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Finding the Best Chocolate Cake Recipe (Part 1)

Chocolate Dessert

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597 replies to this topic

#571 Desiderio

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Posted 20 September 2006 - 04:19 PM

You're welcome, Desiderio. Here are some tips on high altitude baking which may help you out:
http://www.ochef.com/327.htm

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Brilliant!! thank you again for all your help :smile:
Vanessa

#572 RodneyCk

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Posted 20 September 2006 - 04:57 PM

Has anyone tried CI's Moist and Tender Devil's Food Cake? It is in the Baking Illustrated book and by ingredients and amounts alone, seems like it would be a very good chocolate cake recipe.

#573 merstar

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Posted 20 September 2006 - 06:23 PM

Brilliant!! thank you again for all your help  :smile:

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My pleasure, Desiderio. Good luck with all your chocolate baking!

Edited by merstar, 20 September 2006 - 06:24 PM.

There's nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with CHOCOLATE.

#574 merstar

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Posted 20 September 2006 - 06:31 PM

Has anyone tried CI's Moist and Tender Devil's Food Cake?  It is in the Baking Illustrated book and by ingredients and amounts alone, seems like it would be a very good chocolate cake recipe.

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I haven't tried the CI cake, but I have a great recipe from Chocolatier -"Devil's Food Cake With Fluffy White Frosting." I've made this countless times and it's superb. I omit the white frosting, increase the chocolate ganache filling, and use it for both the filling and frosting.

Caution: Although the recipe says to merely butter and flour the pans, make sure you use parchment paper. The cakes are so moist, they stick to the pans like glue! (I found this out the hard way) :)

(Desiderio, don't look at this recipe or you'll have to try it! LOL)

http://www.godiva.co...ipe.aspx?id=518
There's nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with CHOCOLATE.

#575 merstar

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Posted 20 September 2006 - 06:35 PM

Has anyone tried CI's Moist and Tender Devil's Food Cake?  It is in the Baking Illustrated book and by ingredients and amounts alone, seems like it would be a very good chocolate cake recipe.

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I haven't tried the CI cake, but I have a great recipe from Chocolatier -"Devil's Food Cake With Fluffy White Frosting." I've made this countless times and it's superb. I omit the white frosting, increase the chocolate ganache filling, and use it for both the filling and frosting. Also, I use brewed espresso instead of strong coffee.

*Caution: Although the recipe says to merely butter and flour the pans, make sure you use parchment paper (buttered and dusted, preferably with cocoa powder). The cakes are so moist, they stick to the pans like glue! (I found this out the hard way) :)

(Desiderio, don't look at this recipe or you'll have to try it! LOL)

http://www.godiva.co...ipe.aspx?id=518

Edited by merstar, 20 September 2006 - 07:29 PM.

There's nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with CHOCOLATE.

#576 Desiderio

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Posted 20 September 2006 - 10:55 PM

Has anyone tried CI's Moist and Tender Devil's Food Cake?  It is in the Baking Illustrated book and by ingredients and amounts alone, seems like it would be a very good chocolate cake recipe.

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I haven't tried the CI cake, but I have a great recipe from Chocolatier -"Devil's Food Cake With Fluffy White Frosting." I've made this countless times and it's superb. I omit the white frosting, increase the chocolate ganache filling, and use it for both the filling and frosting. Also, I use brewed espresso instead of strong coffee.

*Caution: Although the recipe says to merely butter and flour the pans, make sure you use parchment paper (buttered and dusted, preferably with cocoa powder). The cakes are so moist, they stick to the pans like glue! (I found this out the hard way) :)

(Desiderio, don't look at this recipe or you'll have to try it! LOL)


http://www.godiva.co...ipe.aspx?id=518

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Ahh I am going mad!!!! :wacko: ,Actually I was contemplating a devil's food cake the one on the CI book , cause reading all the explanation it might sounds like that will be my type of cake , but the chocolate sour cream bundt cake will come first .I am thinking to host a nice , all ladys night , and make them all eat bunch of different chocolate cakes :laugh:

Edited by Desiderio, 20 September 2006 - 10:56 PM.

Vanessa

#577 Desiderio

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Posted 20 September 2006 - 11:31 PM

This is the one I baked this morning,the egullet version of the double chocolate cake.
Posted Image
The one I cut for tasting , baked in a 9 inch about 1 1/2 deep ( maybe less ).
Posted Image

This is the same baked in a 10 inch ( I believe ) 2 inch deep .
Posted Image

Ok I have been reading about high altitude etc, and I am starting to understand some little things .
Any way this one I baked last has a better crumb and texture than the second one , its a little bit on the dry side and that might have to do with altitude as well ,the taste is very chocolatey but has something into it that I cant well percieve ,some taste I am not too convinced about .Another thing I really liked the first one I baked (Wooley) if it wasnt for all the crumbly factor and I did taste and smell the baking soda on that one , maybe because I used a dry buttermilk and didnt activated the BS well, I liked the taste and the moistness, and I start to think that it might be the method so the creamy method instead of the foaming one , it is possible that it gives a more moist cake?Next one the chocolate sour cream cake in fact uses the creamy method and for what I have read everyone said is very moist and the texture is perfect right? SO will se if I can get the taste of the fudge one with a nice texture that would be great .keep you posted.

Good baking :biggrin:

Edited by Desiderio, 20 September 2006 - 11:35 PM.

Vanessa

#578 miladyinsanity

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Posted 21 September 2006 - 09:22 AM

So I sliced the double chocolate cake (my mom didn't take it to the relatives after all! Yay!) and it doesn't crumble.

Also, if you chill it, it's really yummy after it's been zapped for 20 seconds in the microwave--I couldn't wait for it to come down to room temperature.
May

Totally More-ish: The New and Improved Foodblog

#579 fodgycakes

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Posted 21 September 2006 - 10:09 AM

Which recipe did you do Michelle?The double chocolate ?
I Know its an old thread but I just bake the original recipe on this thread the one Wendy posted to be tested .Still in the oven , I actually baked the cakes in 3  9 inc round pan ,and I did use the coffe as well.
Will see how come out and I was thinking to do a black forrest cake as well , it really looks yummy , thank you for the idea.
After this I really want to try the chocolate stout cake , that was mentioned in another post ( wich one?) but the recipe is on bon appetit , and can be found at epicurious.com "chocolate stout cake ".

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It was the tweaked version of the Double Chocolate Cake with the additional tweaks I noted.

I'm planning to try this recipe again today or tomorrow as cupcakes but I've seen there were some problems with the texture as cupcakes. Anyone had better success or a better recipe? I will decrease the leavening.
Michelle Pham

I like pie.

#580 Desiderio

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 01:04 PM

Ok I think this might be the last chocolate cake for this week ( gotta make a ton of chocolates for next 2 weeks :huh: ), the chocolate sour cream cake ( not in a bundt cause I dont have one and dont feel like buying anymore stuff atm )is in the oven , and I am really hoping to see some good results.I was very disappointed in the double chocolate cake , it turned very dry crumbly and taste is quite bland for my taste.I think until now the best , taste /texture wise was the fudge brownie cake ( wooley ),so if this doesnt turn the way I am expecting I am going to try that again with a few tweking .Will see :unsure:
Vanessa

#581 skyflyer3

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 04:31 PM

He-he, I found another great chocolate cake. In Seattle, I had a fantastic chocolate cupcake from Macrina Bakery, frosted with maple buttercream. This cake, to me, was perfect - moist, dark, chocolatey and satisfyingly dense. Macrina also has a cookbook, and I was pleased to see the recipe for the cake printed there! So this week, I borrowed the book from the library and tried it out. I learned the recipe is very forgiving, as I measured my sugar out wrong, then added it right after I popped it into the oven, and it still came out great. Although I did the maple-flavored Neoclassic Buttercream and it wasn't as light as I'd hoped for. Anyway, if you've got a great maple buttercream recipe to share, please let me know as it goes great with chocolate cake.

edited to say that the Neoclassic recipe was from RLB's Cake Bible. And, my usual standby chocolate cake was the Cook's Illustrated Sour Cream one I reveiwed earlier, as it's incredibly easy to make, tastes great, bakes up perfect and the crumb is exactly what I'm looking for. I've tried the Double Chocolate Cake too many times and it always ends up too crumbly for me. If anyone locally (or Ling, ehem) who has consistently baked up this cake well and loves it, would be willing to share a piece with me or critique my methods so I know if it's something I'm doing to make the end product not end up well, I'd love it. I'm just trying to make the world a better place with better chocolate cake.

Edited by skyflyer3, 22 September 2006 - 04:38 PM.


#582 Desiderio

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 04:45 PM

Thank you for sharing you experience Sky,I am puzzled as well with the double chocolate cake .I am about to taste the chocolate sour cream one ( CI one ).keep my finger cross :raz: .
Vanessa

#583 Desiderio

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 06:22 PM

Ok definately the chocolate sour cream is a winner.texture is great fine not very crumbly, and very nice taste.I think its a keeper ( ohh finally ) :biggrin:
Vanessa

#584 merstar

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Posted 23 September 2006 - 12:14 PM

Desiderio,
I'm glad the cake turned out well!
There's nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with CHOCOLATE.

#585 miladyinsanity

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 01:40 AM

Ok definately  the chocolate sour cream is a winner.texture is great fine not very crumbly, and very nice taste.I think its a keeper ( ohh finally ) :biggrin:

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Really? Are you sure you don't want to test other recipes? Just in case, you know? :laugh:
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Totally More-ish: The New and Improved Foodblog

#586 RodneyCk

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 09:28 AM

It has been quite awhile since I have been through all this thread, and it is one of my favorites to read, so many good results, tips and photos to illustrate the journey, if you want to call it that. :biggrin:

What I can not remember and could be very crucial to this thread was if there were any guidelines ever drawn for the "Best Chocolate Cake?" There are many different variations and from what I can tell, the ones being tested in this thread fall mostly into the Devil's Food variety.

I have developed, so far, three of my own chocolate cake recipes which include variations for even more possibilities. They are;

1. Fudge-like chocolate cake, probably closest to the Devil's Food variety
-which by decreasing the flour can turn into a flourless-like chocolate cake

2. Cake-like (or German Chocolate Cake but intensified with lots of chocolate, where most German Chocolate cakes fail)
-which by adjusting the leavening can be turned into a Browny-like chocolate cake.

3. Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake which is denser, usually baked in a square/rectangular pan. Butter is the key in this type of cake, increased to provide for the moisture. - no variation here yet.

4. (working on this one next) Chocolate Sponge cake - dark, moist with more eggs added to give it a slightly more spongy texture.

Trying to find the "one", if that is even possible, might cause less hair pulling frustration if the type of cake sought after was defined, especially when it comes to chocolate cakes. Looking back at page 1, I do not think it ever was, other than "the best chocolate cake."

#587 Ling

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 11:43 AM

I've tried the Double Chocolate Cake too many times and it always ends up too crumbly for me.  If anyone locally (or Ling, ehem) who has consistently baked up this cake well and loves it, would be willing to share a piece with me or critique my methods so I know if it's something I'm doing to make the end product not end up well, I'd love it. 

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I haven't made this cake in a few months now, but I'll PM you in advance the next time I'm down in Seattle and make this cake. :smile:

#588 fodgycakes

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 03:28 PM

Update: I made the tweaked double chocolate cake as cupcakes with some additional tweaks. I decreased the baking soda to 1 tsp from 2 tsp and increased the eggs to 4.5 eggs. The tweaked version says 1/2 - 3/4 cup vegetable oil and I went with 3/4 cup. Baked at 325 for about half an hour for cupcakes that were about 1/2 cup batter. I made a 2/3 batch and it made 24 small cupcakes. They were so good. When I first made this cake I think I used just 1/2 cup vegetable oil and it wasn't as good as I was expecting, this time around it really came together as what I was looking for.
Michelle Pham

I like pie.

#589 Desiderio

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 07:22 PM

Update: I made the tweaked double chocolate cake as cupcakes with some additional tweaks. I decreased the baking soda to 1 tsp from 2 tsp and increased the eggs to 4.5 eggs. The tweaked version says 1/2 - 3/4 cup vegetable oil and I went with 3/4 cup. Baked at 325 for about half an hour for cupcakes that were about 1/2 cup batter. I made a 2/3 batch and it made 24 small cupcakes. They were so good. When I first made this cake I think I used just 1/2 cup vegetable oil and it wasn't as good as I was expecting, this time around it really came together as what I was looking for.

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Michelle , thats good news then ,I think later on I will try redoing this cake with your suggestions .I have to resay that the chocolate sour cream cake is soo good and stays moist and chocolatey even right out of the fridge .
Vanessa

#590 merstar

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 07:28 PM

...I have to resay that the chocolate sour cream cake is soo good and stays moist and chocolatey even right out of the fridge .

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Also, the leftover slices (if there are any), freeze beautifully.
There's nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with CHOCOLATE.

#591 Desiderio

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 12:35 AM

...I have to resay that the chocolate sour cream cake is soo good and stays moist and chocolatey even right out of the fridge .

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Also, the leftover slices (if there are any), freeze beautifully.

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Ahh yes I have like 3 cakes in the freezer hihihi!Wel only one of them is the good one unfortunally :raz:
Vanessa

#592 fodgycakes

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 11:24 AM

Here's a picture of one of the cupcakes. I took them camping this weekend and my zip-top of beautiful Italian meringue buttercream was left in the hot car too long. ): I'm home now and wanted to eat one right away so I placed a big homemade marshmallow on top and zapped in the microwave for a few.

Posted Image
Michelle Pham

I like pie.

#593 SweetSide

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 12:37 PM

Here's a picture of one of the cupcakes. I took them camping this weekend and my zip-top of beautiful Italian meringue buttercream was left in the hot car too long. ): I'm home now and wanted to eat one right away so I placed a big homemade marshmallow on top and zapped in the microwave for a few.

Posted Image

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Still looks delectable -- and I'm sure it tasted that way too!
Cheryl, The Sweet Side

#594 Desiderio

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 04:44 PM

Here's a picture of one of the cupcakes. I took them camping this weekend and my zip-top of beautiful Italian meringue buttercream was left in the hot car too long. ): I'm home now and wanted to eat one right away so I placed a big homemade marshmallow on top and zapped in the microwave for a few.

Posted Image

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Michelle the cupcake looks great, moist and chcolatey , thank you for posting the pic ad the tips :smile:
Vanessa

#595 Desiderio

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Posted 30 September 2006 - 02:40 PM

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This is the sour cream chocolate cake that I frostes with the rich vanilla buttercream frosting , the recipe I took from the CI best recipe book, and I simply love it , its great smooth and has a great mouthfeel and taste , I did add vanilla bean as well as vanilla extract I think its worth it ,I am going to bring it for our neighbor bbq this afternoon.
Vanessa

#596 golfgirl1227

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Posted 04 October 2006 - 07:27 PM

I've been following this thread for quite awhile, but haven't made any of these yet.

Can someone tell me, is WhiteTruffleGirl's version (the one on page 15 or 16) the final version of the Epicurious recipe, or has there been another version?

TIA!

#597 merstar

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Posted 04 October 2006 - 07:31 PM

Posted Image
This is the sour cream chocolate cake  that I frostes with the rich vanilla buttercream frosting , the recipe I took from the CI best recipe book, and I simply love it , its great smooth and has a great mouthfeel and taste , I did add vanilla bean as well as vanilla extract I think its worth it ,I am going to bring it for our neighbor bbq this afternoon.

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Your cake looks beautiful, Desiderio!
There's nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with CHOCOLATE.

#598 fodgycakes

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Posted 04 October 2006 - 09:18 PM

I've been following this thread for quite awhile, but haven't made any of these yet.

Can someone tell me, is WhiteTruffleGirl's version (the one on page 15 or 16) the final version of the Epicurious recipe, or has there been another version?

TIA!

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She made quite a few changes, all with a certain reasoning, and she favors her tweaks to the original round of tweaks. I used some of her advice, like reducing the leavening and increasing the eggs and my first attempt was pretty good but not great and the second time I made the cake, I increased the oil and it was perfect. I tried a creaming method that first time like she did and used the original directions the second time but I don't know if the improvement might have been solely in the increase in oil. Here's what I keep in my recipe file to note the tweaks..:

Double Chocolate Cake

1½ oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1½ oz semi-sweet chocolate, chopped (or no unsweetened, all semi-sweet)
1½ cups cocoa powder (regular or Dutch process)
1 cup +1 TB - 1½ cups hot brewed coffee *I used 1½
1 TB espresso powder
4 oz. (8 TB) unsalted butter, melted
1½ cups white sugar
1 cup light brown sugar
2¾ cups cake flour
1-2 teasp baking soda *I used 1 tsp
¾ teasp baking powder
1¼ teasp salt
3-5 lrg eggs *I used 4.5 (because I did a 2/3 batch so using 3 eggs for that was easier)
½-¾ cup vegetable oil *I used ¾ cup
1½ cups sour cream (or buttermilk)
2 teasp vanilla

1. Preheat oven to 300°F. Grease two 9”x2" pans. Line bottoms with rounds of wax paper/parchment and grease paper.
2. Into a medium bowl, pour the hot coffee, mixed with the espresso powder, over chocolate, cocoa, and melted butter; blend till smooth. Let mixture cool slightly, stirring occasionally, until chocolate is completely melted and mixture is smooth.
3. Into a large bowl sift together sugars, flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
4. In another large bowl with an electric mixer beat eggs until thickened slightly and lemon colored (about 3 minutes with a stand mixer). Slowly add oil, sour cream, vanilla. Add melted chocolate mixture, beating until combined well.
5. Add dry ingredients and beat on medium speed until just combined well.
6. Divide batter between pans and bake in middle of oven until a tester inserted in center comes out clean, about 60 to 70 minutes (watch carefully--timing may vary).
7. Cool layers completely in pans on racks.
8. Run a thin knife around edges of pans and invert layers onto racks. Carefully remove wax paper.

 

 

 

 

[Moderator note: This topic continues here, Finding the Best Chocolate Cake Recipe (Part 2)]


Edited by Mjx, 01 November 2013 - 04:51 PM.
Moderator note added.

Michelle Pham

I like pie.





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