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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

the best chocolate layer cake ...

i have ever had

i love chocolate
but chocolate cake, usually not my favorite
but this chocolate cake is incredible

our daughter merideth made it for gordon's birthday
how many descriptive adjectives can i use
it is wonderful, tasty, marvelous, great, absolutely scrumptious

beatty's chocolate cake
by barefoot contessa

butter, for greasing the pans
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour, plus more for pans
2 cups sugar
3/4 cups cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 extra large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup freshly brewed coffee

preheat oven to 350 degrees.  butter two 8" round cake pans, 
line with parchment paper and flour the pans.

sift flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer and mix on low speed until combined.  in another bowl, combine the buttermilk, oil, eggs, and vanilla.  with the mixer on low speed slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry.  with mixer on low, add the coffee and stir to combine scraping the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula.  pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean.  cool in the pans for 30 minutes, then turn out onto a cooling rack and cool completely.

chocolate ganache
1 pound semisweet chocolate chips
2 cups heavy cream
1 pinch kosher salt

place the chocolate in a large heatproof bowl.  in a medium saucepan, bring the cream to a bare simmer.  pour the hot cream over the chocolate, add the salt, and let stand for 2 minutes.  whisk until melted and smooth.  let cool, stirring occasionally, until thick and spreadable, 4 to 5 hours.  (note: don't try to speed the cooling process by putting the frosting in the refrigerator; it will become lumpy.)  whip frosting in mixer before spreading, to make light and fluffy.

tip: a simple way to make buttermilk
place 1 tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice in a liquid measuring cup 
 add enough milk to bring the liquid up to the one-cup line
 let stand for 5 minutes

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