Friday, May 20, 2005

Devil's Food White-Out Cake

Devil's Food White-Out Cake (Adapted from Baking From My Home To Yours)

For the cake

1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
10 tablespoons (1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons or 1 stick + 2 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 ounces chopped bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled
1/2 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
1/2 cup boiling water
1/2 teaspoon instant espresso powder
4 ounces (about 2/3 cup) finely chopped excellent quality milk or semi-sweet chocolate

For the frosting

4 large egg whites, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup water
1 tablespoon vanilla

To prepare the cake

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

In a large mixing bowl, beat butter until creamy and smooth. Add sugars and beat until light and fluffy. Mix in eggs, one at a time, beating until well combined after each addition. Mix in vanilla and melted chocolate.

Alternately mix in the flour mixture and buttermilk, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients, mixing just until combined. Be sure to stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl once or twice to ensure even mixing. Mix together boiling water and espresso - carefully pour into the batter and mix to combine - the batter will thin. Stir in chopped chocolate.

Evenly divide the batter between 2 8" round baking pans that have been coated with nonstick cooking spray. Line the bottom of the pans with parchment paper, if desired, then spray once more before adding the batter.

Place pans into the oven and bake, rotating halfway through, until the cake springs back when lightly pressed in the center and a toothpick placed near the center comes out mostly clean with a few moist crumbs attached, about 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and set pans on a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes. Turn cakes out of the pan and place onto wire racks, top side up, to cool completely.

When cakes have completely cooled, gently slice each in half. Set three layers aside, then crumble the fourth.

To prepare the frosting

Place egg whites into a clean mixing bowl.

In a small saucepan, add sugar, cream of tartar and salt. Bring mixture to a boil, then cover and cook for 3 minutes. Uncover and cook until the syrup reaches 242 degrees on a candy thermometer.

Meanwhile, as the syrup nears 230 to 235 degrees, begin beating the egg whites to soft peaks using the whisk attachment. With the mixer still running, remove syrup from the heat and begin to pour it in a slow, steady stream into egg whites. Mix in vanilla. Continue to beat the frosting until it has come to room temperature, about 5 to 7 minutes.

Place a bottom layer cake, cut side up, onto a cake stand or serving platter. Top with a generous amount of the marshmallow frosting and spread into an even layer. Repeat process with another layer of cake and frosting. Add final layer, cut side down, and frost top and sides of the cake. Cover frosted cake with the crumbled crumbs from the fourth cake layer, patting them gently into the frosting to adhere.

Place cake into the refrigerator to chill for at least 1 hour before serving.

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  1. Great looking cake with very nice height in the marshmallow frosting. I've made this cake many times and it's always a crowd pleaser.

    I found out how to make the perfect circle - before putting the chocolate crumbs on the frosting, first put a circle of paper on top. After you finish with the crumbs, take the paper off. The result is a perfect white circle.

  2. It's a beautiful cake Joe!
    I love the marshmallow frosting here. Blak and white lovely contrast, kinda formal and festive. Dorie is brillant and I think she and I may be related, heehee.

    I'm going to have to give this one a try soon.

  3. Joe - Good tip! But doesn't it mar the frosting underneath when you take it off?

    Stacey - It is definitely worth all the fuss!