The world’s best Chocolate Cake

Österr Flagge

Chocolate Cake with Peanut Butter Frosting and a Chocolate Ganache Glaze

Everyone who knows me, knows that I am not exactly the biggest fan of chocolate cake and highly critical when it comes to chocolate cake recipes. While I’ll eat and love any vanilla cake I am served, I am less likely to enjoy just any random chocolate cake. For me, chocolate cake has to be super moist and hast to have an intense flavor of real, good quality chocolate. Dust-dry cocoa powder cake is neither baked nor served in my kitchen. 🙂

Until my chocolate cake became what it is today, I had had to go through numerous Fail!-recipes and do a lot of fine tuning on my own recipe, but now this cake is pure perfection:

So today I want to share with you the very best Chocolate Cake Recipe  in the world,

and no, that is not an exaggeration in any way. Omnomnom!

kuchen essenLet’s start baking!

For the batter (enough to make two 20cm round cakes) you will need:

  • IMG_2399180g dark chocolate, melted
  • 350g all-purpose flour
  • 400g caster sugar
  • 50g cocoa powder (unsweetened)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 380g buttermilk
  • 180g oil
  • 4 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1tsp white wine vinegar
  • 250g boiled, black coffee, hot

Once you have all the ingredients and equipment ready, line your baking pans with parchment paper and turn your oven to 350°Fahrenheit/ 180°Celsius air circulation (390°Fahrenheit/200°Celsius bottom and top heat).

If you are using springform pans, it is sufficient to put parchment paper circles on the bottom and grease the sides. In case you are using cake rings, as I am, you need to cut ouIMG_2395t parchment paper circles and additionally, 2 strips of parchment paper with a width of 10cm and a total length of 65cm for each pan. As you can see in the picture, you need to fold the paper strips lengthweise at about 2cm. Then cut in the folded part each centimeter from the bottom to the crease. Put two strips into each cake ring making sure that the cut flaps line the bottom and place a parchment paper circle on top – now the dough won’t leak or stick to the pan and you are ready to go.

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler or (for anyone who is as lazy as me :-D) in the microwave. Simply put your chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and micorwave it on 600Watt or a medium setting for 60 seconds. Then wait 1 minute, stir, wait 1 minute, stir (-the heat spreads over time). If there are still big pieces of chocolate after 3 minutes (very unlikely with only 180g of chocolate), go ahead and pop your chocolate right back into the microwave for another 30 seconds.

IMG_2403 trocken und feucht
Der Teig darf am Schluss ruhig leicht klumpig sein!

Put all your dry ingredients (flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda&powder, salt) in one bowl and carefully blend them together.

Use a different bowl to combine the wet ingredients (eggs, buttermilk, oil, vanilla, vinegar) except the chocolate and coffee. Use an electric whisk to mix thoroughly. Then add the hot coffee and the melted chocolate and mix again.

Lastly, add your dry ingredients blend to your wet ingredients bowl and mix everything together.

Divide IMG_2404your dough evenly among the two pans – I tried to eyeball it and my cakes turned out uneven :-(, SO please calculate exactly how much dough needs to go into each pan and while distributing check with your scale whether you are really doing half and half.

Put the pans in the oven and bake for 28 minutes. Then rotate the pans and bake for another 22 minutes. After a total of 50 minutes your cakes should be done, the toothpick should come out clean and the cake tops should spring right back up after being pressed down gently.

IMG_2411 vor und anch dem backen
Before the baking – after the baking

Allow the cakes to slightly cool in their pans. Go ahead and generously soak the cakes with syrup at this point (syrup recipe down below, as usual this step is optional). After 10 minutes the cakes can be removed from the pans and overturned (this evens out possible surface irregularities). Take off any parchment paper.IMG_2421Soak the bottom side (which actually is the top side now… :-)) of your cakes with syrup.IMG_2425

Once the cakes have completely cooled, you can either go ahead and cut, fill, stack, … them or you can wrap them in plastic wrap and store them in the fridge for later use.

 Before you proceed to make the frosting, you need to cut your cakes into even layers. 2 cakes à 2 IMG_2429layers equals 4 layers. Measure the height of your cakes and half them using a cake wire or a serrated knife. Be sure to account for unequally high cakes and adjust your layer height so all 4 layers are approx. the same.

Since one of my cakes was lopsided and also less high (one cake was more than 5cm high, the other only 4cm), I decided on only 3 layers à 2,7cm (and on simply munching away the leftovers of the smaller cake).

For the syrup (optional!) you will need:

  • 60ml water
  • 60g sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Boil water and sugar in a pot. As soon as all the sugar granules have dissolved and the syrup has slightly thickened, set the syrup aside.Once the syrup has cooled stir in the vanilla extract. Done!

My Chocolate Cake Recipe can be filled with all different kinds of frostings,

but for the birthReeses PBcupsday of my sister, who happens to love Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, I decided on a Peanut Butter Frosting to turn this cake into a chocolaty, peanut buttery flavor explosion.

Caution! Danger of Addiction! Consume at your own risk only! 🙂

For the Peanut Butter Cream Cheese Frosting you will need:IMG_2432

  • 150g butter
  • 600g powdered sugar, sifted
  • 250g cream cheese
  • 150-250g peanut butter, creamy(250g for peanut butter addicts, 150g for rookies)

Beat the room temperature butter with 150g of sifted (- obligatory for frostings!) powedered sugar until light and fluffy. Add the cream cheese and the rest of the sifted powdered sugar in 2 portions. Mix thoroughly! Lastly, stir in the peanut butter.

IMG_2436Now it’s time to fill and stack your layers. I like to use an offset spatula and a dough scraper with a 90° angle.

Take your cake board or plate and put a small splodge of frosting right in the middle. This will ensure that your cake doesn’t simply slide off your board.

Decide which one of your layers is the most even and set this one aside until the very end because it will be the top most layer of your cake. Center a different layer on the splodge of frosting on your board and add 1/5 of the frosting on top. Spread the frosting evenly using the offset spatula and doing a wiping movement. The frosting should generously flow down over the edges of the layer.

IMG_2442Next, place a second layer an another 1/5 of your frosting on top of the first layer. Just as before, spread the frosting evenly on the layer and push excess frosting over the edges allowing it to overflow. Add another layer (3rd layer) and again cover it with 1/5 of the frosting. Repeat for the 4th layer. Because the 4th layer will be the top layer, be especially precise to achieve an as even surface as possible.Small irregularities will be covered by the choclate ganache glaze.

Now there should be an even layer of frosting between and on all four of your cake layers and there should be 1/5 of the frosting left in your bowl.

step by step to a buttercream coated cake

Let’s deal with the sides of your cake. Spread the excess frosting that you have pushed over the edges of your cake layers all over the sides of your cake, so that everything is well coated with buttercream. In case there are spots where there is too little frosting, take a splodge of icing out of the bowl with the last 1/5 of frosting in it and spread it on there. Make sure everything is well covered with frosting.

Now take your dough scraper with the right angle and line it up with the bottom of your board (so the side will automatically be straight) and lightly touch it to the side of your cake. Drag it around the sides of your cake scraping off all the excess frosting and creating a smooth surface. Wipe off all the frosting from your scraper and repeat. After a couple of rounds of dragging your scraper around the sides of your cake, it should be perfectly covered with a smooth, straight and thin layer of frosting. Now drag the scraper one last time across the top of your cake to finish the buttercream coat off. (small irregularities will be covered by the chocolate ganache – so don’t worry!)

Allow the buttercream to set for 1-2 hrs in the fridge.

For the ganache (aka chocolate glaze) you will need:IMG_2451

  • 100g heavy cream
  • 70g milk chocolate
  • 70g dark chocolate

Put your heavy cream into a pot and bring it to a boil. Add the chocolate making sure it is completely covered. Take the pot from the stove and wait for a couple of minutes. Then use a wire whisk to stir until the mixture hast turned into a smooth chocolate glaze.

Now take the cooled cake out of the fridge and immediately pour the hot chocolate glaze over it. Shortly before the chocolate glaze hits the edge of the cake top, stop pouring. Use a pallete knife to gently spread the glaze over the edge so it can drip down.

Caution: Since the cake is very cool, the chocolate glaze sets pretty quickly. Don’t take too much time!IMG_2460For looks I added some caramelized peanuts in the center of the cake.

IMG_2488 cutHappy baking and have a baketastic day,

Your Backdirndl


5 thoughts on “The world’s best Chocolate Cake

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