This is a recipe I've used for Kalin's famous Buzz Lightyear cake, but we liked it so much, that after more than a year, I decided to make it for Ellie's Tinkerbell as well.
The difference is, that this year I shot step-by-step while I was making it, so here it is now with the corrections and changes.
The original recipe for this cake ( Heavenly Devil's food cake) is again from Christopher Kimball's " The dessert bible".
- First make sure that all ingredients are room temperature! It is extremely important!
- Preheat the oven at 350F. The original recipe calls for three 8 inch cake pans but I needed a 9"/11" sheet cake pan( both for Ellie's Tinkerbell and Kalin's Buzz Lightyear cake, so I double the recipe. Cover the bottom of each pan you use with a piece of parchment paper.
( Note: this is the original recipe, not the doubled one! If you want to use it in a sheet cake pan, double the ingredients! If you are going to use it in three 8 inch cake pans- use it as is!)
1 1/4 cups boiling water
4 ounces unsweetened chocolate chopped
1/4 cup cocoa powder
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup cake flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 pound ( 2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened but still firm
1 1/2 cups packed dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 large eggs
1/2 cup sour cream or plain yogurt
1. Stir in the boiling water, chocolate and cocoa together and reserve.
If for some reason ( like if your chocolate is to coarsely chopped) you can't melt the chocolate with boiling water, you can use a Bain Marie ( water bath) to do that. Then gradually add the boiling water and cocoa.
2. Combine the dry ingredients- flour,salt, baking soda and sift together.
3. Beat the softened butter on medium high for 1 minute.It's supposed to look creamy as on the picture. No lumps allowed!
4. Add the brown sugar, vanilla and beat until fluffy. You can still see the pieces of sugar, but it's creamy!
5. Add one egg at a time and beat on high for 30 seconds. Be very careful with the last egg you add, you might want to beat it in less than 30 sec, since sometimes ( depending on the size of the eggs) it can be too much on the butter and you risk to overwork it. Add the sour cream( I prefer it than yogurt and beat until well combined on medium speed. Be sure to scrape the bowl often! ( I apologize for the pictures here, but unfortunately I forgot to turn on the flash :-(
6. Add half of the chocolate mixture to the cake batter( be sure to stir well before you add it) and half of the dry ingredients. Beat on low or even stir and then add the rest of the chocolate mixture and the rest of the dry ingredients. Scrape the bowl and continue to stir by hand ( just folding).
7. Pour the batter into the pans and bake for 20 to 25 minutes( if you make a sheet cake I would double that, but check it around 40 min), as you rotate the pans halfway through. When it is ready, let it cool on a baking rack for 10 minutes. Then release the edges with a knife and turn it over on the cooling rack. Peel off the parchment paper. Let the cake cool completely before you start working with it.
If you are going to sculpt a cake you might want to freeze the layers before shaping.
You can check the recipe for the all purpose lemon cake that I've posted here.