One of my all-time favorite ingredients is chocolate (as you can see here and here). There are so many variations of chocolate cake, but sometimes classic and simple is better. I had never made a 2-layer cake before. The challenge here was stacking the 2nd cake on top of the 1st one. The secret is to get the cake out of the pan without it crumbling. Also, to have enough icing – don’t forget, you have to put enough icing in between the 2 cakes, and then on top and around the sides. I added strawberries on top, but you can decorate with sprinkles, gummies, or something spooky for Halloween. Because I was taking this cake to a party, I brought it on a throw away platter, which have come in handy more than once.
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pans
1/2 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa (spooned and leveled), plus more for pans
2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups packed light-brown sugar
2 large eggs plus 2 large egg yolks, room temperature
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup low-fat buttermilk
How to Make: [Adapted from Martha Stewart]
1. Pre-heat oven to 350. Butter two 8-inch round cake pans; dust with cocoa, tapping out excess. Line bottom of each pan with a round of parchment paper; set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
3. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition; beat in chocolate and vanilla. With mixer on low, alternately add flour mixture in three parts and buttermilk in two, beginning and ending with flour mixture.
4. Divide batter between prepared pans; smooth tops. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of a cake comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes.
5. Cool in pans 15 minutes; run a knife around edge of each pan, and invert cakes onto a wire rack to cool completely.
6. Set a rimmed baking sheet upside down on a work surface. Place one cake on sheet, and spread top with 1/3 of frosting. Place second cake on top, and spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake.
7. Using two wide metal spatulas, carefully transfer frosted cake to a serving platter.