Sunday, February 14, 2010

Heavenly Cake - Double Chocolate Cake (2 attempts)


Mis en place:

Chocolate and butter.

I should have realized something was wrong when the batter was as thick as a buttercream...

Keep the ganache warm while the cake bakes.

Carefully check the raspberries to make sure they are kosher (no bugs...)

Looks OK...

I used a tooth-pick. I think I made the holes too small as the ganache did not really seep in. I told my wife that I think I saw Rose use something bigger in one her videos. My wife jokingly said, "...are you kidding! I think Rose uses a coffee cup to make her ganache holes!"

I put some chambord in the ganache for extra raspberry flavor. Yum!

After glazing the raspberries I am ready for divine inspiration I take a bite...

The verdict is... ach! Dry!!


What happened?

I soon found out:

Apparently, this is a common problem. I wish Rose had given a warning of how unforgiving the chocolate cake batter could be...

There simply was not enough liquid to dry ratio in the batter. To be fair I did not sift the flour and chocolate. It seems the wet and dry proportions of the chocolate cake must be exact for the proper  texture.

I had to make it again.


My father was having a house warming party the next day. A 1/2 hour or so before I whipped up one of these cakes up and put in 3/4 cup of boiling water into the chocolate instead of the 1/2 cup. The batter was nice and runny. (I also had to make it parve (i.e. margarine) since it was a meat meal...)

The cake cake came out a little lopsided with out the proper height. But... it was moist, fudge-y (, warm) and yummy! The extra liquid must have weighed it down. Next time I will either weigh my ingredients properly (not likely until I can afford (and have room for) a nice scale, sorry Rose!) or attempt to use 2/3 cup boiling water instead of 3/4 and see the difference...

Rose's cake even though it was made funny looking by my efforts totally blew this bakery cake out of the water! Only one or two pieces were attempted from this cake (and not finished.)


Rose's Cake after it was attacked by the populous...

Just goes to show you that a really good unadorned (and lopsided) cake can out-do a fancy looking cake any day. :) Thank you Rose!

My father's new place, by the way, has three ovens! Meat, Dairy and Parve! Yowza! I'll think I may be coming over more often... ;)

I also made Chocolate chip cookies (using Joe Pastry's tutorial.) The Muscavodo sugar I added really made these great!

My little brother Georgie snuck an extra cookie from the tin on our way out...


  1. All I can say is "THANK YOU". I to have had the same problem-dry and crumbly. So disappointing when I was so careful and it looks so beautiful. Thank you for finding the solution and testing it out1 You are a champion cake baker.

  2. Congratulations, Mendy. I'm glad your cake was a hit at the house warming party.

  3. It looks great and the best satisfaction is to beat out a bakery cake!

  4. You have the cutest children around you and your baking goodies! Cake looks lovely and good tip for making it a little more moist.

  5. I remember when Rose made that post and all of a sudden, the mystery of the dry chocolate cake was over. It was truly a life changing moment! Good for you, trying again and succeeding!

  6. Beautiful cake Mendy! Thanks for sharing the link to the mystery of the dry chocolate cake! :)

  7. Adorable little cookie thief!

    Laughed out loud at your kosher bug comment - haha! Can't believe you washed them and they didn't start to break down. Must have been super raspberries.

    So, why don't you measure the proper amount of water to bloom the cocoa in, then cover it with plastic wrap so the water doesn't evaporate?

  8. Thanks for sharing the solution to the dry cake problem. I read Rose's instruction to cover it with plastic wrap but for whatever thought, nah, can't be THAT important. Doh! Wish I hadn't doubted Rose. Will try it again sometime.
    Btw, how cool that you have such a young brother :o) He's cute!

  9. The cake must have been delicious since so little was left. It is always so dissappointing when those beautiful bakery cakes don't taste as good as they look.

  10. ב''ה

    Thank you all for your nice comments!

    @ButterYum: The raspberries did start to shed their mortal coil a bit as I washed them. I was gentle though and only lost a select few. It was either that or no raspberries at all...

    @ButterYum and Hanaâ:
    I actually did cover the hot chocolate with plastic wrap. I therefore assume that the problem had to do with the sifting/measuring of the dry ingredients. I added the extra water as per blogger Aaron so as to avoid the sifting etc. Programmers are notoriously "lazy" (supposedly in a good way.) ;)

  11. ב''ה

    Concerning the dryness issue. It is intersting to note that in the instructional video Rose posted the batter looks quite thick, very much like my first (dry) batter. I am begining to think that my coco may have been somehow extra "dry." It just sort of looked it for some reason. Maybe I'll opt for Hershey's and try Rose's suggestion of the hot pan of water next time.

  12. Hi Mendy! Thank you for your comment on my blog and I really appreciate all the great details you gave with both of your experiences! They were very helpful. Good job on doing it twice and I love the step-by-step photos! :)

  13. Mendy, Thanks so much for posting about the dryness. I remeasured the cocoa and water before adding to the final mix. It was off by a couple of grams. I still think the end cake was a little bit dry, but it may just be that it is not the moist chocolate cake I am accustomed to?

    Your little brother Georgie is too cute. So great that he is an uncle already! One of my uncles is 18 months younger than me, more like a brother than an uncle!

    Gorgeous cakes - both of them. Nothing screams "amazing cake" better than an empty cake plate!