Old-Fashioned Chocolate Layer Cake

2 cups sugar     
2/3 cup solid vegetable shortening  
3 large eggs     
2 cups all purpose flour   
¼ tsp salt     
½ cup unsweetened cocoa   
2 cups buttermilk   
1 tsp vanilla extract

1 lb. powdered sugar, sifted
6 Tbs milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 Tbs unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 Tbs brewed coffee
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 tsp ground cinnamon

Preheat over to 350 degrees.  Grease and flour three 9-inch round cake pans.  Cream sugar and shortening until light and fluffy.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating afgter each addition.  Set aside.  Sift flour, salt, and cocoa in a separate bowl.  Dissolve baking soda in buttermilk.  Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk to butter mixture, blending after each addition.  Blend in vanilla.  Pour into prepared pans.  Bake 20 to 25 minutes, or until cake tester inserted in center comes out clean.
Frosting:  Mix powdered sugar, milk, vanilla, butter, coffee, cocoa, and cinnamon.  Spread frosting on top of two layers, then stack layers on serving plate.  (Hold together with wooden picks.)  Add third layer.  Frost top and sides.

Courtesy of Cindy Willard with Suzanne Cook and Company

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