As we get set to welcome the first day of Spring…
Angel Food Cake would seem to be a more suitable celebration than
Devil’s Food Cake
… the antithesis of Angel Food Cake
Dark, rich, and decadent
No matter what the season, everyone needs a delicious Chocolate Cake recipe in their collection and this one will not disappoint.
It all began with a recipe for Devil’s Food Cake that I found in a Fine Cooking magazine many years ago … and then a few little adjustments …
It is rich and moist (made with butter, buttermilk and mayonnaise) – it’s not overly sweet; it’s not light and crumbly.
The best part about this cake is the ‘frosting’ … it is topped (and filled) with ganache, rather than a confectioner’s sugar buttercream – this makes it intensely chocolate, without being too sweet.
Prep Time: 30 minutes Baking Time: 40-45 minutes
175 grams (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened
420 grams – 2 cups (hard-packed) dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon (15 mL) pure vanilla extract
3 large eggs, at room temperature
265 g (1 ¾ cups) all-purpose flour
¾ cup (180 mL) sifted cocoa powder
1 teaspoon (5 mL) espresso or dark coffee granules (optional)
1 teaspoon (5 mL) baking powder
1 teaspoon (5 mL) baking soda
1 teaspoon (5 mL) salt
375 mL (1 ½ cups) buttermilk (full-fat)
60 mL (1/4 cup) mayonnaise (full-fat)
450 g (1 pound) semisweet chocolate, roughly chopped
500 mL (2 cups) heavy cream
30 g (2 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
- Bake the cake: Preheat oven to 3500F. Prepare two 8- or 9-inch round cake pans – spray with an oil-based spray, or coat with a little butter; dust with flour and tap out the excess.
- In a large bowl with a stand mixer, beat the butter, brown sugar and vanilla on medium speed until well mixed – increase speed a little and continue to mix until it is light in colour, fluffy, and increased in volume (about 5 minutes).
- Lower mixer speed to medium and add eggs – one at a time – mixing well after each addition.
- In a another bowl, mix together the flour, cocoa powder (sifted), espresso powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
- On low speed, add the flour-cocoa mixture to the butter-egg mixture – add just a third at a time, alternating with a third of the buttermilk. Start and end with the flour-cocoa mixture. Mix each addition until incorporated. Scrape down the bowl after each addition. Gently fold in the mayonnaise at the end.
- Divide the batter between the two prepared pans. Bake until a cake tester comes out dry – about 40 minutes.
- Let cool for 10-15 minutes on a wire rack. Remove cakes from pans onto wire rack. Cool cakes completely before cutting. The cakes can be refrigerated or frozen at this point.
- Make the Ganache: Place the chopped chocolate in a large bowl. In a saucepan, heat heavy cream (medium-high heat) until it just comes to a boil. Pout hot cream over chocolate and let it sit – without stirring – for 5 minutes. With a whisk or a large spoon, gently stir the mixture in a circular motion until it is fully combined. Fold in the soft butter. Cover, with a sheet of plastic wrap placed directly on the surface of the ganache, and set aside at room temperature for several hours – or overnight.
- Assemble Cake: Cut each cake in half, forming 4 layers. Place one of the layers on a cake platter. Top this layer with about 1/3 cup of the ganache and spread evenly to cover. Add another cake layer and some ganache. Repeat until all layers have been added. Spread the remaining ganache over the top and sides of the cake. Start with spreading a very thin layer over the top and sides and then refrigerate it to set – this helps to seal in any crumbs and makes finishing the cake much easier. Spread the remaining ganache over the top and sides. Refrigerate (covered) for up to two days. Bring cake to room temperature before serving.
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