Last Friday was me and Jeremy’s six-year anniversary. When I got home from work Jeremy surprised me with a mini picnic on the living room floor, candles lit all over the place, and the best card ever. That night we went out to a fancy dinner at Waterloo & City, an English-style gastropub, and had an amazing meal. It was my first time going to an expensive/fancy restaurant because I usually try to budget my spending really well, but we figured that after six years together we deserved to go to a nice restaurant. I had wanted to make a cake for our anniversary, but couldn’t get it done during the week, so last Saturday I decided to continue the fancy trend and make a fancy blackout cake with strawberry cream cheese icing, strawberry preserves, and chocolate ganache. I got the blackout cake recipe from King Arthur Flour but changed it a little bit to make it more moist, and I used this tutorial from I am Baker for the frosting technique I applied to the sides of the cake. We loved the cake, it was just beautiful to look at and was incredibly rich, so word to the wise, when you’re serving it cut a smaller piece than you would think you’d need, as you get full from it very quickly.
Now to the fun bit, the giveaway! In honor of love, I decided to make a giveaway basket compromised of one of the things I cherish most in this world, chocolate. And not just any chocolate, but my favorite chocolate brands. Yipee! The entry period ends February 9th at 11:59 pm PST, and the giveaway items include:
I always get them at Whole Foods, but I’m sure you can find them at other locations if you wanted to pick some up for yourself. But first, you should enter the giveaway! To enter, please leave a comment below about your favorite chocolate-related food. For extra entries, you can:
– Follow me on Twitter and leave a separate comment saying you did.
– Like Adventures in Cooking on Facebook and leave a separate comment saying you did.
– Follow me on Pinterest and leave a separate comment saying you did.
If you already do any of those things, just leave a comment saying you do. If you don’t have a Pinterest account but would like one, email me with your email address and I’ll invite you. The giveaway is only open to residents of the United States, because of shipping expenses. Best of luck, I’m looking forward to hearing about your chocolate-related favorites for future recipe inspirations!
Chocolate Blackout Cake with Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting
- 4 Large Eggs
- 2 Cups Sugar
- 2 Cups Flour
- 1 Cup Vegetable Oil
- 1 Cup Water
- 3/4 Cup Cocoa Powder
- 1/2 Cup Milk Chocolate Chips
- 2 Tablespoons Cornstarch
- 2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
- 2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract
- 1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1 Teaspoon Salt
- Parchment Paper
Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting
- 1 Cup Butter 1 stick, softened
- 1 Cup Cream Cheese 8 ounce package
- 1/3 Cup Strawberries pureed
- 4 Cups Powdered Sugar
- 1 and 1/2 Cups Strawberries about 3/4 lb, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 Cup Sugar
- 1/3 Cup Water
- 2 and 1/4 Cups Dark Chocolate Chips
- 2 Cups Heavy Cream
- First make the chocolate ganache. Pour the chocolate chips into a large bowl. Heat the heavy cream in a small pot until it becomes hot and just begins to have bubbles coming up along the sides. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and stir until all of the chocolate is melted and they are completely combined. Allow it to cool for 2 hours, then whisk it with an electric mixer for minutes to help it gain some air and fluffiness.
- To make the strawberry preserves, heat the sugar, water, and strawberries in a small pot over medium high heat, stirring every couple minutes. Continue heating until the mixture begins to boil rapidly, then lower the heat and allow the mixture to simmer for 40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes or so. Remove from heat and allow to cool for 20 minutes before placing it in the refrigerator to chill.
- To make the strawberry cream cheese frosting, beat the butter and cream cheese until well blended, add the strawberry puree and continue mixing until it is completely incorporated. Then add the powdered sugar and mix until a fluffy frosting forms. Place it in the refrigerator to cool.
- While everything is cooling, make the cake. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Then cut (4) 8-inch circles out of parchment paper and place them in the bottoms of 4 well-greased 8-inch cake pans. Set them aside. You could also do it with just (2) 8-inch cake pans for a two-layer cake.
- Mix together the dry ingredients until well blended. Then add the vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla extract and beat until thoroughly combined. Add the water and stir until blended. Stir in the milk chocolate chips. The batter will be very thin.
- Evenly distribute the batter between 4 cake pans and bake in the oven for 25 - 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. If you are doing a 2 layer cake it will be on the longer spectrum of cooking time, if you do a 4 layer cake it will be on the shorter spectrum of cooking time. Remove the pans from the oven and allow them to cool for 15 minutes before removing the cake from the pans, and allow the cake layers to cool completely on a plate or wire rack.
- Once the cake has cooled completely, begin layering and frosting the cake, with strawberry cream cheese frosting and strawberry preserves between each layer. Frost the entire outside of the cake with the strawberry cream cheese frosting. Then decorate the outer walls of the cake with the chocolate ganache using this technique from I am Baker with an 11mm circular frosting tip. Enjoy!