HCB: Devil’s Food Cake with Midnight Ganache

I just realized that the last post I did for my Heavenly Cake Group was the Cradle Cake, which was back in January – Yikes!  I’m surprise Marie has not kicked my butt out of the club.

I do have to come clean and blame the fact that the last couple of cakes in the list have just not been favorites of mine, and I know myself well to know that if I’m not feeling it, then most likely I not going to make the effort. 

But, I have missed it.

So, when I saw this weeks’ choice, I was ready to go, no only because I been craving chocolate cake like crazy as of late, but I also had a house party to go to on Saturday night and I figure this was a perfect cake to take and share. 

This cake is the reason I love chocolate so much and Rose’s recipes go straight to my dark chocolate heart.  The ganache is made with cocoa and chocolate, plus caramel, just to give it a punch and make it even richer.  While the recipes does give you the option of adding dried sour cherries soaked in Cognac, I opted out of this – the fruit, not the liquor.

The cake does not fall behind either, since uses 99% cacao chocolate, cocoa powder and if that does not make it deeper in chocolate flavor, how about using Muscovado sugar to give it an extra punch? Yep, the cake is like a chocolate explosion.  The batter (yes, I do try my cake batters) was decadent and I almost had to stop myself from eating a spoonful of the stuff.

I started the cake early in the day, since the plan ahead tells you to make the ganache at least SIX hours before using it.  Miss your cocoa powder with the boiling water, vanilla extract and Cognac (without the cherries).  Then chopped up an additional 200 grams of dark chocolate (since I did not want to dirty up my food processor, I basically chopped it up with my chisel and put in a bowl to await the hot, caramel.  Then it was sugar time.

I had no luck with making Rose’s caramel.  I have tried it before and every single time something goes wrong with it.  So I really gave myself a good pep talk and read the caramel portion of the recipe like twenty times and then plunged ahead.  It went like a well oil machine up to the point of adding the cream.  If you have done caramel before, you know that once you add the cream to the hot sugar it will bubble up furiously – mine did that, and then it went super happy on me and started to really bubble over a la science experiment – YIKES!  As it was spilling from my saucepan, I made sure that I got caramel syrup over my cutting board, clean plates and my kitchen towel before I rushed it to the sink to spill some more.

I knew it was too good to be true.

Lesson learned?  A) use a bigger saucepan or b) pour the cream with the saucepan in the sink.

Once it was done, butter is added and then the whole thing get’s poured over the chopped chocolate and then the cocao+water mix is incorporated.

The smell of the chocolate as I was mixing it with my whisk was intoxicating.

The taste was really devilish.

The cake batter was up next and after forty of so cakes, the technique that Rose’s used to incorporate the dry ingredients with the soften butter and then the liquid makes it pretty effortless.  I think it took me longer to weigh and prep my ingredients than to mix the batter.  I did not even use the KA, but my hand held mixer.

My cakes were ready at the 40-minute mark.  I let them cool for almost an hour, and then placed them in the refrigerator to cool for another hour, before I let my creative juices flow and covered the whole thing with the ganache.  And just like Rose said, after almost 7+ hours of sitting at room temperate it turned into a dream consistency to spread over the cakes.  I did notice that as I keep spreading the ganache would harden, so don’t take to long to do this step.  Once it was all nice and covered, I placed my finished cake in the refrigerator overnight to get everything nice and hard and set.  The next day I took it out and let it come to room temperature.


Tom - He is not a chocolate fan, so when he mention he was going to have a piece I had to do a double take first, then rushed to cut him a piece.

I loved it; it was all that a dark, chocolate cake could be and more.  It satisfied my chocolate craving to its full extend.  I don’t see myself wanting another chocolate cake anytime soon.

Did you hear that Marie? – No more chocolate cakes for a while.

As always my HCB post do not have the recipes posted, due to the publishers request.  I highly recommend the book and if you want to check out the other baker’s creation click right over here to check it out.