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Vanilla Bean Latte Cake with Dark Chocolate Truffle
Note: The truffles require refrigeration ahead of time (up to overnight), so make sure to prepare them ahead.
For the cake:
Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease three 9-inch round cake pans, and line the bottoms with parchment paper for the cake layers.
In a large bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
In another bowl, whisk the boiling water and cocoa powder until smooth.
Beat butter and sugar together on medium speed in the bowl of a standing mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Beat in buttermilk and vanilla extract.
Reduce the speed to low and beat in 1/3 of the flour mixture, followed by half of the cocoa mixture. Repeat with another 1/3 of the flour mixture and the remaining chocolate mixture. Beat in the remaining flour mixture until just incorporated.
Divide the batter into thirds and pour into the prepared pans, smoothing the top surface with a spatula. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean.
Place the cakes (in the pans) on a wire rack to cool. Then invert the cooled cakes onto a greased rack. Cool completely before frosting.
To prepare the buttercream, put egg whites and sugar in a mixing bowl over a pot of simmering water. Use an electric hand mixer to beat constantly until the sugar has completely dissolved and the egg whites are hot. Remove from heat.
With whisk attachment, continue whipping the mixture in the bowl of a standing mixer until thick, glossy and cool.
Switch over to the paddle attachment. While continuously mixing on medium speed add softened butter in chunks until incorporated, and mix until it has reached a silky smooth texture. If it curdles, keep mixing and it will come back to smooth. Add vanilla beans, espresso, cinnamon and salt, mix well. Set aside.
To assemble the cake, place one cake layer on your serving plate and spread with 1/3 cup of the buttercream. Repeat this process until all cake layers are placed. Smear the remaining buttercream on top and sides of the cake. Top the cake with dark chocolate truffles*.
Cover and refrigerate the cake until an hour before serving. Leave cake out in room temperature for at least an hour prior to serving.
To prepare the chocolate truffles:
Put the chopped chocolate into a medium sized heatproof bowl and set it aside. In a small saucepan heat the heavy cream over medium heat until it simmers. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate. Add the vanilla. Let the cream melt the chocolate for 5 minutes (without stirring) and then stir until silky smooth.
Cool the chocolate in the fridge for at least 2 hours. After the chocolate has cooled, roll the chocolate into small balls. If the chocolate is too cold, let it sit on the counter until you can roll it into small balls. Place the balls on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. When all of the chocolate truffles are rolled into balls, put them back in the fridge overnight.
When ready to assemble, roll the truffles in the cocoa powder. Serve or keep in the fridge until ready to eat.
Nancy is the Coupon Clipping Cook, which means she not only has an astounding number of recipes to share with us (her TK recipe box is busting at the seams!) but she's also got loads of money-saving tips in her blog (she worked at a grocery store for a number of years, so she knows her stuff). She has some pretty amazing creations, like Roasted Garlic Potato Soup and Nutty Coconut Chicken. Go check them out!
Heather is a Texas native and the blogger behind Heather's Dish. She's mom to Weston, wife to Nate, and they live in Little Rock, Arkansas with their two "stubborn and saucy" dogs Bunker and Keira. In her blog, she shares her photographs, random musings (serious and silly alike), and all kinds of scrumptious recipes---and not just evil variations of her favorite mac and cheese. Her enviable TK recipe box is a testament to that. Go see for yourself!