‘The Hunger Games’ Cookbook Teaches You How to Bake Katniss’ Favorite Chocolate Cake

hunger games cook bookOF COURSE there is a Hunger Games cookbook. As far as I'm concerned, the novel is all about eating -- and hopefully the movie is, too. Why aren't there a dozen Hunger Games cookbooks? That's the real question.

Well at least we have The Unofficial Hunger Games Cookbook: From Lamb Stew to "Groosling" -- More Than 150 Recipes Inspired by The Hunger Games Trilogy, and it looks like a marvel of culinary genius. Or at least like a lot of fun. It includes recipes for Rue's Roasted Parsnips, Grilled Tree Rat With Peanut Butter Dipping Sauce, and Plutarch Heavensbee's Roasted Sucking Pig Surprise. And also some recipes you might actually make, such as Capitol Grade Dark Chocolate Cake. Oh yes -- you like? Keep reading for that recipe!

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Capitol Grade Dark Chocolate Cake, courtesy of The Unofficial Hunger Games Cookbook

The feast served during Katniss' first night away from her family ends with a decadent chocolate cake. Amidst the depression of facing almost-certain death (not to mention Haymitch's dispiriting drunkenness!), this sweet ending perhaps makes Katniss realize that things aren't as bad as they may seem. The Hunger Games, Chapter 3

Cake:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 cup fine-quality unsweetened cocoa powder, like Scharffen Berger
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup cold brewed coffee
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil

Icing:

  • 2 cups (1 pound) butter (no substitutes), softened
  • 9 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups fine-quality unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9- by 13-inch pan.

2. In a large bowl sift together the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Make a well in the center and pour in the eggs, coffee, buttermilk, and oil. Mix with a wooden spoon until smooth; batter will be thin. Pour into a prepared pan.

3. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan for 45 minutes.

4. While the cake cools, prepare the icing. In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment on medium speed or using a wooden spoon and a lot of muscle, beat butter until smooth and creamy. Reduce speed to low and add confectioners' sugar, cocoa, and vanilla, scraping the sides as you go. Add milk as needed until icing reaches preferred spreading consistency. (For thicker frosting add less than a cup of milk. For thinner frosting, add more milk. Your choice!)

5. Once cake has thoroughly cooled, spread icing over the top.

And may the baking odds be ever in your favor. Here's one of the things I like about the book -- every recipe comes with a short reference to the novels, reminding you where the dish comes from. Too cool! Anyway, great. Now I'm craving chocolate cake.

Well, I'll tell you what. We haven't seen Hunger Games the move yet, but I think it's pretty safe to say that it's way more delicious than Twilight or Harry Potter!

Did you read The Hunger Games? Did it sometimes make you hungry?

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