Michael’s 50th Cake

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When you husband turns 50 you celebrate with a chocolate cake fit for a King.  Thanks to Baker by Nature for the recipe. Chocolate Cake with chocolate buttercream and a salted caramel fudge sauce.

INGREDIENTS

Hot Fudge Sauce
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1 1/3 cups heavy cream
6 ounces dark chocolate, finely chopped
2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Cake:
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar, packed
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 3/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
3 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
3 large eggs + 2 large egg yolks, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1/3 cup full-fat sour cream
3/4 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups hot water
1 cup chocolate chips

Frosting:
2 cups unsalted butter very soft
4 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons heavy cream (more if needed)
2 tablespoons hot fudge sauce (see below for recipe)

Garnish:
1 cup hot fudge sauce sauce (see below for recipe)
4 ounces semi-sweet or dark chocolate, shaved
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips

INSTRUCTIONS 

Hot Fudge Sauce

Whisk together the sugar, water, and corn syrup in a 3-quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat, gently tilting the pan side-to-side to help the ingredients cook evenly and avoid burning, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the sugar turns a deep golden brown/copper color. Once the caramel reaches this color, remove from heat and immediately add in the heavy cream. Be very careful during this step – the caramel will hiss and bubble up aggressively!

Add in the chopped chocolate and stir smooth. Finally, stir in the vanilla and sea salt. Vigorously whisk the mixture smooth and set aside to cool. Store covered, for up to one week, in the fridge.

Cake

Preheat oven to 350°(F). Cut out three 9-inch round segments of parchment paper to line your cake pans with. Spray each pan generously – sides and bottom – with nonstick cooking spray, then place the parchment paper cut out in the bottom of the pans and spray again. It’s important to make sure every bit of pan and paper are sprayed so your cakes don’t get stuck. Set pans aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl using a handheld electric mixer, combine both sugars, flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt; mix on low until dry ingredients are thoroughly combined. Use your hands to break up any large clumps, if needed. In a separate bowl combine the eggs, egg yolks, milk, sour cream, oil and vanilla extract; mix until completely combined. Pour mixture into the dry ingredients and beat on low until just incorporated. Pour in hot water and continue mixing until completely combined; about 1 minute. The batter will quite thin. Quickly fold in mini chocolate chips.

Divide batter evenly among prepared pans. Bake in preheated oven for 28 to 30 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center of a cake comes out clean or with just a few moist crumbs attached. Cool cakes for 10 minutes in the pan before removing from pans and transferring to a cooling rack. Cool cakes completely before frosting.

Frosting

In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl using a handheld electric beater, cream the softened butter on medium-speed until completely smooth; about 3 minutes. Turn the mixer off and sift the powdered sugar and cocoa into the mixing bowl. Turn the mixer on the lowest speed and mix until the sugar/cocoa have been absorbed by the butter; about 2 minutes. Increase mixer speed to medium; add in vanilla extract, salt, heavy cream and hot fudge; beat for 3 minutes. If your frosting appears a little too thin, add a little more confectioners’ sugar; If your frosting needs to be thinner, add additional heavy cream, 1 tablespoon at a time.

Assembly

Using a serrated knife, carefully trim the raised top of each cake, making each one an even, level surface. Transfer 1 layer to a large plate or cake stand. Spread a thin layer of frosting on top, then add a 1/2 cup of hot fudge sauce; top with another cake layer, and repeat, thinly spread it with a layer of frosting, then adding a 1/2 cup of hot fudge sauce. Top with the final cake layer and place cake in the fridge to set for 1 hour. Once set, finishing frosting the top and sides of the cake. Sprinkle the sides and top with chocolate shavings, then gently press the mini chocolate chips around the sides and on the top. Slice and serve, or keep refrigerated for about a week.

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