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Mini Salted Chocolate Fudge Cakes

January 11, 2012

Mini Salted Chocolate Fudge Cakes

Mini Salted Chocolate Fudge Cakes

I really hope that you’ll understand that I have a problem.  I have a problem that really can not be helped.  I exercise everyday.  I do.  It’s just a little thing I like to do.  Why?  Well, because you see, I have a problem and it’s me.  Yes, me.  It’s all me.  I exercise so that when I come across decadent desserts like the one in the photo above come into eye sight I don’t turn into a balloon.

One of my goals for this year is to become skilled at cake decorating.  I can bake a cake.  I can make frosting.  I can cut a cake.  Oh, and I can also eat a cake.  I can not decorate a cake the way I see it in my mind.  It is something that comes with practice, it is a skill.  Someone told me that no cake will ever be “perfect”.  I have a hard time believing that but it is true.  Everything and I really mean EVERYTHING is flawed.  There is always something.  Why do we strive for perfection, anyway?  There is beauty in EVERYTHING.  I’m not going to go any further with that thought.

This cake.  OH.  MY.  GOD!!!  I love this cake.  It is chocolatey, sweet, salty, fudge-y and really not complicated to make.  I came across a similar cake on Martha Stewart’s site a while ago but I did not want to make it because let’s face it a whole cake is A LOT for two people.  I then saw this version on Sweetapolita and that was it, I had to make the cake.  I decided that instead of making an entire three layer 6 inch cake I would make it into 3 mini cakes with 3 layers (4 inch cake pans).  Turns out, it is an awesome idea!  The cakes, although, in mini form were still able to be cut into wedges that would make 4 individuals very happy to share.  I think that these cakes would be an amazing idea for a wedding or shower, everyone could have their own cake.  Tell me you wouldn’t want your very own cake.

Chocolate Fudge Cake

Ingredients

3/4 cup  all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons dark unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons hot brewed coffee
2 eggs, room temperature, lightly beaten
2 teaspoons vanilla

To Prepare

Preheat oven to 350° F. Prepare three 4-inch round cake pans with butter, parchment paper rounds, and cocoa powder. Tap out excess.
In bowl of electric mixer, sift all dry ingredients and add all remaining ingredients to bowl with the dry ingredients and with paddle attachment on mixer, mix for 2 minutes on medium speed (you may need the plastic splash-guard that comes with mixer) and pour into prepared pans. If possible, use a kitchen scale and weigh divided batter in pans for even layers. Batter will be liquidy.
Bake for 20 minutes and rotate pans in oven. Cakes are done when toothpick or skewer comes clean–approximately 30 minutes. Try not to over bake.
Cool on wire racks for 20 minutes, then loosen edges with a small palette knife, and gently invert, or release if using a spring form, onto racks until completely cool.

Makes 3 – 4 inch spring forms

Chocolate Fudge Frosting

Ingredients

1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons  unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons boiling water
1 1/2 cups  butter, room temperature
1/2 cup confectioners’ (icing/powdered) sugar
1 pound good-quality semi-sweet chocolate, melted and cooled

To Prepare

Combine cocoa powder and the boiling water in a small bowl or glass measuring cup, and stir until it cocoa has dissolved.
In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (flat beater), beat the butter, the icing sugar, and salt on medium-high speed until it is pale and fluffy–about 5 minutes.
Reduce mixer speed to low, and add melted chocolate (cooled), beating until combined and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
Beat in the cocoa mixture until well incorporated.

Makes 5 cups

Notes

Frosting can be refrigerated for up to 5 days, or frozen for up to 1 month in an airtight container.
Before using, bring to room temperature (usually overnight on counter does the trick), and beat on low speed until smooth.

*Dark Chocolate Fudge Frosting Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart

*Alternatively, for a lighter, less dense and fluffier chocolate frosting option for this cake, you can use Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream to mask and frost the outside of this cake. The colour will be a lighter chocolate colour and much more subtle chocolate flavour (less fudgy), and it goes very well with the chocolate buttercream filling.

Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream (Filling)

Ingredients

300 grams (10 oz) chopped semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, melted, and cooled
5 large, fresh egg whites
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups butter, cut into cubes and cool, but not cold
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

To Prepare

Melt chocolate in heatproof bowl over pot of simmering water, or in a microwave-safe bowl in 25 second intervals, stirring in between until smooth. Set aside to cool (you can scrape it out into a new container to speed up cooling).
Wipe the bowl of an electric mixer with paper towel and lemon juice, to remove any trace of grease.
Add egg whites and sugar, and simmer over a pot of water (not boiling), whisking constantly but gently, until temperature reaches 150°F, or if you don’t have a candy thermometer, until the sugar has completely dissolved and the egg whites are hot.
With whisk attachment of mixer, begin to whip until the meringue is thick, glossy, and the bottom of the bowl feels neutral to the touch (this can take up to 10 minutes or so). *Don’t begin adding butter until the bottom of the bowl feels neutral, and not warm.
Switch over to paddle attachment and, with mixer on low speed, add butter cubes, one at a time, until incorporated, and mix until it has reached a silky smooth texture (if curdles, keep mixing and it will come back to smooth). *If mixture is too runny, refrigerate for about 15 minutes and continue mixing with paddle attachment until it comes together.
Add vanilla, continuing to beat on low speed until well combined.
Add melted chocolate and mix on medium-low speed until combined.

Assembly of the Sweet & Salty Cake

1.  Trim any doming from the tops of your cake layers with a sharp, serrated knife and place first layer, face up, on your cake board, pedestal, or plate.  Slice each 4 inch cake into three, about 1/4 inch thick.

2.  Using a small offset palette knife, spread approximately 1/4 cup of the chocolate buttercream evenly on the top.

3.  Repeat this 1-2 until you come to the final layer, which you will place face down on the top of the cake.

4.  Place cake on a turntable (if possible), and using a small offset palette knife for the top of the cake, and medium straight palette knife for the sides, cover the cake in a thin layer of chocolate frosting (or chocolate buttercream, if using) to mask (seal in crumbs). Refrigerate for 30 minutes (or more). *This does not need to be perfect, as that will come with the top “coat” of buttercream.

5.  Repeat step 4, and, for best results, use bench scraper held at 90° against the side of the cake, slowly turning the turntable and keeping your hand steady–let the turntable do the work. Clean up edges with your small offset palette knife.

6. Chill cake to set. *Bring to room temperature before serving–about 2+ hours. Never serve Swiss Meringue Buttercream until it is soft and room temperature, as cold buttercream is, well, kind of yucky!

7. Sprinkle with Fleur de Sel.

8. Place any remaining buttercream/frosting in airtight containers and refrigerate up to a week, or freeze for up to 2 months, bringing back to room temperature before rewhipping to smooth consistency.

9. Serve at room temperature, and slice with a long, thin-bladed, sharp knife. Rinse knife with hot water and dry before each new slice, for best results.

From Sweetapolita

Mini Salted Chocolate Fudge Cakes

Mini Salted Chocolate Fudge Cakes

I think that the mini version of this cake is an idea that should not be passed up.  I recommend that if you are planning on doing any cake decorating you invest in a turntable.  In the above photo you can tell that I did NOT use a turntable and it created an unsmooth side on the cake in the foreground.  A turntable will help ensure a smooth cake.  I will state this again, it does not affect on the flavor or taste of your finished product.

From our kitchen to yours,
Sydney Jones

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10 Comments leave one →
  1. January 11, 2012 4:15 pm

    This is so elegant looking. I’m already looking for Valentine’s Day treats. This one would fit that bill perfectly. I’m definitely bookmarking this. Well done.

  2. January 11, 2012 6:20 pm

    Thanks Tia! It is an amazing cake, would be absolutely perfect for Valentine’s Day in heart pans 🙂

  3. January 12, 2012 8:07 am

    Absolutely adorable. And I love the look – elegant and rustic at the same time. I bet you thought the sides weren’t perfect, but I really don’t think I’d change a thing! Honestly!

    I’d like to master some cake decorating skills this year as well. I’m not a huge fan of fondant, because I prefer to gobble up traditional icings and frostings. But darn it, every time I come up with a decorating plan I have to abandon ship!

    • January 12, 2012 6:11 pm

      Thank you!! I really like the look of the chocolate buttercream filling against the dark chocolate fudge frosting. Which by the way is super amazing to work with and it tastes like chocolate heaven.
      I love working with fondant and gum paste but I don’t care for it’s edible properties either. I hope that you receive more opportunities to enhance your skills, perhaps someone should have a cake decorating contest to force you into doing it. If your gingerbread decorating skills are any reflection on your cake decorating skills I think we’d all be in trouble. You really do need to get your cake decorating skills on 🙂

  4. January 12, 2012 9:15 pm

    looks so good!

    • January 13, 2012 4:27 am

      Thank you! If you are in the market for a fudgey chocolatey cake, this is the cake for you 🙂

  5. January 13, 2012 8:45 am

    (Shhhhhh… the next contest on my blog? It has a whole lot to do with… shhhhh… cake decorating!)

Trackbacks

  1. The Perfect Valentine’s Day Sugar Cookies « Sydney'sKitchen

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