BEST. CHOCOLATE. CAKE. EVER. To be totally honest, I’m not a huuuuge chocolate cake fan. If it’s put in front of me, I’ll definitely eat it, don’t get me wrong, but it’s just not one of those things that I crave. But this cake is different…..It’s moist, perfectly flavoured, not overwhelmingly sweet and the chocolate chips really bump it up a chocolate cake bracket. And then there’s the frosting……. True story: after making this cake for the first time, I made just the frosting again a few weeks later because it’s just like candy. And then I put it in the freezer where it sort of froze, and turned into a vaguely caramel candy-like snack. It was a semi-successful experiment, but the point remains; this will be your new favourite icing.
The recipe for this cake suggests that you bake 3 separate round cakes, and assemble it in layers. That’s a great idea if you’re feeling particularly ambitious. But if you’re not, just throw all the batter into one cake dish and while it may not look as fancy, it will still taste just as fancy.
Chocolate Cake with Caramel-Milk Chocolate Frosting Recipe
Nonstick vegetable oil spray
2 cups sifted cake flour (sifted, then measured)
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 ¼ tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 ½ cups (packed) golden brown sugar
1 cup plus 2 tbsp (2 ¼ sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
3 Large Eggs
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
1 cup plus 2 tbsp buttermilk
1/2 cup lukewarm water
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (about 6 ounces)
24 ounces high quality milk chocolate (such as Lindt), finely chopped
3 ounces bittersweet, or semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 ½ cups sugar
1/2 cup water
2 ¼ cups whipping cream
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray three 9-inch diameter cake pans with 1 ½ inch high sides with nonstick spray. Line bottom of pans with parchment paper. Whisk flour and next 4 ingredients in medium bowl to blend. Using electric mixer, beat brown sugar and butter in large bowl until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating in well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Beat in flour mixture in 3 additions alternately with buttermilk in 2 additions. Beat in ½ cup lukewarm water. Stir in chocolate chips.
Divide batter among prepared pans (about 2 1/3 cups for each). Smooth tops. Bake cakes until tester inserted into centre comes out clean, about 22 minutes. Cool completely in pans on racks. Invert cakes onto 9 inch diameter cardboard rounds or tart pan bottoms (cakes will be delicate). Peel off parchment.
Combine milk chocolate and bitter-sweet chocolate in large bowl. Stir in sugar and ½ cup water in heavy medium saucepan over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat and boil without stirring until syrup is deep amber colour, occasionally brushing down sides of pan with wet pastry brush and swirling pan, about 10 minutes. Carefully and slowly add whipping cream (mixture will boil vigorously). Stir over low heat until any hard caramel bits dissolve and mixture is smooth. Pour caramel over chocolate; let stand 1 minute to allow chocolate to soften, then whisk until chocolate-caramel frosting until completely cool, about 2 hours. Let stand 1 hour at room temperature before continuing.
Using electric mixer, beat frosting just until colour resembles milk chocolate and frosting is easily spreadable, about 1 minute (do not overbeat or frosting will become stiff and grainy). If necessary to correct graininess, set bowl with frosting over saucepan of simmering water for 10 seconds intervals, whisking just until frosting in smooth and spreadable.
Place 1 cake layer on platter, flat side up. Spread 1 cup frosting evenly over top. Top with second cake layer, flat side up, pressing slightly to adhere. Spread 1 cup frosting over top and sides of cake, swirling decoratively. (Can be prepared 2 days ahead. Cover with cake dome and store at room temperature.)
From: The Bon Appétit Cookbook