Sinful Midnight Cake

Do you realize how many different chocolate cake recipes there are in this world?  Way too many, and settling on a recipe (in my opinion) is half the battle.

I settled on a cake that doesn’t have a single calorie in it.  No sir, I’m certain of that.  And if you believe me, I’ve got a bridge I’ll sell you.  Cash only please, and no refunds!

This recipe was adapted from Betty Crocker’s Cookbook – copyrighted in 1969.  I’m not sure how it got it’s name because it really isn’t as dark as midnight, but I suspect it might be hard to stay out of at midnight. In fairness to Betty Crocker, it should be noted that I didn’t have enough baking cocoa on hand when I made this recipe so I substituted some of the cocoa with melted semi-sweet chocolate chips.   It’s possible that if I had used the cocoa that the recipe originally called for then it might have produced a darker colored cake.

I’ve included one of my recently learned secrets on how to handle fresh baked layer cakes in this post.  Until recently, I struggled with uneven cake tops.  If you have this problem make sure you read this entire post.. 

Sinful Midnight Cake

2 eggs

1 2/3 c. sugar

1/4 c. olive oil

1/2 c. margarine, softened

1/4 c. cocoa

1/2 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted

1 1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. salt

2 1/4 c. all-purpose flour

1 1/4 c. hot water

2 tsp. instant coffee

1 tsp. vanilla extract

Heat oven to 325 degrees.  Grease and line two 9” round layer pans with parchment paper.  Lightly grease parchment paper.

In a large mixing bowl, add eggs, sugar, margarine, oil, cocoa, and melted chocolate.  With electric mixer, mix for 1 minute on low speed.  Add remaining ingredients and mix for 2 minutes on high speed.  Pour into prepared pans.  Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in the center of each cake comes out clean.

Remove cakes from the oven.  Using a clean dishtowel, while the cakes are still warm and in their pans, press them flat.  This saves you from having uneven cake tops when it comes time to decorate them.  Place two large pieces of plastic wrap on a flat surface and flip the cakes out of their pans onto each piece of plastic wrap.  Lightly wrap each cake in the plastic wrap.  This traps the moisture in and will help make your cakes super moist.  Allow cakes to cool thoroughly. 

Unwrap each cake when your ready to frost and decorate them.  

I frosted this cake with a chocolate buttercream icing, but because this recipe calls for a lot of sugar and the cake was sweet, I think I’d opt for a chocolate whipped cream frosting the next time around. 

I am definitely more of a cake fan than an icing fan.  What about you?

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17 thoughts on “Sinful Midnight Cake

  1. Thank you very much for the recipe! I’ve made it for my Dad’s b-day and the cake was very very moist! thank you for the tips! I’ve used cherry confiture as the first layer of filling and then added sour cream as the second layer. Really cool! My parents said it was just like eating a b-day cake from a high quality patisserie shop : ) And I said it all comes to the recipe!

    1. Georgia, I am so glad you had success with the recipe – especially when you are serving for a very special occasion. Your cherry layer sounds delicious. What a great idea! Now you’ve got me wanting to make a cake 🙂 I have no willpower!

      1. ahaha =) I know! I only managed to snatch a tiny piece of this b-day cake but it was delicious! will certainly share your recipe on my blog, managed to make some photos before the cake disappeared…

  2. Chocolate cake with chocolate frosting is always a favorite at our house. I will try your tip for even layers. I slice the tops with fish line tovmske them level and even.

  3. Eileen….like you, I am much more about the cake than the icing. But this cake looks so scrumptious I have only one question. Would it really be that wrong of me to eat this Sinful Midnight Cake for breakfast! Beautiful! : )

  4. I’m an icing girl…the more the better, but not too sweet. This looks great, and I really needed that tip on how to have flat layers!

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