18 September 2013

Makin' Cake ... We Should Cocoa

I was looking back at past posts and realized that it has been an age since I made a cake. A chocolate cake - a cake that is so rich and gooey and crumbly that it makes you tremble with the initial sugar hit and puts your teeth on edge (in a good way). I realized that this chocolate cake deficit must be rectified almost immediately.

I was reading the We Should Cocoa post for this month and realized ("Oh! Lookee here!") that it is Choclette's blog birthday celebration month for all those chocolate blog challenges at We Should Cocoa.
How fortuitous! Happy Blogging Birthday to WSC! Here's a blow-out chocolate cake to celebrate!

There is a densely moist chocolate cake that is sliced into three layers. There is milk chocolate and rice crisped cereal mixed, chilled and chopped into small crunchy bits. There is a soft caramel gooey sauce. There is a super rich dark chocolate ganache frosting. This is a chocolate bomb of a cake - one worthy of an ice cold jug of milk on the side.

This is another beautiful cake ... it's been too long.

Chocolate Cake with Milk Chocolate Crunch and Caramel Sauce
a Martha Stewart recipe

Cake Ingredients:

1 ½ c. all purpose flour
¾ c. unsweetened Dutch process cocoa powder
1 ½ c. granulated sugar
1 ½ tsp. baking soda
¾ tsp. baking powder
¾ tsp. salt
2 large eggs
¾ c. warm water
¾ c. low-fat buttermilk
3 tbsp. canola oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Milk Chocolate Crunch:

1 c. rice crisped cereal
6 oz. milk chocolate, melted

Caramel Sauce:

1 c. granulated sugar
1 c. heavy cream
½ c. light corn syrup
3 tbsp. unsalted butter
¼ tsp. vanilla extract
Pinch Kosher salt

Dark Chocolate Frosting:

¼ c. plus 2 tbsp. Unsweetened Dutch process cocoa
¼ c. plus 2 tbsp. hot water
2 sticks unsalted butter ( Yikes, half a pound ! )
½ c. confectioner’s sugar
1 lb. semi-sweet dark chocolate, melted and cooled

Making the Cake:

  1. Butter and flour a 7 or 8 inch cake pan that is 3 inches deep. Set it aside. Preheat the oven to 350° F.
  2. Sift the flour, cocoa, granulated sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a deep bowl.
  3. Add the eggs, warm water, and buttermilk, canola oil, and vanilla and beat to make a thick batter. Beat for three minutes at medium speed with electric mixer.
  4. Pour into the prepped pan and bake in the center of the preheated oven for 55 to 60 minutes. Cake tester should come clean when the center of the cake is poked.
  5. Cool the cake completely in the pan – on a cooling rack.
  6. While the cake cools, make the milk chocolate crunch – stir the rice crisps into melted milk chocolate. Spread the crunch to a ¼ inch layer on waxed paper and place the paper on a cookie sheet. Freeze for half and hour. Use a long knife to chop the crunch into small pieces. Scrape into a bowl and store in the fridge until it’s time to use it.
  7. Make the caramel sauce. Bring the butter, granulated sugar, corn syrup, and heavy cream to a boil in a heavy sauce pan, stirring constantly. Using a candy thermometer, boil the sauce just until the temperature reaches 236° F. This will take a while - be patient. Remove immediately and stir in the vanilla and a pinch of salt. Stir until the sauce cools and begins to thicken up. Set aside to cool and thicken to spreading consistency.
  8. Make the frosting. Place the cocoa in a small bowl and add the hot water. Stir to make a thick paste. Set aside. Melt the pound of dark chocolate in a double boiler and when it is melted, remove the top pan from the lower and let the chocolate cool a bit. Meanwhile, whip the butter, confectioner’s sugar and pinch of salt until it is light and fluffy. When the butter is light yellow and fluffy, add the cocoa paste and the melted and slightly cooled chocolate and whip to a smooth shiny frosting. Let the frosting set a bit before using, as it will thicken up a bit.
  9. To assemble the cake:
  1. Run a sharp knife around the outer edge of the cake in the pan and tip the cake onto a turntable or flat plate. Use a long serrated bread knife to cut the cake horizontally into three uniform layers.
  2. Place the top layer top side down on a pretty platter. Sprinkle on ½ c. of the cold milk chocolate crunch. Then drizzle ¾ c. caramel sauce over the layer, being careful to keep the caramel and crunch on the layer and not falling over the edges.
  3. Place the second layer of top of this gooey first layer and repeat with the crunch and caramel.
  4. Top the cake and chill it to set up the caramel sauce … chill for about 30 minutes.
  5. Use the frosting to put a thin ‘crumb coat on the top and sides of the cake. Let it set up for about ten minutes. Then generously frost the sides and top with the rest of the frosting. There is plenty of frosting to frost and then pipe a decoration, should you choose to …
  6. Refrigerate the finished cake for 1 hour and then slice and devour.

Final Note: I figure there must be 1000 calories in a slice of this cake ... and since I haven't had chocolate cake since January ... I figure that I'm making up 4 calories per day since the last debacle... not that I'm rationalizing or anything!


  1. Now THAT is a proper chocolate cake! It looks so perfect and well chocolatey. I need a cup of tea and a slice please. Right now. X

  2. My husband just said, I wish we had something chocolate so I showed him this pic and he drooled:) looks delicious

  3. Now I'm feeling guilty. I haven't baked a chocolate cake in a very long time... and it is my husband's favorite. Time to get baking! And this is just the recipe! Thanks!

  4. What a beautiful cake!!!
    Well done!

  5. Oh what the heck. Add the scoop of vanilla ice cream to the plate and make it perfectly sinful. Looks delicious.

  6. What WONDERFUL and professional looking chocolate cake. I made a little one for my munchkin's b'day recently but NOTHING like this dear. So inspiring Susan!

    chow! Devaki@weavethousandflavors

  7. It looks and sounds rich, decadent, and so delicious. It's really pretty too!


Anonymous comments will not be accepted. Please be aware that due to spamming concerns, I must be able to track back.