HAPPY 21st BIRTHDAY, ZENKA! This past Tuesday, "the day of Zenka's birth, she FINALLY turned 21. Now, if you know Zenka, she loves chocolate. In fact, she swore off chocolate until her birthday - what a better way to hop back on the chocoholic train than to eat this cake!? Also - Irish Car Bomb = a type of shot. Zenka = can legally drink. And I am Irish, and no, I don't take offense to name of the shot/cake.
The cake itself is very dense and has a strong, deep flavor. I did use dark chocolate cocoa, so next time I may just use "regular" cocoa. The buttercream though… was amazing. I think I will make it again to frost other cakes. It had a nice coffee flavor with a hint of vanilla and was so creamy. However good this cake tasted… the decorating didn't go as planned. I frosted the cake with a beautiful layer of the buttercream and did some nice piping along the bottom and top of the cake, and I was going to pipe some delicate strands of the ganache. Oh, if only I were more graceful. I was piping the ganache and it exploded…everywhere. So I had to resort to having a layer of ganache OVER the buttercream. Next time, I will be more careful. But i really did love this cake and hope to make it again soon. So… if you have a birthday coming up… let me know (wink wink).
Irish Car Bomb Cake
For the Guinness chocolate cake:
- 1 cup stout beer/ Guinness
- 2 sticks unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
- 2 cups flour
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 3/4 tsp. salt
- 2 large eggs
- 2/3 cup sour cream
For the Bailey's ganache:
- 8 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
- 2/3 cup heavy cream
- 2 tbsn. butter, room temperature
- 2 tsp. Bailey's Irish cream
For the Bailey's buttercream frosting:
- 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
- 6-8 cups powdered sugar, sifted
- 1/3 cup Bailey's Irish cream, then keep adding until desired consistency is reached (I used about…eh… 3/4 of a cup)
- To make the cake, preheat oven to 350 F. Grease two cake pans and line with a circle of parchment paper on the bottom. Combine stout and butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the cocoa and whisk until smooth. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt. In the bowl of an electric mixer beat together the eggs and sour cream to blend. Add stout mixture and beat to combine. Mix in dry ingredients on low until incorporated. Divide batter among cake pans and bake until an inserted toothpick comes out clean, about 35 minutes (for me it took a little longer, but again, blame the oven). Cool completely.
- To make the ganache, place chocolate in heatproof bowl. Heat cream in saucepan until simmering, then pour over chocolate, let sit for 1 minute, then stir until smooth. Add butter and Bailey's and stir until combined. Set aside until cool and thick enough to be piped (you can use the refrigerator to speed the process but stir every 10 minutes to ensure even cooling).
- To make the frosting, place the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat on medium high until light and fluffy. Gradually add powdered sugar until incorporated. Mix in Bailey's until smooth. Add more if necessary until frosting has reached a good consistency for piping or spreading. Frost the cakes as desired and enjoy!