Dark Chocolate Cake

This is the epic tale of Jon’s birthday cake.

Every year Jon and I make each other a cake for our birthdays.  This year Jon stated he wanted chocolate cake, so off I went to Sweetapolita’s blog to find the perfect cake to make him.

I decided to make the campfire cake, with the alteration that I was going to just make one frosting to keep things simple.  But, of course, that didn’t work out so well.  For some reason I decided that the frosting Sweetapolita frosted the cake with was the marshmallow one, so I made it and then realized that I chose the wrong one.  So in the end I ended up making two frostings.  The marshmallow frosting between each layer and the chocolate frosting on the exterior.

Other than the minor frosting mistake, everything was going as planned with the cake.

I frosted the exterior of the cake carefully and diligently.  As I frosted it I noticed that my frosting had a lot of bubbles.  Still, I continued frosting the cake until it was all done. Ta-da! Actually, not so much.  Because Nalena is a perfectionist.

Yes, it’s true. And it’s an awful thing to be.  I could have walked away and been happy with how the cake turned out.  But no, those bubbles were really bugging me.  So I searched online and realized I overwhipped the buttercream.  *All* I needed to do to get the air bubbles out was to press the frosting against the side of the bowl with a spatula.  I did a test batch with the leftover frosting and away the bubbles went.

After this discovery I decided I would unfrost the entire cake, put it all back in the bowl, get all of the bubbles out of the frosting and then put all of the frosting back on the cake.  You might think, Crazy, but remember, perfectionist.  Perfectionist.

This is when things went horribly wrong.  I am not sure exactly how it happened, because it all went down in a matter of seconds.  Here was the setting:  the cake was sitting on its stand, which was sitting on top of a small cake turntable. Actually, it’s a pottery turntable, but similar nevertheless.  I went to the kitchen to get the bowl to transfer all of the icing back into and set it on the table.  And then! It happened.  Somehow the bowl touched the cake stand which was pulled by gravity and the cake made a 180 degree flip.

It landed upside-down on the edge of the table.  This is when you start crying.  You have now been working on this cake for two days, for everything to go all wrong.

I then very carefully picked up the cake and put it back on the stand.

It looked like this upon getting it back on the stand.  Yes, this is what happens when you worry about a couple of bubbles.

Somehow, I didn’t quit.  I got all of the frosting off the disheveled cake, pressed out the bubbles and put it all back on.  She was pretty in the end.  A little more crooked than she started off as, but that’s okay.  And Jon was happy as can be when he got home from work and had some cake to eat.  Even if it was one day late.

Because I am exhausted, and because I am lazy I will not be posting the recipe.  If you ever want to make this cake go here.

Happy Birthday Jon! I love you more than words can describe.  To many more years of chocolate cakes and misadventures.

7 replies on “Dark Chocolate Cake”

Dear Miss Perfection(ist),

How did you get the frosting off the cake without getting little specks of cake in the frosting, hmmmmm? I’ve actually tried this before with even more disastrous results.


Nonplussed in Nashville

Dear Nicole,

You caught me, I did get cake crumbs in the frosting. I very meticulously picked them out, it was a very arduous process. Next time send me proof of these “disastrous results” you speak of.

Nalenita tan Bonita

The cake might not have been perfect (although I’m pretty sure imperfect cake tastes about the same*), but your composition perfectly captures the mind of a perfectionist.

Love from Minnesota!

*disclaimer: I do not like cake.

Ruth, I guess I should clarify that I am only a perfectionist when it comes to certain things, like anyone else out there in this world. 🙂 I totally understand your dislike for cake, there are so many other more delicious sweets.

[…] My sugar cookies would puff up, my frosting would droop in very sad manners, and my cake would stick to the pan.  But I was convinced that if all of these folks out there who were self-taught could do it, then I could too.  I kept trying, kept learning, and kept reading.   Slowly, I started having more successes than failures in the kitchen.  I can now bake and decorate sugar cookies, swirl frosting on cupcakes, and make a cake (even if it topples over). […]

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