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Layered Salted Caramel Chocolate Cake Recipe

Layered Salted Caramel Chocolate Cake Recipe

My beauty therapist follows my blog and last year when I was in there getting tortured, lovely treatments she whipped out her phone and showed me a picture and a link for a recipe to this cake.  I was like, whoa – seriously? There was like 13 steps or something involved in the production of this cake but then I started to study it and realised the cake itself was very similar to my red velvet cake, the making of the caramel was easy-peasy and that it was actually a relatively inexpensive cake to make (compared to some of the ridiculous concoctions I have come up with). You can totally make this cake in one day if you start early in the morning but I think it will be better over two days because (a) it will taste better as the cake will absorb some of the caramel sauce overnight and (b) be way less stressful, not that it’s hard – don’t think it’s hard cause it’s not.

It’s a really, really moist cake so make sure you line and grease the baking tins really, really well to make getting them out easy!

Oh….and I sliced and wrapped up a piece of this cake and took it down to her at the salon and she hands-down swore it was the best thing she’d ever eaten in her life!!

Cake
225g (not quite 2 cups) plain flour
350g (1 3/4 cups) caster sugar
85g (2/3 cup) cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
2 eggs
250ml (1 cup) buttermilk
125ml (1/2 cup) vegetable oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
250ml (1 cup) hot coffee

Salted Caramel
300g (1 1/2 cups) caster sugar
60ml (1/4 cup) water
280ml (1 cup + 1/8 cup) thickened cream
30g (2 tbsp) unsalted butter
1/2 tsp – 1 tbsp sea salt flakes (to taste)

Swiss Meringue Buttercream
200g (1 cup) caster sugar
4 egg whites
250g (1 cup) softened unsalted butter, in tbsp pieces
1 tsp vanilla extract
6 tbsp salted caramel

Chocolate Ganache
200g dark chocolate
200ml (3/4 cup) thickened cream

Cake: Preheat oven to 180C/160C fan-forced/350F. Grease and line two 20cm/8 inch round tins.

Sift the flour, cocoa powder (cocoa powder will always need sifting or you will get lumps), baking powder and bicarb of soda together into a large bowl, then stir in the sugar. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, buttermilk, oil and vanilla and pour into the dry ingredients and beat until smooth. Then add the hot coffee gradually until it is all combined. It is quite a runny batter. Divide the batter between the tins and bake for 35 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean or with just a few moist crumbs but no wet batter.  Once baked, remove to a wire rack and leave to cool completely in the tins.

If you are assembling the cake the next day, wrap the cakes still in their tins in plastic wrap and refrigerate.

Salted Caramel: Place the sugar and water into a deep, heavy-bottom saucepan and bring to the boil,Swirling the pan only, do not stir until the sugar is dissolved and the colour changes to amber. Remove from heat and slowly pour in the cream, while whisking – it is extremely hot and may spatter and it will rise up in the pan. When the bubbling stops, add the butter and whisk until combined.

If it’s not completely smooth, return to a medium heat and cook at a gentle simmer, whisking for a couple of minutes or until it is smooth. Add the salt a little at a time until it is the right saltiness for you (but be careful when you taste as it could still be really hot). Leave to cool completely in the fridge.

Swiss Buttercream: Place egg whites and sugar in a clean heatproof bowl and place over a pan of simmering water (do not let the base of the bowl touch the water) and whisk until sugar has dissolved completely and the mixture is warm – if you rub some of the mixture between your fingers it should be smooth and you shouldn’t be able to feel any grains.

Remove the bowl from the heat and using an electric mixer, whisk the egg whites until thick and glossy (about 10 minutes). On a lower speed and making sure the meringue is cool; add the butter, a tablespoon at a time, making sure each addition is fully incorporated before adding the next. If the meringue curdles, just continue to add the butter and continue whipping and if it remains curdled, remove about 4tbsp of the mixture and melt in the microwave for about 15 seconds and then add back to the bowl while mixing and it should go smooth. Then add the vanilla extract and salted caramel. If the mixture seems a little runny because the butter was too soft or it’s a hot day place in the fridge for 15 to 20 minutes to firm up before using.

Assembling: Remove the cakes from the fridge and lay a piece of baking paper on the bench before turning them out. Line a plate or cake tray with pieces of baking paper so you can slide them out from under the cake easily when are you finishing decorating the cake. Using a long, serrated knife carefully slice through the centre of each cake so that you end up with four layers. Carefully pick up the first layer and put on your plate and spread generously with buttercream, then drizzle a few teaspoons of salted caramel over the top.

caramel cake 9

 

Continue the other layers and use the rest of the buttercream to spread a thin layer over the top and sides of the cake. If will look messy and the crumbs will poke through but that’s OK because you will be finishing with the chocolate ganache. Place the cake in the fridge to chill while you make the ganache so it can set.

Chocolate Ganache: Place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl and heat the cream in a small saucepan or the microwave until it starts to simmer then pour over the chocolate and let it sit for 5 minutes before stirring. Allow the ganache to cool to room temperature then pour over the cake using a palette knife to smooth over the edges.When you are ready to serve, pour some salted caramel over each piece. This cake is very rich so serve in small slices!

caramel cake 11

Layered Salted Caramel Chocolate Cake Recipe

Ingredients

  • Cake
  • 225g (not quite 2 cups) plain flour
  • 350g (1 3/4 cups) caster sugar
  • 85g (2/3 cup) cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
  • 2 eggs
  • 250ml (1 cup) buttermilk
  • 125ml (1/2 cup) vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 250ml (1 cup) hot coffee
  • Salted Caramel
  • 300g (1 1/2 cups) caster sugar
  • 60ml (1/4 cup) water
  • 280ml (1 cup + 1/8 cup) thickened cream
  • 30g (2 tbsp) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 tsp – 1 tbsp sea salt flakes (to taste)
  • Swiss Meringue Buttercream
  • 200g (1 cup) caster sugar
  • 4 egg whites
  • 250g (1 cup) softened unsalted butter, in tbsp pieces
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 6 tbsp salted caramel
  • Chocolate Ganache
  • 200g dark chocolate
  • 200ml (3/4 cup) thickened cream

Instructions

  1. Cake: Preheat oven to 180C/160C fan-forced/350F. Grease and line two 20cm/8 inch round tins.
  2. Sift the flour, cocoa powder (cocoa powder will always need sifting or you will get lumps), baking powder and bicarb of soda together into a large bowl, then stir in the sugar. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, buttermilk, oil and vanilla and pour into the dry ingredients and beat until smooth. Then add the hot coffee gradually until it is all combined. It is quite a runny batter. Divide the batter between the tins and bake for 35 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean or with just a few moist crumbs but no wet batter. Once baked, remove to a wire rack and leave to cool completely in the tins.
  3. If you are assembling the cake the next day, wrap the cakes still in their tins in plastic wrap and refrigerate.
  4. Salted Caramel: Place the sugar and water into a deep, heavy-bottom saucepan and bring to the boil,Swirling the pan only, do not stir until the sugar is dissolved and the colour changes to amber. Remove from heat and slowly pour in the cream, while whisking – it is extremely hot and may spatter and it will rise up in the pan. When the bubbling stops, add the butter and whisk until combined.
  5. If it’s not completely smooth, return to a medium heat and cook at a gentle simmer, whisking for a couple of minutes or until it is smooth. Add the salt a little at a time until it is the right saltiness for you (but be careful when you taste as it could still be really hot). Leave to cool completely in the fridge.
  6. Swiss Buttercream: Place egg whites and sugar in a clean heatproof bowl and place over a pan of simmering water (do not let the base of the bowl touch the water) and whisk until sugar has dissolved completely and the mixture is warm – if you rub some of the mixture between your fingers it should be smooth and you shouldn’t be able to feel any grains.
  7. Remove the bowl from the heat and using an electric mixer, whisk the egg whites until thick and glossy (about 10 minutes). On a lower speed and making sure the meringue is cool; add the butter, a tablespoon at a time, making sure each addition is fully incorporated before adding the next. If the meringue curdles, just continue to add the butter and continue whipping and if it remains curdled, remove about 4tbsp of the mixture and melt in the microwave for about 15 seconds and then add back to the bowl while mixing and it should go smooth. Then add the vanilla extract and salted caramel. If the mixture seems a little runny because the butter was too soft or it’s a hot day place in the fridge for 15 to 20 minutes to firm up before using.
  8. Assembling: Remove the cakes from the fridge and lay a piece of baking paper on the bench before turning them out. Line a plate or cake tray with pieces of baking paper so you can slide them out from under the cake easily when are you finishing decorating the cake. Using a long, serrated knife carefully slice through the centre of each cake so that you end up with four layers. Carefully pick up the first layer and put on your plate and spread generously with buttercream, then drizzle a few teaspoons of salted caramel over the top.
  9. Continue the other layers and use the rest of the buttercream to spread a thin layer over the top and sides of the cake. If will look messy and the crumbs will poke through but that’s OK because you will be finishing with the chocolate ganache. Place the cake in the fridge to chill while you make the ganache so it can set.
  10. Chocolate Ganache: Place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl and heat the cream in a small saucepan or the microwave until it starts to simmer then pour over the chocolate and let it sit for 5 minutes before stirring. Allow the ganache to cool to room temperature then pour over the cake using a palette knife to smooth over the edges.When you are ready to serve, pour some salted caramel over each piece. This cake is very rich so serve in small slices!
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Carolyn Murphy

Carolyn Murphy

Carolyn Murphy is a married mother of three and regularly provides us with recipes and strange but true stories about her life. When she’s not here, she can also be found on her website pinkpostitnote.com where all her other recipes are located!

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