I asked my dad if I could make a cake to help with the celebration. He told me he considered just getting one from Costco. Wha???? Not that I’m against Costco (I love that store in fact…) But, I’m always needing reasons to make totally awesome cakes, and I can’t think of a better reason than to celebrate my parents being together for 30 yrs.
I even had something already picked out that I wanted to create.
I loved eating this cake. It was moist, the ganache layer added just an edge of rich chocolate, all covered in a rich and smooth raspberry buttercream. My favorite was getting some of each flavor in a bite.
Chocolate Cake adapted from Sweetapolita Makes 1 jelly roll/half sheet cake
2 3/4 cups all-purpose Flour
2 2/3 cups Sugar
2 3/4 teaspoon Baking Soda
2 3/4 teaspoon Baking Powder
1 cup Cocoa Powder (I used Dutch process cocoa from Sprouts and it was delicious)
1 3/4 teaspoons Salt
2/3 cup vegetable Oil
1 1/8 cups buttermilk
1 cup hot Water (I just did hot from tap, probably around 120 degrees)
2 teaspoons Vanilla
*this recipe is kind of like a box mix, except you make the powder part. But then you just dump everything else in. easy*
- Butter the bottom of a jelly roll/half sheet pan (13”x18”x1”) and line it with either parchment or wax paper. Preheat oven to 350.
- Sift all dry ingredients into a large bowl (I used my standing mixer bowl).
- Add all wet ingredients and mix on medium for 2 minutes with paddle attachment, scraping the sides as needed. (I know that a hand mixer would work fine too)
- Mine seemed really airy after mixing, so if yours does too, turn it to low for another minute or 2.
- Pour into prepared pan, batter will be fairly runny.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes, until toothpick comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached. Cool in pan on a wire rack.
Raspberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream
(for better step by step instructions look here)
1 1/3 C Egg Whites (I used 9 egg whites, it was slightly under, but totally fine)
2 C granulated Sugar
pinch of Salt
3 C (6 sticks) butter cut into 1T bits, at room temp
seedless raspberry jam, to taste (maybe 1/3-1/2 C)
- Combine egg whites and sugar in a double boiler over simmering water.
- Stir and cook until all the sugar is dissolved, candy thermometer reading about 150
- Whip the egg/sugar mixture on high until it is smooth and glossy, and the bowl and frosting feel room temperature, no longer warm. (my kitchen was really hot that day, so this took a super long time –like probably 20 minutes. I eventually stuck an ice pack around the bottom of the bowl to help it cool down faster, and that worked great.)
- Turn mixer to low and add the bits of butter 1 T at a time, letting it incorporate before adding more.
- Once all the butter is added, turn the mixer to med-high and let mix until it comes together.
- Add the raspberry jam a little bit a time, letting it incorporate before adding more.
Whipped Ganache Filling (for better step by step instructions look here)
8 oz chocolate, chopped
1/2 C heavy whipping cream
- Put chocolate in bowl.
- Heat cream over stove over medium heat until almost boiling.
- Pour cream over chocolate and let sit for a few minutes.
- Stir together cream and chocolate until all chocolate is melted and it is smooth.
- Let sit until set up and no longer runny (throw it in the fridge to make it go faster)
- Once set up, whip until light and fluffy.
*you will want to whip this as close to when you use it as possible, otherwise it might get too hard to spread easily*
Assembling & Decorating the Cake
You will want plenty of time to assemble this cake. I wouldn’t recommend trying to rush it.
- The cake needs to be chilled, so either put it in the fridge for several hours, or in the freezer for 1/2-1 hour. Cut the cake into 4 equal parts:
- The illustration on the left will give you more of a long, skinny rectangle, the one on the right is not as long and skinny. I did the one on the right.
- Place one of the quarters onto your serving tray. My cooking sheet does not have straight sides, so I cut the edges to make them straight up and down.
- Level layer if needed, and frost with desired amount of whipped ganache. Repeat with next layers alternating between buttercream and whipped ganache, and place the top layer upside down.
- Place in the freezer for 15-30 minutes, I promise this will help you frost faster and easier.
- Frost the top of the cake with desired amount, and just a thin layer of frosting all way around the sides. You’ll be adding ruffles, so you want it to be thin, it will just help the ruffles stick better.
- For the ruffles, use a petal tip (I used Wilton #104).
- Hold the piping bag at a 90 degree angle, as close to the cake as possible, with the wide part of the tip next to the cake, the skinny part farther from the cake.
- Make a back and forth motion as you work your way up the cake, layer upon layer.
- Do ruffles all the way around the sides, until it’s all covered.
Because of the ruffles, there is a lot of frosting on this cake. So be sure to cut big enough on the first slice
otherwise you might have a person who’s slice is half frosting :) But it worked out, he just added another slice on top of that one.
Happy thirty years to my wonderful parents!