Birthday Celebration for Two!
Last night we celebrated our kids birthdays since they weren’t in Colorado during either of theirs this summer. I love to bake something special for their birthdays so I asked each one what they wanted.
My son who turned 25 on the 17th of August had been traveling in China. He said he wanted something very chocolaty and would also love some Mocha Chip Cookies if I’d be willing to make them. My daughter who turned 22 on the 1st of August was attending summer school in Boston and didn’t want a chocolate cake at first but changed her mind and decided on a one that she originally wanted last year. Instead at the last minute we ended up making the Butterfinger Cake which was delicious but not so chocolaty.
Of course I wanted to make something super spectacular like a multi-layered sponge, devils food and raspberry mousse cake but opted for what my children requested. After all, it was their celebration!
To please them both, I made the Chocolate Buttermilk Cake with Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting that my daughter craved and was also very chocolaty, along with Chocolate Chocolate Chip Espresso Cookies that my son requested. Both were extremely rich, satisfying and quick to prepare, which was fantastic since I made both yesterday.
Below is the Chocolate Buttermilk Cake recipe.
The recipe which came from Donna Hay Magazine issue 50, called for an 18cm round cake pan which equates to a 7″ cake pan. I already had one 7″ springform pan but ended up purchasing another one to make the prep work go quicker. At first when I looked at the size of the pan I thought it would be too small, but was I wrong. With the cake so incredibly rich, a thin slice is all you can take.
The photo at the top of this page was taken from the magazine. Below is the one I made. Since I still haven’t perfected my food photography skills I felt it best to share a professional photo first. However, my cake really did look like the photo above except maybe I didn’t pipe my icing quite as nice or shoot the cake in ideal lighting!
Chocolate Buttercream Cake
- 1 cup (250ml) water
- 125g butter (8 tablespoons), chopped
- 1/3 cup (35g) cocoa, sifted
- 2 cups (300g) unbleached flour, sifted
- 1 teaspoon baking soda, sifted
- 2 cups (440g) caster (superfine) sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup (125ml) buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- chocolate cream cheese frosting
- 100g butter (7 tablespoons), softened
- 500g (16 ounces), cream cheese
- 2 cups (320g) icing (confectioners) sugar, sifted
- 1/2 cup (50g) unsweetened cocoa, sifted
Place the flour, baking soda and sugar in a bowl, add the cocoa mixture and whisk to combine. Add the eggs, buttermilk and vanilla and whisk to combine.
Divide mixture between 2 lightly greased 18cm (7″) round cake tins lined with parchment paper.
Bake for 40–45 minutes or when tested with a skewer it comes out clean. Allow to cool in the tins for 10 minutes. Turn out onto wire racks to cool completely.
While the cake is baking, make the cream cheese frosting. Place the butter and cheese in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat for 6–8 minutes or until pale and creamy. Add the icing (confectioners) sugar and cocoa and beat for an additional 6–8 minutes or until light and fluffy.
To assemble, slice the cakes in half horizontally. It’s best to use a serrated knife when slicing the cake in half. If you have a turntable this will make it very easy. Place one cake layer on a plate and spread with one quarter of the frosting. Repeat with remaining layers and frosting.
- I hope you enjoy this lusciously moist, rich cake. Oh and for the Chocolate Chocolate Chip Espresso Cookies, I’ll post those later this week!