This dark chocolate cake recipe is brought to us by my granddaughter Sabrina. She has mastered this cake so well we already gets orders for it. Sabrina is only eleven years old. Imagine what she will do when she is older!
Besides the dark, unsweetened cocoa powder in this recipe, Sabrina adds espresso powder and very dark distilled coffee. This make the flavor deeper and the cake very moist. She also uses buttermilk for this cake. Here is a recipe for buttermilk substitute in case you cannot find it. Basically this is what you will do – add a tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice to a 1 cup measuring cup. Top it off with whole milk. Let it sit, undisturbed, for about 5 minutes, until the milk curdles. Use that. You can also use 3/4 cup of plain yogurt mixed with 1/4 cup of milk. Either will work wonderfully.
Although we made this dark chocolate cake recipe in a 13×9 cake pan, you can divide the batter into two round ones and layer it.
Dark chocolate cake recipe
1 3/4 cups (222 grams) all-purpose flour
3/4 cup (75 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder
1 3/4 cups (350 grams) sugar
2 teaspoons (9.6 grams) baking soda
1 teaspoon (4.70 grams) baking powder
1 teaspoon (5.9 grams) salt
1 teaspoon (2 grams) espresso powder
1 cup (225 grams) buttermilk *
1/2 cup (112 grams) oil
2 large eggs at room temperature
2 teaspoons (8.4 grams) vanilla extract
1 cup (240 grams) very strong distilled or instant coffee
Preheat your oven to 350 F (176 C).
Place the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and espresso powder in a bowl. Whisk to mix well.
In another bowl, whisk together the oil, eggs, vanilla and buttermilk. Whisk until it is all incorporated.
Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ones. Mix. Add the coffee. Mix well, until everything is incorporated. This batter is liquid so don’t worry about it.
Pour the batter into a 9×13** prepared pan (line it with parchment paper, oil it lightly and dust it with flour). Place the pan in the oven and bake between 35 to 45 minutes. Once a toothpick comes out clean the cake is done.
Remove the cooked cake from the oven and place it on top of a cooling rack. Cool down completely and frost.
Remove the cake from the mold by flipping it onto a platter or board. Peel off the parchment paper and frost.
*if you can’t find buttermilk go ahead and add a tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice to a 1 cup measuring cup. Top it off with whole milk. Let it sit, undisturbed, for about 5 minutes, until the milk curdles. Use that. You can also use 3/4 cup of plain yogurt mixed with 1/4 cup of milk. Either will work wonderfully.
** you can also make this in two 9 inch round pans. Pour in half of the batter in each pan and layer.
FOR THE BUTTERCREAM FROSTING –
1 cup (227 grams) softened, unsalted butter
1 teaspoon (4.2 grams) vanilla extract
a pinch of salt
About 2 cups (224 grams) of powdered (confectioners) sugar
Place the butter in a bowl and start beating with an electric beater. You can do this by hand but it will take some time.
Add the vanilla and the salt and beat for about 5 minutes. We need it to get fluffy.
Slowly start adding the sugar. Taste it after 1 cup and decide if you would like it sweeter. Add the sugar and continue to beat until you have a smooth cream.
Frost your cake. If you have any left over frosting, keep it in a closed container in the fridge.
If you are going to make a layered cake you will need two recipes for the frosting.