Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The Triple Birthday Bash: Dennis and the German Chocolate Cake

You'd never guess this was taken at the end of the night.
For our final birthday celebration, Dennis (whose birthday was a mere 2 days away) wanted to revisit his strong German roots (he studied brewing there for 5 months) with a German Chocolate Cake. This was a strange breed of cake as it was more about the filling than the frosting, but in order to appease the beer gods I went through with it anyway (and powered through the exhaustion that had set in after 2 other cakes and a grand total of 6 layers of baked goodness).

German Chocolate Cake
Adapted from All Recipes
Servings: A 2 layer 9" cake
Time: 1 hour

Before egg whites, this is essentially the tastiest chocolate frosting
1/2 cup water
4 oz German Sweet Chocolate
1 cup butter, room temp
2 cups granulated sugar
4 egg yolks
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk
2 1/2 cups cake flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
4 egg whites

1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup evaporated milk
1/2 cup butter
3 egg yolks, beaten
1 1/2 cups sweetened flaked coconut
1 cup chopped pecans
2 tsp vanilla extract

1 tsp shortening
2 oz semisweet chocolate
Prior to the crazy filling, this is one boring looking cake.

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease and flour two 9" round pans.
  2. Heat the water and german chocolate together in a sauce pan until melted. Remove from heat and let cool.
  3. Sift the cake flour, baking soda and salt together in a large bowl and set aside.
  4. Using the paddle attachment of a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
  5. Mix in the egg yolks one at a time.
  6. Stir in the melted chocolate and vanilla.
  7. Alternate adding in the flour mixture and buttermilk (flour->buttermilk->flour->buttermilk->flour) at low speed until just mixed. Be sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl between each addition. Set aside.
  8. Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold 1/3 of the whites into the batter then quickly fold in the remainder until no streaks remain.
  9. Pour the batter into your prepared pans and smooth them with a rubber spatula.
  10. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the toothpick test comes back clean.
  11. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes then liberate them from their pans to finish cooling.
  12. Make the filing by combining the sugar, evaporated milk, butter and egg yolks in a saucepan over low heat. Stir constantly until thickened. Remove from heat and stir in the coconut, pecans and vanilla. Let cool in the fridge until it looks sufficiently spreadable.
  13. Spread the filling between the layers of the cake and on top. 
  14. Melt the shortening and chocolate together in a saucepan then drizzle it over your cake.
  15. Hope that this makes you even with your brewer roommate for all the free beer he has provided.
I would watch a movie starring a monster with a German Chocolate Cake for a head (seriously tell me that doesn't look like a mouth).
The cake itself was quite chocolatey and tasty (as well as the requisite moist and bouncy), but the coconut filling really made it special by adding some sweetness and crunch. Meanwhile, the chocolate drizzle made for an even more decadent experience. This was definitely the most unique looking cake I've ever made, but I strangely found myself wishing for even more chocolate. At some point, I plan to correct this by trying out this Inside-Out German Chocolate Cake. But after three cakes in one night, I'm definitely not in any rush to make anymore (despite what my now elevated blood pressure and blood sugar would have you believe).

Yup, we even had a pinata. This may very well have been the social event of the decade...nay... century!

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