Baking Classics: Buttermilk Chocolate Cake

Baking Tutorials: How To Prepare & Ice A Buttermilk Chocolate Layer Cake By rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Modern Southern Socials Game Day EntertainingBaking Classics

The Technique

Buttermilk Chocolate Cake 

Our grandmother’s are the very best cake makers. Many times simple layer cakes were prepared for humble occasions as dessert was indulged in regularly after supper & on a weeknight no less. The entire family would sit patiently for the first slice to be cut at the table much like the ceremonious turkey carving at Thanksgiving. Homemade layer cakes were enjoyed more often than we do now as they were designed to celebrate the simple pleasures hidden within each day. Buttermilk Chocolate Cake is a decadent layer cake that offers tender slices finished with a light, glossy Chocolate Buttercream. If you have ever wanted to prepare a chocolate cake from scratch, I encourage you to give the recipe a try as you will not be disappointed. I have taken great care in providing you with valuable information to ensure a snafu does not surface. Sometimes, it is those extra pointers that can make or break success during recipe preparation. 

Baking Tutorials: How To Make A Chocolate Layer Cake From Scratch By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Food Stylist Writer Modern Southern Socials Game Day Entertaining TV Cooking Personality

RKG Original Small Monogram

Buttermilk Chocolate Cake
makes 12 servings

1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
1 3/4  cup all purpose flour
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp table salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup hot strong brewed coffee
Chocolate Buttercream

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease & flour 2 {8-inch} cake pans. Line the bottom with parchment paper & lightly grease. Cream the butter & the sugar on Medium speed with an electric stand mixer until light & fluffy. Stop the mixer occasionally & scrape down the sides of the bowl. Blend in the eggs & the vanilla. Whisk together the flour, the cocoa powder, the baking powder, the baking soda & the salt in a small bowl. Add to the butter mixture on Low speed alternately with the buttermilk, beginning & ending with the flour mixture. Add the hot coffee & mix just until blended. Portion the batter evenly between the prepared cake pans. Lift each pan about an inch from the countertop. Drop it onto the surface. Repeat two additional times. This will level out the batter in the pans so that the cake rises evenly. 

Bake 40 to 43 minutes or until the cake pulls away from the pan edges. A toothpick inserted into the center will test clean. Do not over bake. Cool cake layers in the pans on a wire rack 10 minutes. Remove the layers from the pans. Discard parchment paper. Cool completely, about 1 hour. Prepare the Chocolate Buttercream & frost the cake layers.

Baking & Pastry Tutorials: Chocolate Buttercream. Buttermilk Chocolate Layer Cake By Rebecca Gordon Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Game Day Entertaining Modern Southern Socials

buttermilk lipstick Southern Recipes & How To's Easy Tailgate Recipes RebeccaGordon ButtermilkLipstickChocolate Buttercream
makes about 3 cups

1 1/3 cups bittersweet chocolate morsels
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
2 Tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
A pinch of table salt

Melt the chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl on High 1 minute, stirring after 30 seconds. Microwave an additional 15 seconds if necessary until the chocolate is smooth when blended. Beat the softened butter, 1 cup powdered sugar, the milk, the vanilla & a pinch of table salt with a hand-held electric mixer until blended. Add the remaining 1 cup powdered sugar Beat the mixture on Low then gradually increase the speed to High & beat until airy & light in texture. Scrape down the bowl sides with a rubber spatula. Add the melted chocolate. Beat the mixture on Low then increase to Medium speed & blend until light & fluffy. Use immediately as directed.

Southern Recipes RebeccaGordon ButtermilkLipstickFROM THE KITCHEN OF BUTTERMILK LIPSTICK
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Baking Tutorials: Chocolate Layer Cake By Rebecca Gordon Buttermilk Lipstick Editor-In-Chief Culinary & Entertaining Brand Cooking & Baking Tutorials Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Editorial Director Pastry Chef Writer Southern Socials Game Day EntertainingHow To Make Buttermilk Chocolate Cake

One of the first recipes I ever baked was a chocolate cake from scratch. I was in about 4th grade or so & although I iced the layers while warm because it just sounded good, the wonky landslide of a cake still tasted delicious. Over the years, I have learned a great deal about baking & icing layer cakes. I’m pleased to share my pointers with you.

rebecca gordon buttermilk lipstick Southern Recipes & How To's Easy Tailgate Recipes RebeccaGordon ButtermilkLipstickThe Technique

From properly preparing cake pans for baking to blending the batter, making a layer cake from scratch is not difficult but there are several points to consider when taking on the task. Start by being certain you have several pieces of key equipment, a few valuable tools & the best ingredients available in order to ensure success throughout the process. Here’s what you should know. 

Baking Lessons: How To Make Chocolate Cake By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Food Stylist Writer TV Cooking Personality Modern Southern Socials Game Day EntertainingNo. 1

The Cake Pan Preparation

Preparing cake pans for batter is ultimately one of the most crucial steps when baking a cake. You can take great care in mixing & blending the batter but it will not be worth your time & effort if the baked cake layers do not release from the pans properly. There are a few methods that I use in order to achieve success when baking that are applied for different flavor profiles. This cake happens to be extremely tender & moist so an extra step has been added to ensure the very bottom of the cake does not stick to the pan.

Begin by coating a generous portion of shortening on the bottom & around the sides of each cake pan. Add a little flour to each pan & pick them up. Turn the pan, tapping lightly while the flour begins to coat & stick to the surface. When it has been coated, remove any excess flour that does not stick.

Baking Lessons: How To Make Chocolate Cake By Rebecca Gordon Culinary & Entertaining Brand Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Food Stylist Writer Southern Hostess TV Cooking Personality Game Day Entertaining Modern Southern Socials1a

Although many traditional southern style layer cakes can be prepared by simply greasing & flouring cake pans, the additional step of adding a round of parchment paper will ensure the cake releases easily. The flour around the sides of the pan will further help rather than by simply relying on a light coating of cooking spray.

Place the cake pan over a piece of parchment paper. Run a very sharp paring knife around the base of the cake pan to create the circles.

Baking Lessons: How To Make Chocolate Cake By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Editorial Director Pastry Chef Writer Food Stylist Southern Hostess Modern Southern Socials Game Day Entertaining TV Cooking Personality 1b

Place the parchment paper circle into the bottom of the cake pan. Gently press it to the bottom for a snug fit. Lightly coat the parchment paper with cooking spray. Set the cake pans aside.

The Basics: Drop Cookies. Pecan-Oat Cookies By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Baking & Cooking Tutorials Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Writer Food Stylist Photographer Tv cooking Personality Southern Hostess Game Day EntertainingNo. 2

The Cake Batter Procedure

The Butter

Softened butter is called for often in recipe applications. The key is to begin the mixing process whether for cakes or other baked items with butter that is the proper consistency. It shouldn’t be too firm nor too soft. You should be able to create a rudimentary butter curl with a spoon indicating that it is indeed ready to use.

Begin the mixing procedure by creaming the butter & the sugar together in the work bowl of an electric stand mixer. The creaming process is a standard cake blending procedure in which the butter & the sugar are beaten using a paddle attachment thus aerating the mixture so that the additional ingredients will blend in well. It will take anywhere from 3 to 5 minutes.

Baking Cake Layers: Buttermilk Chocolate Cake By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Baking & Cooking Tutorials Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Writer Food Stylist TV cooking Personality Southern Hostess Game Day Entertaining Modern Southern SocialsThe Eggs & The Vanilla

Once the creaming process is complete, ring the work bowl using a rubber spatula to ensure all of the ingredients have been well blended. Add the eggs & the vanilla & blend the mixture once again on Low speed just until the yellow of the egg disappears. Be certain to stop the mixer occasionally during the blending process & scrape down the bowl sides for the best results.

Baking Tutorials: How To Make Chocolate Cake Layers By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Writer Food Stylist Game Day Entertaining Tv Cooking Personality Modern Southern SocialsThe Dry Ingredients & The Liquids

Portion the coffee & the buttermilk. The coffee will compliment & enhance the chocolate flavor while the buttermilk provides moist cake. Measure the flour, the cocoa powder, the baking powder, the baking soda & the salt. Place the ingredients in a bowl & be certain to whisk them together in order to disperse the leavening to ensure a level rise when the batter bakes. 

Baking Lessons: How To Make Chocolate Cake By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Writer Food Stylist TV Cooking Personality Modern Southern Socials Game Day EntertainingThe First Addition Of Dry Ingredients

The dry ingredients & the liquids will need to be added to the butter mixture in stages. Always begin & end the process with the dry ingredients. Blend them in on Low speed just until incorporated.

Baking Lessons: How To Make Chocolate Cake By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & entertaining Brand Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Editorial Director Pastry Chef Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Pastry Chef Modern Southern Socials Game Day EntertainingThe First Addition Of Buttermilk

After a little bit of the dry ingredients have been added, pour a little buttermilk into the mixture & blend until the mixture is smooth. this will aide in loosening the mixture so the process can be repeated. 

Baking Lessons: How To Make Chocolate Cake By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Baking & Cooking Tutorials Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Food Stylist Game Day Entertaining Modern Southern Socials The Final Addition Of Buttermilk

Add the last bit of buttermilk remaining & blend the batter well so that it is smooth.

Baking Lessons: Buttermilk Chocolate Layers Cake By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Baking & Cooking Tutorials Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Writer TV Cooking Personality Game Day Entertaining Modern Southern Socials The Addition Of Hot Coffee

Blooming the cocoa powder is a method that helps deliver a texture that’s more moist as well as a deeper, intense chocolate flavor. You’ll find this technique used in a variety of ways. Sometimes it’s added to water or even oil & allowed to stand a few minutes. The old-fashioned cake blending technique of adding boiling water at the end of a chocolate cake recipe works to bloom the cocoa powder by hydrating it as it has a tendency to dry out baked goods. This process also helps to smooth out the cocoa before baking to prevent any lumps throughout the final cake. The hot coffee in this recipe simply mimics this notion plus intensifies the chocolate flavor one step further.

While the mixer is running Low speed, slowly pour the hot coffee into the batter. 

Baking Lessons: How To Prepare Chocolate Cake Layers By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Editorial Director Pastry Chef Writer Game Day Entertaining Modern Southern SocialsNo. 3

The Chocolate Cake Batter & The Portioning

Stop the mixer & use a rubber spatula to ring the bowl, smoothing out any unincorporated ingredients. Pour the cake batter evenly between the prepared pans.

Baking Tutorials: Buttermilk Chocolate Layer Cake By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Baking & Cooking Tutorials Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Editorial Director Pastry Chef Writer Tv Cooking Personality Game Day Entertaining Modern Southern Socials3a

Lift each cake pan about an inch from the countertop & drop it onto the surface a few times. This will settle the batter into the pans to ensure the cake layers rise & bake evenly in the oven. Bubbles from the leavening will pop over the surface of the batter. The procedure will prevent the need to trim the cake before icing the layers. 

Baking Lessons: How To Make Level Chocolate Cake Layers By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Food Stylist Writer Tv Cooking Personality Modern Southern Socials Game Day EntertainingNo. 4

The Baking & The Cooling 

Position the oven racks in the center of the oven & always preheat it while preparing cake batter so that it is the proper temperature when the cake pans are added. Place the filled pans on the same center rack & start the timer. When they are ready to be removed from the oven, the cakes will pull away from the pan edges & a toothpick inserted into the center will test clean. Do not over bake them. 

Cool cake layers in the pans on a wire rack 10 minutes then invert them to remove the layers from the pans. Discard parchment paper. Flip the cakes over & allow them to cool completely on a wire rack, about 1 hour. 

Baking & Pastry Tutorials: Chocolate Buttercream By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Culinary & Entertaining Brand Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Writer Food Stylist Modern Southern Socials No. 5

The Chocolate Buttercream

The Chocolate Buttercream has a silky, glossy texture. Expect a light & airy buttercream that is not overly sweet & carries a distinctive buttery taste. It is the perfect consistency for spreading. The only tool you’ll need is a butter knife or a small icing spatula.

Baking Tutorials: How To Make A Chocolate Layer Cake From Scratch By Rebecca Gordon Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Baking & Cooking Tutorials Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Writer Food Stylist TV Cooking Personality Game Day Hostess Modern Southern Socials 5a

Begin the process using a large bowl. Add the softened butter, 1 cup powdered sugar, the milk, the vanilla & the salt. Use a hand held mixer to complete the task. In the meantime, be certain the chocolate is smooth, fluid & cooling at this point. Before starting the procedure.

Baking Tutorials: How To Make A Chocolate Layer Cake By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Baking & Cooking Tutorials Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Food Stylist Writer TV Cooking Personality Game Day Entertaining Modern Southern Socials 5b

Once the ingredients in the bowl have been blended until they are smooth, add the remaining powdered sugar & whip the mixture until light & airy.

Baking Tutorials: How To Make Chocolate Layer Cake From Scratch By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooking Cooking & Baking Tutorials Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Writer Food Stylist TV Cooking Personality Game Day Entertaining Modern Southern Socials 5c

Use a rubber spatula to ring the bowl sides then add the melted chocolate. Beat the Chocolate Buttercream until everything is well blended & fluffy. Once blended, transfer the frosting to a clean bowl before beginning the icing process. Be certain all of the ingredients are well blended to ensure the mixture is smooth.

Baking Tutorials: How To Make Chocolate Layer Cake By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Baking & Cooking Tutorials Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Food Stylist Writer TV Cooking Personality Game Day Entertaining Modern Southern Socials No. 6

The Cake Assembly

Layer cake frosting techniques vary greatly. The top & the sides can be iced smoothly for a clean, modern look or a simple butter knife will produce a more casual cake style. This particular cake is a little old-fashioned so I prefer the latter method although I have iced the layers both ways for equally stunning presentations. 

Place one of the cooled cake layers with the top side facing up on the plate or cake stand you would like to use for your presentation. Spread about a 1/2 cup or so of the buttercream in the center of the cake layer. Use the butter knife to spread it all the way to the edges being a little generous. When the second layer is added, you want a little bit to press out to ensure that once the cake slices are cut for serving, the frosting on the cake sides meets the frosting in the center of the cake for a cohesive, even look.

Baking Tutorials: How To Make A Layer Cake From Scratch By Rebecca Gordon Buttermilk Lipstick Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Cooking & Baking Tutorials Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Writer Food Stylist TV Cooking Personality Modern Southern Socials Game Day Entertaining6a

Place the second cake layer over the buttercream with the bottom side facing up. Generally, this surface will always be more level.

Baking Tutorials: How To Make A Chocolate Layer Cake By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Cooking & Baking Tutorials Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Editorial Director Pastry Chef Writer Food Stylist TV Cooking Personality Game Day entertaining Modern Southern Socials 6b

Spread a generous portion of Chocolate Buttercream over the top of the cake & push it to the edges & slightly over.

Baking Tutorials: How To Make Buttermilk Chocolate Layer Cake By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Baking & Cooking Tutorials Editorial Director Digital Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Food Stylist Writer TV Cooking Personality Modern Southern Socials Game Day Entertaining6c

Spread the frosting around the sides a little at a time. I generally start at the plate base & work the knife up to the top layer. Once there, the purpose is the merge the frosting on the sides with that already on top of the cake. Use the knife to gently blend the areas where they meet. Once you complete the task, you can use additional frosting to make decorative swirls on the top & sides of the cake.  

Baking Tutorials: How To Make A Chocolate Layer Cake From Scratch By Rebecca Gordon Editor-In-Chief Buttermilk Lipstick Culinary & Entertaining Brand Practical Culinary Techniques For Everyday Cooks Baking & Cooking Tutorials Editorial Director Digital Culinary Photo Journalist Pastry Chef Writer Food Stylist TV Cooking Personality Game Day Entertaining Modern Southern SocialsNo. 7 

The Chocolate Layer Cake

Wipe the plate edges clean with a damp paper towel after icing. Store the cake in the refrigerator until ready to slice. Allow it to stand at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before serving guests for a smoother Chocolate Buttercream texture.

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About Rebecca Gordon

* Southern Born * Southern Bred * Tailgate Queen * Southern College Football Fanatic * SEC Tailgate Strategist * Southern Recipe Writer & Sometimes Novelist * Half-Hour Hostess * Media Personality * Houndstooth Hound Owner * Small Town Dreamer * Big Idea Doer * 3rd Generation Pimiento Cheese Fixer * Casserole Maker * Budweiser Drinker * Bourbon Cocktail Sipper * Peanut Butter Love Affair * Cookie Monster * Calorie Burner * Retainer of Useless Pop Culture One Liners * Terrible Dancer * Even Worse Singer but doesn't care * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Rebecca Gordon shares over 20 years of cooking knowledge in the instructional filled original editorial content on Buttermilk Lipstick as well as the cooking class format videos that can be found on her YouTube channel through regular collaboration with numerous media outlets. Gordon draws from an extensive background in corporate publishing spanning over 13 years on both the business and editorial side focusing on women’s southern lifestyle. She is a classically trained pastry chef and draws from fine dining restaurant experience from a James Beard award winning chef as well as her southern roots upbringing to share cooking, entertaining & style content relevant to today’s modern woman.

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