chocolate mud cake...

with salted caramel milk chocolate ganache...

Finding the right chocolate mud cake for a wedding cake is kind of tricky. I want it dense and stable, but moist. After searching and testing for weeks, this is it. 

This cake can be finish with just the ganache, but I wrapped mine with chocolate fondant to get a nicer clean looking. You'll need 2 days to make this cake with ganache. Bake cake and make ganache the first day, then layer the cake and frost it the next day. You'll need one more day if you decide to cover the ganache with fondant because you need to let the ganache firm up overnight before covering it with fondant. The thing about mud cake is it tastes better a couple of days old. So this is a perfect cake to make for a party because you don't need to finish the whole cake in one day.

I'm planning to make my first ever wedding cake for a friend in September. Hopefully if time allows I'll get to make more cakes like this before I get my hands on the wedding cake. I'm so excited!

makes 6" cake (adapted from Pam's mud cake)

Chocolate mud cake:
- 1 1/3 cups hot water
- 1 tbsp. instant coffee
- 8 oz. (2 sticks) unsalted butter
- 7 oz. Caraibe, 66% cocoa
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder, dutch processed
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Milk chocolate caramel ganache:
- 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 2 1/4 lbs. caramelia, 36% cocoa


Chocolate mud cake:
1. Grease two 6" round cake pans. Line the base and sides with parchment paper, bringing paper extends above the top of the pans.
2. In a mixer bowl, dissolve coffee in hot water. Put butter and chocolate in. Stir over a bain-marie (a hot water bath) until chocolate is melted. Remove from heat and place the bowl on a standard mixer with whisk attachment. Add sugar and beat on medium-low speed until sugar is dissolved.
3. Sift all dry ingredients, add to the batter. Beat on medium-low speed until well blended.
4. Lightly beat eggs with vanilla extract. Add to the batter and beat on medium-low speed until well combined.
5. Pour batter equally into prepared pans (22 oz. per pan). Bake at 325 degrees for 45-50 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center of the cake will come out clean.
6. Let cool completely in pan. Once cool, cover with plastic wrap. Leave overnight at room temperature. Do not trim or layer it, this way the cake doesn't dry out. Once you trim and layer the cake, fill and frost the cake right away. This will keep the cake moist.

Milk chocolate caramel ganache:
1. Bring cream and salt just to a boil.
2. Remove from heat. Add chocolate and let stand for a minutes. Stir until smooth.
3. To get a smooth, shinny and stable ganache, finish with an immersion blender for a minute.
4. Pour the ganache into a container, leave it overnight at room temperature to set.

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