Chocolate Covered Strawberry Cake

chocolate covered strawberry cake_1

I love cake and I love chocolate covered strawberries.  Why not put them together?  This cake is 4 layers of moist chocolate cake, chocolate mousse, sliced strawberries and chocolate frosting.  For the top I put some chocolate dipped strawberries and next time I’ll add some chocolate shavings to the center!

I’m sorry my frosting technique isn’t really perfect.  I read that you can take a Viva paper towel to smooth the frosting, but I only have Brawny!

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Cake

yield 16-20 servings (depending on the size of the slices)

Cake:
1 ¾ cup flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
2 cups sugar
1 cup cocoa
½ cup vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk
½ cup hot coffee
½ cup boiling water
2 tsp. vanilla
3 eggs

Filling:
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup powdered sugar, divided
1 tsp. instant gelatin
2 Tbs. butter, soft
1 – 8oz. package of cream cheese, room temp.
½ tsp. vanilla
2/3 cup semi sweet chocolate chips, melted
7 large strawberries, sliced

Frosting:
1 cup butter
¼ tsp. salt
4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
½ cup cocoa, sifted
¼ cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla

Decoration:
6 whole strawberries, washed and dry
4 oz. milk chocolate
2 tsp. shortening

1.  Making the cake:  Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Sift the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, sugar and cocoa in a large bowl.  Mix the vegetable oil, buttermilk, coffee, water and vanilla in another bowl.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry.  Beat in the eggs one at a time.  Beat batter at medium speed for 2 minutes.  Pour batter into 4 -8″ or 9″ round cake pans.  Bake 28-30 minutes.  Cool and set aside.

2.  Making the filling: Beat cream to soft peaks.  Whisk together ¼ cup powdered sugar and gelatin.  Add to cream.  Beat to stiff peaks.  In seperate bowl,  beat butter, cream cheese, vanilla and ¾ cup powdered sugar together for 2 minutes.  Add melted chocolate to cream cheese mix.  Beat 1 minute.  Fold in the whipped cream.

3.  Making the frosting: Beat butter and salt until creamy.  Add powdered sugar and cocoa alternating with milk.  Add vanilla and beat medium high for 2 minutes.  Scrape often.

4.  Making the chocolate covered strawberries: Melt chocolate and shortening in the microwave on high in 15 second increments.  Stir each time.  Dip or drizzle melted chocolate on each strawberry.  Place on sheet of wax paper to dry.

5.  Place 1 layer of cake on platter.  Spread 1 cup of filling on top.  Layer sliced strawberries on top of filling.  Repeat cake layer, filling, strawberries.  Repeat cake layer, filling, strawberries.  Place final layer on top.  Frost cake and place chocolate dipped strawberries on top.

**Tips:**
1.  If you don’t have 4 round pans, then use two and let the batter sit out while the cake bakes and cools for 10 minutes.  Put the cake on a wire rack and use the cake pan and parchment paper over again.
2.  You can use parchment paper or nonstick foil on the bottom of the cake pan to keep the bottom from sticking.
3.  You can make the mousse 1-2 days ahead of time as long as it is very air tight in the fridge.  The fudge buttercream frosting can be made ahead of time in the fridge and let it sit out to warm up a few hours before decorating.
4.  Because there is sliced fruit inside, it will go brown after 2 days in the fridge.  So don’t put fruit in the layers if you need to keep it longer.

adapted from recipe by Sharon Kurtz

 

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