Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Cake Slice Bakers: Mile-High Devil's Food Cake

The recipe from the Cake Slice Bakers for May is the Mile-High Devil's Food Cake from the book Sky High: Irressistible Triple-Layer Cakes. The recipe was easy to follow. We were given a choice of two frostings - Brown Sugar 7-Minute Frosting or Brown Sugar Buttercream. I chose the buttercream. It took forever to beat until spreading consistancy. I don't know if that was normal or because it's a muggy evening here in South Florida. I thought I was going to miss the end of "American Idol"! I haven't gotten to try the cake yet since it's late and I'm taking it to my parent's house for Thursday night dinner. I'll let you know. I did taste the cake part and YUMMY!

I know my cake doesn't look pretty, but I have no decorating talent!

Friday morning: I had the cake last night after dinner. The cake part is so yummy. The buttercream frosting is not my favorite at all. I felt like I was eating butter with some brown sugar. I would definitely make the cake again but would use a different frosting.

Makes an 8-inch triple layer cake:

1 cup of unsweetened cocoa NOT DUTCHED PROCESSED
1 and ¼ cups of hot water
3 cups of light brown sugar; packed
2 and 2/3 cups cake flour*
1 and ½ teaspoons baking soda
¾ teaspoon of salt
9 ounces of unsalted butter at room temperature [2 sticks plus 2 tablespoons]
3 large eggs
1 and ½ teaspoons of vanilla extract
¾ cup of cold water
{*1 cup of cake flour is equal to ¾ cup of flour plus 2 tablespoons of cornstarch}

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter the bottoms and sides of three 8-inch round cake pans. Line the bottoms of the pans with parchment paper and grease the paper as well.

Place the cocoa in a medium bowl and add the hot water. Whisk until smooth and let it cool to room temperature.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the sugar, flour, baking soda, and salt. With the mixer on low blend to combine. Add the butter and the dissolved cocoa. Then raise the mixer to medium speed and beat for 2 minutes until light and fluffy.

In a medium bowl whisk together the eggs, vanilla, and cold water until combined. Add this liquid to the batter in three additions scraping down the sides of the bowl between additions.

Divide the batter among the three pans.Bake for 35-45 minutes or until a cakes tester inserted into the almost comes out clean. There should be a few crumbs attached still. Cool the cakes in the pans for 15 minutes. Then invert and remove parchment paper and cool completely on a wire rack.

Bakers’ choice of: Brown Sugar 7-Minute Frosting or Brown Sugar Buttercream

Brown Sugar 7-Minute Frosting
6 egg whites
1 and ½ cups of brown sugar
¼ cup light corn syrup*
2 tablespoons of water
½ teaspoon of cream of tartar
{*corn syrup can be substituted with equal parts of treacle OR liquid glucose OR light colored honey}

Do not try to make this frosting on a rainy day or if you live in an extremely humid area. The humidity will make it impossible to work with the egg whites.

Place all the egg whites in a bowl and set them aside while you make the syrup.
In a small heavy saucepan, combine the brown sugar, corn syrup, and water. Bring to a boil over medium-low heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Continue to boil washing down the sides of the pan with a wet pastry brush. Boil until the syrup reaches 238 degrees F (softball stage) on a candy thermometer. Immediately remove from heat.

Add the cream of tartar to the egg whites in the bowl and beat just to combine. With the mixer on medium speed gradually add the syrup in a thin stream taking care not to hit the beaters. Beat until fairly stiff peaks form but the frosting is still spreadable. If the frosting is too stiff it will be hard to work with. Use immediately.

Brown Sugar Buttercream
5 egg whites
1 and ¼ cups of packed brown sugar
¼ cup of water
1 pound of unsalted butter (16 ounces) at room temperature

Place all the egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer; set aside.

In a heavy medium saucepan combine the sugar and water. Cook over medium heat stirring to dissolve the sugar. Then bring to a boil without stirring and cook until the syrup reaches 238 degrees F on a candy thermometer.

Begin beating the egg whites on medium low speed. Slowly pour in the syrup making sure not to hit the beater. Increase the mixer speed to medium high and beat until the meringue has cooled to body temperature.With the mixer on med-low add 1-2 tablespoons of butter at a time. When all the butter has been added increase the mixer’s speed to medium and beat until the mixture looks curdled or separated. Continue to beat until the icing comes together again looking like soft smooth whipped butter.

Assembling the cake:
Place one layer flat side down and cover it with 2/3 cup of the frosting. Top with second layer and repeat process. Top with third layer and frost the sides of the cake.

Bakers Notes:
A cake topped with the meringue frosting is the best eaten the day it’s made. It does not do well in the fridge.

If you choose the buttercream frosting you can keep it in the fridge for 3 days. Make sure to allow the cake to come to room temperature for 1 to 1 ½ hours before slicing. Otherwise the frosting will be hard and heavy.


Monica H said...

Great job on your cake. I want to lick that frosting!

Katie said...

Your cake looks wonderfully tall.

Caroline said...

What a tall cake! That frosting looks so glossy and fluffy, yum!

Alwayzbakin said...

Mmmm. Looks good. And it DOES look pretty.

The Bahens said...

I tried the buttercream too and it never set up, so I added a LOT of powdered sugar. It helped with the consistency and the flavor.

Tami said...

MMM! I want to stick my finger right into that icing!

I love the pic of your kitty watching the popcorn in the microwave!

Jennifer said...

This cake looks REALLY tall!

Mmhmm, I could deal with a slice of that!!!!

Caroline said...

Oh, that looks great! The first cake I ever made was a Devil's Food Cake (from scratch). Mine wasn't as tall, though!! Devil's food has a special place in my heart - I'll have to make this cake!