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Author Notes: A favourite recipe at my cake studio & cafe, I created this cake for a TV segment back home in Melbourne. It's no fuss & easy to make with delicious results; a total crowd pleaser! —Janet Alice
Makes: one 8" cake
Chocolate Buttermilk Cake
grams dark chocolate (at least 70% solids), chopped
grams plain flour
grams dutch cocoa
grams caster sugar
milliliters vegetable oil
- Preheat overn to 160degC, grease & line 3 x 8" tins with baking paper. If you only have one, that's alright - just bake each cake individually OR one big cake which you can slice up later into three
- Melt chocolate in large heatproof bowl over saucepan, set aside to cool (alternatively you can melt chocolate in a microwave)
- Sift flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt into a bowl
- Whisk eggs and sugar together to be light and fluffy, this process might take up to 15 mins. Slowly add oil into mixture whilst continuously whisking.
- Slowly add melted chocolate to egg & sugar mixture (sabayon). Alternate between adding dry ingredients, and milk in thirds into the mixture. Mix until just combined.
- Divide into three tins and bake for 35-45 mins
- Cool tins for 15 mins before turning out of the tins
- TO FROST & FINISH THE CAKE: Once the cakes are removed from the tins, using a serrated knife, run it over the surface to even them out so they sit on top of each other balanced and more or less equally in width
- Put a little bit of buttercream on the base of the plate so that the cake does not move during frosting process
- Place the first layer cake on the plate, and cover surface liberally w buttercream. You can do this with a spatula, or alternatively fill a piping bag w the frosting and squeeze directly onto surface of the cake
- Using a palette knife, smooth the frosting into a uniform surface, before putting the second layer of cake on top
- Repeat the above two steps, and place the final layer of cake UPSIDE DOWN so that the top of the cake is now completely flat
- Press down tightly, and have a look on the side if the cake is straight up. If not, gently nudge cake layers straight
- With your piping bag or spatula, liberally spread frosting around the cake side. Place a scraper even with the base of the plate, and following the round edges of the cake, move along the perimeter until you're happy with the smoothness. If the frosting gets soft, place the cake in the fridge for a few minutes. When you've finished with the sides, spread a thin layer of frosting on the top of the cake.
- Using a dessert spoon, drop spoonfuls of ganache on the edges of the cake, allowing them to naturally drip down the sides. Finish the cake w whatever you like - for this one we used honeycomb chunks an Maltesers!
Buttercream Frosting & Dark Chocolate Ganache
grams unsalted butter, at room temperature
grams pure icing sugar, sifted
milliliters full cream milk
grams thickened cream
grams dark chocolate, chopped
- For buttercream: combine the butter, icing sugar & milk in mixer & beat until light & fluffy. This process can take 15 mins or even longer sometimes. Take care to scrap the sides of the bowl so that everything gets mixed. The longer you beat the buttercream, the fluffier and lighter in colour it gets!
- For ganache: take thickened cream to boil in a saucepan, then remove from heat and add chocolate. Mix thoroughly until all the chocolate has melted & cool before using (but making sure its still runny)