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This is the latest version of my favorite chocolate cake recipe. It has been used (extensively) for layer cakes, sheet cakes, and cupcakes. Why a new recipe? With tweaks to the fat portion of the ingredients, this version has even more flavor (sorry, Canada, flavour), than the original, and is still simple, easy and quick to make. Oh, and if you happen to forget the butter and coconut oil in the microwave, this works as a fat-free recipe too. Ask me how I know;) I’ve also included an updated frosting recipe, because that’s what friends are for. It’s metric, because these days, that’s how I roll.

I like it. I hope you do too!

Truly Excellent Chocolate Cake, v. 2.0

Cake:
2 C. sugar (400g), half white, half brown
2 C. all-purpose flour (250g)
3/4 C. cocoa powder (88g)
2 t. (11.5g) baking soda
1 t. (4.3 g) baking powder
½+ t. (5g) kosher salt
2 eggs
1 C. buttermilk (or 1 scant cup milk, warmed with 1 T. white vinegar)*
1 C. coffee
2.8 oz. (80g) butter, melted
1.16 oz. (33g) coconut oil, melted
2 t. vanilla

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare one 9″ x 13” pan, two 8/9” cake pans, or 24 standard muffin tins, with butter and flour/cocoa powder or line with parchment paper (a lot less trouble).
2. Mix sugar, flour, cocoa, soda, powder and salt in a large bowl.
3. Add remaining ingredients, beat for 2 minutes.
4. Pour into baking pans and bake until tester comes out clean (30-35 minutes for cake pans, 35-40 minutes for large pan, or 22 minutes for cupcakes).
5. Let cool 10 minutes and remove from pan. Frost when cool.

* Note: I usually make a cup of coffee in a 2C glass measuring beaker, then add the vinegar and fill up to the two-cup line with milk. Voila!

. . . . . .

Buttercreamcheese Frosting:
100g butter, softened
160g cream cheese, softened
560g powdered sugar
pinch of salt, to taste
~½ t. vanilla
2 T. lemon juice, or some combination of lemon, orange juice concentrate, milk, cream, and/or Grand Marnier; this is the flavoring portion so tweak at will!

1. Cream butter and cheese together until whipped smooth, fluffy and white (can take up to 5 minutes but it’s worth it).
2. Sift powdered sugar, add to butter mixture in two parts, blend.
3. Add flavorings and beat another ~3 minutes until smooth, light, and spreadable. Adjust liquid as necessary to reach desired thickness.

Works well for anywhere you need a mostly white frosting, and colors well. Just ask my friend Uni the Unicorn!

Uni the Unicorn was a present for a six-year old’s birthday: Six layers of chocolate cake with buttercreamcheese frosting, a little marshmallow fondant for the eyebrows, and magic!

 

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You may have noticed that I’ve been on a baking kick. It’s probably time to give my pancreas a break and go back to salads, but here’s one last* cake for you. Four layers, chocolate, more chocolate and raspberry.

 

 

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*  Let’s get real, it won’t be the last, but I am planning to slow down the baking. A little:)

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Chocolate frosted meringue mushroom strawberry reduction fondant bunny chocolate cake.

/because awesome:)

Happy Easter!

 

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Target: Caaaakkkkeeee!!!!!

Another year, another cake:) For this year’s birthday I wanted a little visual contrast, plus a way to use the last of summer’s fruit. Also, pretty. I went with that classic good time, chocolate, and a buttercreamcheese frosting.

Two layers, baked and cooled and torted to make four. To shake things up a bit, I added a thin coating of raspberry jam before frosting the first and third layers, to bring out a touch of fruit flavor. Crumb coat. Thick frosting top. Chocolate ganache trim, topped with blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, and mint, with a buttercream flower to wrap it all up.

Cutting it was scary, but worth it.

So tasty!

Cake!

 

 

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Subject: Cake, variation birthday
Year: 2015
Mission: Simple, elegant, tasty (natch)
Goal: Achieved

This year’s cake was chocolate, four layers, with a chocolate-cream cheese frosting. Sure, my original plan involved crazy complicated construction, multiple colors, and improbable royal icing designs, but in the end I wanted a good old-fashioned birthday cake. Nothing stressful, nothing so complex that it would interfere with family time. This fit the bill to perfection.

I used raspberry jam alternated with frosting in the filling, plus raspberries and their leaves on top for decoration, served with Pennsylvania’s own Yuengling Black & Tan ice cream.

Damn fine cake, if I do say so myself:)

Cake2015

CakeSlice2015

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How do I not have this recipe up here already? This rich, moist chocolate cake is delicious and (in my *ahem* extensive experience) virtually foolproof. Not only would I hate to lose the recipe, I’m also baking this weekend, so here you go!

Truly Excellent Chocolate Cake

Cake:
2 C. sugar (400g)
2 C. flour (250g)
3/4 C. cocoa powder (88g)
2 t. baking soda
1 t. baking powder
1 t. kosher salt
2 eggs
1 C. buttermilk (or 1 scant cup milk, warmed with 2 t. white vinegar)
1 C. coffee
1/2 C. vegetable oil
2 t. vanilla

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare one 9″ x 13” pan, or two 8/9” cake pans, with butter and flour/cocoa powder or line with parchment paper.
2. Mix sugar, flour, cocoa, soda, powder and salt in a large bowl.
3. Add remaining ingredients, beat for 2 minutes.
4. Pour into baking pans and bake until tester comes out clean (30-35 minutes for smaller pans, 35-40 minutes for large pan).
5. Let cool 10 minutes and remove from pan. Frost when cool.

Frosting:
1/2 C. butter, softened (113g)
1/2 C. cream cheese, softened (116g)
3 1/2 C. powdered sugar (437g)
1/2 C. cocoa powder (59g)
1/2 t. salt (to taste, less if you use salted butter)
2 t. vanilla
2-4 T. milk or cream

1. Cream butter and cheese together until whipped smooth.
2. Sift sugar, cocoa powder, and salt onto butter mixture, blend.
3. Add vanilla and milk and beat for 3 minutes until smooth. Adjust milk as necessary to reach desired thickness.

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Every year I make a cake for my birthday. This year I decided it was time to try tiered layers, plus butterflies, fondant flowers, pearls and gold dust (those last all technically edible but we know better; save your taste buds for the good stuff). What you see here are two 9″ layers supporting two 6″ layers, all in chocolate with a ridiculously decadent Grand Marnier frosting. Delicious!

Cake2014

/not a lie:) Also, what better fuel for writing than cake?

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