Seriously, this is the best chocolate cake in the history of the world. I'm not even making that up. Would I fib to you??
No, I wouldn't. Mamma didn't raise that kind of girl.
It's perfect for a chocolate craving, a family function, just because.... pregnancy induced hormonal meltdowns.....
Alright, the preggo hormones have driven me to the chocolate extreme. Better believe that this baby is not fooling around when it comes to chocolate cravings. Mama wants rich, decadent, deep, chocolate indulgence. Might as well do it right.
Ask my boyfriend (Google) who makes the best chocolate cake and most likely, he comes back with this one.... It goes by many names, Ina Garten's Beatty's Chocolate Cake, Hershey's Black Magic....you name it. It's been around a while....different names, same recipe. I've tried this recipe probably a hundred times and it has never worked for me. It always fell in the center, never cooked, was always sticky, fell apart. At the same time I loved the flavor...and besides thousands of people can't be wrong.
Now I have brand new perfectly calibrated ovens. I didn't think it was my oven. And user error....uh....my pride refuses to let that one be an option.....so....what could I do to MAKE THIS WORK?
My determination led to tinkering. And LO AND BEHOLD, IT FINALLY WORKED!! And not only did it cook perfectly, but it was both soft AND durable. I could flip the layers, cut it, frost it, and it never fell apart or crumbled into a mess. At the same time it stayed incredibly moist, rich and delicious. Basically, I deduced that there was a lot of lift, and not enough structure to support it in the original recipe. Hence the falling....so here's my alterations. This recipe is now fool proof.
Best Chocolate Cake in the History of the World
2 1/4 cups All Purpose Flour
2 cups granulated sugar
3/4 c dark cocoa powder (or just a really good cocoa powder if you can't get a hold of a dark one)
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk (I have used low fat and it's worked just fine)
1/2 cup canola oil
1 tsp good pure vanilla extract
3/4 cups strong black coffee
Whisk all the dry ingredients together in a bowl, set aside.
In an electric mixer, beat eggs, buttermilk, oil, and vanilla. Add dry ingredients and beat till well mixed. SLOWLY add the coffee in a slow drizzle. Batter will be pretty thin, don't sweat it. I have fool proofed this. It will be ok :)
"grease and flour" 2 8in round cake pans. I just gave them a good spray with Baking Pam. Done.
Pour even amounts of batter into cake pans. When I poured them, each pan measured about 2lb 10oz.
Yes, I weigh them...I'm an OCD dork.
Bake at 350 for 35 minutes. OR basically until you jiggle them and they don't jiggle back. The sides of the cake should come away from the pan edges. Let cool on wire rack. Then turn out of cake pans and let cool COMPLETELY before you level (if needed) and frost it. There is nothing more irritating than melty frosting.
Speaking or frosting.....
I have like 3 variations of the same chocolate frosting. Which I guess makes it different. But lately I have been on a huge cream cheese kick. I put it in all my frosting now a days. It just makes them so smooth and creamy. Maybe it's a phase and I'll get over it. But for now, it's awesome and you can't even taste the cream cheese. So here's my chocolate buttercream.....variation 2...I'll call it my "Super" Chocolate Butter Cream. Be aware that this recipe as written will make more than enough to frost your cake. So either cut it in half, or make some cupcakes :)
It's a rich, sensual, frosting with a whipped appearance and texture, thanks to the cream :)
I eat it by the spoonful. It's dangerous.
"SUPER" Chocolate Butter Cream
3 sticks salted butter, softened
1 8oz block of cream cheese (straight from the fridge)
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 c milk
1 cup dark cocoa powder (or just a really good cocoa powder)
2 lb powdered sugar
1 cup heavy cream, plus more to thin your frosting to desired consistency
2/3 cup Ghiradelli Hot Chocolate mix (I use Double Chocolate, but Hazelnut or mocha might be good)
Cream your butter till light and fluffy. Whip in your cream cheese till incorporated. Don't over mix our your cream cheese will start to get kinda funky on ya. Add salt, vanilla, cocoa and milk. Mix. Add powdered sugar. Mix. Icing will be very very thick. It's ok. We will fix this.
In a seperate bowl or large measuring cup, mix together the cream and hot cocoa mix. Whisk it with a fork or small whisk till it's evenly combined. Add ALL of the cream mixture to your frosting. Mix till well combined.
Check your consistency. Add more cream to thin it if needed.
Together, it's like woah. I need a glass of milk to cut the richness. Usually I give the sweets I make away, or you know, I would be a whale instead of a hippo. But his one is staying here. It's just what i want when I crave chocolate.
Husband wanted to eat it like this:
threatened him with a painful death calmly rationalized with him, and in the end we decided to eat it like this:
Aaaaaaaaand I'm going to go get a slice now. It's a good way to get my calcium in....don't burst my illusion....