I’ve been itching to bake lately, and once again Smitten Kitchen has provided the proper inspiration. I put a few tweaks on this recipe and made it a smaller size (well, smaller pans – but it was tall), but generally this is her recipe.
I basically made 2/3 of her recipe – upping the graham crumbs a bit and reducing the all purpose flour a bit. I kept the chocolate amount the same, and I added some marshmallows… because while a toasted meringue is good, it’s not the same as marshmallows. Next time I think I’ll do a 1/2 a recipe, with her proportions exactly, and see if it would be a bit saner of a size. Of course, a cupcake version may be more realistic…
If you want the original recipe, go buy the Smitten Kitchen Cookbook – every recipe we’ve tried so far has been a winner.
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen
- 2 x 6″ cake pans
- A torch/flame
Disclaimer: I’m really not sure the best way to bake the cake in a 6″ pan. I always think it will be the same temp, shorter amount of time as a 9″ pan… but no. So what I give here is very much an approximate – see what works for you. And hey – if you have a magic formula to make it work – let me know!
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1-2/3 cup Graham Cracker Crumbs (either buy already as crumbs or just pulverize a bunch in a food processor)
- 1-1/3 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 teaspoon cinnamon
- 11 tablespoons butter
- scant 1/2 cup sugar
- 2/3 cup brown sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1-1/3 cup buttermilk (Trick: Mix 1 TB vinegar with 1 cup milk to make buttermilk / or 1-1/3 cup milk + 1-1/3 tablespoon vinegar for this recipe)
- 1/2 lb milk chocolate (I used chips – you can chop up bars as well)
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 2 pinches salt
- 3 egg whites
- 2/3 cup sugar
- rounded 1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 2/3 teaspoon vanilla
Finish: Mini marshmallows
Preheat oven to 350°F, and prep pans. Butter them generously and then dust with flour.
Whisk flour, graham crumbs, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Cream butter and sugars in with an electric mixer or stand mixer until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, scraping the bowl after each addition. Add 1/3 dry ingredients and mix well. Then add 1/2 of the buttermilk, mix and scrape down the bowl. Add another 1/3 of the dry, mix, then the rest of the buttermilk. Scrape the bowl and add the rest of the dry ingredients. Mix well.
Divide batter into prepared pans and bake. As I said above, I’m not sure the timing on this. I baked it for 20 minutes at 350°F, and then turned it down to 300° for another 20-25 minutes. It took awhile for the middle to set, but I took them out once a toothpick came out clean.
Cool completely on a wire rack, turning out of pan once it’s mostly cool. Cool completely before layering/frosting.
Make filling: Heat cream to a simmer, then pour over the chocolate. Let it sit for 1 minute, then whisk until smooth. Let cool either in an ice bath or in the fridge until it is room temperature.
Make frosting: Heat sugar, egg whites, and cream of tartar in a heat proof bowl over simmering water. Whisk until sugar is dissolved and whites are warm. Take off of heat and mix with an electric mixer or stand mixer for 4-7 minutes until glossy stiff peaks form. Add vanilla towards the end.
Finish cake: Place first layer of cake on a serving plate. Level it off if you’d like with a long serrated knife, but it depends on how neat you want the finished product to be. Plop all of the chocolate filling on top and spread it out to be somewhat even – with a 1/2-1″ gap around the edge. Place the second layer on top. Put mini marshmallows around the edge of the cake to fill in any gap from the chocolate layer:
Frost cake: Start with a crumb coat. Put a thin layer of frosting all the way around every surface of the cake. Let it dry a bit – fastest is to just stick it in the fridge for 5-10 minutes. Then finish frosting the cake. I followed Smitten Kitchen’s recommendation of finishing with big dollops of frosting – using a piping back and a 1/2″ tip. I added more marshmallows on the top as well.
Then pull out your torch again and toast the whole thing.