This is a delicious, moist cake with a full chocolate flavor, and best of all, the layers hold when stacked!! I made it exactly how the original recipe calls for and if I had to do it again, the only two things I would change are to replace the hot water called for with hot coffee and the frosting. It's good, but I prefer a whip cream based frosting that is not as sweet as the one used here. But that's just my personal preference. Do note that this is a very thin batter, so don't be alarmed when you pour it into each pan for baking. Enjoy!
For the Cake:
- 2 c flour
- 2 c sugar
- 3/4 c unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 c buttermilk
- 1 c vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1 c hot water (or hot coffee)
For the Frosting:
- 1 1/4 c butter, softened
- 1 1/4 c shortening (or omit the shortening and use 2 1/2 c butter total)
- 9 c powdered sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1 c unsweetened cocoa powder
- 4-5 Tbsp milk or water
For the Garnish:
- Caramel Kitchen chocolate caramel sauce
- Fresh raspberries
For the Cake:
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
- Prepare 3 - 8 or 9 inch cake pans. Grease the bottom and sides with nonstick spray, line the bottom of each pan with parchment paper and lightly grease with additional nonstick spray and sprinkle with flour, tapping out any excess.
- In a large bowl, whisk together all of the dry ingredients.
- Add the eggs, buttermilk and oil to the dry ingredients and mix to combine.
- Add the hot water or coffee and vanilla and continue to mix well.
- Divide the batter between your 3 prepared pans and bake for 28-30 minutes.
- Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before frosting.
For the Frosting:
- In the bowl of a stand mixer or a large bowl with a hand mixer, cream together the butter and shortening, or butter only until nice and smooth.
- Reduce the speed and gradually add 4 cups of powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
- Add the vanilla and half of the water or milk and continue to mix until smooth.
- Add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
- Add the cocoa powder and continue to mix until completely combined and smooth.
- Place your first cake layer on a cardboard round or a serving platter.
- Spread about a 1/4" layer of frosting on top of the bottom layer of cake.
- Place the second cake layer on top of the first and add an additional 1/4" layer of frosting on top.
- Place the third cake on top of the two layers and frost the entire top and sides of cake with a thin layer of the frosting. Allow the frosting to set (this is called a crumb coat and it locks in all of the crumbs so they don't see through in the final layer of frosting).
- Once the crumb layer has set, continue to add 1/4 to 1/2" layer of frosting around the entire cake, beginning with the sides, smoothing it as you go. (I like to use a scraper/chopper with a straight edge to smooth out my sides). I use an offset spatula to smooth out my top layer.
- Once the frosting is smooth, transfer any additional frosting to a large piping bag or resealable plastic bag fitted with a large star tip.
- Pipe the frosting along the bottom edge of the cake.
- Squeeze out the chocolate caramel sauce along the perimeter of the top of the cake, allowing it to drip down the sides.
- Continue to pipe pillows of frosting on top of the circle of the chocolate caramel sauce until you have made a complete circle around the top edge of the cake
- Fill the middle the frosting ring with fresh raspberries.
Recipe adapted from LifeLoveandSugar
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