Chocolate Peanut Butter Layer Cake

Remember how I said that Annie’s Eats was my current favorite food blog?  Well, I’m here to show you just another sweet reason it should be yours too.

My husband, aka. The Banker, is a meat-and-potatoes kind of guy.  He likes things simple.   He prefers his dessert to be chocolate cake from a box with chocolate frosting from the tub.  He rolls his eyes when I opt to use my creative side while baking.  [I get the full head shake when the camera comes out.]  He finds it quite unnecessary.  Pillsbury does it just fine for him.  But if I insist on stepping outside of the box, it better be something he might like.

It was a Saturday morning and I wanted to tap my kitchen creativity.  So I gave him a stack of my printed off recipes that I wanted to try.  I watched him flip through the pages, occasionally looking up at me like I was a nut job.  Apparently, anything with a fruit in the title is an unacceptable dessert. But then…

Chocolate Cake + Peanut Butter Frosting = Approved

This time, it was The Banker who picked a Annie’s Eats recipe.  It was the Chocolate Peanut Butter Layer Cake and you can click on over to her recipe here.  I was initially pulled in by her beautiful presentation of this handsome cake on wood pedestal.  And with peanut butter cups sitting on top, I figured it might be a winner for The Banker.

In preparing my grocery store list, I discovered there were three sticks of butter in the cake and another three sticks of butter in the frosting.  Dear Lord, that’s a pound and a half of BUTTER!  I kept waiting to see that this was a Paula Dean recipe.  Nope.  Just a lot of butta.

Outside of all that butter, I knew this was going to be a good cake since she calls for sour cream AND instant coffee powder.  Two key ingredients for making a tasty and moist chocolate cake.  The only instant coffee powder I had in the house was Starbucks Vanilla VIA.  I figured if vanilla extract is good, a little vanilla coffee can’t hurt.  And it didn’t.

Tip: always add some instant coffee in with your water for any chocolate cake you make.  You can thank me later.  [And no, it doesn’t make the cake taste like coffee.  The Banker was very concerned about this the first time he saw me doing this.]

Tip:  if you have a little helper in the kitchen who insists on cracking eggs, use a separate bowl.  This is also a good suggestion if you are just a sloppy egg-cracker.  Don’t be ashamed, just plan ahead.  And to get those pesky egg shells out, wet your finger before you start fishing.  It really works.

Tip:  When baking with round pans, it is always best to use parchment paper to line the bottoms.  It prevents the top of the cake from sticking to the pan.  I like to start with lining and dusting my pans before I touch my other ingredients. Perhaps I should have opened with this tip.

When the cakes make it into the oven, it’s time to tackle the peanut butter frosting.  Mmmm… just let that sink in for  a minute.  Peanut.  Butter.  Frosting.

Okay, I’ll admit I could not bring myself to use another three sticks of butter.  First of all, that’s just a ton of butter.  Also, I was only making a two layer cake rather than the three layer cake the recipe was set up for.  I figured I didn’t need as much frosting.  I also cut down the amount of cream and powdered sugar to balance it all out.

Tip:  Annie suggests changing the measurements if you aren’t using three 8-inch cake pans.  I think it causes unnecessary brain damage to change 1 1/4 tsp of baking soda by a third.  That’s just too many fractions for this scatterbrain.

Tip:  fill what ever pans you are using about 2/3 full, leaving room for the cake batter to expand, but not overflow.  [A mistake I have made.]  Make cupcakes with any left over batter.  I used two 9-inch cake pans and was able to make about 10 cupcakes.

Eat:  And enjoy every bite!

Now I realize I’ve done two desserts.  I’ll try to balance this out and pick a different food group from a different blog for my next food post.

sam

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2 Comments

  1. Looks simply amazing!

    Reply
    • Thank you! Of course, the more important thing is that it is simply delicious. Presentation is just a perk.

      Reply

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