Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Mile High Devils Food Cake

Oh My God. This Cake. Fantastic!

Really. Moist, dark, rich, but still light and oh so good. Yes, I tried it. I brought the cake to a brunch I was invited to and after all of the oohing and ahhing and roll of eyes I had to try it. Yes. They were correct. Delicious.

I again increased the recipe by half to make a large 10" three layer cake. I doubled the frosting because in some of the Mile High recipies I've felt the frosting is skimped on. Not so in this recipe. Double frosting was more than enough for the cake. In fact I made cookies and sandwiched the frosting inbetween. They are still in the freezer and will go up to the lake this weekend.

Here's the recipe. I used the buttercream frosting.


Mile-High Devil’s Food Cake
From: Sky High: Irresistible Triple-Layer Cakes
By Alisa Huntsman and Peter Wynne
Makes an 8-inch triple layer cake:
1 cup of unsweetened cocoa NOT DUTCHED PROCESSED
1 and ¼ cups of hot water
3 cups of light brown sugar; packed
2 and 2/3 cups cake flour*
1 and ½ teaspoons baking soda
teaspoon of salt
9 ounces of unsalted butter at room temperature [2 sticks plus 2 tablespoons]
3 large eggs
1 and ½ teaspoons of vanilla extract
3/4cup of cold water
{*1 cup of cake flour is equal to ¾ cup of flour plus 2 tablespoons of cornstarch}
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter the bottoms and sides of three 8-inch round cake pans. Line the bottoms of the pans with parchment paper and grease the paper as well.
Place the cocoa in a medium bowl and add the hot water. Whisk until smooth and let it cool to room temperature.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the sugar, flour, baking soda, and salt. With the mixer on low blend to combine. Add the butter and the dissolved cocoa. Then raise the mixer to medium speed and beat for 2 minutes until light and fluffy.
In a medium bowl whisk together the eggs, vanilla, and cold water until combined. Add this liquid to the batter in three additions scraping down the sides of the bowl between additions. Divide the batter among the three pans.
Bake for 35-45 minutes or until a cakes tester inserted into the almost comes out clean. There should be a few crumbs attached still. Cool the cakes in the pans for 15 minutes. Then invert and remove parchment paper and cool completely on a wire rack.
Bakers’ choice of: Brown Sugar 7-Minute Frosting or Brown Sugar Buttercream
Brown Sugar 7-Minute Frosting
6 egg whites
1 and ½ cups of brown sugar
¼ cup light corn syrup*
2 tablespoons of water
½ teaspoon of cream of tartar
{*corn syrup can be substituted with equal parts of treacle OR liquid glucose OR light colored honey}
Do not try to make this frosting on a rainy day or if you live in an extremely humid area. The humidity will make it impossible to work with the egg whites.
Place all the egg whites in a bowl and set them aside while you make the syrup.
In a small heavy saucepan, combine the brown sugar, corn syrup, and water. Bring to a boil over medium-low heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Continue to boil washing down the sides of the pan with a wet pastry brush. Boil until the syrup reaches 238 degrees F (softball stage) on a candy thermometer. Immediately remove from heat.
Add the cream of tartar to the egg whites in the bowl and beat just to combine. With the mixer on medium speed gradually add the syrup in a thin stream taking care not to hit the beaters. Beat until fairly stiff peaks form but the frosting is still spreadable. If the frosting is too stiff it will be hard to work with. Use immediately.
Brown Sugar Buttercream
5 egg whites
1 and ¼ cups of packed brown sugar
¼ cup of water
1 pound of unsalted butter (16 ounces) at room temperature
Place all the egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer; set aside.
In a heavy medium saucepan combine the sugar and water. Cook over medium heat stirring to dissolve the sugar. Then bring to a boil without stirring and cook until the syrup reaches 238 degrees F on a candy thermometer.
Begin beating the egg whites on medium low speed. Slowly pour in the syrup making sure not to hit the beater. Increase the mixer speed to medium high and beat until the meringue has cooled to body temperature.
With the mixer on med-low add 1-2 tablespoons of butter at a time. When all the butter has been added increase the mixer’s speed to medium and beat until the mixture looks curdled or separated. Continue to beat until the icing comes together again looking like soft smooth whipped butter.
Assembling the cake:
Place one layer flat side down and cover it with 2/3 cup of the frosting. Top with second layer and repeat process. Top with third layer and frost the sides of the cake.
Bakers Notes:
A cake topped with the meringue frosting is the best the day it’s made. It does not do well in the fridge.
If you choose the buttercream frosting you can keep it in the fridge for 3 days. Make sure to allow the cake to come to room temperature for 1 to 1 ½ hours. Otherwise the frosting will be hard and heavy.


Debbie said...

I am so glad to meet a fellow baker who, like me, has to at least increase a frosting recipe by half. Double is even better! I like to see the icing between the layers! Wow ... 10 inch layers ... bet you had to call in a crane to move it.

Caroline said...

A 10-inch cake, WOW. That cake must have been a pretty sight.
I noticed that about the frostings as well, so I usually double 'em.
I'm glad you loved this cake, I loved it, too!

symphonious sweets said...

This cake was light and rich! Your slice looks great!

Lulu the Baker said...

Great job on your cake!