Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Double Layer Chocolate Cherry Cake Surpreme

This cake reminds me of the big beautiful party hat in the children's book "Go Dog Go".  Do you remember that book?   I loved that book as a kid, and of course my favorite part was the party on top of the tree at the end of the book, and the last "hat" that the girl dog wore to impress the boy dog.  That was the hat that finally impressed him, and not only him but any of us who read the book.  But here is the story behind this cake.

Two of my daughters have celebrated their birthday together for most of the last 34 years.  That is because they are twins. They are married now, and have families of their own, but have often been able to celebrate their birthday together,  and would make each other a cake.... and their cakes are always something special.  But this year, they weren't together for their birthday, and so no cake for each other... but our daughter Marie was able to be with us, while our daughter Elizabeth was able to be with our son and his family in North Carolina, which was really special for each of us who had one of them, but what about that special cake?

I was going to make the cake this year, and  I wanted it to be special, because I had to keep up with their wonderful tradition. When they were little I had often made an ice cream cake, with layers of pound cake alternating with layers of ice cream, and frosted with chocolate frosting and then completely covered with M&M's.  They were fun, delicious cakes, although not very pretty.... always a little lopsided and messy looking, but so good.  I considered doing that again, but it seemed to me that it ought to be a little more grown up  type of cake and it should be much prettier than it was in those days.  I wanted it to be chocolate, and I decided cherries would add a variation to  traditional chocolate cake, and it should have some fun decorations, like those cakes of old, but perhaps an upgrade of the chocolate candies, with  at least a flower or two.  So here is the cake I made. I hadn't initially  intended to post the recipe, but it was so good and I did end up taking pictures of it once it was finished, soooo I decided afterwards, that I would go ahead and post it.

I had thought about frosting the cake completely, but once I began building it, my whipped cream started seeping out the edges, and I knew it wouldn't quite work to frost it all, so I left it mostly naked, and just frosted the top. I think if I realized how it would go, I would have made chocolate ganache, and poured it over the top and let it drip down the edges instead of the frosting, then I could have had purposeful drips, and it might have seemed more planned... but oh well, maybe next year.  Anyhow it turned out wonderfully moist,  rich and chocolatey.  The whipped cream and cherry pie filling was amazing with it,  the chocolate decorations were delightful and delicious, and like the dog at the end of the"Go Dog Go" book, everyone really loved it.

 For the Cake:
2 cups organic granulated sugar
1 cup organic unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 cup almond flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup oil (my latest favorite oil to bake with is avocado oil)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water

Instructions for the Cake:
  1. Heat oven to 375°F. Grease two 8 or 9-inch round baking pans.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt. 
  3. In a separate bowl combine the eggs, buttermilk, oil and vanilla and mix well. 
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until well combined.
  5.  Stir in the boiling water ( the batter will be very thin). 
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared pans.
  7. Bake for 25 - 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted  center comes out clean. 
  8. Cool 5 minutes in the pan and then invert onto wire racks to cool completely.
  9. Place in the freezer, and freeze for several hours or overnight (optional). 
For the Frosting:
1/4 cup butter
1cup organic powdered sugar
1/4 cup half and half
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Instructions for the Frosting:
  1. In a medium small saucepan, add half and half, butter and chocolate chips, stir constantly and warm over low heat until melted.
  2. Remove from heat.
  3. Slowly add the powdered sugar to the saucepan, stirring constantly to blend.  
  4. Stir in vanilla.
  5. Allow to cool about 10 minutes. 

For the Filling: 

Whipped cream

Cherry pie filling

For the Decorations: 
Fresh cherries
Chocolate chips
Large chocolate bar
Round chocolates, (Such as Lindt Truffles, or Ferrero Rocher Truffles)white, milk and dark chocolates  for variety
Chocolate cream filled wafer sticks
Chocolate covered cherries or chocolate covered dried cherries
Roses or pretty flowers

How to Assemble: 
  1.  Remove Cakes from freezer, and allow to sit at room temperature 10 - 15 minutes.
  2.  Place one cake onto a cake plate for the bottom layer.  
  3.  Spread with whipped cream.
  4.  Spoon cherry pie filling over whipped cream, (leave a little border of whipped cream on the edge, so that the cherries don't spill over and down the sides of the cake).
  5. Top with remaining cake.
  6.  Frost with Frosting
  7. Decorate by arranging chocolates, cherries and flowers over the top in one big wonderful grouping. When I shopped for the toppings, I looked for a variety of textures and shapes, all with the theme of chocolate, white chocolate and cherries.



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  1. Wow! Your cake is a work of art!!! It's incredibly beautiful like it is. I'm glad you didn't put icing all over. :-) Happy Birthday to your girls!!!

  2. Good Golly, Like I want to eat that Go Dog Go Cake!! Really beautiful Pam!
    Miss you all...
    Hugs, Roxy

  3. Your cake is lovely Pam! What a beautiful job of decorating.