Micheal wanted a chocolate cake for his birthday and I spent a lot of time trying to find the perfect recipe. I ended up combining parts of several different recipes, and luckily it turned out perfectly. It was very moist and the ganache frosting was delicious. For the Happy Birthday signature on the cake, I just typed up the letters on my computer, printed, and cut them each out. Then I carefully placed them on the cake (after the icing had cooled and hardened in the fridge for about 30-40 minutes) and sifted powdered sugar over the entire cake. With a knife, I carefully removed each paper letter to reveal the hidden message! I've never done this before, but thought I'd try something different than the usual decorative "Happy Birthday" made with colored icing. It creates a neat look - if you want to try it, use Arial font, size 120, and type whatever message you want to that lucky person!
- 2 cups sugar
- 1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup dark-cocoa powder
- 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup boiling water
- 1 pound semisweet chocolate
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
- 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 9-inch round baking pans.
- Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pans.
- Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely. Spread icing (recipe below) over one layer of cake, top with second layer, then ice top and sides.
- Finely chop chocolate. In a medium saucepan bring cream, sugar, and corn syrup to a boil over medium-low heat, whisking until sugar is dissolved.
- Remove pan from heat and add chocolate, whisking until chocolate is melted. Add butter to frosting, whisking until smooth.
- Transfer frosting to a bowl and cool, stirring occasionally, until spreadable (this can take 30+ minutes – put in the fridge if you’re in a hurry).