Happy 13th Birthday!


Yikes! I can not believe that I am the mother of a 13 year old. This year, he decided on a new cake. Chocolately and moist, this cake is one that I used to serve at Val 21, a restaurant I headed way back when. I filled it with raspberry or lemon curd in the center and finished it with a rich ganache frosting. This time I made it with Vanilla Buttercream. What is great about this cake is that it is even better the next day. You can bake the cake; then decorate it and serve it the next day.

Moist Chocolate Cake

2 cups sugar
2 cups water
4 oz. unsweetened chocolate
6 Tbsp. butter
2 cups of Flour, sifted
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 eggs

Place the water and sugar in a pan and bring to a boil over high heat. Remove from heat and add butter and chocolate. Stir and allow to cool. Sift together the dry ingredients. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 10 1/4 round cake pan (You can also use 2 (9) inch rounds, but they won’t be as high. I used a 10 1/4 inch as we didn’t want a layer cake).  Line the bottom with a piece of parchment, cut to fit the inside. You really need this unless you are using a spring form pan, as this cake is so moist, it helps to have the parchment so that you can turn the cake out on to your cake plate once it has cooled.

Whisk the eggs and vanilla together. Once chocolate mixture is cool, beat in eggs. Slowly add the dry ingredients and whisk well until all ingredients are blended. The batter will be very dark and extremely watery. Do not fret. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until cake is firm and a tooth pick comes out clean from the center. Allow to cool completely before removing from pan and placing on cake plate.

Vanilla Buttercream – makes 2 cups

We are not huge frosting folks so this recipe thinly frosted my 10-inch round with not a lick left over.

1  large egg yolk at room temperature
1 1/3 cups confectioners sugar, sifted
1 vanilla bean, insides scraped out
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 sticks of butter (unsalted and at room temperature)

In a slightly warm bowl (Just fill a bowl with hot water and let it sit for a minutes. Remove water and dry well) combine all the ingredinents and beat until smooth, about 5 minutes. Refrigerate for an hour or two before you spread it on the cake.

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