- 375 ml (1 1/2 cups) brown sugar, firmly packed
- 250 ml (1 cup) unsalted butter
- 4 eggs
- 10 ml (2 tsp) vanilla extract
- 410 ml (1 2/3 cups) multi-purpose flour
- 6 ml (1 1/4 tsp) baking soda
- 5 ml (1 tsp) baking powder
- 5 ml (1 tsp) salt
- 180 ml (3/4 cup) cocoa
- 250 ml (1 cup) milk
- 250 g (1/2 lb) cream cheese, softened
- 60 ml (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened
- 500 ml (2 cups) powdered sugar, sifted
- 100 g (3 1/2 oz) dark chocolate, minimum 70% cocoa
This icing covers the middle and sides of two 20 cm (8 in.) cakes
- Make sure all the ingredients are at room temperature before starting.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F).
- Butter and flour two 20 cm (8 in.) cake pans.
- Using a mixer, cream together the brown sugar and butter.
- Add eggs one at a time. Beat well after each addition. The mixture should be smooth before adding another egg.
- Add the vanilla extract before adding the last egg.
- In another bowl, sift all the dry ingredients.
- Alternate adding first one part of dry ingredients, then one part of milk. Mix well after each addition.
- End with one part of milk.
- Scrape the sides of the bowl to mix all the ingredients together well.
- Pour mixture into the two buttered and floured cake pans.
- Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until a knife inserted in the middle of one of the cakes comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven and leave to cool for about 10 minutes before turning cakes out of the pans. Finish cooling on a cake rack.
- Apply the icing.
- Melt the chocolate using a double boiler or a microwave. Set aside.
- Using a mixer, beat together the cream cheese, butter and sugar.
- Mix all the ingredients well until there is no undissolved sugar remaining.
- Add the melted chocolate to the cream cheese mixture.
- Continue beating until the mixture is well combined.
- Place one of the two cakes in the centre of a plate.
- With a scraper or a spatula, place a good quantity of icing on the centre of the cake and spread outwards, leaving 2 cm (1 in.) free of icing around the edge.
- Stack the other cake on top of the first one.
- Place more icing on the centre of the cake and spread outwards.
- End by icing the sides of the cake.
- Insert some more icing in between the two cakes, if needed, and cover any unevenness on the surface of the cakes.
To prevent the cake from moving when applying the icing, use a bit of icing in the centre of the plate - the cake will then stick to the plate.