Dark Chocolate Raspberry Cake

There are certain flavor combinations that will always go with chocolate: hazelnut, strawberry, cherry, coffee, and (of course) raspberry! This recipe originally started off as an idea for a cupcake, but I decided to expand it in to a cake. While I love cupcakes for their versatility and ease of serving, cakes are slightly more elegant and impressive for special occasions.

The recipe starts off with a chocolate cake, filled with fresh raspberry compote. Then it is iced with raspberry buttercream and topped with a dark chocolate raspberry ganache. As a finishing touch, I stuck a few fresh raspberries on top for decoration. The cake recipe provided makes a 2-layer 6-inch cake but can easily be doubled to make a 10-inch cake. (I had plenty of leftover raspberry buttercream and a bit of extra filling and ganache, so you don’t need to adjust the other components if you want to make a larger cake.)

I made this cake last week for a coworker’s birthday, and it was the perfect size for our 10-person office. We even had a few small slices left over for the next day! The cake was amazing, and everyone found it hard to only have one piece. The rich chocolate of the cake is nicely balanced with the tang and fruity flavor of the fresh raspberries. I’ll definitely be making this one again… 😀

Click below for the recipe! Have a question? Feel free to ask in the comments below! And thanks for reading! 🙂

Dark Chocolate Raspberry Cake

Yield: 6-inch cake, about 8-12 servings

Being by assembling your ingredients.

For the chocolate cake, you are going to need:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick of unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup whole milk, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup fresh-brewed coffee, cooled to room temperature (it is best to use really strong coffee)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the raspberry filling, you are going to need:

  • 1 cup fresh raspberries
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon fresh squeezed lemon juice

For the raspberry buttercream, you are going to need:

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 pound icing sugar
  • 1/3 cup seedless raspberry jam
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla

Lastly, for the ganache, you are going to need:

  • 6 ounces dark chocolate
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon raspberry liqueur, such as Chambord

You are also going to need:

  • 2 6-inch cake pans
  • Non-stick baking spray
  • Small saucepan
  • Double boiler
  • Icing knife
  • Cake circle or serving plate

First, for the cake, pre-heat your oven to 350° F.

Next, sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in to a medium bowl or on to a sheet of wax paper. Also, in a measuring cup, mix together the milk, coffee, and vanilla.

In a large bowl, beat the butter and the sugar together until light and fluffy.

Slowly beat in the eggs, 1 at a time, until they are incorporated.

Add 1/2 the dry ingredients to the butter and mixture, and mix to combine.

Next, add the milk and coffee mixture, and beat to incorporate. Make sure you add half of the dry ingredients before adding the milk and coffee mixture, or else the coffee will curdle the eggs.

Last, add the remaining dry mixture. Mix until all the ingredients are incorporated. Scrape down the side of the bowl, and mix again to make sure all the ingredients are combined. The mixture will be quite dense.

Grease the sides and bottoms of your 6-inch cake pans (or 10-inch cake pans if doubling the recipe). Divide the batter among the two pans. Bake in your pre-heated oven for 30 minutes (or 40-45 minutes for a 10-inch cake) or until a cake tester inserted comes out clean.

Let cakes cool in the pan for approximately 5 minutes, and then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

While the cake is cooling, prepare the raspberry filling.

In a small saucepan, combine the raspberries, sugar, cornstarch, and lemon juice. Cook, until the raspberries begin to lose their juices and break down. Stir, and cook until the filling boils and thickens (about 5 minutes). Remove from the heat and let cool.

Next, prepare the raspberry buttercream.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter until it is light and fluffy. Add the raspberry jam and vanilla, and beat to combine. Add the powdered sugar, and mix on low-speed until the sugar is incorporated (about 5 minutes). Increase the speed to high, and whip the icing until it is light and fluffy.

Once the cakes are fully cooled, begin assembly.

Place the first layer of the cake on a cake circle or plate. Add a layer of the cooled raspberry filling, and then top with the other cake layer. (To ensure a flat top, place the top layer on the cake with the bottom-side facing upwards.)

Add a thin layer raspberry butter as crumb coat. Chill the cake in the freezer for about 5-10 minutes to allow the crumb coat to set. Remove the cake from the freezer, and then add the outer coat of buttercream.

For the dark chocolate raspberry ganache, melt the chocolate and heavy cream in a double boiler. (Alternatively, use a heat-proof bowl set over a pot of simmering water.)

Add the raspberry liqueur, and stir to combine. Remove the ganache from the heat to cool slightly.

For final decoration of the cake, slowly pour the chocolate ganache over the top of the cake, allowing some to drip down the sides. While the ganache is still warm, decorate the top with fresh raspberries.

Place the cake in the refrigerator to allow the ganache to cool. To serve, remove the cake from the refrigerator, and let warm at room temperature for about 15 minutes.

Enjoy! 😀

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