If you like all things rich, dark, and chocolatey, then you'll want to plunge headlong into this and never want to come out! It is soft, moist, deliciously decadent and richly deserving of any chocolate lover's undying devotion....Of course it does involve a few more steps than an everyday chocolate cake, but this is for special occasions and well worth it. During my childhood birthdays, my mom used to bake this and every year saw the same cake because it's the only one I ever wanted! So when thinking of cakes to bake for my son's birthday, this was an obvious winner-after all it's a family tradition and some traditions are best left unchanged!
I have to add that not only is this from my mom's recipe file but also from a much-cherished family friend of ours, who is a world-class culinary expert herself-Leela aunty....It always turns out perfect and this time, when we had the celebration at my son's daycare, the teachers had a bakery-bought cake also for him, but they actually said this cake was so good that they didn't feel like eating the bakery-bought one after it was cut....the best compliment any home baker can get, isn't it?
For the sandwich filling and the topping:
- 2 cups all purpose flour (maida)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 cups sugar, powdered (keep half cup aside for the sandwich filling)
- 1/2 cup sugar, as it is
- 3/4 cup yoghurt
- 3/4th teaspoon cooking soda
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder
- 320 g butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
- Mix the half cup powdered sugar with 1 tablespoon cocoa powder and 1 teaspoon melted butter. Stir into a paste with a little milk or fresh cream, as per the consistency you desire.
- Sieve the flour with the baking powder and keep aside.
- Mix the yoghurt with the cooking soda and keep aside for 30 minutes.
- Separate the egg whites from the yolks. Keep 2 yolks in one bowl and 1 yolk in another.
- Beat the egg whites until stiff.
- In a bowl, mix the cocoa with 1 cup hot water and the half cup unpowdered sugar. Stir on low heat until it becomes thick. Leave to cool. When cool, stir in one beaten egg yolk and keep aside.
- In a mixing bowl, beat together the butter and 1-1/2 cups powdered sugar (remember you kept aside half cup for the filling!). Beat until it combines into a uniformly smooth paste (using an electric beater is the best bet for this).
- Add 2 of the egg yolks and and beat again until well combined.
- Now alternately put in the flour and the curd, mixing with a wooden spatula until well combined, but don't mix too much.
- Lastly add the egg whites and fold them in gently.
- Preheat the oven to 180C.
- Grease a cake tin well or use a nonstick one and transfer the batter to the tin.
- Bake at 180 C for 45 minutes or until a tester/knife comes out clean.
- Leave to cool.
- Turn over onto a plate. Cut the cake into two (horizontally).
- Spread the filling on top of one half of the cake and put the other half cake on top. Press lightly.
- Spread the same cocoa mixture on top of the cake and the sides.
- Decorate as you wish!
This time, I made two variations, totally by accident, and it turned out just fine, so you might like to try it out too-I used just 200 g of butter and also used the yoghurt without mixing any cooking soda into it.
For the decoration, I used M&Ms as my son likes it, but you could also use cherries or dried flowers or icing-unleash your creativity (must admit I'm not good at this!).
You could also bake the batter in two cake tins, so then you could avoid the whole cutting business!
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