Chocolate Covered Strawberries in Cake Form

Lately, I’ve been trying really hard to make healthy choices, including drinking more water, exercising more, and staying away from unhealthy foods. That’s really hard when I love to bake foods that make other people (who don’t care about calories and veggies) happy. This cake doesn’t have a single healthy ingredient in it, besides fresh strawberries, but every bite of it is worth the billion calories that are in it, especially the frosting.

If you don’t know how to make chocolate ganache frosting…well, you’re going to learn now, so pay attention.

Milk Chocolate & Strawberry Cream Cheese Cake with Chocolate Ganache Frosting

Stuff You’ll Need

Makes one layered 9″ cake

For the Cake

  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature
  • 1 cup milk chocolate (Hershey’s chocolate chips are perfect), chopped and melted
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup hot cocoa mix
  • 1 cup buttermilk at room temperature
  • Two 9″ round cake pans, parchment paper

For the Filling

  • 1 stick or 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/3 cup pureed strawberries
  • 5 cups confectioner’s sugar

For the Frosting

  • 12 oz milk chocolate (again, Hershey’s milk chocolate chips are perfect), chopped-this is about two cups or one whole bag of chocolate chips
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • Small saucepan and heat safe mixing bowl
  • Stand mixer or electric hand mixer
  • 6-7 large fresh strawberries
  • Pastry bag with a star tip (if you want to be fancy)

How to Do It

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, and grease each cake pan. Line them each with parchment paper on the bottom of the pans only, and lightly grease the paper.
  2. Beat the vegetable oil, butter, sugar, and eggs on medium speed for two minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, and add the melted chocolate, salt, flour, baking soda, vanilla, hot cocoa mix, and 1/2 cup of buttermilk.
  3. Beat on medium speed for another minute, and scrape the sides of the bowl as necessary. Add the remaining buttermilk, and beat for another 30 seconds.
  4.  Pour the batter into the prepared pans, and bake 28 minutes, or until a cake tester or toothpick comes out clean when pressed into the center of the cake. Remove the cakes from the oven, and cool in the pan for 10-15 minutes. Remove the cakes from the pan, and move to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
  5. While the cake is baking, pour the 12 oz of chopped chocolate or chocolate chips into a heat safe mixing bowl. Pour the heavy cream into a small saucepan, and place it over medium heat. Let the cream heat until it begins to gently boil. Remove the pan from the heat, and pour the cream over the chips. Let the chocolate rest for 3-5 minutes while the cream warms it, and then gently mix it with a wire whisk until it’s completely blended and smooth. Refrigerate the chocolate while the cake continues to bake and cool, about 30-40 minutes total.
  6. To make the filling, cream the butter and cream cheese together until smooth with a paddle attachment, about 3 minutes. Add the pureed strawberries, and continue to mix for another 30 seconds. Switch to the whip attachment if you’re using a stand mixer, and gradually begin adding the confectioner’s sugar one cup at a time.
  7. This cake is best served with multiple layers (you can get more cream cheese frosting in there that way) so you’ll need to cut the layers in half. Do not attempt this until the cake is completely cooled. The easiest way to do this is by using a handy-dandy cake leveler, which you can also use to level the surface of the cake when it’s rounded too much while baking. If you don’t have access to one of these, you can use a warm serrated knife to slice through the center of the cake. Cut half way through each cake, and you’ll end up with four layers. If you’re feeling especially brave, cut through the cakes twice to get six layers.
  8. After you’ve cut the layers, remove the chocolate ganache from the refrigerator. Use an electric hand mixer, or transfer the ganache to the bowl of a stand mixer, and whip the icing for 3-4 minutes. It should be light and fluffy with an appearance similar to whipped cream and a texture similar to chocolate pudding…and a taste similar to Heaven. Honestly.
  9. You can use a pastry bag with a round tip or a resealable plastic sandwich bag with a small cut in one of the corners to pipe the chocolate ganache around the edges of the first cake layer. This is an optional step, but by adding the ganache around the edges, you’ve greated a little fence for the filling so it doesn’t leak out of the sides of the cake.
  10. Spread a large dollop of strawberry cream cheese icing on top of the layer but no closer to the edges than the chocolate ganache. Place the second layer of cake on top of this, and repeat the process. Do not put cream cheese icing on top of the final layer.
  11. Frost the cake with a layer of chocolate ganache icing, and let it rest in the refrigerator for 10 minutes. Frost with the remaining chocolate ganache, and smooth the edges.
  12. If you’d like to make the cake really fancy, hull 6-7 ripe, fresh strawberries, and slice them vertically to get even, rounded slices. Layer them to make a heart shape on the top (if you’re sappy like me) or cover the top generously with the slices (if you’re a Valentine’s Day Grinch). Use a pastry bag fitted with a star tip to pipe rosettes around the top so it’s even prettier.

Cake recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour, ganache recipe from King Arthur Flour, and strawberry cream cheese icing recipe from The Adventures in Cooking Blog.

Trackbacks

  1. […] Milk chocolate strawberry cream cheese cake with chocolate ganache frosting. Wow, that’s a mouth full, literally.  I don’t normally make cakes for Winesday because they take so much time and I’m often trying to get the Winesday dessert done on Tuesday night, but I was seriously craving chocolate cake for this. It was a pretty sweet ending to the final Winesday of winter to have warm, comforting pasta followed by layers of rich, creamy chocolate. If only the approaching swimsuit season could be so sweet… Share these yummies:Like this:LikeBe the first to like this post. […]

Comment on these yummies

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: