Thank goodness Valentine’s Day is dead and gone (’til next year, that is). Seriously. If you’ve ever waited tables, you know what I’m talking about. It’s one of the worst days of the year to be a service industry professional. (Read: Why You Shouldn’t Dine Out On Valentine’s Day on Serious Eats). It’s over now, though, so I won’t continue bitching about it.
St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner. Let’s bust out the beer and celebrate!
This Chocolate Stout Cake is rich and moist (you know I hate using that word, but it is!) with just the right amount of beer to make a perfectly not-too-sweet layer cake. It’s almost too easy to make. Just melt together some beer, butter, and chocolate, and add it to a mixing bowl with all the usual suspects. Bake it up and slather it with some velvety soft chocolate frosting.
As for the frosting, I just want to go on record as saying that I loathe making frosting. Consistency and texture are seemingly always at odds with the sweetness level. You know when you bite into a cake or cupcake and your teeth immediately hurt from the sugar overload in the frosting? Like an instant cavity. No thanks. Gross. That’s not happening here today, folks. No way.
I adapted the frosting recipe from Sweetapolita’s Dark Chocolate Party Cake. (She makes the most gorgeously perfect cakes I’ve ever seen). I changed the chocolate ratios a bit to my liking and added a touch of bourbon to the frosting (duh).
It was a struggle to keep one slice for myself to photograph. People will fight over this cake. You’ve been warned.
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup chocolate or milk stout
- ¾ cup dark cocoa powder
- 1 tsp espresso powder
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 3 eggs, room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup light brown sugar
- ½ cup sour cream
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1-1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
- ½ cup confectioner’s sugar
- ½ cup dark cocoa powder
- ⅓ cup bourbon, warmed
- ¼ cup sour cream
- 1-1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- ⅛ tsp salt
- 8 oz. semisweet chocolate, melted and slightly cooled
- 8 oz. milk chocolate, melted and slightly cooled
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter two 9-inch round cake pans and dust with cocoa powder, tapping out the excess.
- Melt together the butter and stout over low heat in a saucepan. Add the cocoa powder and espresso powder, stirring until combined. Remove from heat and allow it to cool slightly.
- Sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a separate mixing bowl.
- Beat together the eggs, granulated sugar, and light brown sugar. Add the sour cream and vanilla extract and continue beating. Add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the stout/chocolate mixture. Take care not to overmix.
- Divide the batter into the prepared cake pans and bake for 25-30 minutes until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool in pans for 10 minutes. Loosen the cakes using a butter knife or spatula and invert onto wire racks to continue cooling.
- Beat the butter for 4 minutes until fluffy.
- Sift together the confectioner’s sugar and dark cocoa powder. Add the mixture to the butter along with the bourbon, sour cream, vanilla extract, and salt. Beat until combined.
- Beat in the melted semisweet and milk chocolate, scraping the bowl with a spatula if necessary to ensure there’s no chocolate stuck to the bottom. Use the frosting immediately. Store the cake (or any leftovers) in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before serving.
Frosting recipe adapted from Sweetapolita’s Double Chocolate Party Cake