My go-to chocolate cake recipe: Yo’s Ultimate Chocolate Cake
But as you know, normal chocolate is too mainstream for me and I’m a big fan of dark chocolate.
So I went looking for different types of cocoa powder at “fancy” ingredients supermarkets (normal baking ingredients stores only seem to carry regular cocoa powder). I found Meriah’s dark and extra dark cocoa powder at Jaya Grocer. I was so excited, I immediately stocked up both types. I use different cocoa powder for different occasions, depending on the type of cake and the people it’s serving.
So I’ve just discovered that the link containing Yo’s chocolate cake recipe has changed and her ever so in-demand sizing charts have disappeared. I personally found those charts really helpful so it’s such a shame that’s it not on there anymore. Anyway here is the guideline I usually use.
- 2 sticks unsalted butter
- 2 1/2 cups castor (fine granulated) sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup cocoa powder (you can substitute for dark or extra dark or even black depending on your preference)
- 2 cups boiling water
- 2 3/4 cups multi-purpose flour
- 2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. salt
- Whisk water and cocoa together and set aside to cool. (I actually prefer not to use a whisk in this case because the cocoa bits get stuck in the whisk. I prefer to just use a spoon and mix it thoroughly)
- Cream butter and sugar in your electric stand mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy – approx. 8-10 minutes. While the mixer does its thing, you can sift your dry ingredients together (flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt).*
- Add the eggs to your butter & sugar mixture two at a time, until incorporated.
- Preheat the oven at 175°C.
- At this time, your cocoa mixture should have cooled slightly. Time to add everything into your butter mixture. Alternately add in dry ingredients and cocoa mixture in the following order: flour – cocoa – flour – cocoa – flour – cocoa – flour.
- Pour the well-mixed batter into a lined 10 inch round pan and bake for 1 hour 20 minutes. (I would start with an hour and keep testing to see if it’s done)
*Step 2 calls for the creaming and sifting to be done at the same time. There are two things to keep in mind here:
1) You will most probably need to keep scraping down the sides of your mixer bowl while sifting your dry ingredients. And most of the time sifting the dry ingredients will require the use of your fingers to level everything properly. In my case, my fingers sometimes get moist with butter when I go to scrape down the sides of my bowl. Tip: Keep a paper towel nearby so you can keep wiping your hands between stations.
2) Of course not everyone has a stand mixer, some of you may have a hand mixer instead. Don’t fret! In situations like these, I actually prefer a hand mixer. Not that I don’t love my stand mixer. But with a hand mixer, you can control where the beater goes in the bowl and you won’t need to scrape down the sides as much. Only thing is you can’t multi-task like we do here in this recipe. So you will need to do one after the other when it comes to creaming and sifting. That being said, you may now wonder why you need to trade in your hand mixer for a stand mixer if you were already thinking of it before. My advice would be, don’t trade it in. Just add on. Have both. Stand mixers come in really handy many other times, especially when you want to whip egg whites.
Anyway let’s now call this 1 batch of the chocolate cake recipe which yields 4 lbs of batter and will bake nicely in a 10 inch round pan. The following chart shows you how to divide or multiply the batch according to different pan sizes. (E.g. divide the recipe by 8 to fit in a 4 inch round but take a quarter for a 4 inch square or a 5 inch round)
Those of you who are familiar with Yo’s sizing chart, you may notice there are slight differences here. But I have adapted the numbers to ones that are more easily divided. And some of which I’ve tried and tested. For instance, the 6 inch round cake originally called for slightly less than half the recipe but I’ve baked exactly 1/2 in a 6 inch pan before and it worked.
And for those of you who find grams more easily divisible than cups, you can refer to my go-to conversion chart.
As for the dark chocolate part, I absolutely love using dark or extra dark cocoa powder as it provides a beautiful contrast to its icing counterpart. If you use a nice light-coloured buttercream or fondant icing, the colours contrast really well.
Even if the colour doesn’t play a part, the sweet tastes of ganache, buttercream, and fondant also contrasts really well with the bittersweet taste of the dark chocolate.