The Classic – Chocolate Cake

Back to basics. This is “the cake of my childhood”, the one my mom always made for my birthdays, and may be the first real cake I ever made. Over the years, I’ve made a few adjustments to the recipe, but not many. This is a quick and easy to make chocolate cake, made in a roasting tray, and thus perfect for children’s birthdays, “bring-cake-to-work” days, the school´s cake lottery and other events. And if there’s any cake left, eat it the next day (it may even taste better on day 2) or put it in the freezer.

225 gram (8 oz) melted butter
3 eggs
3,5 dl (1 1/3 cup) sugar
6 dl (2 2/3 cup) plain flour
3 tbsp cocoa
3 tsp baking powder
3 tsp vanilla sugar
1-2 tsp cinnamon
2, 25 dl (1 cup) milk

100 gram (3,5 oz) butter
250 gram (8,5 oz) powdered sugar
1 1/2 tbsp cocoa
3 tbsp strong coffee

Sprinkles, candy, chopped nuts, raspberries, coconut…

How to do it

  1. Preheat the oven to 200ºC / 390ºF. Line a roasting tray, size 30×38 cm (12×15 in) to 35×43 cm (14×17 in), with parchment paper.
  2. Melt the butter and let it cool down a bit.
  3. In a large bowl, beat the eggs together with sugar for a few minutes until you have a thick and fluffy mixture. I use a stand mixer with a whisk, but you may also use an electric hand mixer.
  4. Add the melted butter to the mixture.
  5. In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, cocoa, baking powder, vanilla sugar and cinnamon.
  6. Slowly add the mixed dry ingredients and the milk to the mixture, and mix until you have a smooth batter.
  7. Transfer the batter to the roasting pan.
  8. Bake the cake in the bottom of the oven for 15 minutes, or until a skewer put in the centre of the cake comes out clean.
  9. For the icing, mix together the butter, powdered sugar, cocoa and coffee until the mixture is smooth. I use a food processor or an electric hand mixer.
  10. Let the cake cool down a bit, then cover it with the icing. The cake should be warm enough for the icing to melt, but not so warm that the icing melts into the cake. I recommend you start with just a little bit of icing to find out whether the cake is cold enough. And should the cake be too cold for the icing to melt, just pop the cake with the icing back into the oven for a few seconds while the oven is cooling down. (Keep a close eye on the cake, though, the icing will melt fast!)
  11. When the icing has cooled down, but before it stiffens, decorate the cake with your choice of decoration. In honor of breast cancer awareness month I’ve used pink and white sprinkles and then added some raspberry cake dust when the icing had stiffened.

I also use this recipe, with some adjustments, for other cakes, so you may very well find variations of this recipe in other cakes on this site later.

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