Friday, February 11, 2011

Happy Birthday! Cake!

So this is REALLY late.  But better late than never?

It took days to decide what kind of cake I wanted to make for my birthday.  Once I finally decided, my mother told me I can't make my own cake, that I should email her the link so she and my dad could make the cake.

Well, I come to find out my father BOUGHT a cake rather than making one.  I was pissed! And here it was the DAY of my birth!  I had to start the cake STAT!

I got out the recipe and started!  

The ganache was still hardening on the cake as we ate dinner and was barely fully settled when we ate, but it was awesome!

Look at it!

I first saw the recipe on Love & Olive Oil (she makes such yummy food) and fell in love with the picture.  And I finally had the opportunity to bake it!

Double Chocolate Layer Cake with Raspberry Filling

Makes 12-14 servings. Recipe from Epicurious via Smitten Kitchen.


For cake layers:
3 ounces fine-quality semisweet chocolate such as Callebaut
1 1/2 cups hot brewed coffee
3 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process)
2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
3 large eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups well-shaken buttermilk (or 1 1/2 c milk with 1 tablespoon cider vinegar and set aside to curdle)
3/4 teaspoon vanilla

For ganache frosting: (halve this if filling with raspberry or other filling)
1 pound fine-quality semisweet chocolate such as Callebaut
1 cup heavy cream (or soy creamer)
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter (or margarine)

For raspberry filling: (optional)
2 10-ounce bag frozen raspberries, thawed
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
(or use Rasberry jam)


Make cake layers:
Preheat oven to 300°F and grease two 10" cake pans, or three 8" or 9". Line bottoms with rounds of wax paper and grease paper.

Finely chop chocolate and in a bowl combine with hot coffee. Let mixture stand, stirring occasionally, until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth.

Into a large bowl sift together sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. In another large bowl with an electric mixer beat eggs until thickened slightly and lemon colored (about 3 minutes with a standing mixer or 5 minutes with a hand-held mixer). Slowly add oil, buttermilk, vanilla, and melted chocolate mixture to eggs, beating until combined well. Add sugar mixture and beat on medium speed until just combined well.

Divide batter between pans (pans should only be half full - if you use 8" pans you will have some batter leftover) and bake in middle of oven until a tester inserted in center comes out clean, 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes.

Cool layers completely in pans on racks. Run a thin knife around edges of pans and invert layers onto racks. Carefully remove wax paper and cool layers completely. Cake layers may be made 1 day ahead and kept, wrapped well in plastic wrap, at room temperature.

Make frosting:
Finely chop chocolate. In a 1 1/2- to 2-quart saucepan bring cream, sugar, and corn syrup to a boil over moderately low heat, whisking until sugar is dissolved. Remove pan from heat and add chocolate, whisking until chocolate is melted. Cut butter into pieces and add to frosting, whisking until smooth.
Transfer frosting to a bowl and cool, stirring occasionally, until spreadable (depending on chocolate used, it may be necessary to chill frosting to spreadable consistency). I found that stirring this over a bowl of ice water did a great job of cooling it off quickly and evenly.

Make filling:
Puree the raspberries in a food processor, blender or immersion blender. Press the puree through a fine-mesh strainer with the back of a spoon, removing the seeds. Heat the puree in a small pot with the sugar and cornstarch until mixture boils, stirring constantly. As it boils, it should quickly thicken. Let cool.

Spread filling between cake layers, assemble, and spread ganache over top and sides. Cake keeps, covered and chilled, 3 days. Bring cake to room temperature before serving.

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