Dana Treat – Treat Yourself


Posted June 16, 2011

Sour Cream Chocolate Cake

With Love & Butter

Makes a 9-inch double layer cake

I‘m giving you the recipe as written in the book.  Remember, I would at least one and a half the frosting recipe – even double it and do a crumb coat.  To do so, spread a thin layer of frosting all over the cake and place it in the freezer for about 15 minutes.  Then frost the rest of the cake.  This will keep little crumbs from marring the smooth appearance of your masterpiece.

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ cup unsweetened cocoa
½ cup boiling water
1 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
2 tsp. vanilla extract
3 eggs
1 cup sour cream
2 cups flour
1½ tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. salt

Chocolate Sour Cream Frosting
¾ cup sour cream
4 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
¼ tsp. salt
1/3 cup (2/3 stick) unsalted butter, melted
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

Make the cake
Preheat the oven to 375ºF with the rack in the center position.  Butter and flour 2 9-inch round cake pans.

Melt ¼ of the butter (½ of one stick) and combine with the cocoa powder and boiling water in a small bowl.  Stir until smooth and set aside.

In the large bowl of an electric mixer, cream the remaining butter with the granulated and brown sugars and vanilla.  Add the eggs and beat until smooth.  Mix in the sour cream, then the reserved cocoa mixture.  Finally, dump in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and mix just until combined.  Divide the batter between the 2 pans and smooth the tops with a rubber spatula.

Bake the layers for 10 minutes, rotate the pans and bake for 10 to 15 minutes more or until a toothpick just comes out clean.  Don’t overbake – moistness is your goal.  Cool the cakes on a rack.

Make the frosting
Put the sour cream, powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt in the bowl of a mixer.  Whip to combine.  Stir the melted butter and cocoa together.  If the mixture begins to harden, dribble in a little more melted butter and beat until free of lumps.  Add to the sour cream mixture and beat until smooth.

Put one cake layer top-side-up on a serving plate and spread frosting generously to within ½-inch of the edge.  Place the second layer on top, bottom-side-up.  Smooth the remaining frosting over top and sides.

(DT: I made this cake a day ahead frosted and all.  I waited until the frosting had hardened slightly and loosely covered the whole thing with foil.  I think it improved both the flavor and texture of the cake so don’t hesitate to do the same.  You could probably even make it two days ahead, but then I would refrigerate it, covered, and bring it to room temp before serving.)

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