13 June, 2011

Buttery And Soft Chocolate Cake For A Crowd

My mom made this cake while we were in Mexico and it was a huuuge hit so, I decided to roll it out again for Babe's birthday soirée...

Preheat the oven to 350°. Lightly grease the inside of a 13 x 9 x 2" baking pan with shortening (shudder, I used butter) and dust with flour...

Butter and Sour Cream Chocolate Batter

4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped (I used Ghiradelli)
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons and 1 1/2 teaspoons water
2 cups bleached cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 pound (16 tablespoons or 2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup sour cream

Place the chocolate and water in a small, heavy saucepan (preferably enameled cast iron) and set over low heat. As the chocolate begins to melt, stir it from time to time with a wooden spoon or flat paddle. When the chocolate has melted, stir slowly to blend until smooth. By the time you need to use it, it should be slightly warm and the texture of thick pudding...

Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt onto a sheet of waxed paper (or bowl like moi)...

Cream the butter in a large bowl of a freestanding electric mixer on moderate speed for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the light brown sugar in 2 additions, beating for 1 minute after each portion is added. Add the granulated sugar and beat for 1 minute longer. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating for 45 seconds after each addition. Beat in the egg yolk...

Blend in the chocolate mixture and vanilla extract. The mixture may look slightly curdled at this point - totally OK - but will be restored once the sifted mixture and sour cream are added to complete the batter...

On low speed, alternately add the sifted mixture in 3 additions with the sour cream in 2 additions, beginning and ending with the sifted mixture. Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl frequently to keep the batter even-textured. The batter will be soft, light, and très creamy. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Smooth the top with a rubber spatula...

Bake the cake in the preheated oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until risen, set, and toothpick inserted in the center withdraws clean. The baked cake will pull away slightly from the sides of the pan...

Cool the cake in the pan on a rack...

Soft and Luxurious Chocolate Frosting

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butted, softened
4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled to tepid
large pinch of salt
2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2/3 cup milk, heated to tepid
5 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted

Place the butter in the bowl of a heavy-duty freestanding electric mixture fitted with the flat paddle attachment. Beat on moderate speed for 1 minute. Blend in the melted chocolate, the salt, the vanilla extract, half of the milk, and the 1 1/2 cups of the confectioners' sugar. Add the balance of the milk and beat for 1 minute. Add half the remaining confectioners' sugar and beat for 1 minute, or until smooth. Add the balance of the confectioners' sugar, beat on low speed to blend, then beat on moderately high speed until very creamy and somewhat lightened in texture, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl frequently to keep the frosting even-textured. Adjust the texture of the frosting to soft spreading consistency, as needed, by adding additional teaspoons of milk or tablespoons of confectioners' sugar...

Spread the frosting over the cake. Let the cake stand for one hour before cutting into squares for serving. Bake and serve within 1 day...

'Twas a huge hit with all us girls the birthday boy...

Annnd, rapidly gobbled up dressed with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and fresh strawberries...

Also helps when your pretty server's lobes and wrist are dripping in Alhambra...

Kindness of the bff who will remember who encouraged her hubs to surprise her by adding the earrings to her growing Alhambra collection for their anniversary theee very next time Babe is in need of the same strong arming help...XXOO


  1. I love complicated recipes!!! How would you amend this recipe if you do not have a freestanding mixer and only have a hand mixer?

  2. Sour cream makes all the difference in cake recipes, this sounds delicious!

  3. dangerous! i'm trying to tracy anderson my way into my first wedding dress fitting and here is a fabulous looking cake! looks like i'll be running a few extra miles this week...

  4. Have you ever just made the frosting and eaten it with spoon?

    No, that would be wrong.....right?

  5. Ohmyohmyohmy. My hips will not be pleased.

  6. My mom made this recipe at their Mexico home where they do not have a free-standing mixer and she swooore she never would again. Think it musta been tedious. Otherwise, the recipe is a piece o' cake! Orrr, 4 pieces like I shoveled in :)

  7. Delissshhhhhhhh. Might have to surprise PB with this on Friday when he gets home from Holland... Maybe if I do, I too, will be dripping in Alhambra :)