20131017_194551I’ve never been a big cake person, however I LOVE a good chocolate cake. I have tried layer cakes before (a long time ago) and was never able to make them beautiful the way they were intended. The cakes would fall apart, or get stuck in the pan, or the frosting would rip off parts of the cake – SO MAD!!! But this time was different, SO SO different. This cake turned out amazing looking and tasting, even if it did take me a while to make. The chocolate pairs perfectly with the raspberries and the fresh raspberries on top with powdered sugar gives a perfect presentation. If you need a dessert to impress – this is it, and if I can make it, so can you! I found the recipe on http://www.epicurious.com and made some small changes as usual. Instead of pre-packaged raspberry jam, I made my own filling with fresh raspberries and had to find a quick fix for not having buttermilk. Let’s go!

I started by making the chocolate cakes.


Butter to grease cake pans
2 c. unbleached all purpose flour
1 3/4 c. sugar
3/4 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 c. water
3/4 c. buttermilk (or I used 3/4 c. milk mixed with one Tbsp of vinegar, you can read here why this works)
3/4 c. vegetable oil
3 eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Position racks in 20131017_204657top and bottom third of oven. Grease cake pans with butter. Sift flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt into large bowl. Use a whisk to  blend and make a well in center I used a 1 cup measuring cup. In a separate bowl, whisk 1 cup water, buttermilk (or milk / vinegar mixture), oil, and eggs. Pour wet ingredients into well of dry ingredients and whisk together. Pour cake batter evenly into the 9″ pans (about 3 cups each).Bake cakes until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, about 30-35 minutes. (If cakes form domes, place kitchen towel atop hot cakes, then press gently with palm of hand to level.I used a clean flat plate to press the dome on my cakes down.) Cool before frosting.

Chocolate Ganache

18 oz semisweet chocolate chips (or chocolate cut into chunks)

2 c. of heavy whipping cream20131017_175016

Pour chocolate into a medium bowl. Bring heavy whipping cream just to boil. Once there, pour over the chocolate and stir until smooth. Cover and refrigerate for about an hour (stirring occasionally) until thick enough to spread. After thickening, remove from fridge to return to room temperature.

Raspberry Filling

1 c. of fresh raspberries

1/4 c. sugar

2 Tbsp water

1/2 Tbsp corn starch20131017_185110

Put all items into a saucepan and stir. Bring to boil. Remove from heat and stir until it reaches a jam-like consistency.

Once cakes have cooled, use a knife to cut around the edges of the cake pans, and place first cake upside down onto cake stand or platter. Cover the top of the cake with raspberry filling and spread evenly. Spoon about 3-4 tablespoons of chocolate ganache and spread evenly over raspberry filling. Take second cake and flip onto bottom layer. Spread a light layer of chocolate ganache onto both cake layers and place in the freezer for 30 minutes to set ganache (this is called a crumb 20131017_204906coat). Once the crumb coat has set, use remaining ganache to spread over the entire cake. I used a silicone spatula and poured the ganache over the edges to spread.

Take a carton of fresh raspberries to circle around the top of the cake. Sift powdered sugar over the top. Voila!! An impressively beautiful cake with decadent flavor. I can’t wait to get home and eat another piece! YUM!!