KsCakes09 Posted 23 Mar 2012 , 12:18am

I've tried several recipes from here, Cake Boss cookbook, martha stewart cookbook, food network & online ....just to name a few & haven't found a chocolate cake/cupcake recipe that actually taste like yummy chocolate. they either taste like cocoa or coffee. I've made box mix choc. cake & it taste like chocolate.....anyone have any suggestions how I can achieve yummy chocolate flavor.

17 replies
JaeRodriguez Posted 23 Mar 2012 , 12:31am

Have you tried the double layer chocolate cake from epicurious? It's amazing! And I think it has a very chocolate-y flavor, not just a subtle cocoa!

scp1127 Posted 25 Mar 2012 , 5:55am

Look for recipes that have melted chocolate in the recipes.

Another option you may want to pursue is using a premium cocoa. I use Hershey's in my basic cake, but use Sharffen Berger in my premium cakes. It is a world of difference. Two other great ones are Pernigotti and Guittard Cocoa Rouge (Dtch Process).

scp1127 Posted 25 Mar 2012 , 5:57am

Look for recipes that have melted chocolate in the recipes.

Another option you may want to pursue is using a premium cocoa. I use Hershey's in my basic cake, but use Sharffen Berger in my premium cakes. It is a world of difference. Two other great ones are Pernigotti and Guittard Cocoa Rouge (Dutch Process).

KsCakes09 Posted 28 Mar 2012 , 8:21pm

Thanks for the info.....where can I find those brands of cocoa? don't think I've seen them at the local store.

Goreti Posted 28 Mar 2012 , 11:06pm

Have you ever tried this recipe?
http://cakecentral.com/recipe/cappuccino-triple-chocolate-sour-cream-pound-cake
I LOVE this cake. After trying a number of different chocolate cake recipes both doctored mix & from scratch, I was still not happy with the flavor. I really love this one and so did everyone else who had it. Almost reminds me of a brownie. Yummy--If you try it, she notes at the bottom that she has increased the flour to 3 cups which is what I did. Was very happy with the crumb.

Prima Posted 29 Mar 2012 , 4:42am

I agree with JaeRodriguez, the Double Chocolate Layer Cake from Epicurious is the best true chocolate cake I've tried. It's rich and chocolately, but not dense, fudgey, or brownie-like as some chocolate cakes can be. Instead, it is light & delicate, and very chocolatey, just like you want a cake to be. Here is the link to the recipe:

http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Double-Chocolate-Layer-Cake-101275

Also, here's a review from my favorite foodie blog, Smitten Kitchen, and her assessment of this chocolate bliss:

http://smittenkitchen.com/2007/07/you-are-owed-chocolate-cake/

Hope this helps!

QTCakes1 Posted 29 Mar 2012 , 5:24pm

I gotta give another vote for the double chocolate layer from Epicurios. And it is about the quality of choclate. In my opinion, Hershey's is a crap chocolate. I know it's the standard go to, but it's not very good. I use Ghiradelli's. Schaffen Berger is also a good one. Remember, with chocolate cake, it's ALL about the quality of the chocolate you use.

Prima Posted 29 Mar 2012 , 6:10pm

Agreed, the quality of chocolate makes all the difference. My faves are El Ray, Scharffeb Berger, & Valrhona. Although spendy, they make a huge difference in the quality of the final product. And isn't chocolate heaven what we're after for when we make this?

QTCakes1 Posted 29 Mar 2012 , 9:32pm

Oh yeah! Valrhona! I forgot that one. They are pricey, but I gurantee you will get a huge difference in flavor.

ktbeths Posted 29 Jun 2012 , 2:34am

I looked up the double chocolate cake on epicurious. It looks amazing. I have a question, though. I have the Vahlrona cocoa, but it is Dutch process - the recipe calls for a cocoa that is natural, not Dutch process. Is there any way I can use my good cocoa in this recipe? Thanks for any help!
Beth S icon_smile.gif

Prima Posted 29 Jun 2012 , 3:26am

In a nutshell, no, generally you can't substitute Dutch process cocoa for natural cocoa. Dutch process cocoa powder is made from cocoa beans that have been washed with a potassium solution to neutralize their acidity. Natural cocoa powder are beans that have been roasted & ground. Because natural cocoa powder hasn't had its acidity tempered, it's paired with baking soda in batter recipes. Dutch process cocoa is paired with baking powder. While I love Valhrona, Schaffer Berger is a good natural cocoa you might try in this case. You can, however, use Valhrona chocolate for the melted chocolate in the recipe.

If anyone can offer their expertise on how to successfully tweak the leaveners in the recipe so that it can work with Dutch process cocoa, I would LOVE to learn.

(PS, the double chocolate layer cake is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!)

mclaren Posted 29 Jun 2012 , 7:48am

When it's not stated, how do we find out the cocoa is Dutch processed or not?

ktbeths Posted 29 Jun 2012 , 1:45pm

After reading some of the comments on the double chocolate cake - I noticed that some stated they had used Dutch process cocoa in the recipe. This led me to a google search on how to substitute Dutch process cocoa for natural cocoa in a recipe. Here is what I found:
According to "The King Arthur Flour Baker's Companion":
"If a recipe calls for natural cocoa and baking soda and you want to use Dutch-process cocoa, substitute an equal amount of Dutch-process cocoa but replace the soda with twice the amount of baking powder. If the recipe calls for Dutch-process cocoa powder and baking powder, substitute the same amount of natural cocoa but replace the baking powder with half the amount of baking soda."
If you are interested in reading the original article, it can be found here:
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/dailydish/2012/02/test-kitchen-tips-natural-versus-dutch-process-cocoa.html#comments
I haven't tried this myself so I can't say for sure, but I plan on making the double chocolate layer cake next week using my Valrhona, so I'll let you know how it goes!

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BakingIrene Posted 29 Jun 2012 , 2:03pm

I bake only recipes that call for the cocoa to be mixed with boiling water. I am sloppy/generous with the measurement of cocoa, and it turns into a rich paste with the water. The cake always tastes like real chocolate when only the normal amount of vanilla is added--no coffee, no salt, no other tricks.

I don't bother converting recipes from Dutch to natural. In my experience, if there is baking powder or egg white meringue in the recipe, there is no difference. I grab whatever is handy.

Prima Posted 29 Jun 2012 , 2:16pm

IMHO, the addition of coffee in the recipe intensifies and balances the flavor of the chocolate. (Just like adding salt to a steak brings out flavors of the meat, or lemon brightens the flavors of a sauce). You don't taste the coffee in the final product, just rich dark chocolate. And I always go heavy on the vanilla. Sometimes these "tricks of the trade" are used to highlight the main ingredient, not mask them. Just my opinion, but I would never want to scare someone away from a great recipe just because it has "tricks".

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chocolatefudgecakefan Posted 11 Jul 2012 , 11:40am

lindy smiths chocolate fudge cake is amazing. Give it a whirl. Lots of real chocolate in it.
http://www.lindyscakes.co.uk/2011/02/02/lindys-chocolate-fudge-cake-recipe/

yortma Posted 11 Jul 2012 , 1:01pm

my favorite recipe is also the double chocolate cake from epicurious mentioned above. I use high quality chocolate (callebaut or scharfenberger). but always use plain old Hershey's extra dark cocoa that is widely available. The cake is moist and has a rich chocolate taste but is not dense. It is really wonderful. I once used valrhona dutch process cocoa in a recipe and thought it had a chemical taste. I threw out the whole $30 bag of it. Since then I have stuck to Hersheys and been very happy with it. I use the extra dark for almost everything. BTW my close second favorite recipe for chocolate cake is the deluxe devil's food cake on the side of the Softasilk flour box. I have made it countless times and it is great. Compared to the double chocolate cake, it is slightly less intense in chocolate flavor and slightly more dense in crumb, but very close in my family taste tests. It uses butter instead of oil, no coffee or chocolate, just the cocoa. (The double chocolate cake domes a bit more, and is a bit crustier on the top, and needs to be leveled). Sometimes it is handy to have an alternate recipe, in case of ingredient shortages! HTH

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