Bob’s Chocolate Love Cake and Cooking for Love!

Hi everyone and please click on the title of this post to read more. Before I begin, PLEASE do not forget to get a sitter and reserve your spot at the social event of the season, the Parents Who Rock fundraiser to bring more music into the Montclair schools this Saturday, April 4th . More details

Well, you are about to be given a recipe that will create a cake that will blow your mind. My friend Bob wanted to make it for his wife’s surprise birthday party and I had the pleasure of filming him preparing it.

Now, I know Bob loves his wife, Maggie, and demonstrates his love for her in myriad ways, but I really got a sense of how much when I saw how meticulously he made a tremendous amount of desserts as well as side dishes and entrees for her party from scratch. He certainly could have catered the whole event, but he knew that she, herself, would never cater a party and would insist on homemade vittles. He felt he had to cook and bake and was happy to do so. I also never knew how organized Bob was (check out his counter top with all the prepped ingredients displayed in the video below-there is also a kissing scene at the end…)and was very impressed.

Speaking of impressed, Maggie seemed pretty pleased with the whole shindig and I do believe he got some major points for pulling off the event and the surprise.

How about showing your loved one how much you care for her/him by making this cake for them? Believe me, they will be forever indebted. I wish I had a piece right now!
P.S. This is Ina Garten’s recipe

Bob’s Chocolate Love Cake:


1. 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
2. 2 cups sugar
3. 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
4. 2 teaspoons baking soda
5. 1 teaspoon baking powder
6. 1 teaspoon kosher salt
7. 1 cup buttermilk
8. 1/2 cup vegetable oil
9. 2 large eggs
10. 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
11. 1 cup freshly brewed hot coffee


1. 6 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
2. 2 sticks (1/2 pound) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3. 1 large egg yolk
4. 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
5. 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar, sifted
6. 1 tablespoon instant coffee granules


1. MAKE THE CAKE: Preheat the oven to 350°. Butter two 8-inch round cake pans and line them with parchment paper; butter the paper. Dust the pans with flour, tapping out any excess.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle, mix the flour with the sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt at low speed. In a medium bowl, whisk the buttermilk with the oil, eggs and vanilla. Slowly beat the buttermilk mixture into the dry ingredients until just incorporated, then slowly beat in the hot coffee until fully incorporated.
3. Pour the batter into the prepared pans. Bake for 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of each cake comes out clean. Let the cakes cool in the pans for 30 minutes, then invert the cakes onto a rack to cool completely. Peel off the parchment paper.
4. MAKE THE FROSTING: In a microwave-safe bowl, heat the chocolate at high power in 30-second intervals, stirring, until most of the chocolate is melted. Stir until completely melted, then set aside to cool to room temperature.
5. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle, beat the butter at medium speed until pale and fluffy. Add the egg yolk and vanilla and beat for 1 minute, scraping down the side of the bowl. At low speed, slowly beat in the confectioners’ sugar, about 1 minute. In a small bowl, dissolve the instant coffee in 2 teaspoons of hot water. Slowly beat the coffee and the cooled chocolate into the butter mixture until just combined.
6. Set a cake layer on a plate with the flat side facing up. Evenly spread one-third of the frosting over the cake to the edge. Top with the second cake layer, rounded side up. Spread the remaining frosting over the top and side of the cake. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before slicing.

Make Ahead

The frosted cake can be refrigerated for 2 days. Let stand for 1 hour before serving.


3 Responses

  1. What a wonderful experience! Thanks for walking us through the cake making – doesn’t look toooooo difficult. Does one absolutely have to use a paddle?

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