We gathered for my gem of a mother-in-law’s funeral earlier this month. I adored her and she was a huge influence in my life as a friend as well as a second mother. Jane was a terrific cook, so I brought this Mocha Layer Cake for our family to enjoy as we celebrated the life of this cherished woman.
Mocha Layer Cake
It’s no surprise Bill is a chocoholic. His brothers and parents had a love of all things chocolate, too. I had to keep the mocha twist to this cake rather subtle. Though I am a fan of the coffee-chocolate combo, the hubby can only take mini doses of anything coffee related. So a bit of coffee went into the cake and the mousse was spiked with a slosh of Kahlua, a coffee liqueur. The exquisite Swiss Meringue buttercream was pure chocolate and the triumphant winner of the 3 layers! Truly exquisite.
Swiss Meringue Buttercream
I make a vanilla Swiss meringue buttercream for my White Chocolate Cupcakes, so I was undaunted when I read the directions for this chocolate version. Egg whites and sugar were heated over a double boiler till the sugar dissolved. Constant stirring was needed so the eggs were gently heated, not cooked. Then they were whipped until glossy peaks formed, then loads of butter followed by chocolate were added. I sampled myself silly, by sneaking swipes of excess frosting from the mixing bowl. It was a heavenly addition to this mocha layer cake.
National Coffee Day is September 29, so today, the Sunday Supper Crew is sharing recipes with coffee. Check out all the fabulous inspiration below! Thanks to Shelby of Grumpy’s Honeybunch and our host today, Wendy of Wholistic Woman for this yummy event today.
- Bulletproof Coffee My Way by Monica’s Table
- Caramel Turtle Mocha Frappe by The Weekend Gourmet
- Chocolate Chip Mocha Smoothie by Sew You Think You Can Cook
- Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Latte by Meal Planning Magic
- Apple Crumb Coffee Cake by Dessert Geek
- Banana Blueberry Streusel Coffee Cake by The Freshman Cook
- Cappuccino Overnight Oats by Pies and Plots
- Cardamom-Crumb Coffee Cake by Wholistic Woman
- Cinnamon Coffee Cake (Kaffee Kuchen) by Palatable Pastime
- Coconut & Coffee Gluten Free Scones by Caroline’s Cooking
- Coffee and Cream Cinnamon Buns by Cooking With Carlee
- Maple-Coffee Breakfast Sausage by Cricket’s Confections
- Pumpkin Coffee Cake by The Bitter Side of Sweet
- Pumpkin Spice Latte Breakfast Bites by Beauty and the Beets
- Whole Wheat Pecan Crumb Cake by Family Around The Table
- Best Coffee Frosting by My World Simplified
- Bittersweet Cremeux with Coffee Caramel and Bourbon Cream by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
- Chocolate Chip Mocha Brownies by Crazed Mom
- Chocolate Coffee Nut Bark by My Imperfect Kitchen
- Coffee Toffee Crunch Cookies by Family Foodie
- Coffee Vanilla Ice Cream Pie by Moore or Less Cooking
- Cold Brew Affogato by Helpful Homemade
- Dark Chocolate Espresso Torte with Strawberry Coulis by Gourmet Everyday
- Eiskaffee (German Coffee with Ice Cream) by Tara’s Multicultural Table
- Espresso Brownie Cupcake Sundaes by A Mind Full Mom
- Mocha Cake with Mocha Rum Icing by Cosmopolitan Cornbread
- Mocha Layer Cake by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Mocha Panna Cotta with Mascarpone Cream by The Crumby Cupcake
- NCR Cookies by Girl Abroad
- No Bake Mocha Cheesecake by Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
- Polish Black Cake with Whipped Mocha frosting by Hardly A Goddess
- Sweet Cream Affogato by The Redhead Baker
- Coffee and Garlic Rubbed Pork Chops by Casa de Crews
- Java Dry Spice Rub Chops by Sunday Supper Movement
- Salmon-Mandarin Salad with Asian Vinaigrette & Coffee Dressing by Asian In America
- Sticky Coffee Chicken by Food Lust People Love
You Might Need:
- 2 cups flour
- ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, divided
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs, at room temperature
- ⅓ cup dark brown sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 2½ ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1-3 teaspoons instant coffee
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon unflavored gelatin (I use Knox brand)
- ½ tablespoon water
- ½ cup cold heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons Kahlua or other coffee liqueur
- 2 egg yolks
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 4 ounces milk chocolate, melted and cooled
- 1 cup sugar, processed in food processor until powdery
- 3 large egg whites
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 sticks plus 2 tablespoons butter (9 ounces), cut into tablespoons, at room temperature
- 4 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, melted and cooled
- Preheat the oven to 350°. Spray two 9-inch round cake pans with Baker's Joy or any flour/oil spray. Line the bottoms with parchment paper and spray those as well.
- Whisk together the flour and cocoa powder with ½ cup of the granulated sugar, and the baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- In your stand mixer fitted with the whisk, beat the eggs with the brown sugar and the remaining ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar at medium-high speed until thick, about 5 minutes. At medium speed, gradually add ½ cup of the oil and beat for 3 minutes. Beat in the melted chocolate, then slowly add the rest of the oil, until thoroughly blended, scraping the side and bottom of the bowl. Whisk the instant coffee (use 1 teaspoon for a subtle coffee boost and 1 tablespoon for a more obvious mocha flavor) into the buttermilk. At low speed, beat in the buttermilk and vanilla. Remove the bowl from the mixer and gently mix in the dry ingredients by hand.
- Pour the cake batter into the prepared pans and bake for about 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the cakes comes out with only a few moist crumbs. Cool the cakes in the pans for 20 minutes, then remove from pans to a rack to finish cooling. Peel off the parchment paper.
- To make the mousse, pour the water into a small bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over the surface. Let stand until softened.
- Next, in a medium bowl, beat the cream until soft peaks are formed. Refrigerate to chill, about 10 minutes.
- In a small, microwave-safe bowl, heat the coffee liqueur until hot, about 30 seconds.
- In another bowl, beat the egg yolks with the sugar and salt at high speed until pale and thick, about 5 minutes. While beating the yolks, mix in coffee-gelatin liquid; scrape the side and bottom of the bowl. Beat in the melted chocolate. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the whipped cream in 2 additions. Transfer the mousse to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and chill for 4 hours or more.
- When mousse is almost done chilling, make the frosting.
- Put the sugar in a medium heatproof bowl ( I used my metal stand mixer bowl) and whisk in the egg whites and salt. Set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and whisk gently until the sugar is completely dissolved, 5 minutes.
- Transfer the egg-white mixture to the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with the whisk. Add the vanilla and beat at medium-high speed until stiff and glossy, about 8 minutes. Beat in the butter a few pieces at a time, making sure it is fully incorporated before adding more. If the mixture ever appears runny, place in the refrigerator to thicken up, then continue.
- Beat in the melted chocolate until fully incorporated, scraping down the bowl as needed.
- Set one cake layer on a platter. Spread the mousse filling on top and cover with the second layer. Frost the cake with the buttercream. Refrigerate the cake until the frosting is firm.
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