How to make the Perfect Chocolate cake – Rich, dense moist cake recipe with Ganache Buttercream

How to make the Perfect Chocolate cake – Rich, dense moist cake recipe with Ganache Buttercream


– I have a special treat for you today. I am sharing my chocolate cake recipe. This is a never before shared recipe, and I’m so excited to
bring it to you today. This is the chocolate cake that I use in all of my cake carving. It’s beautifully dense,
still really moist, very rich, and delicious. I’m also gonna share this
ganache buttercream recipe with you, so let’s get started. (upbeat music) Now, there’s a lot of different ways to get chocolate into a chocolate recipe, and you can use powdered chocolate, you can melt down regular chocolate, you can just use chunks of chocolate. So for this cake, you would want a nice, rich chocolate flavor, and so for that, I’m actually
using baking chocolate, unsweetened baking chocolate. The brand that I like is Baker’s, but of course use any brand that you like. And the first thing that
we’re gonna do is melt it. Now, a lot of people just
microwave their chocolate, and that’s fine. In fact, my microwave has a
melt chocolate button on it that I use all the time, and I love it. But I find that when
you microwave chocolate, it actually cools a lot faster. It doesn’t stay as fluid as long, so I prefer using a double broiler method. Now, this is not an
official double broiler. This is a sauce pan with boiling water, and then a bowl on top. That way you get all
the heat from the steam, and it will melt the
chocolate beautifully, but it won’t burn the chocolate. That’s gonna take a little while to melt, and then it’s gonna take a little while to also cool down slightly. So I always start my cake
by starting this right away, and then I put my other
ingredients together and get started on that. The next component of this
recipe is boiling water. So adding boiling water
to cake recipes actually is one of the things
that helps them maintain just a ton of moisture. So this is great for this cake. Now, I add some cocoa to mine to add to that extreme chocolate
flavor that I’m looking for. So I’m gonna add my regular cocoa, and then a little bit of this dark cocoa, and whisk it together. You can always substitute
some of the cocoa or all of the cocoa for a coffee or espresso powder if you like that. A lot of people love that flavor with the balancing the chocolate. I personally just don’t. (laughs) Now, I’m gonna add some oil. Now, you can use vegetable oil, or I prefer using olive oil. I feel like vegetable oil
has kind of a rancid taste in baked goods a lot of the time. So I avoid it, and I use
a really good olive oil. But again, best part about
cooking and baking for yourself is you can personalize all of this, so use what you have around. And then we’re gonna add the sour cream. So technically, this is a
sour cream chocolate cake, but I’ll tell you a little secret. If I don’t have sour cream,
I’ll just use plain yogurt. I actually use plain yogurt and sour cream completely interchangeably when it comes to baking
and even most cooking. So if you don’t have sour cream, go ahead and use plain yogurt. I would say half the time
that I make this cake, it’s with yogurt, and it
turns out just as amazing. Now we’re gonna stir the sour cream, oil, and chocolate water together. All right, let’s check back in with our unsweetened chocolate. Oh, check it out. It’s smooth, it’s melted. Now, let’s take it off the
heat and let it cool slightly. Now we’re gonna mix the dry ingredients. First, we have the flour, then we have the sugar, baking soda, and salt, and then we give a little mix. Now we’re gonna add this chocolate, water, oil, sour cream mixture
to the dry ingredients, and we’re gonna mix that. And if you don’t have side
scrapers as part of your mixer, make sure that you’re using a spatula and scraping around the
sides or anywhere low where maybe the powder is stuck. All right, now we’re
going to add the eggs. The first thing that we’re gonna do is add four eggs into here and whisk it. And the reason for that
is all the ingredients are going to the same place, and I don’t wanna get something new dirty. But if you want to get
out a whole ‘nother bowl and slightly beat your
eggs in that, feel free. You don’t have to beat them too much. Like I just said, we don’t
wanna over beat the eggs. You just kinda wanna break ’em up, and then mix it again. Oh, this smells so good. I know it doesn’t taste good ’cause there’s no sugar or
anything in this, but oh. It’s just so pretty, it smells so good. All right, so now we’re gonna
take our melted chocolate that’s slightly cooled, and we’re gonna add it to our mixture. We’re gonna put it down low and then pour it in slowly
with a nice, steady stream. Ugh, look at that. It looks amazing. Now I like taller looking cakes. So this recipe is actually gonna make three eight-inch layers. So I’m gonna prepare my pans now. So I have three eight-inch cakes. First thing I’m gonna do is
I like to use Baker’s Joy, but whatever nonstick spray or
whatever you like, use that. I always hold my pan this
way and spray into it. One, that catches kinda
the over spray that way, and if you hold it this way
and you try to spray down, these actually don’t spray as well when they’re angled as they
do when they’re upright. Another thing I do, I do it over the sink. That way it doesn’t
make as much of a mess. Then I take my cake circle, and I put it right down inside. Another tip is to use big even strips. What that does is you
get it wet, you soak it. I do this right at the beginning
before I do anything else. You soak it in cold water, and then you wrap it around the
base of your pan, like that. And what that helps do is
actually keep the outside of your pan a little bit cooler, so that the cake can cook more evenly, instead of the outside cooking really fast and leaving the center raw. One final tip that you can do is to take a flower nail
and shove it in the middle of the parchment circle before
you put it into the pan, and then that helps heat
the core of your cake, and then pour this luscious
batter right into the pan. Separate it evenly
between your three pans. And now it’s time to put
it in the oven to bake it. All right, let’s talk frosting. If you’ve seen any of
my other cake videos, you know that my go-to is ganache. One, it’s delicious. It’s made the same way as a truffle, so you’re basically frosting your cake with that rich truffle
center, and it’s so good. The reason that I prefer it under fondant is you can get those edges nice and crisp, or if you’re carving a cake,
you can get your details really, really, really detailed. Hmm, just wanted to say that. So that’s why I prefer ganache with that. But for just a layered cake
like we’re doing today, not everybody likes ganache. As rich as it is, as delicious as it is, because it sets and gets firm, it’s not always the best choice for a nice and gooey, ooey slice of cake. So another option, of
course, is buttercream. Buttercream has a ton
of different options. For me, American buttercream
is simply too sweet, and then the Swiss meringue or Italian meringue buttercreams, they can be a little tricky to make. And for me, they’re super buttery, which sometimes there’s a place for that. Sometimes I really like
it, but I just want a rich, dense chocolate cake with
a nice, rich frosting. So I’m going to kind of marry the two. We’re going to do a ganache buttercream. So we’ll still have more of
the softness of a buttercream, but it will have the
richness of the ganache. So how we’re gonna start that first is by making a batch of ganache. So I have my pan here, and I’ve actually already
turned the heat on. So this is gonna simmer
when we pour it in. But first, we’re gonna take our cream, and we’re gonna heat it up. While the cream is heating up, you want to weigh out your chocolate. Now, I like to mix my chocolate. So I like to use a couple different kinds, but of course, if you
have a favorite chocolate, you can go ahead and use that. If you just use one brand of chocolate, your frosting is gonna taste
just like that chocolate. So if you love Dove and you use Dove, it’s gonna taste like Dove,
Hershey’s, Hershey’s, et cetera. So I like to mix mine for that reason. One of the chocolates that I really like is the Trader Joe’s chocolate bars. Yes, you have to cut ’em, which is kind of a pain
versus buying them already in wafer shape, which melts beautifully, but it’s a really high-quality chocolate for a really great price. Now you don’t want your
cream to over heat. You can see, this is just
starting to steam a little bit. We’re starting to get
some nice little bubbles around the outside edge, so this is ready. What you don’t wanna do is wait
until it’s already boiling. That is too hot, and it will
end up curdling your ganache. You just want this to
be just before boiling, so those outer edges, little bubbles. Now we’re gonna pour it
directly over the chocolate now. Now if you didn’t cut your
chocolate down quite enough, and you still have some
pretty big chocolate chunks, just like we did with the chocolate that went into the cake, you can put this over a
small pot of boiling water and that will help melt the
final little bits of chocolate. It will, of course, add to
this taking a little bit longer to cool if you do that, but you definitely wanna
make sure this is smooth with no chunks, or you’re
gonna regret it later. So it’s worth it to take
a little bit more time to get the right results. Look how beautiful and smooth that is, a couple chunks left, just keep stirring. The cakes are cooling. The ganache has cooled
to room temperature, and so now we’re gonna start
the rest of the frosting. First, we’re gonna take some
butter, a lot of butter. Now you want the butter
to be slightly softened but still a little bit
on the chilled side. So I took it out when
I started the frosting, and then by the time the
ganache had cooled enough that it was ready for
this step, it was perfect. And then we’re going to beat
it until it actually changes. If you beat butter long enough, it will start to get lighter and thicker, and if you’re listening to your mixer, you should hear it change a little bit. It’s hard to, I’ll show you. (chuckles) Now while I’m beating the butter, I’m actually also gonna add
a little bit of corn syrup. Like I’ve mentioned in the past, corn syrup is a stabilizer, and it helps with frostings, and caramels, and sauces, and marshmallows,
and stuff like that. So I recommend it. You can leave it off if you really kinda don’t like the idea of it, but it will end up with a better texture to your frosting if you do,
and it’s really not much. It’s only two tablespoons. All right, now our butter
and corn syrup mixture is thick and ribbony and luscious, and it looks like a nice, thick
frosting by itself already. Although, it wouldn’t
necessarily taste that great. Now that the butter is
beat and luscious looking, we’re gonna add some powdered sugar, and this is gonna continue making it more like a buttercream. And now we’re gonna add the ganache while it’s beating on low. Now you wanna turn it on high and beat it. Now as you can see,
it’s a little too runny to be an effective frosting right now. So we’re gonna chill it. Now you can do it one of two ways. You can it chill for five minutes, beat it, chill five minutes, beat it, chill five minutes, beat it, and it’ll take a couple of times, and it’s a really effective way to do it. Or you can and just chill
it for about 30 minutes and then beat it, but kinda
depending on your refrigerator and how chilled this already is, it might chill a little too hard, and you might get chunks. So I prefer the chill five minutes, beat, chill five minutes, beat,
chill five minutes, beat until you are happy with the
thickness and the consistency, but it is okay if you leave
it a little bit longer than the five minutes, or maybe you forget about
it like I tend to do. Just don’t leave it for too long, or you’ll have to then
let it come back down to a little bit warmer to be
able to effectively beat it. It’s done. Look at how thick that is. This is gonna be great for frosting. So the frosting’s done,
the cakes are baked. It’s time to put it all together. So the very first thing we’re
gonna do is level our cakes. As you can see, using the bake even strips and having the metal in the center and adjusting for altitude, it’s actually left the
cake super level already but not quite perfect. So it’s totally worth doing this. Plus, this’ll make all of
our cakes the same height. So on a good turntable and
with a good serrated knife, you’re gonna hold it the
height that you want it and just spin around. This is just our first little pass. We’re just marking the cake. We’re letting the turntable
do the work for us. After a circle, you should meet
back up to your first line. And if you did, that means you
were holding it flat enough, then now you go a little bit deeper. You really don’t have to do a ton of work. The turntable kinda does your
work for you, and perfect. And then I keep the tops, and you can either use them for a trifle, or, honestly, I just eat ’em. (laughs) They don’t last very long at my house. Plop a little bit of frosting and spread. Now, I am all about turntables. They are life-changing when
it comes to cake decorating, and then repeat, plop, and frost. Now most cakes after
they cool when you bake, they kinda shrink a little bit on the top, so the bottom is always the widest part. So while I go bottom down, bottom down, in the first two layers,
for the last layer, I flip it over and I
have the bottom on top. That gives me crisper corners and that wider point
at the top of the cake. And then you frost the top layer, so plop and spread yet again. Now we’re gonna frost the sides. You can use to pipe and then spread or just add and spread as you go. Clean off your spatula and
knock down those corners. Now that the cake’s even,
we’re gonna add another coat of frosting to make messy frosting, but now we know that every
square inch is covered. This cake is over on the
Working with Lemon channels for their Matilda “Revolting
Children” musical number as the chocolate cake. It’s perfect in my opinion. (laughs) So go check that out. Oh yum, check that out. As a quick end note, thank
you so much to everyone who has sent me messages over
the last couple of months as I have been a little MIA. One, I took off summer to
spend it with my children. I went to Harry Potter world in Orlando. I went to Disney World. My kids and I had so much fun, and I got inspiration for so many fun recipes I’m gonna
be bringing you this year. Also, I set up my kitchen
as a live streaming studio. So every Wednesday, I
will be coming at you live with a live cooking show, and then I will still be doing
the edited content as well. So leave me a comment down below, let me know if there’s
something you’d like to see live or something you’d like to see edited, and of course, what
cake should I make next with this chocolate cake recipe? Don’t forget to send me pictures
or tag me in social media when you make anything
that you’ve seen here, especially this cake, my very favorite. I’ve really been nervous
about sharing this with you. I hope you all love it as much as I do. And now for my favorite
part, get to eat it. Look how luscious this looks. Look at that frosting and that cake. It’s so good. Cheers! Seriously, so good. – Three, two. Don’t forget to subscribe
to Ashlee Marie Cakes, the best baker in the world Please.

4 thoughts on “How to make the Perfect Chocolate cake – Rich, dense moist cake recipe with Ganache Buttercream

  1. what do you call your mixer? I like it. Where can we get it? Your cake looks so tall. Didn't you only bake 1 3-inch bake pan and you even removed the top? Or did you bake more than 1 3- inch pan?

  2. I melt my butter , chocolate and cream together. Chill it . Then whip it. Less effort , Good results. The recipe is beautiful 😘

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *