A Day In the Life of Me

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake

Ok, so if you don't like super rich chocolate and peanut butter mixture then please do not make this cake as you will hate it. It turned out sooooo good! And I took a bigger piece than I could finish. The peanut butter cream cheese frosting adds so much to it and then the chocolate glaze over that just puts it over the top to die for. I got this new cake cook book called Sky High that is full of just three layered cakes. This recipe comes from that and I see much more cakes coming from it into our house (good thing my birthday is coming up... I'm excited for that cake, for sure!). So, here's the recipe for you... Enjoy!
Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake
Makes an 8-inch triple layer cake

2 cups all-purpose 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 white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray the bottoms and sides of three 8-inch round cake pans.
2. Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt into the kitchen aid bowl. Whisk to combine them well. Add the oil and sour cream and blend with the flat beater attachment in your kitchen aid. Gradually beat in the water. Blend in the vinegar and vanilla. Whisk the eggs in a small bowl then add to the mixture and beat until well blended. Scrap down the sides of the bowl and be sure the batter is well mixed. Divide among the 3 prepared cake pans.
3. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out almost clean. Let cool in the pans for about 20 minutes. Invert onto wire racks and let cool completely.
4. To frost the cake place on layer, flat side up, on large serving plate. Spread 2/3 cup of the peanut butter frosting evenly over the top. Repeat with the next layer. Place the last layer on top and frost the top and sides of the cake with the remaining frosting.
5. To decorate with the chocolate-peanut butter glaze, pour the glaze over the top of the cake ad spread it evenly over the top just to the edges so that it runs down the sides of the cake in long drops. Refrigerate, uncovered, for at least 30 minute to allow the glaze and frosting to set. Remove about 1 hour before serving.
Peanut Butter Frosting
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
5 cups powdered sugar
2/3 cup smooth peanut butter
In a kitchen aid, beat the cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy. Gradually add the powdered sugar 1 cup at a time, mixing thoroughly after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bown often. Continue to beat of medium speed until light and fluffy, 3-4 minutes. Add the peanut butter and beat until thoroughly blended.
Chocolate-Peanut Butter Glaze
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (I actually used chocolate chips and it worked great)
3 tablespoons smooth peanut butter
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 cup half-and-half
1. In the top of a double broiler combine the chocolate, peanut butter, and corn syrup. Melt on medium heat, whisking often, until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth.
2. Remove from the heat and whisk in the half-and-half, beating until smooth. Use while still warm.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Chocolate Strawberry Cake

Today was my little brother's 20th birthday and I have been hankering to make a cake, so I asked him if I could make his cake for him. He obliged and requested a chocolate strawberry one which I was more than happy to do for him.
I ended up making a double layer chocolate cake with strawberry filling and cream cheese frosting and fresh strawberries sliced on top. It turned out absolutely wonderful.
The cake was very chocolatey (without being super sugary sweet) and had a great texture. This recipe is now my go-to chocolate cake recipe. I got all of the below recipes from http://www.smittenkitchen.com/. She didn't put it together the same way I did... but all the recipes are hers, which is awesome.

Chocolate Butter Cake
This made 9 inch round layers with a little left over

3 cups cake flour
3 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tablespoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon salt
3 sticks (1 1/2 cups) butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups fresh brewed coffee, cooled to room temperature (I actually used Postum, but I imagine Perro would work great, too)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray with non-stick spray with flour added on 2 9-inch round cake pans.

In Kitchen Aid bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Mix on low speed until fully incorporated.

Add butter and buttermilk and mix until moistened. Put speed up to medium and beat for 2 minutes or until light and fluffy. Scrape down sides of bowl often to make sure there isn't any flour hiding unmixed.

Whisk together the eggs and coffee in a small bowl. Add to the batter in 3 seperate additions, scraping the sides of the bowl in between and mixing just until combined. Fill the 2 prepared pans halfway.

Bake for 38-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Carefully turn them onto wire racks and let cool completely.

Strawberry Filling

1 cup pureed strawberries
1/4 cup sugar
1 Tablespoon corn starch

In a small saucepan mix together all the ingredients on medium-high heat. Stir constantly until the mixture comes to a boil. Let it boil for a few minutes until thickened. Remove from heat and let cool before spreading it between the cake layers.

Cream Cheese Frosting

8 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, at room temperature
3 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cream together the cream cheese and butter until fluffy and smooth. Add powdered sugar and vanilla extract and mix until smooth.

If you make this, let me know how it turned out for you. I will be definitely making it again and soon if I can help it!