Chocolate Layer Cake Filled with White Chocolate Ganache

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It’s pretty much a tradition to have a chocolate layer cake two days after Christmas…still full from all the holiday over eating, we have one more special event to celebrate before the New Year. I can hardly believe it’s been 26 years since I gave birth to my oldest. He wasn’t due till after New Year’s Day so since Bill was scheduled to make rounds over the holidays, I hopped in my little red Toyota and drove over the snow covered interstate to visit my parents. After celebrating  Christmas with my family, I returned home to work a full evening shift on the oncology ward…Bill and I were both exhausted  as we fell into bed late on the 26th after a full day of caring for patients. Hours later I awoke to labor pains and little Thomas was born before noon the next day…with a head full of wild brown hair and his dad’s beautiful eyes. I was smitten.

Like his father, he was an instant fan of chocolate….well, it did take a few months before he first indulged. As a toddler, I remember him pounding on the refrigerator door saying, “puddy, puddy, puddy” over and over. The stash of chocolate jello pudding cups I kept on hand for quick snacks had become a favorite treat. Birthdays demanded some sort of chocolate cake or pie….so when I spotted Diva Entertain’s Best Dark Chocolate Cake last month, I was reminded of this old favorite. I tweaked the recipe by adding a thick, decadent filling of white chocolate ganache and an extremely rich chocolate buttercream frosting. Although hubby jokingly declared the frosting to be “a chocolate party in my mouth” (after I told him, “good, really, really good” didn’t make for a very interesting blog quote), it was full of air holes, so not picture perfect. Still the combination of cake, filling and icing made for one spectacular tasting cake…maybe not up to my picky standards when it comes to looks, but definitely worth sharing due to the amazing flavor.

I sent the leftovers home with the grown up version of the guy below…and he and one of his roommates elected not to share it with any of their friends. I consider that the highest compliment!

Chocolate Layer Cake Filled with White Chocolate Ganache

Ingredients

  • 5 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups very hot coffee
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 cups cocoa powder, sifted
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoons. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3 whole eggs and 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoons vanilla
  • Filling:
  • 12 ounces white chocolate, chopped
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • Chocolate Buttercream Frosting (you may choose to make your favorite chocolate icing instead...it should be enough to frost a layer cake):
  • 2 cups butter, at room temperature
  • 7 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 cup cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1/2 cup cream (more or less depending on desired consistency)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

Instructions

  1. To make cake: Preheat oven to 325º. Coat three 8 or 9 inch cake pans with non-stick spray and then line bottom of pans with rounds of parchment paper.
  2. Put very hot coffee into a medium bowl. Add chocolate, let sit 5 minutes, then whisk until fully melted Set aside.
  3. In a stand mixer, combine 3 eggs and 1 extra yolk with the sugar and beat until light and pale yellow, approximately 3 minutes. Add the oil, buttermilk and vanilla and beat until combined. Add flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and powder and salt and beat until combined. Add chocolate mixture and mix until just fully incorporated.
  4. Divide batter between pans and bake in middle of the oven until a toothpick inserted in a center comes out clean, about 40-45 minutes. Remove to cooling rack. Cool for 5-10 minutes, then remove from pans and allow to cool completely. Carefully peel off parchment. Wrap and freeze one of the 3 layers to use at a later time. You can make a 3 layer cake, but you will need more filling and frosting.
  5. To make filling: Melt cream and white chocolate in microwave, stopping and stirring at 30 second increments till smooth and melted. Refrigerate mixture till cool and thick (you do not want the filling to be hard, but if it is too runny, it will run down sides of cake when second layer is placed over it).
  6. To make frosting: Beat butter with mixer till light and fluffy. Add powdered sugar, cocoa, cream and vanilla and mix till smooth and creamy.
  7. To assemble cake, place bottom layer on serving plate. Put filling in center of cake and spread to within 1/2 inch of edge. Top with second layer, flat side up. Ice top and sides with buttercream icing.
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Comments

  1. Happy Birthday, Thomas. How blessed he is to have such a talented, caring mom. Love that swirl effect on top of the cake…and looking forward to making that white ganache =)

  2. Happy Birthday to your Thomas , Lizzy ! He’s so lucky to have a Mom who’s such an amazing baker/cook ;) …. Anyway , that cake looks utterly delish ! Love the generous frosting so as that yummy filling !

  3. OMG, Lizzy! Not only does this cake look and sound amazing because I love white chocolate with chocolate cake, but I really, really love that you don’t skimp on the frosting and filling! Those thick layers of each are driving me crazy! I wish it was sitting right in front of me this very minute. Just give me a fork and I think I could eat half of it now..the rest later!

  4. Wow, this is a perfect birthday cake with the white choco filling. Just the combination for a chocoholic. I don´t see the holes really… Happy Birthday Thomas! I wish I´d had a mom who baked me these cakes Liz!

  5. Happy Birthday to your son!! What a perfect birthday cake and treat. Lizzy, you worked until the last day of your pregnancy… tipping my hat off to you. I can’t imagine being on my feet that last month of pregnancy as a nurse. I know you are a hard worker…. I see all the hard work you put into your fabulous blog and all amazing things that come out of your kitchen. You are a force to reckon with… take a bow Mom… I think Moms forget to get patted on the back on a child’s birthday. You did all the hard work after all. ;)

  6. Happy New Year! That cake looks just stunning!

  7. Happy Birthday Thomas! My mom has her 3 baby’s birthdays this month. My brother just turned 34 yesterday, my sister is 29 today and I am 28 on the 19th! She was just telling us how much she can’t believe that she is old enough to have kids that are all so grown up!

    What a lovely birthday cake!! I wouldn’t have shared it either! ;-)

  8. That icing looks deliciously thick – I want to stick a finger into the screen and scoop some out!

  9. This cake sounds fabulous, Liz! I adore white chocolate ganache, but I’ve never tried it inside a cake before. Pinning :)

  10. I know exactly what you mean about the air holes in the frosting! I often have that problem especially with buttercreams! Looks great though, and we can’t even tell!

  11. Lizzy,
    The cake looks amazing! My hubby would love it and his birthday is next month, so guess what he’s getting.
    Annamaria
    PS: Happy Birthday Thomas. Are you sure you have a 26 year old? You look so young.

  12. That cake looks scrumptious, but the photo is awesome. Your photography skills are really good. Just had to mention it.

  13. What a lucky son! :) My Beloved gives me boring quotes like that, too. “Mmmmm. Nice, sweetie,” just doesn’t cut it! lol

  14. Perfect looking chocolate cake for a birthday!

  15. Happy 26th to Thomas! Time flies, doesn’t it? I’d be thrilled if my cake decorating turned out like that one. It’s gorgeous. White chocolate ganache, huh? If you have any left over, can I have the tub and a spoon? :)

  16. Awwww how sweet! Happy birthday to your boy! He was lucky indeed to have such an AMAZING cake!!

  17. Wonderful and delicious!
    happy 2013
    spery

  18. Aww, happy birthday to your son! What a wonderful post, Liz, and a stunningly decadent cake! I think your frosting looks gorgeous, so don’t let those air bubbles get you down. And I love that you made your husband give you a sexier quote for the blog, lol.

  19. I enjoy reading the story about the day your son was born… so cute that he loves chocolates since when he was young. As a mom we remember some interesting moment of our kids and we treasure it even when kids are older… Happy Birthday to your son and I love your chocolate ganache filling!

  20. Looks so…………. yummy!!!! Wow, I can see why they didn’t want to share it. I think our Nicks have similar tendencies when it comes to sweets. One time when my Nick was in college, I made a LARGE pound cake for him to share with his housemates. They never saw it because he hid it. He did share a bit with his girlfriend (who’s now his wife) but she told me that he only gave her a few “slivers”. What a brat! :)

  21. Such a gorgeous and decadent cake, perfect for a birthday celebration! :)

  22. carol | a cup of mascarpone says:

    Happy Birthday to your son, Liz!!! How lucky to receive this beautiful cake! I would give anything for a slice if there’s any left over!!!

  23. My friend Liz.
    First, happy 2013 to you and the whole family.
    Then congratulations to his son Thomas for his 26 years of age and have the joy of being a child of a mother as wonderful as you.
    Beautiful and tasty cake, well suited for a celebration.
    Kisses of Gina

  24. Lucky boy to have such an incredible baker for a Mom, such a gorgeous cake. BTW, you are far too young to have a 26 year old, far too young. XO

  25. What a perfect chocolate lover’s cake for his 26th birthday!!! I can see why he and his roommate decided not to share!!! I must say too – you look far too young to have a 26 year old! It’s hard to make a Christmas birthday special but I think you did it!

  26. A gorgeous looking cake!! Perfect for celebrating a birthday! Happy Birthday to Thomas!

  27. I love any kind of chocolate cake but this really looks sensational. I’m saving this recipe to try for the next birthday. Thanks for sharing.

  28. Love the quote. Sometimes you just have to put a husband’s words back into his mouth and tell him to try again. I’m glad Tom(my) has gotten to the age where he realizes he doesn’t have to share everything. The cake looks delicious and very, very picture-presentable.

  29. So your oldest has just turned 26? My oldest is about to turn 20. Both seem to have a healthy appetite for chocolate. What a gorgeous looking cake and I love how the centre is filled with a white chocolate ganache – it just adds to the decadence of this wonderful treat xx

  30. Another gorgeous cake Lizzy! I am sure that anyone would like it!

  31. Happy birthday to your son, what georgeous Mom you are!!

  32. Happy birthday to you son. The chocolate cake looks beautiful and delicious I love it.

  33. Aww! Happy birthday to your baby!

  34. Oh man, I’d have a hard time sharing that cake. Though eating that all by myself would only speed up getting diabetes…

  35. Lizzy, I won’t want to share this cake with anyone either! Very smart boys :)

  36. Your frosting looks intense but oh so good. What a wonderful birthday cake? Remember mine falls in September. (wink, wink)

  37. Happy birthday to Tom and what a cake – no wonder they didn’t share, hehe. Yes, it also has to be said here that I could hardly believe it myself that you have a 26 year old when I met you in Paris last summer. You’re such a belle famille and the only layers you’ll find around you is with cakes!

  38. Karen Brandon says:

    Now , thats how you frost a cake! Wow!.Looks good.

  39. First off Happy New year. Second I am not getting your feed in my feed reader anymore (thought you were away). And finally Happy Birthday, Thomas, what an amazing cake!

  40. Awe, what a sweet story. Happy birthday to your “little” guy and that’s a hell of a cake!

  41. Happy Birthday to Thomas! That’s one good looking cake, that thick layer of frosting looks pretty tempting!

  42. Happy Birthday to Thomas! He is so lucky to have a great mom who bakes such fabulous treat like this cake!!

  43. This looks so good, but now it’s just becoming torture for me to look at!

  44. Happy birthday Thomas. Time does fly, my eldest is almost a teen so it won’t be long before she grows up and flies the nest. The cake is stunning and so decedent. I love the white chocolate ganache filling too, that creamy touch of extra chocolate. Perfect.

  45. Party cake for sure! Love the thick layer of frosting–perfect. You do know how to bake it right Lizzy.

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