Rich, light, smooth, creamy, DELICIOUS chocolate cake. Like the kind of chocolate cake that no matter how many times you tell yourself ‘just one more forkful….’ you end up cleaning your plate and then scraping the frosting off your friend’s piece next to you. And then go look for it in the fridge at like 2 am.
Warning though: this cake is a bit challenging. Its not the typical throw a few ingredients in a bowl, mix, and voila! But its totally doable and soooo worth it. Its kind of like a teenager (Remember when you HAD to have that glitter belt or else Jimmy would totally never notice you. And if you stood in the way of that glitter belt…life was over). So just love the little nit picky directions despite your urge to grab some boxed brownies and see how amazingly yummy it turns out.
*Side note- The actual cake part of this is SO good. Depending on how you like your frosting you may want to change up the recipe. The frosting that goes with this cake is mocha flavored with instant espresso powder, which I LOVE. But I know my little brother wasn’t so into it (not a coffee kid yet). So regular milk chocolate buttercream, vanilla buttercream, or even chocolate buttercream on top and rich peanut butter buttercream in the middle would all be equally as delicious. This is just a great base chocolate cake.
Here we go…..Grab your electric mixers….
Chocolate Layer Cake with Mocha Milk Chocolate Frosting
*I changed up the recipe slightly from Fine Cooking. I only made a two layer cake, which was plenty big. And substituted non-fat yogurt to keep calories skinny jeans friendly!
10-1/2 oz. (3 cups) sifted cake flour
1-1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. table salt
1 cup boiling water
2-1/2 oz. (3/4 cup plus 2 Tbs.) unsifted unsweetened natural (nonalkalized) cocoa
3/4 cup cold water
1/2 cup cold nonfat yogurt
1 Tbs. pure vanilla extract
12 Tbs. softened unsalted butter
2-2/3 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature (Actually do this!)
24 oz. milk chocolate, chopped into matchstick-size pieces (Make SURE these are cut thinly or else they will not melt properly)
6 Tbs. unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
4-1/2 tsp. instant espresso powder
Scant 1/8 tsp. table salt
1 cup plus 2 Tbs. heavy cream
1-1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
3.Beat butter and sugar at high speed until light in color and texture, 6 to 7 minutes. Whisk the eggs briefly and dribble them slowly into the butter mixture, 2 to 3 minutes, stopping as needed to scrape down the bowl and beaters.
4. Stop the mixer and spoon one-third of the flour mixture into the mixing bowl. Beat on low speed, scraping the bowl at least once, just until all traces of flour are incorporated. Stop the mixer and pour in half of the cocoa mixture. Beat on low to medium speed, scraping the bowl at least once, just until the mixture is blended. Repeat, alternating between flour and cocoa mixtures until completely combined. Divide the batter evenly among the prepared cake pans, spreading the batter to level it.
5. Bake, rotating the pans halfway through, until the cake just begins to shrink from the sides of the pan and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes. Let the cakes cool on a rack for about 5 minutes. Invert the pans to unmold. Peel off the parchment liners and turn the layers right side up on the rack. Let cool completely before filling and frosting.
1. Put the chocolate, butter, espresso powder, and salt in a large bowl. Make sure the chocolate is cut very thin or else it will not melt properly and you will get lumpy frosting! Bring the cream to a boil and pour it over the chocolate mixture. Stir until the chocolate is completely melted and smooth. Stir in the vanilla. Refrigerate until the mixture is cold and feels quite firm when you touch it, at least 2 hours. When you’re ready to frost the cake, beat the frosting with a hand-held electric mixer (it will seem a bit firm to beat at first), until the frosting lightens in color, has a spreadable but not-too-stiff consistency, and holds a nice shape. Frost the cake immediately, using about 2/3 cup between each layer and the rest for the top and sides.