Monday, February 13, 2012

Epic Chocolate Cake

I found this recipe on Pinterest, and let's be honest, how could I not make it?

Yield: 10-15 servings (depending on number of chocoholics!)

3 cups flour
2 3/4 cups sugar
1 cup cocoa powder
2 tsp baking soda
2 cups milk
1 cup butter, melted
2 tsp vanilla extract

For Frosting:
4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1 cup cocoa powder
1 cup butter, softened to room temperature
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract

Liqueur for drizzling over cake (I used Baileys...)
1 cup melted chocolate chips (for drizzling)
2 cups chocolate chips (sides of cake)
2-3 Tbs. heavy cream
Mini candy bars for top (I used Twix, Hershey Bars, Butterfinger, and Kit Kat) 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and three 8-inch cake pans and set aside.

Sift together flour, sugar, cocoa powder,
and baking soda. In a separate bowl, combine milk, butter, and vanilla extract. Mix in dry ingredients until combined. Pour batter into pans. Bake for 30 to 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool.
Meanwhile, make the frosting. Sift together powdered sugar and cocoa powder. Add butter, cream and vanilla extract. Beat together until fluffy.

Finally, it's time to assemble the cake! Place the first layer on a plate. Lightly drizzle with liqueur, then spread a layer of frosting, being careful not to press too hard and break the cake. Place the second layer on top of the frosting and lightly drizzle with liqueur, then add frosting to the top.  Add the final layer, drizzle with liqueur, then cover sides and top of cake with frosting.

Next, using your hands (and a lazy susan if you have one) cover the sides of the cake with semi-sweet chocolate chips. Then layer the top with assorted chocolate candies.  I used mini candy bars that you can buy in ten packs and simply broke them in half.
Melt the remaining chocolate chips in the microwave and drizzle over the top of the cake, allowing (or encouraging!) the chocolate to drip down the sides.  Voila!

Tips:  Covering the sides of the cake will take a while and create some spillage - I was finding chocolate chips on my floor for weeks!  If you have any issues (as I did) you can always use extra frosting to camouflage the problem area and add extra chocolate chips over it!
Here's Kyle, trying to attack the finished cake.  Unfortunately for him, I made it for my co-workers, so I grabbed it away and was able to bring it to work unscathed.  There may have been a few missing chocolate chips and/or candy bars, but no one noticed anything...


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