Today I made a birthday cake for my buddy Sandy. She was so excited about me making the cake for her lovely and festive party this evening. It was such a hit I decided to share. For all of you chocolate lovers this ones for you. Make this for your favorite chocoholic in your life they will love you foreva. xo
Ingredients for the cake
6 oz. sweet butter (1 1/2 sticks) softened at room temperature
1 3/4 cup sugar
1 Tbs. vanilla extract
2/3 cup cocoa
1 1/4 tsp. baking powder
1 1/4 tsp. baking soda
2 cups cake flour
1 cup water
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour 1 10 inch cake pan.
In an electric mixer beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. add the eggs and beat at medium speed until incorporated. Add the vanilla extract. Sift the dry ingredients together and add to the butter mixture. Slowly add the water and mix just until smooth. Scrape the batter and spread evenly into the prepared cake pan. Place in the preheated oven. Bake for 30- 35 minutes until cake comes away from the sides of the pan and the cake springs back when touched. Let cool on a wire rack for 25 minutes. bang the sides of the pan and turn over the cake onto a cardboard circle. Let cool completely.
Meanwhile make the ganache.
1 cup heavy cream
1 Lb. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 Tbs. butter
Bring the cream to a boil in a 1 qt. sauce pan. Turn off the heat whisk in the chopped chocolate until smooth. Whisk in the butter. Cover and let cool completely.
Toast 1/2 cup of sliced almonds in the 350 degree oven until golden brown, about 10 minutes.
To assemble the cake
When the cake is completely cool, make one horizontal cut in the center of the cake. Spread a little less than 1/2 of the ganache on the bottom layer of the cake.
Place the second layer on top. Spread the remaining ganache evenly over the top and sides of the cake.
Sprinkle the toasted almonds on the sides and top of the cake. Serve with Vanilla Ice Cream
For the Vanilla Ice Cream
1/2 cup sugar
6 egg yolks
1 vanilla bean
2 cups heavy cream
2 cups whole milk
Combine 1/4 cup sugar and egg yolks in a bowl with a wire whisk. In a clean coffee grinder designated for vanilla beans add some of the sugar and the vanilla bean and blend until bean is chopped fine. In a 2 quart pot combine the remaining sugar with the milk, cream and the chopped vanilla bean. Bring to a boil then add a ladle of the milk mixture to the egg yolk mixture and whisk until smooth. Whisk the tempered mixture into the milk mixture, Stir constantly without boiling until mixture coats the back of a spoon and makes a rose design when you blow hard on the coated spoon. Strain the mixture through a fine mesh strainer and cover the top of the mixture directly with plastic wrap.
Cool completely, then churn in an ice cream machine until thick and desired consistency.
Serve with the cake.
Recipes, writing and photos by Karen Pickus 2011
Courtesy Karen Pickus 2011