The hubby and I cooked ahead last weekend, so we had plenty of leftovers for the week. Which was a good thing, because it was a busy week. And when it wasn't busy, I was feeling too lazy to do anything more strenuous than whip up an omelet. It happens to everyone, right? (Right??)
I have, however, been craving cake like mad for the past few weeks. And Grape Nuts. Which is odd, because I don't really like cake. Or Grape Nuts.
My problem isn't with cake, per se, so much as is it frosting. I only like whipped cream frosting or ganache; I hate thick, goopy, sugary frostings. (But give me a cold yellow cake with whipped cream on top and I'm a very happy camper.) And I don't like chocolate cake unless it has chunks of chocolate in it. This all goes back to my Liking Chocolate But Not Chocolate-Flavored Things issue.
I know I'm strange; no need to point this out.
But back to the cake craving. It was particular: I needed either a yummy yellow cake with whipped cream (which the hubby doesn't like), or something rich and fudgy with good frosting. Lo and behold, I stumbled upon a picture of this recipe in a magazine and was mesmerized. This is a Kraft recipe that starts with a boxed cake mix and ends with a ganache-like frosting made of whipped topping and melted chocolate.
The hubby was off fishing today with our pal Kipp, so I baked the cake this morning and let it sit in the fridge all day long, so I'd have someone to share it with when the boys returned. My only complaint with the recipe is that the frosting is rather difficult to spread on a layer cake (because it's thinner and drippy, like ganache.) But it sets up so well and tastes so good that it's forgiven.
Chocolate Fudge Layer Cake
1 pkg. (8 squares) semisweet baking chocolate, divided
1 pkg. chocolate cake mix (2-layer size)
1 3.9-oz. pkg. Jell-O chocolate-flavored instant pudding and pie filling
1 c. sour cream
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1/2 c. water
1 8-oz. carton frozen whipped topping (do not thaw)
Additional whipped topping or whipped cream, for serving (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 9" round baking pans.
2. Chop two of the chocolate squares and set aside. I went about this big with mine.
And no, there's no real frame of reference. The chunks could be three feet tall for all you know.
3. Using a mixer, beat cake mix, pudding mix, eggs, sour cream, oil, and water on low speed until just moistened. Turn speed to medium and beat 2 minutes. Stir in chopped chocolate.
4. Pour cake batter into prepared pans.
5. Bake 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean in the center of the cake.
6. Cool cakes in pans on wire racks for 10 minutes. Loosen cakes from sides of pans and invert onto cooling racks, removing pans. Cool cakes completely.
Charlie wishes he could eat chocolate fudge layer cake. Charlie wishes he could eat everything.
7. Place whipped topping and remaining six squares of chocolate. Microwave 2-3 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds, until chocolate is melted. Combine chocolate and whipped topping thoroughly, then let rest 15 minutes to thicken.
8. Place bottom cake layer on a serving plate. Top with some of the ganache frosting. Add second layer. Cover top and sides with frosting.
9. Store in refrigerator before serving to let frosting set up.
I've never been good at keeping my cake plates perfectly clean of frosting. Oh well, we all have our talents.
10. Cut into big ol' slices. Isn't it tall? And pretty?
And serve with whipped cream.