Thursday, 8 March 2012

Chocolate and Buttermilk Layer Cake

Yesterday, I had a couple of tubs of buttermilk that needed using. I just cannot stand wasting any food. I was going to make buttermilk pancakes and perhaps a smoothie, but then I also had an urge to bake. So I thought even better, why not use the buttermilk in the same way if I were to use sour cream or yoghurt when baking. And then this chocolate and buttermilk layer cake was born...

In my chocolate cakes these days, I must add coffee or espresso to enhance the chocolatey-ness. Don't be alarmed by the runny batter. The coffee and buttermilk, they really ensure the cake to be dark and moist, very moist...

Just in case, it's not chocolatey enough, the cake is covered with Nutella buttercream frosting. So, you know this is gonna be good.

I brought the cake to the office and it was very well-received. My friend Ross, sent an email with the subject "cake = awesome". I think he liked it and I think you would too.

Chocolate and Buttermilk Layer Cake with Nutella Buttercream Frosting
Recipe by Me
Makes 12 slices

For the cake
400 grams plain flour
450 grams caster sugar
75 grams cocoa powder
1 tablespoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
3 egg yolks
300 ml vegetable oil
350 ml buttermilk
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
350 ml hot espresso (or use strong coffee)

For the Nuttela Buttercream Frosting
125 grams icing sugar
150 grams soft unsalted butter
3 heaped tablespoons Nutella
1 tablespoon hot water

Start by preheating the oven to 180 C. Grease two, 23 cm cake tins with butter or nonstick spray, and line the bottoms with baking paper.

In a large bowl, add the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, salt and baking powder. I don't bother sifting. I just use a whisk to blend everything in and try to break as much lumps as possible.

In a jug, mix the buttermilk, vegetable oil, eggs, yolks, vanilla extract and mix to combine. Pour the wet mixture to the dry ingredients, whisking well. You can use an electric mixer, but I needed the workout before tucking into the cake later. I haven't been to the gym the past week. I felt kinda guilty.

Anyway... next, add the hot espresso or strong coffee slowly and mix until the batter is smooth. Divide into the prepared tins and bake for 30 - 35 minutes until a skewer comes out with moist crumbs. Let cool in the pans for 15 - 20 minutes before turning them out completely on a wire rack.

To make the frosting, dump the icing sugar, softened butter and Nutella into a food processor. Pulse several times until everything comes together. With the motor running, pour the hot water down the funnel and that's it!

Once the cakes are completely cooled, take one cake flat side up, and place it on the cake stand or platter of your choice. Spread half of the frosting all over and then place the second cake, flat side down. Spread the rest of the frosting on top, making any patterns you like.

Make yourself a cup of something nice to drink and enjoy the cake.


  1. Ummmm, I could go for a slice of that cake right now. Love it and know it has to be moist because of the buttermilk. I'm sure you're the most popular person at the office!

  2. Buttermilk is so good in cakes ( pies too). Love it.

  3. Michael, this cake looks mouthwatering and perfect. What a great recipe! I may know how to cook, but when it comes to cakes I'm unfortunately clueless. Great job!

  4. Oh yes - that's what I call a serious chocolate cake. Lovely stuff. Just one question - what's this gym thing you're talking about? I don't think I've ever come across one of those.

  5. Espresso and chocolate...yes please! What a gorgeous and delicious looking cake!

  6. Sounds yummy! Love coffee and chocolate so this will taste really good!:)

  7. Another beautiful cake, Michael! And I have to agree, there is just something magical about combining coffee/espresso and chocolate... YUM!!!

  8. You got me when you mentioned nutella! ;))

  9. OMG! These chocolate and buttermilk layer cake look so amazingly YUMMY! So tempting & heavenly delicious!! :)