This is the second cake I've made for The Cake Slice Bakers and boy is it delicious! On a scale from 1-10, ten being the best, I give the Chai Cake with Honey-Ginger Cream that I made last month a 6. I give this Devil's food Cake with Brown Sugar Buttercream a 9.5! Honestly, it is that good. Go get the book Sky High: Irresistable Triple Layer Cakes from Alissa Huntsman and Peter Wynne- you won't be disappointed!
I've eaten Devil's Food cake before but I've never made it. That being said, I've made many different recipes for chocolate cake. After making this one, I'm wondering what the hell (get it, ha ha!) took me so long to make this. This recipe is going on my "must make again, because it was so darn good" list. It had an excellent crumb, it was chocolately, not too sweet, moist and fluffy.
With this cake came two options of frosting: Brown Sugar 7-Minute Frosting and Brown Sugar Buttercream. I chose buttercream because if you're going to eat devil's food, you're obviously not on a diet, so why not have a decadent frosting to accompany it. How was the buttercream, you ask? Wonderfully creamy, soft and light, caramelly, cinnamony and the teensiest bit of sweetness. The best part though was that it wasn't overwhelmingly buttery, You know how you get that greasy feeling on the roof of your mouth? Well, not with this frosting. It is fluffed up and lightened with egg whites, but creamy from the butter. The brown sugar syrup provides the sweetness instead of using powdered sugar. I added cinnamon because I love it with chocolate and brown sugar. Reminds me of cinnamon toast. It was oh so dreamy.
I decorated it with Guittard chocolate discs.
Makes an 8-inch triple layer cake:
- 1 c. unsweetened cocoa (NOT Dutch Process)
- 1 1/4 c. hot water
- 3 c. packed light brown sugar
- 2 2/3 c. cake flour*
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 3/4 tsp. salt
- 9 oz. unsalted butter, room temp. (2 sticks + 2 Tbsp.)
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 3/4 c. cold water
*1 cup of cake flour is equal to ¾ cup flour plus 2 tablespoons of cornstarch.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter the bottoms and sides of three 8-inch round cake pans. Line the bottoms of the pans with parchment paper and grease the paper as well.
Place the cocoa in a medium bowl and add the hot water. Whisk until smooth and let it cool to room temperature.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the sugar, flour, baking soda, and salt. With the mixer on low blend to combine. Add the butter and the dissolved cocoa. Then raise the mixer to medium speed and beat for 2 minutes until light and fluffy.
In a medium bowl whisk together the eggs, vanilla, and cold water until combined. Add this liquid to the batter in three additions scraping down the sides of the bowl between additions. Divide the batter among the three pans.
Bake for 35-45 minutes or until a cakes tester inserted into the almost comes out clean. There should be a few crumbs attached still. Cool the cakes in the pans for 15 minutes. Then invert and remove parchment paper and cool completely on a wire rack.
NOTE: I halved this recipe and it made a triple layer 6-inch cake. I also made a mini 3-inch cake that I torted and filled with the cinnamon buttercream and covered in brown sugar. Completely over the top and indulgent but delicious!
Cinnamon Brown Sugar Buttercream
- 5 egg whites
- 1 1/4 c. packed brown sugar
- 1/4 c. water
- 1 lb. unsalted butter, room temp. (16 oz./4 sticks)
- 1 tsp. cinnamon (optional- my addition)
Place all the egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer; set aside.
In a heavy medium saucepan combine the sugar and water. Cook over medium heat stirring to dissolve the sugar. Then bring to a boil without stirring and cook until the syrup reaches 238 degrees F on a candy thermometer.
Begin beating the egg whites on medium low speed. Slowly pour in the syrup making sure not to hit the beater. Increase the mixer speed to medium high and beat until the meringue has cooled to body temperature.
With the mixer on med-low add 1-2 tablespoons of butter at a time. When all the butter has been added increase the mixer’s speed to medium and beat until the mixture looks curdled or separated. Continue to beat until the icing comes together again looking like soft smooth whipped butter.
Mix in the cinnamon if using.
NOTE: A cake topped with the meringue frosting is the best eaten the day it’s made. It does not do well in the fridge.
If you choose the buttercream frosting you can keep it in the fridge for 3 days. Make sure to allow the cake to come to room temperature for 1 to 1 ½ hours before slicing. Otherwise the frosting will be hard and heavy.
For a printer friendly version of the cake and both frosting recipes, click here.
Check out all the other Cake Slice Bakers by clicking on the link then their individual blogs!