Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Chocolate Salted Caramel Cake

A first for me!  Homemade caramel sauce and a new chocolate cake and frosting recipe all in one day and for a family gathering.  One thing I have never been afraid of is to try a new sweet recipe for the 1st time on company. You. Know how you can just tell it's going to be good by the ingredients and the pictures?  This is taken from Martha Stewart who of course has pictures that are way better than mine but no worries, this is a chocolate cake I will make again.  I loved the icing and the caramel!
The cake was easy, not too much fuss so while it was cooling I started the caramel.
This definitely had me nervous for a bit and it was so hard to follow the directions of Do Not Stir!
But the end result was delicious and I served each piece with caramel drizzled over it.  The coarse salt on top is also a must.  I won't talk about how many calories just the caramel alone must have but my theory is if your going to have a treat you might as well make it good!
I'm still in my cottage which I love but am looking forward to having counters pace and all my bowls and stuff I need in my new house.
So try this cake, you will love it and let me know what you think.

Suggestions from me
1.  If this is your first time making caramel, you will definitely want to stir it but trust me just be patient.
2.  Make sure you let the caramel cool COMPLETELY before using it on the layers.  Mine ran a little down the sides which wasn't a bad thing but I preferred it thicker for in between each layer.  There is more than you'll need so use enough for each layer.  Don't skip!

3.  I love the Ghiradelli Baking Cocoa
Worth the extra cost.  I used it for the cake and the frosting.  A much richer flavor.  

4. The caramel recipe calls for a
Candy thermometer which I didn't have
Mine is packed away somewhere. But it turned out just fine
5.  You can butter the pans like they say but I always use parchment paper.  Just so easy.
6.  Make sure your eggs for the cake are at room temp
  • Unsalted butter, room temperature, for pans
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pans
  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • 1 tablepoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • Coarse salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups low-fat buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons safflower oil.  ( I only had Smart Balance and it was fine)
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract (use only pure)


  • 4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • Coarse salt
  • 2 sticks cold unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons

  • Lots of calories in this !


  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
  • Coarse salt
  • 1 pound semisweet chocolate, chopped, melted, and cooled
  • Garnish: flaked sea salt


  1. STEP 1

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Make the cake: Butter three 9-inch round cake pans, and dust with flour, tapping out excess. Sift flour, granulated sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt into the bowl of a mixer. Beat on low speed until just combined. Raise speed to medium, and add eggs, buttermilk, 1 1/2 cups warm water, oil, and vanilla. Beat until smooth, about 3 minutes.
      Line pans with parchment paper
  2. STEP 2

    Divide batter among pans. Bake until cakes are set and a toothpick inserted into the center of each comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Let cool in pans set on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Turn out cakes onto racks, and let cool 
  3. STEP 3

    Make the caramel: Combine granulated sugar, corn syrup, and 1/4 cup water in a medium saucepan over high heat. Cook, without stirring, until mixture is dark amber, about 14 minutes. Remove from heat, and carefully pour in cream (mixture will spatter); stir until smooth. Return to heat, and cook until a candy thermometer reaches 238 degrees, about 2 minutes. Pour caramel into a medium bowl, stir in 1 teaspoon coarse salt, and let cool slightly, about 15 minutes. Stir in butter, 1 tablespoon at a time. Let cool completely.
  4. STEP 4

    Meanwhile, make the frosting: Whisk together cocoa and 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons warm water in a bowl until cocoa dissolves. Beat butter, confectioners' sugar, and a generous pinch of coarse salt in a clean bowl with a mixer on medium speed until pale and fluffy. Gradually beat in melted chocolate and then cocoa mixture until combined. Let stand for 30 minutes before using.
  5. STEP 5

    Trim tops of cakes using a serrated knife to create a level surface. Cut each in half horizontally to form 2 layers. Transfer 1 layer to a serving platter, and spread 3/4 cup caramel over top. Top with another cake layer, and repeat with remaining caramel and cake layers, leaving top uncovered. Refrigerate until set, about 1 hour.
      STEP 6
  6. Frost top and sides of cake in a swirling motion. Sprinkle with sea salt.

Martha Stewart Living, 

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