Wednesday, July 1, 2009

The Perfect Chocolate Cake from Molly Whitcomb

I came across this cake at a friend’s house. She did not make it exactly the way I do, but I knew at the time that it was a great cake. It’s an often requested birthday cake, and I made for my oldest daughter’s wedding, as the second cake. Actually I asked a friend to make the layers for me. She is from Denmark. The other friend that I asked to help with the baking is French. My third friend who I consider to be a fabulous baker is German. And my very dear friend from England can make excellent pies. I do not have so may American friends who I consider to be good cooks. But there are two, Lynn Goodwin and Sue (who got remarried and I don’t know her last name). One of them gave me this recipe. I honestly don’t know which one. (I've since learned that it was Lynn who gave me the recipe)

It’s a classic american recipe and has been around a long time. Except all the other recipes put the whipped cream inside, and the butter cream on the outside. I’ve never wanted to do that. I think that the whipped cream would squish out.


1 cup cocoa, best quality (80 gr)
2 cups boiling water

2 1/2 cups flour (11 oz)
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder

1 cup of butter
2 1/2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla

Whipped Cream Frosting:

1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons sugar
Chocolate Butter Cream:

1 cup butter
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 oz semi-sweet chocolate

2 1/2 cups icing sugar (10 oz)

Cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease, paper, grease and flour three 9 inch round cake pans. Stir together the cocoa and boiling water. Set aside to cool. Sift together the flour, baking soda, salt and baking powder, set aside.

In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Add the dry ingredients alternately with the cooled cocoa mixture. Mix only until combined. Divide evenly between the three prepared pans, and spread the batter out flat.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out clean, and the cake pulls away from the sides of the pan. Cool cakes on a wire rack.

Chocolate Butter Cream: In a microwavable bowl, put the semi-sweet chocolate, butter and cream, and place in microwave for about 2 minutes. After taking out of microwave stir until everything looks melted and well mixed. If not so, put back in microwave for a little bit. When well mixed, add to the icing sugar in an electric mixing bowl and continue to whip until very smooth. It will be runny looking. Just leave the beaters in the mixture, cover with plastic wrap and put into the refrigerator or freezer until very solid, but not frozen.

When ready to assemble the cake, put the filling back in the mixer and with a good grip on the bowl, whip until very smooth and spreadable. The mixture will turn from dark brown, to a very pale brown.

I put the butter cream mixture between the layers of the cake and the put a very light coating all over the cake and put the cake into the refrigerator until ready to be served. There will probably be left-over butter cream. It is very good between graham crackers.

Whipped Cream Frosting: Put the whipping cream into an electric mixing bowl, add the beaters and put into the freezer for about 15 minutes. Remove from freezer and beat, adding the vanilla and sugar. Make the cream stiff, but not butter.

Get the cake out of the refrigerator and put most of the cream all over the cake, reserving some for piping however you please. Et Voila!

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