The story behind the cake and my slightly devious birthday letter to hubs...
Once upon a time, a single girl in the city used to keep a stash of dark chocolate safely in the fridge for whenever the craving struck. Dark chocolate was her favorite, and not being much of a sweet tooth, the cravings didn't strike very often. Still, she liked the reassurance in knowing that if the feelings did arise, she had her heavenly goodness safely waiting.
That girl married a boy and moved to a new city. Many things changed, most of which she had anticipated and some which were a surprise. But out of all of the things that were different and new, none shocked her (or annoyed her) more than when one day a craving struck and she went to satisfy it, only to discover boy had eaten all of her dark chocolate! She couldn't decide which upset her more... the fact that she had an itch she couldn't scratch... that boy had eaten all of the chocolate despite claims of not liking dark chocolate... or the fact that he hadn't even replaced it and instead left the empty wrapper to deceive her! This story happened over and over in their first year together and girl didn't know what to do. It turns out that boy didn't originally like dark chocolate, but since that was all girl ever bought, he ate it anyways until too soon he also loved it... and loved in bar fulls! Gone were the days of a bar lasting up to a month... seriously, girl was that good at rationing. She even tried hiding bars in secret stashes, but once boy found out, he would eat them too! Plus it always made girl feel slightly guilty for hiding them from him.
Life went on like this until it was soon boy's birthday and girl had a plan! Oh if he liked dark chocolate so darn much, she would give the chocolatiest dark chocolate cake she could find and try and make him sick of it... a little devious she admits, but lack of chocolate makes a girl do crazy things sometimes. She found the perfect recipe... it used 17 ounces of dark chocolate between the cake and frosting alone (not to mention she would add more on top)... it even had the word death in it's title! And so girl set off to bake this cake of cakes... pouring all of her love and slight frustrations into it just to see what would happen. Well folks, the cake turned out delicious... and what's more, boy not only liked it, he LOVED IT!!!! He ate every last piece of that cake (ok, she may have helped a bit) and never grew tired or sick of dark chocolate. Her plan backfired and girl is back to drawing board on ways to solve her dark chocolate woes. As for boy, well he loved that cake so much he requested it again this year for his birthday and has since then declared it as his official birthday cake... because it's so chocolatey that once a year is more than enough... twice a year might just kill him!
Death By Dark Chocolate Cake (which I adjusted)
- 8 oz. dark chocolate (I used 75-80% but you can adjust to your likes)
- 2/3 cup butter
- 1 cup vanilla sugar
- 4 eggs
- 4 heaped tbsp. all purpose flour
- 4 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 4 tbsp. sour cream
- 2/3 cup heavy cream
- 9 oz. semisweet chocolate
- Grease two 10" cake tins (at least 3" high) with butter and line the bottoms with non stick paper, making sure to grease the top again. Set aside.
- In a bowl, brake the chocolate into small pieces and add the butter in. Place bowl in hot water to melt the two gradually, stirring as you go.
- In a separate bowl, beat the eggs with the vanilla sugar. Add in the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and vanilla extract.
- Slowly fold in the melted butter and chocolate mixture, then add in the sour cream.
- Pour half the mixture into one of the cake trays, and the other half into the other one. Smooth out the tops as best you can.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes, rotating the cakes half way through. Cakes are done when you insert a toothpick in the center and they come out clean. Use this trick and make sure not to over cook the cakes!
- When the cakes are done, cool them completely at room temperature in the tins (I left them overnight).
- Once they are cooled completely, refrigerate for 30 minutes before removing the tins. Cakes are extra sticky and cooling them helps a lot!
- Cut off the top crusted tops and feel free to munch on them. I crumbled mine into some vanilla ice cream as a baking snack ;)
- For the frosting, grate or finely chop 9 oz. of chocolate.
- Heat up the heavy cream in a sauce pan and add in the the chocolate. Mix together until smooth.
- Remove from heat and let it cool until it thickens (about 10 minutes), stirring throughout to keep smooth.
- Use 1/3 of the frosting between the layers, and the rest to cover the top and sides. You can create cool textures or swirls with the frosting if you like. I chose to grate the rest of the bar not used in the frosting and sprinkled it (quite heavily) on the top and sides of the cake.
- Refrigerate for an hour or longer to harden the frosting. A little tip, I inserted my candles at this point to make sure the frosting hardened around them.
- Take out cake a few hours before serving, it tastes best at room temperature and washed down with a cold glass of milk... enjoy!
***Today I am thankful for dark chocolate... and (secretly) that it didn't kill hubs!***