My wonderful husband turned 63 yesterday. I certainly doesn't seem possible that we are old. Of course, he is definitely older than I. We are still celebrating birthdays! Being old doesn't always freak me out but sometimes it does. For example, when you are sitting on the couch watching your grandkids, it seems like only yesterday when my kids were that little.
It is a birthday tradition in our house that the birthday boy/girl gets to request whatever type of cake he/she wants. Every year, without fail, Marty picks Paul Prudhomme's chocolate cake with mocha icing. It is a masterpiece!
Hear is the recipe:
2 2/3 cups of sifted cake flour
1 1/2 t baking soda
1/2 t salt
1 cup, packed, dark brown sugar
3/8 pound (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup light corn syrup
1 T vanilla extract
4 oz. unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled to lukewarm (110 degrees on a candy thermometer
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
Sift the flour, baking soda and salt together in a medium-size bowl and set aside.
Place the brown sugar in a large bowl of an electric mixer; beat on high speed about 10 seconds to break up sugar. Add the butter and beat unti the mixture is the consistency of wet sand, about 1 minute. Beat in the eggs one at a time until well blended, about 10 seconds each time. Add the corn syrup and vanilla and beat until smooth, about 5 seconds. Beat in the cooled chocolate until well blended and smooth, about 3 to 5 minutes, scraping bowl sides well. Add flour mixture and buttermilk alternately to chocolate mixture, beginning and ending with flour and beating after each addition just until smooth. Pour equal amounts of the batter into 3 8-inch round, greased and lightly floured cake pans (1 1/2 inches deep). Bake at 350 until centers spring back when lightly pressed, about 35 to 40 minutes. Remove cake layers from pans to a wire rack and glaze while still hot. Cool thoroughly. Spread generously with icing between layers and on top of the cake.
1 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
1 t vanilla extract
In a small saucepan combine the water and sugar; bring to a boil. remove from heat and stir in the vanilla. With a pastry brush, brush hot glaze over the surface and a little on the sides of each cake layer, using all the glaze. Makes about 1 cup of glaze.
3/4 pound (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
4 1/2 cups powdered sugar (1 1/2 pounds)
1/3 to 1/2 cup heavy cream
3 T instant coffee powder or crystals
2 t unsweetened cocoa powder
2 t vanilla extract
1/4 t salt
Cream the butter in a large bowl of an electric mixer on high speed unti8l very creamy, about 2 minutes. Gradually add the sugar and beat until smooth, about 3 minutes.
In a separate bowl, combine 1/3 cup of the cream and the remaining ingredients, stirring until thoroughly dissolved. Add cream mixture to the butter mixture. Beat until well blended and sugar is completely dissolved, about 5 minutes, scraping the bowl well. Thin with a little more cream if desired. Makes enough frosting for one 3-layer cake.
If you make this cake, you will NOT be disappointed. This is a special cake for special people.