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What I Like Wednesdays - Perfect Chocolate Cake


Today I hopped on the bandwagon and created a page for Cake Endeavours on Facebook.  Be sure to "like" the page!  So, I decided why not hop on another bandwagon while I was at it and start a themed weekly post.  It will be a hodgepodge of recipes, tips, and tools I like and will come across.  

My first installment is the Perfect Chocolate Cake recipe.  This is the only recipe I use when making a chocolate cake or cupcakes.  It has been known to turn people into chocolate cake lovers.  I really don't understand how one can not like chocolate cake in the first place, but if this recipe helps to bring the mistaken around, who am I to complain?

CAKE                                                                        
1 cup unsifted unsweetened cocoa                     
2 cups boiling water                                                                   
2 ¾ cups sifted all-purpose flour                           
2 tsps baking soda                                                   
½ tsp salt                                                                   
½ tsp baking powder
1 cup butter softened                                           
2 ½ cups granulated sugar                                               
4 eggs                                                                        
1 ½ tsps vanilla extract                                            

FROSTING
6 oz. semisweet chocolate pieces
½ cup light cream (10%)
1 cup butter
2 ½ cups icing sugar

FILLING
1 cup heavy cream, chilled (35%)
¼ cup icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS

  1. In medium bowl, combine cocoa with boiling water, mixing with whisk until smooth.  Cool completely.  Sift flour with soda, salt and baking powder.  Preheat oven to 350F.  Grease well and lightly flour three 9” round cake pans.
  2. In a large bowl with electric mixer at high speed beat butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla, scraping bowl occasionally, until light – about 5 minutes.  At low speed, beat in flour mixture (in fourths), alternately with cocoa mixture (in thirds), beginning and ending with flour mixture.  Do not over beat.
  3. Divide evenly into pans; smooth top.  Bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until surface springs back when gently pressed with finger tip.  Cool in pans 10 minutes.  Carefully loosen side with spatula; remove from pans; cool on racks.
  4. Frosting: In medium saucepan, combine chocolate pieces, cream, butter; stir over medium heat until smooth.  Remove from heat.  With whisk blend 2 ½ cups icing sugar in blow set over ice, beat until it holds shape. (Or beat first and then place in fridge and every 10 minutes or so take out and beat until it holds shape.)
  5. Filling:  Whip cream with sugar and vanilla; refrigerate. 
  6. To assemble cake: On plate place a layer, top side down; spread with half of cream.  Place second layer, top side down; spread with rest of cream.  Place third layer, top side up.
  7. To frost:  With spatula, frost sides first, covering whipped cream; use rest of frosting on top swirling decoratively.  Refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.  To cut use a thin-edged sharp knife; slice with a sawing motion.  Serves 10-12.

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