Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Devil's Food Cake with Chocolate-Orange Buttercream

For my mother's birthday I had planned to bake this cake, unfortunately I wasn't feeling good enough, so I had to let it go. But by that time the cake had managed to wriggle into my head and under my skin. I couldn't let go of it. I had so looked forward to making it. So I asked my self: Why not just make it? I mean... do you really need a special occasion to make a cake? Well, it is usually better to have a good reason, because otherwise I'd be baking cakes like this all the time and I'm pretty sure my hips would not agree with that.

But because I had been looking forward to this cake for a while I decided to just bake it and let the pounds fall where they may.... And I have to tell you... I'm glad I did. This is one good cake. Moist, fluffy, flavorful and chocolatey. Just the way I like it! And the frosting... oh my god that frosting is sooooooooo good. I had a hard time trying to restrain myself and not just eat the whole bowl up! That really would have added a lot of pounds!

Though the flavor of the frosting is quite orangy it isn't overwhelming and you can still taste the cake. It really is a great combination!

The recipe called for two 9-inch cake pans, which I didn't have. I used two 8-inch spring pans and had to add quite bit more baking time, but I actually think it turned out better. It made for a beautiful high layered cake which looks very impressive but is really not that hard to put together.

So if you have a special occasion coming up (or not) or just want to score points with a chocolate-lover, this cake will do the trick!


Devil's Food Cake with Chocolate-Orange Buttercream


For the cake:
4 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 fine sea salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
1 1/2 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
1 1/2 stick butter, room temperature
4 large eggs

For the frosting:
8 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
7 tablespoons water (or more)
3 sticks butter, room temperature
2 cups confectioners' sugar
zest of 1 orange
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt


Preheat the oven to 170˚C (325˚F).

Butter and flour the sides two 8-inch spring pans. Cover the bottom with parchment paper.

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler until smooth. Remove from the heat and let cool to barely lukewarm.

Over a medium bowl sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt and baking soda.

In a small bowl whisk together the milk and yogurt.

In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment beat together the sugar and butter until smooth.

Beat in the eggs, 1 at a time.

Mix in the melted chocolate until smooth.

Mix in the dry ingredients alternately with the milk mixture, in 3 additions each.

Divide the batter between the two pans.

Bake the cakes for 50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. (If you're using 9-inch pans, bake for 30 minutes.)

Let the cakes cool in the pans for 15 minutes, then turn the cakes out onto racks. Remove the parchment paper from the bottom and let the cakes cool completely.

To make the frosting, melt the chocolate in a double boiler until smooth. Let cool to barely lukewarm, but still pourable.

In a small saucepan mix together the cocoa powder and water. Stir over medium-low heat until smooth and thick but still pourable. If necessary add more water by teaspoonsful. Let cool.

Beat together the butter, 1/3 cup of confectioners' sugar and the orange zest.

Add the melted chocolate, vanilla and salt and beat again until smooth.

Beat in the cocoa mixture.

Gradually add the remaining 1 2/3 cups of confectioners' sugar and beat until the frosting is smooth.

Cover the sides of your platter with 4 strips of parchment paper.

Place 1 layer of the cake on top of the platter and spread a thick layer of frosting on top of the cake.

Carefully place the second cake on top.

Spread the remaining frosting over the top and sides of the cake, making swirls as you go.

Remove the strips of parchment paper and serve the cake at room temperature.

Source: slightly adapted from Bon Appetit


  1. This cake really is a stunner, I like the swirled icing and your cake stand as well! Great pics. The orange in the icing is a nice way to add a little extra zip to a big chocolate cake. Glad you decided to splurge and make this-great post!

  2. I am not a big fan of butter-cream icing but the way you have made it so yummy, I am having second thoughts :-)