May 04, 2011 12:00 PM

This deliciously decadent cake takes its name from the fault lines that appear across its top during baking. It gained fame after a 1990 quake in Missouri, when local papers published the recipe, and it’s been shaking up bake sales ever since.

Serves: 16 to 20 Hands-on time: 20 min. Total time: 1 hr. 5 min.

1 (18.25-oz.) package devil’s food cake mix

1¼ cups water

3 large eggs

½ cup plus 6 tbsp. butter, softened

2 (3-oz.) packages cream cheese, softened

1 tsp. vanilla extract

2¼ cups powdered sugar plus more for dusting on cake

¾ cup sweetened flaked coconut

¾ cup chopped pecans

1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour a 13×9×2-in. baking pan.

2. Combine cake mix, water, eggs and ½ cup butter in a large mixing bowl. Beat at low speed with an electric mixer just until dry ingredients are moistened. Increase speed to medium; beat 2 minutes or until batter is smooth, stopping to scrape down sides of bowl as needed. Pour batter into prepared pan.

3. Beat cream cheese and 6 tbsp. butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; add vanilla, beating just until blended. Gradually add 2¼ cups powdered sugar, beating at low speed, just until blended. Stir in coconut and pecans. Dollop mixture by tablespoonfuls over cake batter to within 1-in. from sides of pan; do not stir.

4. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely in pan on a wire rack. Cut into squares; dust cake with powdered sugar before serving.

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