April 7, 2015

Black Bottom Cake


 My mother, grandmother, and I used to go to Lehning's Pharmacy, which had an "old fashioned soda fountain" just like the one that George Bailey went to in "It's a Wonderful Life".  My mother's first job was working at the soda fountain at Lehning's Pharmacy.   They served ice cream out of big drum-like cartons in coolers along the wall under a big window.  It always looked to me like the ice cream was packed down in there so hard that it was work to get it out!    Their sodas were mixed using syrup and carbonated water.  

Our very favorite thing to get was a Black Bottom, which was chocolate ice cream with marshmallow creme served on top of it.  It remains my very favorite sundae to this day; however I've never had one since Lehning's closed many years ago.  The closest thing to that is the Dairy Queen's soft serve with marshmallow creme.

It was quite a treat for me when my mother and grandmother would pick me up after school, and we would head over to Lehning's to get a Black Bottom.


So in memory of this wonderful sundae, I made a cake!  This cake was absolutely better the next day, after it had a chance to set overnight.  Maybe next time, I'll just make the sundae . . .


Black Bottom Cake

2 1/3 cups cake flour
1 cup Hershey's cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup hot strong coffee
1 cup buttermilk
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
2 1/2 cups sugar
5 large eggs, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 squares of Baker's semi-sweet chocolate, melted and cooled

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease the bottom of three 8-inch round cake pans, line the bottoms with parchment paper, and grease and lightly dust the parchment paper and sides of cake pans. Shake out the excess flour.

Sift together cake flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, baking powder.  Set aside.  Whisk together the coffee and buttermilk.  Set aside.  Cream butter and sugar in a stand mixer using the paddle attachment for three minutes until light and fluffy.  Add the eggs, one at a time, fully incorporating each egg.  Scrape sides of bowl, and then add vanilla and mix on high speed another four
 minutes.

On lowest speed on mixer, add the flour mixture in thirds, alternating with the coffee and buttermilk mixture, ending with the flour mixture, mixing until just combined.  Divide the batter evenly among the prepared pans.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick (or a cute little cake tester) inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.  (Do not over bake.)  

Let the cakes cool for 15 to 20 minutes.  Remove from pans and peel off the parchment paper and cool completely on a wire rack.  (I use Wilton Bake-Even Strips on the outside of my cake pans, however, if you don't have them, you can level your cakes with a serrated knife.)

Assembling the cake:

Place a dollop of frosting on a cardboard cake round.  Place first cake on top of round.  Frost with Marshallow Creme Buttercream Frosting.  Place the next cake on top of the first one.  Frost this cake with the Marshmallow Creme Buttercream Frosting, and add last cake to the top.  Cover the entire cake with Chocolate Ganache.  Add a cherry to the top!

Marshallow Creme Butter Cream:

7 ounces of Marshmallow Creme
1 stick of unsalted butter, at room temperature 
1 box of Confectioner's Powdered Sugar
1 Teaspoon of Vanilla
2 to 3 Tablespoons of Heavy Cream or Milk to desired consistency

Cream Marshmallow Creme and butter in a stand mixer using the paddle attachment.  Add in powdered sugar on low speed a bit at a time.  Add in vanilla and heavy cream.   Whip until desired consistency.

Chocolate Ganache

1 cup heavy cream
1 stick unsalted butter
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1 bag of semisweet chocolate chips
1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract

Combine the cream, butter, sugar, and salt in a double-boiler or a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water, stirring until the butter is melted.  Remove bowl from pan and pour in semi-sweet chocolate chips and stir until chocolate is melted.  Let the ganache cool.  Spread it onto the top and sides of your cake.

Garnish with a cherry.

Serve to family and friends!!
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