Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Mousse Raspberry Filling and Chocolate Buttercream

This recipe is so decadent that it might put you in a chocolate coma! The cake layers are light and airy with deep chocolate flavor. The milk chocolate mouse is smooth and creamy. The icing is sweet, and the raspberry jam takes the cake over the top. Miniature chocolate chips  provide a candy crunch. This cake has so many flavors and textures that when you eat it, it’s like a party in your mouth! Adapted from King Arthur Flour with my modifications, this recipe is now my favorite chocolate cake recipe. Note: This cake contains coffee but the cake doesn’t taste like coffee. Coffee enhances the cake’s chocolate flavor. As an added bonus, the faux chocolate mousse filling is easy to make!

Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Mousse Raspberry Filling and Chocolate Buttercream Icing

Chocolate Cake
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup unsweetened cocoa
1/2 teaspoon iodized salt
2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
1 cup whole buttermilk, at room temperature
1 cup hot coffee ( I used Dunkin’ Doughnuts original)
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3 large eggs, at room temperature

Preheat oven to 325ºF. Using shortening, lightly grease three, 9-inch cake pans. Line bottom of pans with parchment paper then grease parchment. Flour pans, discarding excess flour. Set aside. 

Sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and cocoa. Pour into mixing bowl of a stand mixer. Stir salt and sugar into flour mixture with a wire whisk. Attach paddle attachment to mixer. Reserve.

In another bowl mix oil, buttermilk, coffee, and vanilla. Pour into the mixing bowl with the flour mixture. Mix with mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds to 1 minute until batter is smooth. Add eggs one at a time, mixing briefly after each addition. Scrape sides of bowl with a silicone spatula and mix briefly again. Pour batter evenly into prepared pans. 

Bake 23-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove pans from oven and place on a wire rack to cool for 15 minutes. Run a table knife around the edge of each pan to free the cake, then turn cakes over onto wire racks to cool completely. Make mousse filling while cake layers are cooling.

Chocolate Faux Mousse Raspberry Filling 
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
One (8-ounce) package cream cheese, at room temperature ( I put cream cheese, still in its silver packaging, in hot water for 5 minutes to soften, then I dry the packaging and open)
1 cup powdered sugar, divided
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon iodized salt
2/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
1 cup cold heavy whipping cream
2/3 cup seedless raspberry jam

In a stand mixer, on medium low speed with the paddle attachment, mix together butter, cream cheese, 3/4 cup powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt. Mix until smooth. Melt chocolate chips in the microwave for a minute or less. Stir until smooth. Add to cream cheese mixture and mix on medium high speed for 1 minute. The mixture will be light and fluffy. 

In another clean mixing bowl, using wire whisk beaters, add whipping cream and 1/4 cup powdered sugar. Beat on high speed just until whipping cream is stiff (over-beating will make the whipped cream grainy). Using a silicone spatula, fold whipped cream into cream cheese mixture in two additions. (Fold from the center to the outside of the bowl turning the bowl 1/4 rotation after each fold.) This will take up to 5 minutes. Scrape sides of bowl and fold again until there are no more white streaks.) Set aside.

Place first cake layer on a serving plate, bottom side up. Spread with 1/2 of the filling. Spread 1/3 cup raspberry jam on top of filling leaving a 1-inch border jam free. Place second cake layer bottom side down on top of jam (you want the jam attached to the bottom side of the cake- if you put the jam on the top side of the cake the cake layers will slide). Spread second cake layer with remaining filling, then remaining jam. Place third cake layer bottom side down on top of jam. Place cake in refrigerator for 30 minutes to get firm. Make icing while cake is firming.

Chocolate Buttercream Icing
2 sticks (16 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
1/4 teaspoon iodized salt
4 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Garnish: Mini Chocolate chips

In a large bowl using a mixer, beat butter 4 minutes. Sift salt, powdered sugar and cocoa together. Set aside. Add vanilla to milk. Set aside. Add powdered sugar mixture and milk mixture to butter in two additions. Scrape sides of bowl and mix again. Beat on medium high speed 2 minutes or until light and fluffy. Remove cake from refrigerator. Ice cake in two steps. First, put a very thin coat of icing on cake and refrigerate 20 minutes until icing hardens. This is the crumb coat and prevents crumbs from getting into the icing. Second, using the remaining icing, put a second coat of icing on the cake. Garnish: Press miniature chocolate chips into icing on top of cake. Eat cake at room temperature. Refrigerate leftovers. Makes one, 9-inch cake. Enjoy!  

Published in The News and Neighbor on February 10, 2021.

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