Monday, October 31, 2011

Anniversary Cake

Bf visited this weekend and we had such an amazing time that I simply didn't couldn't find a moment to post on Friday. Our four year anniversary is next weekend, but this weekend was the best time for him to come out, so we simply did our celebrations early. As part of our weekend, I made an anniversary cake. My bf's mom gave me this amazing chocolate cookbook. It's called Maida Heatter's Book of Great Chocolate Desserts. I picked out a great chocolate cake from the menu and decided to combine it with the Swiss Meringue Buttercream Frosting that I originally made with the Spiced Chai Latte Cupcakes.

St. Louis Chocolate Layer Cake
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 ounces unsweetened chocolate
1/3 cup water
6 ounces (1 1/2 sticks) butter
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3 eggs, separated
3/4 cup milk

Frosting
1/2 cup sugar
2 egg whites
3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
dash of vanilla

I started by sifting together the flour, salt, and baking powder.








I also buttered and floured the cake pans and set them aside.








At this time, I also melted the chocolate and and water in a pan and set it aside to cool slightly. Then, I creamed the butter in a bowl. Once the butter was creamed, I added the sugar and mixed again.






Next, I separated the eggs and added the yolks and mixed again.








I then added the chocolate and mixed again.









After the chocolate was incorporated, I started adding the flour, slowly and alternating with the milk.








Finally, I beat the egg whites in a separate bowl and gently folded them into the batter.








I baked the cakes on 375 for about 28 minutes until they were just done. because it's devil's food cake, you really don't want them to be dry.







I let the cakes cool in to pans for about ten minutes, then cut around the edges with a sharp knife.








I then put the cake on wire racks and let them cool completely. One of the awesome things about this cake is that is cools really flat, so it's really easy to stack.






Once the cake was cooled, I started the frosting. I have to admit, I didn't have my best baking moment. I actually had to make the frosting twice because the first time didn't turn out so well. I really need to get a stand mixer, because my hand mixer is awesome, but is so loud it drives me crazy. I started by mixing together the sugar and the egg whites in a double boiler. I cooked them, whisking constantly, for 3-4 minutes, or until they look like runny marshmellow cream.

I then mixed the egg white mix until it formed a stiff meringue. Basically, when you stop beating, the meringue should roughly hold its shape. I then added the butter, one tablespoon at a time and mixed until it was completely incorporated before adding more. Finally, I added some vanilla and beat the frosting until it was nice and thick. The key with this frosting is to make sure you beat the meringue nice and thick before adding any butter. That was my mistake the first time.

I frosting the cake and made a little four on top.









It was so unbelievably tasty and the frosting went great with the cake. I will definitely be making this recipe again!!!

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