Thursday, May 26, 2011

the best chocolate cake (so far).


I need you to stop doing whatever you're doing, and get your screen and your butt into the kitchen and start making this chocolate cake. It's that good and I don't lie... at least when it comes to cakes. And this is coming from a non-chocolate cake lover. Not that I hate chocolate cakes, but I find them so mundane, so boring. I'd very much rather say yes to something vanilla. Yes, I belong to the vanilla people. But I'm praising this cake to the heavens now, and that's something.


It's dense, but not very. It's fudgey and it's definitely chocolaty. Not to mention easy to make too. I love this cake so much that I can bear to leave it's side for one moment.

To fill this, I used a cocoa frosting recipe from before. The very same batch I made last time actually- I forgot that I froze some! Luckily, even after more than 3 months it was okay. In fact, it was even better! There was no more grittiness from icing sugar like before. For the other frosting, I used a meringue one from Dorie's devil's food white-out cake. The main idea was to use no butter at all since I was running low and because I have a fear of frostings using too much of it. I can't say I like it that much since it's practically devoid of richness but it's a good recipe to have on hand if you're cutting down on fat.


By the way, I have this irritating problem. When I use only-whites recipes, I would usually plan on how to use the yolks. But at that very point of time I want to use yolks, I completely forget which recipes to bake! And vice-versa. So now because of the meringue frosting, I have 2 yolks sitting in the fridge (I halved the whole recipe). Does anyone have any ideas on how to use up the yolks? And if you know how to finish up those whites as well, please do share.


Beatty's chocolate cake
butter for greasing the pans
1 3/4 cups flour
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup cocoa powder
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup freshly brewed hot coffee *I used 2 teaspoons of instant coffee in 1 cup of boiling water



Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter 2 (8-inch) round cake pans. Line with parchment paper, then butter and flour the pans.

Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed until combined. In another bowl, combine the buttermilk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry. With mixer still on low, add the coffee and stir just to combine, scraping the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool in the pans for 30 minutes, then turn them out onto a cooling rack and cool completely.

Meringue frosting
1/2 cup egg whites (about 4 large) 
1 cup sugar
3/4 tsp cream of tartar
1 cup water
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract 


Put the egg whites in a clean, dry mixer bowl or in another large bowl. Have a candy thermometer at hand.

Put the sugar, cream of tartar and water in a small saucepan and stir to combine. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, cover the pan and boil for 3 minutes. Uncover and allow the syrup to boil until it reaches 242 degrees F on the candy thermometer. While the syrup is cooking, start beating the egg whites.

When the syrup is at about 235 degrees F, begin beating the egg whites on medium speed with the whisk attachment or with a hand mixer. If the whites form firm, shiny peaks before the syrup reaches temperature, reduce the mixer speed to low and keep mixing the whites until the syrup catches up. With the mixer at medium speed, and standing back slightly, carefully pour in the hot syrup, pouring it between the beater(s) and the side of the bowl. Splatters are inevitable—don't try to scrape them into the whites, just carry on. Add the vanilla extract and keep beating the whites at medium speed until they reach room temperature, about 5 minutes. You should have a smooth, shiny, marshmallowy frosting. Although you could keep it in the fridge in a pinch, it's really better to use it right now. 

21 comments:

  1. holy java, that looks like an awesome chocolate cake. i am not a coffee drinker though... hmmm. ah well! will figure it out. thanks for sharing! i love this, shockingly as i seem to love most all things i find on your page. always looking forward!
    -meg
    @ http://clutzycooking.blogspot.com

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  2. Hi Meg! If you don't drink coffee (I don't either) you can just substitute boiling water. The coffee taste isn't noticeable but it adds a different dimension to the chocolate.

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  3. That looks awesome! I hadn't even noticed that Ina had a famous chocolate cake recipe, so I'm out of the loop.

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  4. Hi there! Love the cake - it looks gorgeous! Just wanted to say that I use this recipe for my chocolate cakes and cupcakes, too. Except, I use 2 tsp of instant espresso dissolved in the hot water ... it adds a little zing to it. Happy baking!

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  5. Although you've probably used those yolks by now, I have a few suggestions...I usually tend to have more whites than yolks on hand, since I am always using up the yolks for fattening things like key lime pie, custard-base ice creams, and certain fresh pasta recipes (and lemon-ricotta gnocchi, which are super easy and delicious). I usually stash my whites in the freezer, and pull them out to make meringues for Eton Mess or angel food cake when I have enough!

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  6. nice post , it's a good recipe

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  7. Looks great! I run a site called makingvanilla.com that shows people how to make vanilla extract and am always looking for great things to try w/ my homemade vanilla!

    Thanks.
    MakingVanilla.com

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  8. hi! For the cake.. do you use vanilla essence or extract? :)

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    Replies
    1. I've never really known for there to be a difference but I used essence:)

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    2. thanks! I wasn't sure then... didn't know if it would make a difference, but used extract - it was delicious! :D

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    3. I'm glad you loved the cake!

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  9. When everything else fails, I use extra yolks or whites in omelettes.

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  10. This chocolate cake is the bomb. Seriously, I made it for a bake sale but I'm so tempted to eat all of the cupcakes in my fridge right now...

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  11. How do I pin this recipe?

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    Replies
    1. Hi! I'm not a pinterest user so I'm not too sure but I believe you just copy the URL of this page and add it to your pinboard.

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  12. hi!:) if baking cupcakes using this recipe, what temp should i bake the cupcakes at and for how many minutes?:) Thanks so much!:D

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    Replies
    1. You can stick to 350F and try baking the cupcakes for 14 minutes first and if they're not done by then, extend the baking time but be sure to check on them often:)

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  13. Are there directions on how to assemble this cake? I don't see it in the recipe. It looks so good! Thanks!

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    Replies
    1. Hi! All you have to do is slice the cooled chocolate cake into 3 layers and then use the meringue frosting, which must be made just before you're about to use it, to fill and frost the layers. Don't store in the fridge if you can help it:)

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  14. Oh yes, and I would also like to pin your recipes but I don't see a link. Thanks again.

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    Replies
    1. The link for the recipes used here are somewhere in the paragraphs before the recipe:)

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