Friday, July 8, 2011

A Child Like Cake with a Twist: Vanilla Chocolate Chip Cake with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

So July is a particularly busy birthday month in my office, literally 5 within 2 1/2 weeks, which is a good thing cause I need to bake to take my mind off of all the life changes occuring. 

 Lots of big girl changes this week!  It's crazy to be at the point in life where your are having to make serious, life changing decisions.  Work is just crazy, but awesome at the same time. Do you know those times where things just keep spinning and nothing is really certain until its actually happening?  Strange, I know, but that's what is happening. 

Then, the bomb dropped this week and my bestie, who I have worked with for the past two years, is moving to Birmingham of all places.  Thing is, I couldn't be happier for her.  Yes, I will miss her lots, really tons, but this is an amazing opportunity and now I have someone to visit in Alabama!  Seriously though, I go from sad to happy all in the same minute when I think about her moving for this new position.  (I know there are a lot of run-on sentences right here and I don't care.)

Okay then, back to the cake.  The first birthday cake request for July was as follows:

--some kind of chocolate icing or else a light & not too sweet icing
--strawberries or blueberries

This is what I came up with...two layers of  vanilla chocolate chip cake, with a whipped cream, strawberry and blueberry filling, then covered with a light and fluffy chocolate buttercream frosting.  I hope this cake fits the bill, because I had a great time making it.

Starting at the top going clockwise:  chopped chocolate chips tossed with flour, dry ingredients and wet ingredients

Dry and wet ingredients combined.

Cakes waiting to go in to the oven to bake up in to deliciousness.


Bottom layer, with top cut off, so the top layer will lay flat and make frosting the cake easier.

Bottom layer topped with whipped cream.

Berries, berries and more berries!

Light, fluffy chocolate buttercream frosting.

The cake ready to be eaten, but for now into the refrigerator.

Vanilla Chocolate Chip Cake:  (adapted from Magnolia Bakery Vanilla Cupcake Recipe)
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs at room temperature
1 1/2 cups self-rising flour
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips, chopped or 1/2 cup mini semi sweet chocolate chips

1.  Pre-heat oven to 350 degree F.  Spray two 9 inch cake pans with non-stick cooking spray and lightly flour.

2.  In a large mixing bowl, with a whisk, cream butter until well beaten and fluffy.  Whisk in sugar until well combined.

3.  Whisk eggs in one at a time in to the creamed butter and sugar.

4.  In a separate mixing bowl, combine flours.

5.  Measure out milk and vanilla.

6.  Starting and ending with flours, alternate adding the flour and milk mixture to the wet ingredients, mix just until combined. Do not over mix.

7.  In another small bowl, lightly coat the chocolate chips with flour.  This will help them to not fall to the bottom of the cake while baking.  Then gently fold the chocolate chips in to the cake batter.

8.  Pour batter in to prepped cake pans and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until tester comes out clean.  Let cakes cool for 20 minutes, then carefully remove the cakes to a cooling rack, to cool all the way before frosting.

9.  Once cakes have cooled, pick out the one that is the flattest and using a serrated knife cut off the top to make it flat.  This will be the bottom layer of cake.

Filling: Whipped Cream and Berries:
1 cup heavy cream, cold
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 medium strawberries
2 handfuls of blueberries

1.  In a medium mixing bowl, using an electric mixer on high, beat the first three ingredients together until peaks form.

2.  Slice strawberries and lay on a paper towel to dry, wash and let blue berries dry on a paper towel.

3.  Place bottom layer of cake, that has been "flattened" on cake stand.  Spread whipped cream evenly over cake and then top with the strawberries and blue berries. 

4.  Place top layer of cake on and then place the cake in the refrigerator while making frosting.

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting: (from Magnolia Bakery)
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 tablespoons milk
9 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted and cooled to lukewarm
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups powdered sugar

1.  Using a double boiler(I use a metal mixing bowl over a medium sauce pan filled 1/3 full of water) over medium-low heat, melt semi sweet chocolate.  Remove from heat and let cool to lukewarm or room temperature.

2.  In a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter until light and fluffy, approximately 1-2 minutes.

3.  Add in the milk and beat until well incorporated and smooth.

4.  Add the melted chocolate and beat for another 1-2 minutes.  Then add in the vanilla and beat until well combined. 

5.  On a lower speed, one cup at a time, beat in the powdered sugar until desired consistency.  This should turn out to be very light and fluffy and not too chocolaty.

6.  Remove cake from the refrigerator and carefully frost.  I place parchment paper under the edges of the cake to keep the cake stand surface clean.  Just gently pull these out when done frosting.  If you will not be eating the cake right away place in the refrigerator until 10 minutes before serving.  Enjoy!

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