Friday, October 3, 2014

Fun Food Friday- 4-Layer Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake

So last week I showed you how to make the most amazing peanut butter frosting.  When I made the frosting for my cousin's shower I had some left over.  It wasn't enough to make another batch of cupcakes, plus I wasn't sure how fluffy it would be after being in the refrigerator, so I decided to make a cake and use the peanut butter frosting as the filling and then make chocolate frosting for the outside.  And I decided that one layer of peanut butter frosting really wasn't enough, so why not have 4 layers? :)  Yeah, that's how my mind works.  So I made a 4 layer chocolate cake filled with peanut butter frosting and covered with chocolate frosting, then topped with some mini-Reese's and let me tell you, it was amazing!  And it looks pretty impressive.  And it goes a long way (I cut it into 25 pieces).  So if you have some extra peanut butter frosting (if you haven't already eaten it plain :)) and you have to make a dessert to go a long way, try this one, I promise you will not be disappointed.
The first thing you need to do is make the cake.  I made 1 1/2 of my buttermilk brownies recipe and then split it between 2 9 inch square pans.  I line the outside of my pans with these bake even strips (you can get them at Michaels or JoAnn's and they are way cuter now that the ones I have :)).  They help the cake bake more evenly so #1 it bakes faster and #2 you don't have the outsides more done than the insides.  It also makes it so the middle isn't so much higher than the outsides (there still aren't perfectly flat, but much better than without the strips).  I baked them for about 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out of the middle clean.

Ingredients: Chocolate Cake, Peanut Butter Frosting, Butter (which is behind the chocolate chips, nice :)), Chocolate Chips, Shortening, Powdered Sugar, Heavy Whipping Cream, Mini-Reese's, and Vanilla (which I forgot to put in the picture, I was on the ball this day :))
First you want to melt your chocolate chips so there's time for it to cool before you add it to the frosting

In a mixer bowl add butter and shortening...

And blend together...

Until it's nice and creamy

Gradually add the powdered sugar

Once it's all added it will look like this.  Then turn the mixer on high and let it go for a couple of minutes...

Until it looks like this, white and fluffy

Add some cream...

And vanilla.  Let it whip for another couple of minutes.

Then add your chocolate...

And let it mix...

Until you have this yummy, fluffy, delicious chocolate frosting

Now you're ready to assemble your cake.  Slice each cake in half with a long serrated knife (preferably the Cutco bread knife :), I know a great salesman if you need one :)). 

Take one layer (if you don't have a handy dandy cake lifter you can use a flat cookie sheet or a large spatula)

And place on a cake plate (or if you're like me and didn't realize you didn't have a big enough cake plate, just put it right on the cake carrier- I put a little frosting on the plate so the cake doesn't slide off)

Cover the first layer with peanut butter frosting

Then add your next layer.  Repeat this with the rest of the layers

Now you will notice that I did not level off my cakes, I figured it didn't need to be perfectly flat because I wasn't going for a perfect look.  But I will warn you, since it was not perfectly flat when I cut the cake into 25 pieces, they all fell over :), so I highly recommend leveling off the top of the cakes :).  Now another option if you don't have a need for this large of a cake is at this point go ahead and cut the cake into 4 squares.  Then just cover each of the squares with chocolate frosting and freeze whatever you don't need right away.  Then you will have 3 small cakes for later.
I have this handy dandy icing tip that helps you evenly put frosting on the cake.  If you don't have one of these...

Just use a spatula to spread it all over the cake

That looks good, but...

Let's go ahead and put some Reese's on top.  I start with these 4 first...

Then do the corners...

Then just fill it all in until you have 25 on there.  I will warn you that this is one heavy cake, so make sure you have it on a very sturdy plate. 

When it's time to eat just use the mini-Reese's as your guide to cut. Notice how the pieces are trying to fall over? :)  That's because I didn't level off the cakes.  Still tasted good, just didn't look all that pretty.

But Jonathan didn't care how it looked, he was happy to eat it
As was David

As was Micah :)

Chocolate Cake (1 1/2 of my original recipe)
3 cups flour
3 cups sugar
1 1/2 cup (3 sticks) butter
1 1/2 cup boiling water
1/4 + 2 TBS cup cocoa
3/4 cup buttermilk 
3 eggs
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
Sift together flour and sugar into a mixer bowl.  In a saucepan melt butter.  Add water and cocoa and bring to a boil for 30 seconds, stirring constantly.  Pour into bowl with flour/sugar mixture.  Beat on medium/high for 2 minutes.  Add buttermilk, eggs, baking soda and vanilla.  Beat 2 more minutes.  Pour into 2 greased 9 inch square pans.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of a cupcake.  Cool.  Level off the top and cut cake in 2.
Peanut Butter Frosting
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup creamy peanut butter
3 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
In a mixer bowl cream together the butter and peanut butter for 2-3 minutes.  The color will lighten a few shades.  With the mixer on low slowly add the powdered sugar.  Scrape down the bowl to make sure all the sugar got mixed in.  Pour in the heavy cream and beat on high for 3-4 minutes until it is light and fluffy.

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
3/4 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup shortening
4 cups powdered sugar
3 TBS heavy whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted

Cream together butter and shortening.  Gradually add powdered sugar.  When all added mix on high for 2 minutes or until light and fluffy.  Add the cream and vanilla, mix on high for another 2 minutes.  Add cooled chocolate and mix until all combined.

For the cake place one layer on a heavy duty cake plate.  Top with peanut butter frosting.  Repeat with the rest of the layers (you don't put peanut butter frosting on the top).  Cover entire cake with chocolate frosting.  Top with mini- Reese's.

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