Inching Away From the Dark Side.

Chocolate Layer Cake with Milk Chocolate Frosting III

You know how some months seem to whizz you by with the blink of an eye while others, especially those that do not have any public holidays, seem to have a hundred days in them?

With Easter and then a flurry of birthdays- two close friends’, mine, GT’s and my mum’s, all within days of each other- April is one of those months that really just seem to fly by for me. I mean, can you believe we’re done with a third of the year already? Where did all that time go?

Anyway, where was I- oh yes, birthdays. With the end of the month comes my mum’s birthday. And in keeping with the whole traditional of doing chocolate birthday cakes, there’s no guessing what I made this year.

Chocolate Layer Cake with Milk Chocolate Frosting II

What took me by complete surprise was how damned good this cake was. I mean seriously, I’m neither a cake nor- especially not- a milk chocolate person but this cake had me swooning right from the first forkful. Fluffy chocolate cake layers sandwiched between velvety, smooth as silk milk chocolate frosting, it was nothing short of spectacular and completely worth running late for work for to assembly it.

(By the way, if you look really hard at the first photo, that little spot of grey on the far right hand side? That’s my baby parrot trying to sneakily join the fun and get himself some cake)

Much to my delight, my mum really loved the cake, making it a point to tell me several times how good it was in between forkfuls and my dad proclaimed it to be better than the ones from a hugely popular local cake store.

It looks like I have a pretty hard one to top next year but I’m pretty sure I’ll find something in the extensive collection of chocolate cake recipes I have just waiting for their turn in the kitchen.

But until then, I’m perfectly happy to let this cake sit on top of my Definitely Worth Making Again Even If It’s The Last Thing I Make list.

Chocolate Layer Cake with Milk Chocolate Frosting [adapted from]

Chocolate Layer Cake with Milk Chocolate Frosting

2 cups plain flour
2/3 cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
250g unsalted butter, chopped and at room temperature
1 cup lightly packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup caster sugar
4 eggs, at room temperature
60g unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups buttermilk

Milk Chocolate Frosting
2/3 cup milk
3 egg yolks
1 tbsp plus 1 tsp plain flour
1 2/3 cup icing sugar, sifted
Pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
250g unsalted butter, chopped and at room temperature ††
240g milk chocolate, melted and cooled
60g unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled

  1. Preheat the oven to 175C. Butter 2 9″ round springform baking pans generously and line the bases with baking paper; set aside.
  2. Sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt into a bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar together on medium speed till light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the chocolate and vanilla and beat till just combined. Reduce the speed to low and add the buttermilk and flour mixture, alternating between the two starting and ending with the flour mixture. Mix till just incorporated.
  3. Divide the batter evenly between the two prepared pans. Bake till a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out with dry crumbs clinging and cake springs back lightly when pressed, about 25 to 30 minutes. Cool the cakes in their pans for 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  4. To make frosting Heat the milk over medium heat in a large saucepan till hot. Whisk the yolks, flour, 1/3 cup of icing sugar and salt in a large bowl. Gradually whisk the milk into the yolk mixture and pour the mixture back into the saucepan. Return the saucepan to heat and bring it to boil, whisking constantly. Reduce the heat to low and let custard simmer for 2 minutes- the custard will be very thick. Transfer the custard to a bowl and let cool completely.
  5. Using an electric mixer, add vanilla and remaining 1 cup of icing sugar to the cooled custard. Add the milk and unsweetened chocolate in and beat the butter in until well combined. Use the frosting immediately or keep in the fridge till ready to use.
† I used 1 tbsp of lemon juice and enough milk to make 1 1/2 cups. Let stand for 5 minutes before using.
†† Original recipe calls for 375g of butter.
Leave a comment


  1. Wow Laureen! Look at how beautiful the cake is! I was wondering where you bought this from. Even the layering and the frosting of the cake was so pro! I’m just so glad you have the KA, it makes you bake more often now. Heehee… And I’m so enjoying your posts!

  2. oh this cake looks fanatasic. I don t blame the parrot is trying to join too :)

  3. it looks delicious!!!!! please mail me a slice ;)

    and i would like a baby parrot too please.

    thank you

  4. Okay, initially I told myself I’ll want that banana caramel cake (sans the mascarpone) for my birthday next mth, but now I want this! It can’t look any more perfect, Laureen :)

    • Hey Jane :) You’re way too kind. The frosting was such a mess! You should have seen me frantically frosting the cake before leaving for work. I had to change my top because I had chocolate frosting on it by the time I was done :lol:

      Thanks, snooky doodle! :D

      Hey Sarah. Be careful what you wish for- cute as my baby parrot is, the words peace and quiet are completely foreign to me now :D

      Aw, you’re such a sweetie Zhul. Haha well whichever you do go with, you won’t be disappointed!

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