There is nothing better then when you have the excuse to bake a chocolate cake and can eat it too. And when it's this deliciously simple devils food cake with milk chocolate frosting, then you're in for a real treat. My sister and I made this for my dad who celebrated his birthday yesterday. The recipe is from Martha Stewart.
It is a bit time consuming, but most cakes are, since you have to wait for certain mixtures and baked goods to cool down before you can proceed to the next step, but it really doesn't take a lot of effort. The results are fabulous. Make sure to have all ingredients at room temperature before you start baking. It's a step most skip, but one that will make or break the cake. Especially the butter for this here. Make sure to take it out until it's completely soft (and that can take a couple of hours if you just leave it there, or use the microwave cautiously).
click on the images for a bigger view
Here is the finished cake, on the cake stand, ready and waiting to be sliced and eaten. But let's back up a couple of hours...
For the cake
340 gr (1 1/2 cups or 3 sticks) soft unsalted butter, plus more for greasing the pans
100 gr (3/4 cups) cocoa powder, sifted
220 ml (2/3 cups) hot water (i used this amount even though Martha's recipe uses less)
380 gr (3 cups) flower, sifted
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
450 gr (2 1/4 cups) sugar
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
For the milk chocolate frosting
225 gr (8 ounces) bittersweet chocolate (I used one with 60% cocoa solids)
225 gr (8 ounces) milk chocolate
350 gr (1 1/2 cups) heavy cream340 gr (1 1/2 cups or 3 sticks) unsalted butter
Make sure to sift the flower and cocoa, before using. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C, or 350 degrees F.
1. Combine the sifted cocoa powder with the water. Martha's original recipe uses 180 ml (3/4 cup) water, but I ended up needing more, since everything clogged up when using less. Cool the mixture!
2. To the cooled cocoa and water mixture, add the sour cream. Set aside.
3. Sift together the flower, salt, baking soda. Set aside.
4. Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy. Then add the vanilla extract, and after that beat in one egg at the time, until everything is combined.
5. Get your chocolate ready too. We'll chop it up later.
6. Grease your pans (you will need two 9 inch (23 cm) pans or bake in two batches if you only have one). Add a piece of baking paper, grease over it, and them dust the pans with cocoa power.
7. We will now beat in the cocoa mixture and the dry ingredients with the butter, sugar and egg mixture.
8. Add the parts alternately and mix until everything is combined.
9. Divide the batter between two pans and bake the cakes for 45 minutes each or until a cake tester (or toothpick) inserted into the center comes out clean.
10. Chop the chocolate.
11. Put the chopped chocolate in a bowl.
12. Bring the heavy cream to a boil and pour it hot over the chocolate.
13. Whisk until it thickens, and leave it to come to room temperature. You will have to wait anyway until the cakes bake.
14. Take the cakes out of the oven. Leave them in the pans for 5-10 minutes. Transfer them to a cooling wrack, and let them cool completely. This step is very important. Don't frost a warm cake, since the frosting will just melt off.
15. Into the cooled chocolate and cream mixture, add the butter for the frosting, a little bit at a time, until everything is creamed up.
The frosting once it's done.
16. Transfer your cake to a cake stand.
17. Ice the cake in the middle.
18. Put the top layer on the frosting, and frost the top and sides. This frosting sets well. Part of the charm are the swirls, so don't beat yourself up over making this look perfect.
It's best tasted once it' has had a night in the fridge. Before serving (if you have left it in the fridge to set) leave it out, to soften a bit, and then slice it.
I hope you enjoyed this post and that you liked the recipe. But seriously, who can resist chocolate in any shape or form?