Devil's Food Cake

Total Time:
45 min
Prep:
20 min
Cook:
25 min

Yield:
3 layers
Level:
Intermediate

Ingredients
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch-process)
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/4 cups firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Chocolate Glaze:
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 8 ounces finely chopped bittersweet chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • Creamy Butter Icing:
  • 1/2 pound unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted twice
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons milk
  • Creamy Chocolate Icing:
  • 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 1/2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 1/2 pound unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted twice
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons milk
Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 3 (9-inch) round cake pans and line each bottom with a round of waxed paper. Grease paper and dust pans with flour, knocking out excess flour.

In a bowl, whisk the boiling water into cocoa until smooth and whisk in milk and vanilla.

In a large bowl with an electric mixer beat together butter and sugars until light and fluffy, about 2 to 3 minutes, and beat in eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.

Into another bowl or on parchment paper, sift together flour, baking soda, and salt and add to egg mixture in batches alternately with cocoa mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture, and beating well after each addition.

Divide batter among pans, smoothing tops, and bake in upper and lower thirds of oven, switching position of pans halfway through baking, 20 to 25 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean and layers begin to pull away from sides of pans.

Cool layers in pans on racks 10 minutes and turn out onto racks to cool completely. Cake layers may be made ahead and kept, wrapped well in plastic wrap, at room temperature 2 days or frozen 1 week.

Chocolate Glaze:

In a small saucepan, heat cream to a simmer. Pour simmering cream over chopped chocolate. Stir in corn syrup and stir until smooth.

Creamy Butter Icing:

In a large mixing bowl fitted with a paddle attachment, beat butter on medium high speed for 4 to 5 minutes, scraping down sides of the bowl occasionally until very creamy.

Add two cups of sifted confectioners' sugar and beat on medium high speed to incorporate thoroughly, scraping down sides occasionally. Add remaining confectioners' sugar and mix until all of the sugar is completely incorporated.

Add vanilla extract, lemon juice, and milk and beat for an additional 3 to 4 minutes. The frosting should be very creamy.

Cover tightly with plastic wrap until ready to use. If preparing the frosting 1 day ahead, cover the frosting tightly with plastic wrap but do not refrigerate. When ready to use, beat the frosting again adding additional milk or lemon juice until the frosting reaches the desired consistency.

Creamy Chocolate Icing:

In a microwave-safe bowl, combine chocolates. Heat in microwave at medium heat at 30-second intervals, stirring in between, until chocolate is melted. Set aside to cool.

In a large mixing bowl fitted with a paddle attachment, beat butter on medium high speed for 4 to 5 minutes, scraping down sides of the bowl occasionally, until very creamy.

Add the cooled chocolate mixture to the butter and beat until thoroughly incorporated.

Add two cups of sifted confectioners' sugar and beat on medium high speed to incorporate thoroughly, scraping down sides occasionally. Add remaining confectioners' sugar and mix until all of the sugar is completely incorporated.

Add vanilla extract and milk and beat for an additional 3 to 4 minutes. The frosting should be very creamy.

Cover tightly with plastic wrap until ready to use. If preparing the frosting 1 day ahead, cover the frosting tightly with plastic wrap but do not refrigerate. When ready to use, beat the frosting again adding additional milk or lemon juice until the frosting reaches the desired consistency.


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