Rich Chocolate Cake with Coconut Filling and Ganache

By • January 26, 2010 • 81 Comments


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Author Notes: My friends often request the Hyde Park Fudge Cake for their birthdays, which I've made a hundred times. This variation has a yummy coconut filling and a decadent ganache that I could eat with a spoon until I'm sick! - nannydebnannydeb

Food52 Review: This is the bear hug of chocolate cakes -- it's big, it's rich and it's lovable. Inside the dense, sweet cake is tangy layer of cream cheese and coconut. And on top of the bundt cake is a thin ganache glaze. You're supposed to bake the cake in a Bundt pan, but if you don't have one, a tube pan works well (and makes it easier to cut out the cake if it gets stuck). - A&MA&M

Serves 10 to 12

  • 18 ounces good quality bittersweet chocolate, divided, chopped
  • 2/3 cups shortening
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla, divided
  • 1 1/2 cup strong black coffee
  • 3 1/3 cups sugar, divided
  • 3 cups cake flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 8 ounces softened cream cheese
  • 1 cup unsweetened flaked coconut
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  1. Set out the cream cheese to soften. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease a 10-12 cup bundt pan and dust with cocoa powder.
  3. In a small saucepan, melt 8 ounces of the chocolate with the shortening. Set aside to cool slightly.
  4. In a mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese with 1 egg, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 1/3 cup sugar and the coconut. Set aside.
  5. In a large mixing bowl, combine cooled chocolate mixture, 3 eggs, 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, and coffee.
  6. In another mixing bowl, whisk together the sugar, cake flour, soda and salt.
  7. Combine dry ingredients into wet ingredients until just incorporated.
  8. Pour half of the chocolate cake mixture in to the bundt pan. Top that with the coconut/cream cheese mixture and then top that with the remaining cake mixture.
  9. Bake on the center rack of a 350 degree oven for 45-65 minutes or until tester comes out clean.
  10. Cool the cake in the bundt pan on a wire rack for 10 mintues. Invert the cake on a serving plate to cool further.
  11. While cake is cooling, bring the heavy cream to a simmer. Remove from heat and whisk in 10 ounces bittersweet chocolate until smooth. Set aside to cool.
  12. Once the cake has cooled, drizzle or pour (depending on how much icing you want) the ganache on to the cake.

Tags: cake, rich

Comments (81) Questions (0)

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17 days ago Linda


18 ounces of chocolate divided seems like an awful lot. Does that mean 18 squares of bakers chocolate?

Dscn2494

about 1 month ago Linda Browne

I'm going to make this cake for a dinner party on Sunday. I'm going to put some whole toasted almonds on top of the cake before the ganache so that it is like an Almond Joy candy bar.

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3 months ago Mignardise

Made this cake yesterday and serve it after dinner tonight. It's definitely a keeper! So rich and fudgy. I used coconut oil, per all the suggestions. Also had no problem getting it out of the pan (baking spray + cocoa powder) or with overflow. The coconut filling is perfect. Incredibly delicious - so glad I have some left for tomorrow!

Dsc0262

3 months ago Jinran

I have to say this is really a fantastic cake recipe and all my friends like it. I used silicone pans, so I don’t have the stick problem. Since I don’t have shortening at hand, I used unsalted French better instead, and it turned out to be wonderful. And I took your guys suggestion; I used half cake flour and half whole-wheat flour, which works so great. But I decreased the amount of sugar, and used brown sugar instead. I used up my chocolate, so I whipped heavy cream and dressing with my homemade rose sauce. What a wonderful cake we have in years. Thanks so much for sharing such wonderful recipe.

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3 months ago brookev

This is an excellent cake recipe! We love it. I substituted the shortening with virgin coconut oil, HALVED the sugar in the cake to 1 1/2 cups (which I felt was the perfect amount of sweetness, especially since the cake has a bit of melted chocolate in it too), used whole-wheat pastry flour instead of white flour, and toasted the coconut. PERFECTION!

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8 months ago farida kee

I mixed 1 TBS melted butter with 1 TBS of cocoa-powder to make a paste and brush onto the Bundt pan and the cake slipped out perfect.But there was some "oozing" from the cake-and the cake "puffed up" high and cracked the whole top of the cake-how can I prevent that?I opt not to use the ganache and the cake was wonderfully rich and tasty!

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9 months ago cwya

I just dont get it. I know I'm way old and stuff but seriously--a debate over "shortening?" I shudder to imagine what people might think if they knew that "shortening" is a commercial substitute for LARD. So by all means be horrified if you must but if you truly want the purist original flavor I suggest pig fat and baking in a wood-fired stove. My gramma's new gas oven was featured in the newspaper!I too am at 6400ft and the only subs I have to use are adding a little more flour, another egg, and a tiny bit of oil for flavor if desired. Increase heat a tad and lengthen time til top is crusty to touch. I am serious about this recipe since my grandmother made it as "mahogany" cake and it was devoured to the last crumb. The coconut filling is great for modern palates I guess, but a maple/chocolate icing and pecans make it absolutely superlative. 22 hired hands cant all be wrong!

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9 months ago Eva

Superb. Make this now.

I made the following substitutions:
2c sugar in the batter (instead of 3)
Coconut oil instead of shortening (1:1 substitution)
1c each whole wheat pastry, home-milled kamut, home-milled spelt flours

All four of us rated this a 9 or 10. We fully expect it will get even better over the next few days, as many chocolate cakes do. May freeze half of it.

Oh, also: I had tremendous good luck getting mine out of the bundt pan in one gorgeous piece. I was apprehensive, but generously greased (using coconut oil) and cocoa powdered the mold, and said a little prayer as I flipped it. Whew!

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10 months ago LeeLeeBee

I made this cake to celebrate our fifth anniversary. It was absolutely fantastic - very flavorful and moist. I was a bit worried about the amount of sugar (don't like desserts to be super sweet), but the cake was perfect.

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10 months ago nancy56

One of the best chocolate cake recipes ever!

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12 months ago Sherry Schreiber

This cake is fantastic and gets better with age. I froze it in slabs, and when I want some, I remove it from the freezer and defrost it in the microwave. It is even better than when it is just baked. Also I used mascarpone for the filling rather than cream cheese, and it worked beautifully. If you cover the top with shredded coconut, it really looks special.

Stringio

about 1 year ago Todd Lent

Hi, just wanted to let you know I made this for my birthday, but since I'm vegan, I veganized the recipe. It came out amazing!

Instead of shortening, I too used coconut oil. I used two kinds of dark vegan chocolate. Ener-G egg Replacer for the eggs. And a tub of Galaxy vegan cream cheese. Other than that, I basically used the normal ingredients for everything else. Oh, and for the topping I used chocolate chips, coconut oil, Earth Balance and more shredded coconut which basically turned the whole outside of the cake into a giant Mounds bar. :-)

I have to say, it came right up to the top of the pan and stopped, so I didn't have any overflow or extra baking time issues. (It took about an hour.) Thanks again for the amazing (now vegan) recipe. This is going to be one of my go-tos for a while! (Wish I could post a picture.) :-)

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over 1 year ago Lisakb

I adore coconut....and chocolate......this is now added to my "to do" list! I do have a chocolate zucchini bread recipe that has coconut, and it is excellent., I have to say that I was initially turned off by the shortening, though I do have some of the non-hydrogenated type. Love the coconut oil suggestion, especially since my husband puts it in everything! I have really tried to cut down on the fat content (and calories) of recipes as we get older. I no longer make things with a whole cup of oil or multiple sticks of butter. There are plenty of ways to sub for some of the fat without losing the moistness of the finished product. So, I guess I will play around with this a bit.

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over 1 year ago Vicky K

I agree with Aurora. Shortening? The word always makes me run for cover, or else just turn the page if I´m reading recipes.
I feel like I´m reading something from a past age. Butter for baking of, if absolutely necesarry - oil. But I´ve never had an oil cake that was as delicious as a cake with butter.
If people think they are doing something healthier buy using oil or shortening - fagetaboutit.

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over 1 year ago aargersi

Abbie is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Look, if you don't like the recipe then by all means, bake something else. There is no cause nor it is your place to judge or criticize anyone else's choice of ingredients - different people find different things work for them, appeal to their taste. Run for cover if you must but please don't post negative comments on what a LOT of people have had great success with and enjoyed mightily.

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over 1 year ago aargersi

Abbie is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Look, if you don't like the recipe then by all means, bake something else. There is no cause nor it is your place to judge or criticize anyone else's choice of ingredients - different people find different things work for them, appeal to their taste. Run for cover if you must but please don't post negative comments on what a LOT of people have had great success with and enjoyed mightily.

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over 1 year ago Vicky K

I agree with Aurora. Shortening? The word always makes me run for cover, or else just turn the page if I´m reading recipes.
I feel like I´m reading something from a past age. Butter for baking of, if absolutely necesarry - oil. But I´ve never had an oil cake that was as delicious as a cake with butter.
If people think they are doing something healthier buy using oil or shortening - fagetaboutit.

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almost 2 years ago AireHead

I made this for my Mom's 91st birthday and it was AWFUL. I am an experienced baker, and gasped in horror at the shortening (used coconut oil as another suggested) and it did ooze out of the pan, not once but twice, but it was so hard and dry I had to cut it with a BREAD knife. The only outlier is I live in Denver 5280 feet, but have been used to minor modifications in only commercial box mixes. Followed the recipe to a "t" except for exchanging oils. Was looking forward to rich/delicious was a possible masonry substitute instead. The first chocolate brick.

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

almost 2 years ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

We're very sorry you had a bad experience with the cake. Not sure what went wrong with yours; we made ours with shortening (and just to be clear, you can always use non-hydrogenated shortening) and it turned out well. The one you see in the photo is the one we made. Not doubting that you had trouble -- just noting that under the right conditions (and I've never dealt with high altitude baking so no sure how this messes with recipes), it is a good cake.

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almost 2 years ago aargersi

Abbie is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I have had this cake on numerous occasions and it is ALWAYS rich and moist and incredibly delicious. I am not sure what all of the fuss is over shortening - bakers use it often and it is available in an organic version just like most other ingredients - plant based, inoffensive. Not worth a horrified gasp I don't think. Perhaps the altitude IS your issue, but this is one damn fine cake

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11 months ago pattycakes

At your altitude, Airehead, I'm surprised that you haven't experienced more problems with not adapting cakes to high altitude! I live at 6200 ft, and my usual adaption is to add an extra egg, decrease leavening by at least 1/4th (both soda and baking powder), and decrease sugar by the same. Raise the heat by 25 degrees. If you do this with every cake recipe from the get-go, you'll find they all work at altitude. Some will need a little more tweaking, perhaps, but you won't have the overflow that you experienced with this recipe as is. It's just that the science of baking doesn't allow for an all-altitudes recipe!

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about 2 years ago Green Rider

I have not had good luck with a Bundt pan (any tips for smooth removal?), so I went to a Tube pan instead; and after preparing the pan I also put parchment on the bottom. It came out perfectly.

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almost 3 years ago losangel

When I bake a cake where the pan is greased and floured, I always let my cake cool completely, but before unmolding, I heat it over a gas burner to soften the shortening. It will release easier once the shortening and cocoa powder are soft, give the cake a little jiggle and it should come right out without any problems.

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

almost 3 years ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

Cool tip -- thanks.

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over 3 years ago cookster

How much coconut oil do you use to replace the shortening?

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over 3 years ago nannydeb

I used the same amount, 2/3 cups. It was delicious!

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over 3 years ago cookster

How much coconut oil do you use to replace the shortening?