This may be the official Chocolate Cake Day, but chocolate cake day is any day for me. I've blogged recipes for flourless chocolate cake, red velvet cake, double chocolate cake, bittersweet chocolate bundt cake, brownie chocolate cake, 5 minute chocolate cake in a mug and lots of other delicious chocolate cake recipes. My company TeamBuilding Unlimited also has a Chocolate TeamBuilding event called Have Your Cake and Eat it, Too! in which participants cut up and stack and decorate chocolate cakes to reflect their company and team. Those large chocolate layers come from a local bakery.
Here's a fabulous recipe for Double Chocolate Layer Cake adapted from Gourmet Magazine (March 1999). The recipe below is for 2-10" layers, but you can do 3-7" layers. Remember to have the ganache cooled before icing. As with all chocolate recipes, use the very best chocolate, preferably organic, fair-trade.
Double Chocolate Layer Cake
For cake layers
3 ounces fine-quality semisweet chocolate such as Callebaut
1 1/2 cups hot brewed coffee
3 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process)
2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
3 large eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups well-shaken buttermilk
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
For ganache frosting
1 pound fine-quality semisweet chocolate such as Callebaut
1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/4 cup unsalted butter
two 10- by 2-inch round cake pans
Make cake layers:
Preheat oven to 300°F. and grease pans. Line bottoms with rounds of wax paper and grease paper.
Finely chop chocolate and in a bowl combine with hot coffee. Let mixture stand, stirring occasionally, until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth.
Into a large bowl sift together sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. In another large bowl with an electric mixer beat eggs until thickened slightly and lemon colored (about 3 minutes with a standing mixer or 5 minutes with a hand-held mixer). Slowly add oil, buttermilk, vanilla, and melted chocolate mixture to eggs, beating until combined well. Add sugar mixture and beat on medium speed until just combined well. Divide batter between pans and bake in middle of oven until a tester inserted in center comes out clean, 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes.
Cool layers completely in pans on racks. Run a thin knife around edges of pans and invert layers onto racks. Carefully remove wax paper and cool layers completely. Cake layers may be made 1 day ahead and kept, wrapped well in plastic wrap, at room temperature.
Finely chop chocolate. In a 1 1/2- to 2-quart saucepan bring cream, sugar, and corn syrup to a boil over moderately low heat, whisking until sugar is dissolved. Remove pan from heat and add chocolate, whisking until chocolate is melted. Cut butter into pieces and add to frosting, whisking until smooth.
Transfer frosting to a bowl and cool, stirring occasionally, until spreadable (depending on chocolate used, it may be necessary to chill frosting to spreadable consistency).
Spread frosting between cake layers and over top and sides. Cake keeps, covered and chilled, 3 days. Bring cake to room temperature before serving.
Other Posts on Chocolate Cake Day:
Mary Cunningham at Cynthia's Attic reposted her Chocolate Cake in a Mug! Great photo and slightly different recipe from the one I posted last Spring.