A Birthday Cake for Number Four

So I'm only two and a half weeks late, but that's what happens when it's not your first child...or second...or third. I made up for it. What one year old doesn't need a five layer cake of her own?

You should have seen her eat it.

"You can do it, Brucie!"

This is a delicious and simple chocolate cake recipe. It's baked in a half sheet pan (I cut out rounds to make the layer cake). It will definitely serve a crowd. Make it and take it to your next pot luck or picnic.

Mississippi Mud Cake
2 cups flour
2 1/2 cups sugar
1 t baking soda
1/2 t salt
1 cup unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups whole milk
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 t vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350. Spray a 15 1/2-by-10 1/2 inch (jelly roll or rimmed cookie sheet) pan with cooking spray.
Sift the flour into a large bowl. Add the sugar, baking soda, and salt. Stir well to combine and set aside.
In a heavy saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the butter, milk, and cocoa powder. Bring to a boil, whisking frequently, until the butter melts completely. Add the cocoa mixture to the flour mixture, whisking until combined. Add the eggs and vanilla and whisk until well blended. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 15 to 18 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely in the pan.
If you just want to make a sheet cake to take to a party or picnic, frost at this point, transport and serve right out of the pan.
To make the layer cake, I used a 3 1/2 inch round cookie cutter and cut out five circles from the baked cake. Place one round on cake stand. Spread with about 1 T frosting. Top with additional layers and frosting. Spread a very thin layer of icing around the sides and let set in refrigerator until icing is firm. (This is a crumb-coat: it suspends the fine crumbs so they won't appear in the final layer of frosting. The second layer of icing will now slide neatly over this layer).
Remove from refrigerator frost with the final layer of icing.

Chocolate Satin Frosting
6 oz unsweetened chocolate
1 cup evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups sugar
6 T unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 t vanilla
Roughly chop chocolate. Set aside.
In small saucepan, bring evaporated milk to boil. Remove from heat and add chocolate pieces, without stirring. Cover and set aside for exactly 10 minutes. Scrape into bowl over mixer or food processor and add sugar, butter and vanilla. Process until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and let sit in refrigerator until it reaches desired consistency (I let mine sit about 15 minutes)
This frosting keeps refrigerated for about 3 weeks, or can be frozen for 6 months. Let soften before using.


Heather said...

Oh I have been looking for the perfect cake for Gracie to smash on her face!! This looks perfect. Thanks for the recipe... I will definitely be using it.

Jacqui said...

I laughed my head off at the pics on Seth's blog. that babe of yours is edible herself!!

Erin Gilbert said...

My mouth has been watering for this ever since you told me about it. I can't wait to make it myself.