 12 from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily, except Saturday, January 12, when it opens at 8 a.m. and closes at 5 p.m. Admission is free, and parking is $15.

For more information about the 2019 Pennsylvania Farm Show, visit farmshow.pa.gov.

Return to top