Saturday, May 28, 2011

Chocolate Turtle Cake - It's My 1st Blogiversary!

Yep, its my Blogiversary! Exactly one year ago today, I published my first blog post. That is so hard to believe! These past 12 months have seemed to fly by so quickly. I've had such a blast having my own blog, but without you all I probably wouldn't have kept it up. So thank you for taking the time to read it! It means so much to me : ) Heres to many more years of fun in the blogosphere!

This is actually a cake I made for my mom's birthday, but I thought this would be an opportune time to share the recipe. It is a little bit involved, but totally doable if you tackle it one step at a time : )

Super rich, super chocolatey, super delicious! Definitely a crowd pleaser. Yum!

Chocolate Turtle Cake

Serves 12

3 Cake Layers (recipe below)

Caramel Filling (recipe below)

Chocolate Filling (recipe below)

Caramel Frosting (recipe below)

Chocolate Ganache (recipe below)

Place one cake layer on a cake stand. Using caramel frosting, pipe a frosting border around the top edge of the cake to make a barrier (so the filling won't leak out). Spread half of the caramel filling evenly over cake. Pipe half of the chocolate filling evenly over caramel filling, spreading it out to the edges of the cake. Top with second cake layer and repeat the process. Top with last cake layer. Frost entire cake with caramel frosting, reserving some to use as garnish. Slowly pour ganache over top of cake and allow to drip down the sides. Allow ganache to set. Pipe decorative rosettes of caramel frosting on top of cake, and place pecan halves in the center of each rosette. Enjoy!

For the cake:

Adapted from this recipe

1 1/3 cups cake flour (or 6.5 oz Soft White wheat flour + 2 tbls cornstarch)

1/2 cup dutch processed cocoa (I used "natural" processed)

1 cup sugar (or honey sucanat)

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature

1/2 cup whole milk, divided

3 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350°. Grease three 8-inch cake pans and line with parchment paper.

Lightly beat eggs, vanlla, and half of milk in a bowl. Mix until incorporated. Set aside.

Equip your mixer with whisk attachment and sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder and salt into the mixer bowl. Add butter and remaining milk. Beat on medium speed until smooth (about 4 minutes), scraping bowl as needed.

The mixture may start out rough looking, then turn thick and paste-like. After beating, add one-third of the egg mixture and mix on medium for two minutes. Add another third and beat for two minutes (the mixture will start to increase in volume). Add last third of the egg mixture, and beat for two minutes more.

Divide batter evenly between pans, (I use a kitchen scale to do this), and level out smooth. Bake for about 20-25 minutes. Cake is done when it springs back slightly when touched in the center, and a toothpick comes out clean.

Allow to cool completely in pans, (the cake should pull away form the sides of the pan as it cools, but if it doesn't, just run a knife around the edges to release). Once cooled, remove from pans and peel parchment paper off.

For the caramel filling:

2/3 cup dulce de leche (homemade* or store-bought)

1/3 cup chopped pecans

Stir together dulce de leche and pecans. Set aside until needed.

*To make homemade: Pour one can of sweetened condensed milk into a saucepan. Cook over low heat, stirring often, until it thickens and turns golden brown. (This might take up to an hour). (Reserve 1/3 cup to use in the frosting, and use the rest for the filling. If you're a little short, don't worry about it - you don't have to have exactly 2/3 cup).

For the chocolate filling:

Adapted from this recipe

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened

2 2/3 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted

1/3 cup half-and-half

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

1/2 cup cocoa powder, sifted

In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter. Mix in cocoa powder, vanilla, and confectioners' sugar. Add half-and-half. Beat until creamy. Set aside until needed.

For the caramel frosting:

Adapted from this recipe

3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter, softened

2 cups powdered sugar

1 tablespoon heavy cream

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Pinch of salt

1/3 cup dulce de leche

In the bowl of an electric mixer cream butter and sugar on low. Add cream, vanilla, and salt. Beat until there are no lumps. Scrap down bowl. Add dulce de leche. Beat until incorporated. If frosting is too thick, add a little bit more cream. Set aside until needed.

For the chocolate ganache:

Adapted from this recipe

8 oz. semi-sweet or milk chocolate, finely chopped

3/4 cup heavy cream

Make ganache after the cake is frosted and ready to go. Place chocolate in heatproof bowl. Pour cream in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Pour cream over chocolate. Let stand for 1 minute. Whisk until smooth. Allow to cool for about 10 minutes, (if it thickens too much it will be difficult to pour over the cake). Slowly pour over cake, letting it drip down the sides. Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. Congrats on your 1st blogiversary! :) Love you sis!