dark and delicious
A friend gave me her recipe for chocolate cake and it is so moist and dense. I have made this cake twice since she shared her recipe and now I have to share it with the rest of the world.
Jill's Chocolate cake
In a bowl over simmering water (or if you have a double boiler, use that) you will melt down 3 oz of unsweetened chocolate and then set that aside to cool. If you are lucky someone will come into the kitchen and spy the chocolate and take a taste and then feel mildly foolish.
On a piece of wax paper you will sift together 2 1/4 cups cake flour, 2 tsp baking soda and 1/2 a tsp of salt. You will set that aside. I know I know... all this setting aside business. But cake requires preparation and this cake is worth it.
Next you will cream 1/2 cup of slightly softened butter. Then you will continue to cream that with 2 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar. If there are small children about they will ask for a taste of the brown sugar because it has a certain exotic allure if you are three years old. Add 3 eggs one at a time, beating well with each addition. Things should become light and fluffy. Beat in the cooled melted chocolate and 1 1/2 tsp of vanilla. Kick everyone out of the kitchen and have a taste. (if you don't kick them out they will want a taste too.) Now to get slightly fancy. You will slowly add the dry mixture and 1 cup of sour cream. You will alternate between the dry mixture and the sour cream. It will become quite thick as you mix everything together. Finally you will add 1 cup of boiling water. It will make the batter thin but it will work. Trust me.
Pour the batter into 2 greased/floured 9" inch round pans and bake in oven at 350F for about 35 minutes (or until done) Remove from the oven, let it cool and turn over onto rack to completely cool.
Now the frosting I like to do comes from Joy of Cooking. It is a chocolate mousse frosting that is smooth and decadent like a character out of a Christopher Isherwood story.
Whisk together in a heat-proof bowl (or your double boiler once you have washed it and had a drink because you need one after all these people hassling you to make another cake) 2 eggs, 2 cups of powdered sugar, 1/2 cup of milk and 1/4 tsp of salt. You will then set the bowl/pan over a pan of simmering water and you will whisk and whisk until the mixture reaches 160F on your thermometer. Remove the pan from the heat and add 4 oz of unsweetened chocolate (finely chopped) and 6 Tbs of butter. (cut into small pieces) Yes there is more whisking involved. You can do it. You can say it is exercise so that you can have a second slice of cake. You will also add 1 tsp of vanilla. Stir until the butter and chocolate have melted. Now you will get out another bowl -because you haven't dirtied enough dishes today. You will take that bowl and put in ice water and then set your pan of chocolate deliciousness in the ice water. Using a handmixer on high-speed you will beat the ever-living heck out of this until the frosting takes shape. The chocolate mixture will be dark and glossy at first but as you beat it, it will slowly lose its gloss and become lighter. Keep beating and it will become super smooth and lush.
You should be able to use it immediately or you can pop it in the fridge for a bit and give it a quick stir and frost your cake. You will end up with a great deal of frosting so you can take your time with the crumb layer and will likely end up with enough leftover that you can put it on the person of your choice and eat it that way.