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chocolate cake with chocolate ganache

I was given the request of making a cake for my mom's birthday, and of course I had to accept the offer. However she didn't want just one nice big chocolate cake, she wanted two cakes, one chocolate and the other coconut. She was being nice and thinking about other guests that aren't chocolate fans, but all I could think about in my mind was "how can anyone hate chocolate?". So I followed through with the request and out of the oven came this beautiful chocolate layer cake with ganache dripping from the sides. A perfect simple birthday cake.

What you need:

For the cake:

  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour

  • 1/2 cup cake flour

  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

  • 4 large eggs

  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt or sour cream

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the simple syrup

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar

  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder*

  • 1/2 cup water

*I didn't use cocoa powder

For the frosting:

  • 1 cup butter, softened, 2 sticks

  • 4½ to 5 cups powdered sugar

  • 4 Tablespoon cocoa

  • 1 teaspoons vanilla

  • 5 Tablespoons heavy cream or milk, I prefer heavy cream

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

What to do:

1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Generously mist three 8-inch diameter by 3-inch high cake pans with non-stick spray, and line with circles cut from parchment paper.

2. Place the sugar, flours, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large mixing bowl, and whisk to combine.

3. Cut the butter into smaller pieces and add it to the dry ingredients. Mix on low speed until the mixture resembles damp sand (30 seconds to a minute).

adding pieces of butter
crumbly mixture after butter is incorporated

Add the eggs, one at a time, scraping the bottom and sides of the bowl with a silicone spatula after each addition.

adding egg one by one
after beating in each egg

4. When all of the eggs are fully incorporated, add the Greek yogurt or sour cream and vanilla, and beat on medium speed for about 60 to 90 seconds, to aerate the batter and strengthen the cake's structure.

adding greek yogurt
batter ready

5. Divide the batter evenly between the three prepared pans, and bake for 30-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the thickest part of the cake comes out clean or with one or two moist crumbs.

6. Cool completely, then soak with cocoa simple syrup (optional) and fill and frost with chocolate S buttercream.

batter evenly divided
frosting each layer

To make the cocoa simple syrup (optional):

Place the sugar and cocoa powder in a small pot and whisk to combine. Stir in the water and place over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until all the sugar has dissolved.

Place one cake layer on a serving platter. Use a pastry brush to soak the cake with the simple syrup before topping with chocolate Swiss meringue buttercream. Repeat as you add each layer.

To make the buttercream:

In a medium bowl combine butter, powdered sugar, cocoa, vanilla, cream/milk, and salt and beat for 5-7 minutes until light and fluffy.

Add more powdered sugar to thicken and stiffen up frosting or more cream/milk to thin frosting out depending on use. If you are frosting cookies or a cake use less powdered sugar.

Recipe From: Baking a Moment

Frosting from: chef in training

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