RUSTIC CHOCOLATE CAKE
Yields: 12 slices (3layer 6″ or 9″)
Baking temp: 350 degrees fahrenheit
Baking time: 30 mins
1 ¾ cup all-purpose flour
1 ¾ cup sugar
¾ cup dutch-processed cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp kosher salt
2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup buttermilk
½ cup canola oil
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup brewed coffee
3 oz semi-sweet chocolate
1 cup heavy cream
8 oz semi-sweet chocolate
Chocolate Shards (Optional):
4 oz semi-sweet chocolate
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. You may either use three 6-inch or two 8-inch round cake pans. Line with parchment paper and grease. Set aside.
- Note: Using a 6-in cake pan will yield a towering cake. I leave the decision to you.
- If buttermilk is unavailable, start by making you own. Combine a scant cup of milk with a tablespoon of vinegar (white or cider) or lemon juice. Leave for at least 5 minutes or when it starts to curdle.
- In a bowl, combine the hot brewed coffee and semi-sweet chocolate. You want to start dissolving the chocolate in the coffee. Mix well and set aside.
- Get your dry ingredients ready. Sift and measure the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt. In the bowl of your electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine all ingredients well.
- Get your wet ingredients ready. In another bowl, combine buttermilk, oil, eggs and vanilla extract.
- With the mixer on low speed, add the wet ingredients slowly. Add coffee and chocolate mixture next. Mix just until combined. Over mixing will create tunnels and a peaked center while under mixing will result to an uneven mixture and a flat cake.
- Divide the batter into 2 or 3 pans and bake right away.
- Place them in the middle rack of the oven. Carefully space the pans for proper heat circulation. Bake for 30 minutes or until a cake tester (wooden toothpick) comes out almost clean. Work on the chocolate shards and frosting while cooling the cake.
For the chocolate shards
In a bowl, melt the chocolate pieces in the microwave for about a minute, in 30 second intervals. Stir until all pieces are completely melted. Pour on a parchment paper, approximately 12” x 16” in size. With an offset spatula, spread the melted chocolate thinly and evenly. Cover with another sheet of parchment paper of the same size. Roll and keeping it in place, refrigerate for at least half an hour or until it has firmed up. When ready to garnish, unroll and with an offset spatula, lift the pieces gently and decorate.
For the frosting
In a mixing bowl, place the chocolate pieces. Heat up the cream for about 2 minutes in the microwave. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and mix well. Refrigerate for about half an hour to cool before whipping.
Take out from the fridge and pour the contents in the bowl of the stand mixer, saving about a cup of the chocolate mixture for later.
On medium speed, whip for about 3 minutes until it starts to form medium peaks.
Spread on the cooled cake, either entirely covering the cake or leaving the sides unfrosted just like I did.
Note: If you prefer not to go with the rustic or naked look, you may trim off the top of each cake evenly and frost all around it.
Heat up the remaining chocolate ganache in the microwave for about a minute. Pour over the frosted cake. With an offset spatula, work around the cake by spreading the ganache and slightly pushing off the edges to create that nice dripping effect.
lace the chocolate shards on the cake, however you prefer. Refrigerate for a few minutes before cutting. Enjoy!