Friday, July 12, 2013

Really Good Chocolate Cake

I made this cake for my brother's 40th birthday.  He requested chocolate cake with fluffy white frosting.  I like the way it turned out, both looks-wise and in the taste department.  In fact, the next morning I was really wishing I had taken at least a slice home.  Cake for breakfast?  Yes, please.   

I've made this chocolate cake a few times and each time it's been moist and delicious.  I think the sour cream helps.  Check the cake carefully as it bakes to make sure you do not overcook it.  There really is nothing worse than dry cake.  Blech.  Not even worth eating, in my opinion.  I would rather error on the side of being a little underdone.  If you're checking it with a toothpick, it's okay to have moist crumbs (even really moist crumbs) on it. 

I really like this recipe.  It's simple and from scratch. 

  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Grease two 9-inch round cake pans with butter and line the bottom of each pan with a round of parchment paper.  Lightly grease the paper.
In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, sift the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix on low to combine well.
Add oil and sour cream and mix on low to combine.
With the mixer on low, GRADUALLY add the water. 
Add vinegar and vanilla.
Add eggs and mix until well blended.
Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl and be sure the batter is well-mixed and no flour bits remain.
Divide among the 2 prepared cake pans.  Using a kitchen scale really helps to ensure the layers are equal.

Bake for 40 to 45 minutes on the same rack, without the cake pans touching each other, or until a cake tester or wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out almost clean.
Let cool in the pans for about 20 minutes.
Invert onto wire racks, carefully peel off the paper liners, and let cool completely.

Source:  Sugar and Spice by Celeste

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