Easy Chocolate Cake
Hello! My name is Anton Landicho, I am 15 years old and a Grade 10 student from Miriam Nuvali. I am also a cooking enthusiast who is still learning my way around the kitchen. Today I would like to share my experience with baking my first ever cake. There wasn’t really any occasion to bake cake, I was recently gifted with new baking materials and ingredients and I had the rest of the day off from school. I simply wanted to bake something.
I originally wanted to bake a lava cake but I did not have the proper materials to make one so I considered making a regular chocolate cake instead. I saw an easy recipe and I checked to see if I had everything I needed to make it, and I did. And this made me want to do it even more. It also seemed nice to surprise my family with a fun chocolate cake for dessert. So I ended up really wanting to make one. If I were to assess my experience baking my first cake, well there weren’t really many different ways to make this cake but there were certain things to consider and to prepare for making this cake. I realize I could have prepared better. For example, I could have cleaned up our messy but large countertop which is good for baking, I could have organized everything and put them in one place and I could have worked smarter and tried to lessen the dishes I would use.
Out of all the means I listed down, doing each one would have been best but unfortunately I only did a few of them. I ended up using a small area in front of the microwave, which made it really hard to work and it made the process even messier. I did not organize much but instead I would just find the things I needed in the house only when I needed them rather than preparing them beforehand. I did wear an apron to keep my shirt clean, and I did try to limit the number of dishes I used but I wasn’t so good at it to be honest.
I found an easy chocolate cake recipe and checked if everything was complete. Then I prepared my phone (where I could watch my recipe), a bowl, cooking utensils, and some ingredients I needed.
I had a really hard time with the first couple parts of the recipe because I was really messy and some parts in the process I did not know how to do and were not explained in the video. But once I continued on with the recipe it got slightly easier. Overall, it was still so messy and I was all over the place. I kept walking around trying to find certain things I needed in the middle of the process because I did not prepare well enough beforehand.
The last part was the easiest since I had gotten some momentum and most of the things were prepared already. Finally, I finished the cake and I patiently waited for it to cool down even though I was dying to put it together and start putting icing in it. Once it was ready, I finished icing the cake and decorated it and it turned out great!
If I look back on the whole experience, before even starting on the cake, at first I was feeling a little lazy about baking since I knew how tiring it would be. But I was still really excited to use my new baking materials and to do the recipe that I saw since I had everything I needed and it seemed easy enough. And as I predicted, it was very tiring and stressful. It was messy and cramped in the area I was working in, I was getting really sweaty, and I had a really hard time since I did not prepare well enough. But once I finished, despite how stressful the process was, I was still very happy and proud. When I saw the end product it was all worth it. I was so proud of myself and when I showed it to my family, they were also very proud of me, since this was the first cake. So despite all the stress and even though I was such a mess in the kitchen, I was really happy with how it turned out. It was all worth it. I’m very glad that I got over my laziness and decided to make that cake.
For those of you who want to try the easy chocolate cake I made, here is the recipe I used. I hope you have fun making it and enjoy eating the cake as much as we did!
For the cake
• 2 cups (300) all-purpose flour
• 3/4 cup (80g) cocoa powder
• 2 tsp (10g) baking powder
• 3/4 tsp (3g) baking soda
• 1.5 tsp (7g) fine sea salt
• 3/4 cup (150g) brown sugar
• 1 cup (220g) granulated white sugar
• 1/2 cup neutral-tasting oil
• 2 egg yolks
• 2 large eggs
• 1 Tbsp (12g) vanilla extract
• 13/4 cup milk (brought to a light simmer)
For the frosting
• 4 cups (500g) powdered sugar
• 1/2 cup (55g) cocoa powder
• Generous pinch sea salt
• 1/2 cup (110g) softened butter
• Milk to thin (1/4 cup-1/2 cup)
Step by step instructions
1. Start by preparing two 9-inch cake pans by cutting the parchment paper to fit the bottoms, grease the bottom of the pan and cover with parchment paper, and then grease the parchment paper and walls of the cake pan.
2. Sift out all-purpose flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and fine sea salt. To that add in granulated sugar, and brown sugar. Whisk together.
3. To a medium bowl, add the egg yolks, and while whisking slowly drizzle in neutral-tasting oil. As it gets thick add in vanilla extract then continue to whisk and drizzle in the oil until all has been added.
4. Add in the large eggs, whisk all together and then pour the custard mix into the dry ingredients. Fold together until combined.
5. Separately heat up whole milk just before it starts to simmer. Pull off the heat and pour directly into the dough mixture. Whisk constantly until all is incorporated.
6. Split that mixture evenly between the two cake pans and bake at 350F for 30-35 minutes. Remove and let cool inside the cake pans for 10 minutes.
7. Carefully remove the cakes from the springform pans and gently invert them onto a wire rack to cool completely.
8. For the frosting, mix together powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and sea salt.
9. Using a stand mixer beat softened unsalted butter until creamy then add in the dry ingredients in batches and then thin it out with whole milk. The finished consistency should be thick but spreadable.
10. Add one of the cakes to a cutting board spreading frosting out evenly across before adding the other cake on top, gently pressing down, and then spread the remaining frosting over the top and on all sides of the cake.
11. Top with fresh gratings of dark chocolate.
12. Ideally, let sit at room temperature under a bowl for a couple of hours or overnight before serving.
For the original recipe: