Chocolate Cake with Caramel Sauce
Adapted from a recipe found on Cakecentral.com
Ingredients – Cake –
- 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter. I replace half with oil to make it more moist
- 1 1/4 cups unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
- 1 1/4 cups hot water
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/4 teaspoons coarse salt
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 1/4 cups granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup sour cream
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 2 x 8 inch pans with non-stick spray.
Divide batter between pans, and bake until toothpick inserted into centers comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes. After removing the pans from the oven, leave cake in the pans for no more than 5 minutes, then transfer cakes to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
Helpful Hint – If you plan to double the mixture, it will not fit in a regular kitchen-aid mixer. Just FYI!! I doubled the recipe to make 2 x 9 inch cakes and 24 cupcakes and ended up using a large pot to complete the mixing.
Ingredients – Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
- 1 cup solid white vegetable shortening
- 1 teaspoon clear vanilla flavoring (Wilton flavoring is my favorite)
- 7 teaspoons of water or milk (3 teaspoons = 1 tablespoon)
- 1 lb pure cane confectioners sugar
- Pinch of salt
Cream together the shortening, clear vanilla flavoring and water or milk. Make sure it is a smooth consistency before moving on. Add confectioners’ sugar and salt. Blend until creamy. If you find that the frosting is too stiff, keep adding a tablespoon of water or milk until you reach the desired consistency. I added 3-4 extra tablespoons to make it really smooth. For this cake, I recommend doubling the recipe.
Filling the Cake
To fill the cake, I cut the dome off the top of both the cakes, to make them flat. I placed the first cake right side up (with the cut dome on the top) on the board. Then I put a layer of Caramel sauce on first. I used about a half of a jar of caramel sauce (about 3-4 oz). This does sink into the cake a bit.
I then put a layer of vanilla butter cream frosting on top of the caramel. Followed by a large sprinkling of white chocolate chips on top of the frosting. This can be as much or as little as you want.
The next layer of cake I placed on top of the white chocolate chips. This was placed on the cake upside-down. (With the cut side facing down). Any gaps between the two layers, I filled with vanilla butter cream frosting.
Frosting the cake
When I frost a cake, I like to start on the top and get that covered and relatively smooth. Then I work my way around the side of the cake and make that completely smooth. There is always a bit of an edge for the over lap so I smooth that over going towards the middle of the cake. To smooth the edges I used a spatula with long, straight edges. You can also use a long knife or anything else that has a long edge, but make sure it is straight.
After the cake is frosted, I took my caramel sauce and heated it in the microwave for 10-15 seconds. I slowly poured it around the edge of the cake. I went over it about 3 times to give it enough sauce for a decent drizzle. Then I drizzled a bit more on the top of the cake. This took about 1-2 oz of caramel sauce but you can use as much or as little as you like. Can I just say – I LOVE CARAMEL!!! So Yummy…. anyway… moving on.
I colored the buttercream with brown, a little bit of lemon yellow and a touch of red to get this almost caramel color. Using a large star tip, I swirled rosettes around the edge of the cake and topped them with black fondant flowers and a pearl sprinkle. I made these flowers using a flower press that I purchased at Michaels craft. You can also purchase flowers from Michaels. I have even seen some for sale on etsy.com.
Personally, I was ok with how the cake looked at this point, but my daughter, Alyssa, was not. She wanted more flowers so I repeated this step around the bottom of the cake. She was right, I think it looks much better.
Mmmm….mmmmm….mmmmm – VOILA!!!