Darya from Flowwow

How to Make a Chocolate Cake: an Easy Recipe

29 May 32
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Chocolate Cake

Chocolate cake is not just a beloved dessert worldwide – it’s also an iconic, timeless treat that can be easily prepared at home. Whether you need a spectacular birthday celebration, a special surprise, or simply a sweet treat, this classic dessert is more than likely to make your guests happy and full. Today, let’s take a look at the origins of this treat, possible types of fillings, baking techniques, and creative decoration ideas. Plus, we'll offer one of the best chocolate cake recipes to prepare at home.

The History of Chocolate Cake

This dessert is easily traced back all the way to 18th century Europe, the time when chocolate became more accessible and popular than ever before. The early desserts were on the dense and fudgy side, often made to stay fresh for a long time. Over time, recipes evolved, incorporating more ingredients to create the fluffy texture we know and love today.

Types of Cake Fillings

Types of Cake Fillings

Whatever filling you can imagine, it probably already exists! There’s a classic buttercream for those of you who favour a simple chocolate cake recipe; there’s Mary Berry's take on this iconic treat and even some novel tropical fruit additions, which add a whimsical touch to your dessert. Each option adds its own unique flavour and texture, so you can choose different options for different occasions depending on the theme.

Mary Berry's Chocolate Orange

This undoubtedly unique twist is now beloved worldwide, specifically because it combines the zesty freshness of oranges with the sweetness of chocolate. This delightful contrast results in one of the most eccentric chocolate cake recipes.

Chocolate Banana

For a tropical twist, try your dessert with a creamy chocolate banana filling. The sweetness of ripe bananas accompanies the deep cocoa flavour, offering a decadent treat for those who prefer a sugary finish.

How to Make Moist Chocolate Cake Recipe

Now, let's see how to cook an easy chocolate cake recipe at home. Here's a simple guide that yields a heavenly dessert.

Ingredients

For the Cake:

Ingredients for cake

The key items to prepare are nothing out of the ordinary. Take note that this is a chocolate sponge cake recipe, which will result in a soft base.

For the Frosting:

Ingredients for the frosting

This step will require just a bit more preparation than the first one.

Make the Cake: Step-by-Step Preparation

Let’s take a look at the specifics of preparing this wonderful treat. Most of the items used in this preparation are not allergy-friendly, so make sure to double-check everything before starting baking. However, there are always alternative options! As such, for a chocolate cake recipe that is gluten-free, just substitute any of the ingredients with their gluten-free alternatives.

Make the Cake: Step-by-Step Preparation

1. First things first, preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Remember to always grease and flour your cake moulds beforehand: it’s unbelievably easy to forget to do that at the last minute.

2. Take a large, deep bowl and carefully sift the flour inside. Next, gradually combine all things dry: sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and don’t forget the salt – basically, almost everything from our list.

3. Next up, add all the ‘wet’ items: that would be the eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla extract. Beat the resulting mixture for approximately 2 minutes until it becomes creamy and sour cream-like (this is much handier with a mixer, but be cautious not to overdo it).

4. Once finished, stir in the boiling water, mixing continuously and making sure that the batter remains smooth (it should be quite thin, but not runny).

5. Distribute the batter between the moulds, shaking them slightly from side to side to remove any and all trapped bubbles.

6. Now it’s time to wait: bake for 30-35 minutes, keeping a close eye on the progress.

7. As the last step, cool the bases for 10 minutes before moving on to the next part.

Make Classic Chocolate Buttercream

Perhaps not surprisingly, a lot of milk is requred for this step, so it’s 100% not a vegan chocolate cake recipe. Although it’s possible to try adding some alternatives, such as almond milk, keep in mind that it’s more than likely to negatively impact how the dessert will turn out. To be on the safer side, either follow this recipe or try searching for a specialised one.

Make Classic Chocolate Buttercream

1. Let’s start by getting a large and deep bowl and beating the softened butter; in time, it should become very soft and creamy. You can speed up the process by heating up the butter beforehand.

2. Slowly sift in the icing sugar, cocoa powder, salt, milk, and, lastly, vanilla extract. Keep continuously whisking so the mixture remains smooth and soft, similar to sour cream.

3. One problem that often occurs is that the frosting becomes too thick. In this case, include more milk, one tablespoon at a time, until you have a consistency of slightly thick yoghurt.

Baking Techniques

Baking

Every artist needs to perfect their tools, and pastry chefs are not an exception. To achieve that perfect chocolate cake, a lot of factors have to come together, including selecting the pan, controlling the temperature, and timing the overall process.

Best Pie Pan

Low-quality cake tins and moulds always come with a high risk of receiving a burnt cake. This is tremendously important in the case of tender chocolate biscuit cakes, so make sure to use high-quality non-stick cake pans that distribute heat evenly, ensuring even baking.

Oven Temperature and Timing

To avoid any issues, take some time to preheat your oven to the right temperature before you do anything else. Additionally, don’t forget to monitor the baking time closely. If you’re preparing a chocolate mousse cake recipe, take more caution not to keep your treat in the heat for too long. Each oven has its own quirks, so checking up on your dessert is a good practice.

Assembly

The one final step left is to arrange all the elements together to create the long-expected masterpiece. To start off, liberally place the buttercream between the cake layers (for a less sweet dessert, skip this phase and directly move to the next one). After that, simply stack your layers and cover them with the icing. You can apply the icing as much or as little as you want, but it will definitely help your treat become more moist and finger-licking good.

Creative Decoration Ideas

Decoration Idea for Chocolate Cake

Get creative with your decor! Consider topping the cake with dark chocolate curls, fresh berries, or edible flowers for a stunning presentation. Also, it never hurts to add some food colouring to get that outstanding vibrant look. Who doesn’t love it when their dessert looks like a cheerful rainbow?

Whether you're a novice baker or a seasoned pro, there's nothing quite like a slice of homemade chocolate cake. Enjoy!

FAQ

Which Type of Chocolate Cake Is Best?

While there is no universal dessert for each and every one of us, most people would agree on rich and fudgy cakes with a tangy triple chocolate filling or even a chocolate mousse one. However, the possibilities for experimentation are endless!

What Defines a Chocolate Cake?

This treat is typically defined by the inclusion of anything cocoa-related, be it powder or just melted chocolate, resulting in a rich, tangy flavour and dark colour.

Which Chocolate Is Good for Cake?

Choose high-quality products with at least 70% cocoa solids. These types are more easy to melt and they provide more intense flavour and richness.

Do I Have to Keep Chocolate Cake Refrigerated?

While this dessert can be stored at room temperature for a day or two, if you're not serving it immediately, the most fitting solution is to place it in the fridge or freeze it. This is especially necessary if it's made with something perishable, such as milk.

What Is So Special About Chocolate Cake?

This icon holds a special place in the hearts of many people due to its irresistible taste, comforting texture, and versatility in both everyday desserts and celebratory cakes.
Darya from Flowwow