Three Layer Chocolate Cake with Salted Caramel Buttercream Filling

Sorry, I've been missing.  Lots going on. And while every time I cook or think about cooking I have my blog in mind, I can't find the time or motivation to write about it. I need a ghost writer. Any takers?

Birthday cake.  What's better than a birthday cake? They're delicious, they're celebratory, and you only get to enjoy your own once a year. When my friend Annie was planning her 30th birthday party earlier this month, she asked me to be her cake captain.  Actually I nominated myself, but she selected me. I'm not sure how many others were in the running, but I imagine it was pretty stiff competition.  It was a job I took very seriously and it took a lot of research, brainstorming, and decision-making.  Luckily I just came out of leadership training at work.

I made the executive decision to stick with my go-to chocolate cake, which is Ina's perfect chocolate cake recipe.  But I doubled the recipe, and made a 3-layer 10 inch cake. By the way, it IS the perfect chocolate cake recipe and I will never try anything different.  

When it came to the filling, I decided on salted caramel butter cream.  Why? Well, because 1. It's salted caramel butter cream, and 2. It's one of Annie's favorites and she had it at her wedding.  And I ate most of it so I owed her one.

So, here it is:

Chocolate Cake
Salted Caramel Butter Cream Filling
 Chocolate Butter Cream Frosting
Prepare the cake as instructed, doubling the recipe if you want to make a triple layer 10-inch cake.  After it has cooled, refrigerate the layers for at least an hour, but preferable overnight (cake tastes better the next day!).   When ready to frost and assemble, prepare the salted caramel filling.  I did NOT use a candy thermometer, I just used her recommended timing and it turned out perfectly.  Use one cup of the filling (and save the rest for ice cream!), and beat together with butter, powdered sugar, milk, and salt.  You're going to need to lick the bowl here.  To prepare the chocolate butter cream, melt 8 oz of milk or semisweet chocolate (30 second intervals in the microwave).  Beat the powdered sugar and butter, then add in the chocolate and milk.

Take the cakes out of the fridge and level them off to create a flat surface (this is actually quite easy with a serrated knife and a chilled cake).  Place the first layer on a cake stand, and top with plenty of salted caramel filling (as much as you want, really - you will definitely have some filling left over).  Place the next layer on top, and repeat. 
Add the final layer, then frost the whole thing with the chocolate butter cream.  Top with caramellos and sea salt.  
The only thing I would have done differently with this cake is that I would not have transported it via cab while wearing a mini skirt. Very tricky.  The cake is about 500 lbs so you will need to prepare for some heavy lifting and rock solid planning if you need to take it anywhere.  But, you will be very happy once you do. It goes perfectly with ice cream, wine, and karaoke party buses.

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