RECIPE TITLE "Old-Fashioned Chocolate Layer Cake" from
Chocolate: From Simple Cookies to Extravagant Showstoppers
Makes one 8-inch 2-Layer cake, about 10 servings --
2 cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
6 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk
Chocolate Cream Frosting
1 1/4 cups heavy whipping cream
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1/4 cup light corn syrup
16 ounces semisweet chocolate, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
Two 8-inch round cake pans, 2 inches deep, buttered and the bottoms
lined with parchment or wax paper
It was typical in the past to use a white or yellow cake for the
layers with a rich chocolate frosting instead of all-chocolate layers
and frosting. This particular version uses tender yellow cake and
a fudgy frosting.
1. Set a rack at the middle level of the oven and preheat to 350
2. In a small bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, and
3. Use an electric mixer set at medium speed to beat the butter
and sugar together. Continue beating until light, about 5 minutes.
Beat in the egg yolks, two at a time, beating smooth between each
addition. Beat in the vanilla.
4. By hand, using a rubber spatula, stir half the flour mixture
into the batter, making sure to scrape the sides of the bowl well.
Stir in the milk, then the remaining flour mixture. Scrape well
after each addition.
5. Divide the batter between the prepared pans and smooth the top.
Bake the layers for about 35 to 45 minutes, or until well risen
and atoothpick or a thin knife inserted in the center emerges clean.
Cool in the pans for 5 minutes, then unmold and finish cooling the
layers on racks. Peel off papers.
6. To make the chocolate cream frosting, combine the cream, butter,
and corn syrup in a saucepan. Place over medium heat and bring to
a boll, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat, add chocolate,
and shake pan gently so that all the chocolate is covered by the
hot liquid. Let stand 5 minutes, then whisk smooth. Scrape the frosting
into a bowl and let cool to spreading consistency, either in the
refrigerator or at room temperature.
7. To assemble the cake, place one of the cooled layers on a cardboard
or platter. Spread about half the frosting over the first layer.
Top with the second cake layer, flat bottom side up, and spread
the top and sides of the cake with the remaining frosting. If you
wish, using a spatula, press some chocolate shavings into the frosting
on the sides of the cake. (If you try to use your hands, the chocolate
will melt from the heat of your hands).
Serving: Serve the cake in wedges-it needs no accompaniment.
Storage: if the cake is made early on the day it is to be served,
keep it under a cake dome at a cool room temperature. If you prepare
the layers in advance, wrap and freeze them until you are ready
to finish the cake. If you prepare the frosting in advance, wrap
and refrigerate it, then bring it back to room temperature for several
hours so that it turns to spreading consistency.
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