December 23, 2013

PW's Big Chocolate Birthday Cake with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

My husbands birthday was this past Friday and this was his cake.  Four layers of deliciousness. He loves raspberry so the layers were slathered in raspberry jam and then the entire thing was frosted with chocolate buttercream.  It was yummy. 

He first saw this recipe while I was watching a DVR'd episode of The Pioneer Woman and told me this was the cake for him.  Of course he had my add some raspberry layers which I was happy to do for the birthday boy. 

I love this cake recipe, usually it's a sheet cake recipe but I've made it as cupcakes too.  It's divine, I love the texture and flavor.  I have posted this recipe on a smaller scale before, but it was nice and handy to have the appropriate measurements for this 4-layer version.  

If you're doing the raspberry jam layers, don't go too heavy on the jam.  If you do, the layers will start to slide off to the side. Not a good look.

Big Chocolate Raspberry Cake
modified slightly from The Pioneer Woman

  • 4 sticks butter, softened + more for the pans
  • 8 heaping Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder +  more for the pans
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 whole eggs
  • **Raspberry Jam (see below)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350º, grease 4 - 9" round cake pans, then coat with cocoa powder
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar and salt.  Set aside. 
  3. In a large saucepan, melt the butter and then add the cocoa powder and mix until smooth. Add the boiling water and allow to boil for 30 seconds. Remove from the heat. 
  4. Add the chocolate mixture into the flour mixture and stir will.  let cool slightly. 
  5. In a separate bowl combine the buttermilk, baking soda, vanilla extract and the eggs that been beaten. 
  6. Slowly add to the chocolate mixture and stir until smooth. 
  7. Put and equal amount of batter into the four prepared pans. 
  8. Bake for 20 minutes. 
  9. Let cool completely before frosting, cool the layers in the refrigerator for best results before frosting. 
**If you're going to add the raspberry layers - I used a jar of my favorite raspberry preserves and put them in each layer - no frosting, just preserves.  Go easy on the preserves otherwise the layers will side off each other. 

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
Recipe from Savory Sweet Life

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract or 1 tsp almond extract
  • 4 Tbsp milk or heavy cream
  1. In your stand mixer, beat the butter until light and fluffy - 2-3 minutes. 
  2. Add the confectioners sugar, use low speed until the mix has come together (to prevent your kitchen from being covered in a cloud of sugar). 
  3. Add the remaining ingredients and beat until smooth. 
  4. If you need a thicker frosting, add a little more sugar one Tbsp at a time.  If it needs to be thinned, add a little more milk. 

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