Thunder Cake

Thunder storms are now an exciting, anticipate phenomenon in our home, thanks to the lovely book by Patricia Polacco, Thunder Cake.

Smiles and Thunder Cake


  • 1 cup shortening (we use butter)
  • 1 34 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 eggs, separated
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 13 cup tomato puree
  • 2 12 cups cake flour
  • 12 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 12 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Grease and flour two 8 1/2 inch cake pans.
  3. Cream together the shortening and sugar.
  4. Beat in the vanilla and egg yolks.
  5. Mix in the cold water and pureed tomatoes.
  6. Beat the egg whites until they are stiff and fold into egg/tomato mixture.
  7. Sift the cake flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt.
  8. Mix dry mixture into wet.
  9. Pour batter evenly into cake pans.
  10. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes.
  11. Let cakes cool on wire racks before frosting with chocolate buttercream icing.
  12. Optional (but really a must!): Top with fresh strawberries.

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