Thursday, August 8, 2019

Baker's Corner: Fudgy Chocolate Cake


The introduction to this post is going to be (kinda) short and sweet 😊 The National Day long weekend is on the horizon and I have a bunch of plans that I want to execute and blogging does not happen to be one of them!

It was my FILs birthday last week. We went shopping on Orchard road and then enjoyed a lovely meal at Tandoor Holiday Inn. I still wanted to bake him a cake because who doesn't like having cake made for them right? I asked the twins what cake I should bake for their ajja (grandpa) and pat came the reply “Chocolate and Raspberry Cake”. Chocolate is their favourite flavour (ties for first place with strawberry) and raspberries are their favourite fruit so I should have guessed!


I was looking for a cake recipe that was simple, had easily available ingredients and that would result in a really moist cake. This recipe checks all the boxes and how! This is an oil-based cake so how you go about it is you mix the dry ingredients together in a large bowl, whisk the wet ingredients together in another medium bowl, mix the wet ingredients into the dry and BAM! cake batter done! No sieving of dry ingredients, creaming of sugar and butter or any of that cumbersome stuff.


The cake turned out moist, fudgy and chocolatey. The addition of a little brewed coffee enhanced the chocolate favour. The only gripe I had with the finished product was that the cake was a tad too sweet for my liking (the others thought it was okay though!) so I fine-tuned the recipe and it should be perfect now. Since this is a blended cake, the sugar is not required to build volume so it can be reduced with no significant change in outcome of the texture. Follow the recipe below and you should be fine! I suggest you take a look at the notes section at the bottom of the recipe before starting for some tips, tricks and suggestions so you will be guaranteed to get a good outcome for this cake.

 That's it folks! Make this cake the next time you have a loved one's birthday or for a special occasion and you will be glad you did.


Fudgy Chocolate Cake

Prep time: 40 min; Cook time: 30 min
Total Time: ~1 hour 15 min
Yield: 12-14 Slices; Serves: 8 
Recipe category: Dessert/American
Recipe level: Moderate
Recipe source: Adapted from here

Ingredients:

For the chocolate cake:

1 3/4 cups (228 g) all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups (300 g) white granulated sugar
3/4 cup (85 g) natural unsweetened cocoa
2 1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 cup (240 ml) milk
1/2 cup (120 ml) vegetable oil
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp brewed coffee, Optional but recommended
2 large eggs
1 cup (240 ml) hot water

For the chocolate frosting:

1 1/2 cups (336 g) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups (12 oz) semi sweet chocolate chips, melted
5 tbsp (35 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
6 cups (690 g) icing sugar
1/2 tsp salt
10–12 tbsp (150-180 ml) heavy whipping cream

For decoration:
A handful of fresh raspberries
Semisweet chocolate chips or chocolate sprinkles


Please refer recipe notes at the end for important tips & tricks

Method:

For the chocolate cake:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C) and prepare three 8-inch cake pans with non-stick baking spray and parchment paper at the bottom. I used disposable aluminum pans and just greased them with butter.


2. Add the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt to a large mixing bowl and combine. Set aside.



3. Add the milk, vegetable oil, vanilla extract, brewed coffee and eggs to a medium sized bowl and combine.


4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and beat until well combined.


5. Slowly add the hot water to the batter and mix on low speed until well combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure everything is well combined.


6. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cake pans and bake for 22-25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with a few moist crumbs.


7. Remove cakes from oven and allow to cool for 2-3 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack to finish cooling completely.


For the chocolate frosting:

1. Add the butter to a large mixer bowl and beat until smooth


2. Add the melted chocolate and mix until well combined


3. Add the cocoa powder and mix until well combined


4. Add about half of the powdered sugar, salt and half of the heavy cream and mix until well combined


5. Add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until smooth


6. Add the remaining heavy cream as needed to get the right consistency of frosting



To decorate the cake:

1. First use a large serrated knife to remove the domes from the tops of the cakes so they are all flat

2. Put a dab of frosting on the serving plate or cardboard cake circle. Place the first cake layer on it

3. Spread a generous amount of chocolate frosting on top of the cake in a uniform manner

4. Add the second layer of cake, then repeat the frosting step

5. Add the third and final layer of cake on top


6. Frost the top and outside of the cake with the remaining chocolate frosting

7. Pipe swirls with the remaining chocolate frosting around the top of the cake (using any nozzle and in any design you like! I used my trusty Wilton 1M tip), then decorate with raspberries and chocolate chips or sprinkles


8. Refrigerate the cake until ready to serve. The cake is best when served at room temperature and holds up well for 4-5 days when well sealed in an air-tight container


Notes:
  • I suggest you don’t use spring-form tins for this cake as the batter is very thin
  • Make sure your oven is at the right temperature
  • Do not over bake the cake (a few moist crumbs on the skewer is a good indication for doneness)
  • Wait till the cakes have cooled down completely before frosting (preferably refrigerate them until nicely cold)
  • Slice off the domed top of the cakes to make sure you get a nice flat surface to work with
  • Even if it seems that the amount of icing sugar in the frosting is too much, it actually isn’t! You need that much for the frosting to hold its shape when piping so don’t be tempted to skimp
  • Make sure the whipping cream is chilled before use
  • The same recipe could be used to make cupcakes. It would make 24 cupcakes. I often half all the ingredients and make 12 cupcakes. The baking time should be reduced to 18-20 min
  • You can use strawberries or blackberries instead of raspberries

Cheers,
Megha

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