20 September 2012

Moist Chocolate After Eight Cake



I have to share the recipe for my After Eight Cake. I've made it twice now. The first cake was a trial run and the second cake I made for a Clandestine Cake Club meeting.

The first was the two layer cake you see above. A lovely, moist chocolate cake sandwiched together with peppermint buttercream, then topped with chocolate buttercream, sprinkles and After Eight mint creams.I skimped a bit and used a cheaper version of after eights, but nobody at work minded. It was eaten in record time as word got out that it was in the staffroom. Everyone loved it.

So, I made it again for cake club, but I wasn't paying attention and used different cake tins. I soon found out when I realised there was too much cake batter for my two lined tins. Rather than start again, I decided to go for it and ended up with a four layer cake (I baked them for less time). I was worried it might not be as moist as the first cake, but my fears were unfounded and once again it proved very popular.



Photo courtesy of Foodess,
The original cake recipe came from a wonderful blog with the most stunning photos, called Foodess.

I got in touch with Jennifer who writes Foodess and she kindly gave me permission to print her recipe in metric for you (you can find the original recipe in cup measures here). I hope she doesn't mind me showing you how amazing and moist her cake looks.

The secret ingredient in this cake is coffee, but the most amazing thing about this cake is it's simplicity. There is no creaming or fancy techniques, you just throw all the ingredients in and whip them together into a batter, add hot coffee, give it a stir, pour it into lined tins, pop it into the oven and it is ready in just over half an hour.

print recipe

After Eight Cake
A moist chocolate cake filled with peppermint buttercream, then topped with chocolate buttercream, sprinkles and after eight mint creams. Divine!
Ingredients
  • 225g plain flour
  • 400g caster sugar
  • 70g cocoa powder
  • 1 ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 large eggs, whisked
  • 250ml buttermilk (1 tbsp lemon juice of vinegar, topped up with milk to 250ml and left for at least 5 minutes)
  • 115g butter, melted
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 200ml strong coffee, still hot
Instructions
1. Preheat oven to 180c/160c fan/350/gas mark 4. Grease two 18cm cake tins and line the bottom of each with greaseproof paper.2. In a large bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer, add the flour, cocoa, sugar, bicarbonate of soda and salt. Give it is good stir with a metal spoon until it is well combined.3. Whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, melted butter and vanilla and pour into the dry ingredients. Whisk until velvety smooth with either a stand mixer or an electric hand mixer. Next pour in the hot coffee and mix in with a spatula, until you have a runny mixture. (don’t panic, it will work)4. Pour the batter into the cake pans and bake in the middle of the oven for 35 minutes. A skewer should come out clean.5. Allow the cakes to cool in the pans for a while, before tipping carefully onto a wire rack to continue cooling.
Details
Total time:
Yield: 1 chocolate cake;



The recipe doesn't include buttercream, I don't measure my buttercream ingredients. For a two layer cake I use a 250g block of unsalted butter, diced and when it is soft, I whisk in icing sugar or cocoa powder until it is just right, adding a splash of milk to the mixture for a lovely smooth consistency and adding any extra flavours as I go.

If you feel more confident using a recipe for buttercream, here are a few:

50 comments:

  1. What a stunner! I love the after eights standing to attention on the top!!

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    1. Thanks Sarah, I was going to cover the sides with frosting then after eights, but I changed my mind at the last moment.

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  2. I was looking forward to this recipe, after reading your Clandestine Cake Club Dundee post! Glorious.

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  3. Both of your cakes look stunning Jac. I can see why this would have been so popular at both work and CCC. Before I started my blog, I always used to make my cakes by melted butter and sugar so I didn't have to do any creaming, then I thought I ought to take a more grown up approach. Now you've got me thinking again ;-)

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    1. I haven't made many cake this way. It is great if you want a quick cake that will impress.

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  4. Oh my gosh, you can see how moist it is!!!

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    1. It really is. I heartily recommend it Pam :)

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  5. they look gorgeous cakes. My mum gave me a similar recipe where you beat in boiling water and I like the idea of doing it with coffee.

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    1. I think Nigella has a similar recipe too. I seem to remember her making a cake this way.

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  6. That looks fab - just what I need for my Dad's 65th birthday next week. Thanks for the inspiration!

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    1. Brilliant! I hope he enjoys it. Let me know how you get on :)

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  7. You ladies have so much fun coming up with delicious cake recipes for your monthly get together.

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    1. We certainly do Val. It does stretch your talents, trying to come up with something new each month.

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  8. What a stunning cake - I always love to see how a recipe changes in someone else's hands - had seen the foodess cake but didn't realise it was the same til I saw the photo! Four layers is impressive - no wonder it went down well

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    1. I don't think I could have cut a cake into 4 layers easily, but four seperate cakes, well that was a breeze. The foodess is amazing, isn't she?

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  9. Now that's a cake for chocolate-lovers - yum!

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    1. It certainly is. Maybe that is why I enjoyed it so much :)

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  10. That sounds superb and looks amazingly moist. I really wish I liked coffee though - was the taste very noticeable?

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    1. No, you can't actually taste the coffee, it just seems to deepen the flavour of the chocolate. I don't like coffee either, so you can trust me on this one :)

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  11. Jesus h Blimey woman!!! What a cake! Probably my most favourite thing in the world is mint buttercream. Just blinkin gorgeous!!!

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    1. Thanks Dom. I shall know what to make you if we ever meet up :)

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  12. Yay! I was hoping you would post the recipe ;0)

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  13. Gorgeous cake, Jac. Being a Southerner (the US kind, not the UK kind) we use a lot of buttermilk in baking so it is an ingredient I almost always have in the fridge; it makes things extra moist without being at all wet. LOl how you 'accidentally' made a four-layer cake. Of course no one would mind that! Lucky colleagues

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    1. Buttermilk isn't always so easy to find here, hence the vinegar and milk method. It does make a difference to cakes.

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  14. Yum yum yum yum yum. Looks like the perfect chocolate cake to me and a relatively easy recipe. Will have to try it to see if it beats Ina Gartend's Beattie's Chocolate Cake - my current long-standing best chocolate cake recipe! Love the mints on top. A fab additon to the CCC table xxx

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    1. Oh will have to try that one. Which book is it in?

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  15. A wonderful, very stylish & FABULOUSLY looking stuffed cake! :)

    What a party hit! It looks juts magnificent & truly appetizing too, Jacqueline! ;) Yummmm!

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  16. Oh my!! that looks beautiful Jac.After eights have just gone on my shopping list for tomorrow so I can make it straight away, can't wait to try it. Coffee and chocolate go so well together!! Thanks Jac xx

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    1. Brilliant! Hope you enjoy it Lisa, although I know you will xx

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    2. It actually tasted even nicer than it looks....this was a raving hit at my impromtu bar-b-que yesterday. It was sooo simple to make too!! Thanks again Jac xx

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  17. Jacqueline look absolutely georgeous!!

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  18. LOVELY Jac such a stunning cake! I LOVE it! Karen

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    1. Thanks Karen, I was really pleased with it :)

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  19. Chocolate and mint - what a terrific combo. Love the decoration...love the cake!

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  20. These American style cakes with buttermilk and coffee are amazing aren't they? I've been using a similar one and you can really notice the difference.

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    1. It does make a difference, the cake is very moist and full of flavour.

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  21. Holy moly What a fantastic cake. I was so pleased with the result. Rises hugely, moist, & very light. It doesn't taste of coffee which is good as I hate coffee. Easy to make. Will certainly make it again.

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  22. Holy moly What a fantastic cake. I was so pleased with the result. Rises hugely, moist, & very light. It doesn't taste of coffee which is good as I hate coffee. Easy to make. Will certainly make it again.

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    1. It has worked every time for me too Sara, that is until last night, when I managed to bash the pans on my unit and knocked all the air out of them. Typically it was for a special occasion :(

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  23. Hi Jac cake looks amazing - perfect for my bro who loves after eights! Re your buttercream recipe is it basically butter plus cocoa powder with a splash of milk for chocolate & then for the peppermint do you add peppermint essence to the chocolate buttercream? Thanks

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    1. The middle layer is peppermint buttercream, just standard buttercream with peppermint essence added.

      The top layer is chocolate buttercream. I usually started it off with some icing sugar, then start adding cocoa and end with a splash of milk.

      It is an amazing cake, although last time I made it I stupidly knocked it before I put it in and it was heavy. So go gentle with it.

      The other times I made it, it was amazing!

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I love reading comments, so thank you for taking the time to leave one. Unfortunately, I'm bombarded with spam, so I've turned on comment moderation. I'll publish your comments as soon as I can and respond to them. Don't panic, they will disappear when you hit publish. Jac x