Chocolate Caramel Layer Cake

This cake is a lot of work, best done over two days, but I promise it is worth the effort. Recipe adapted from BBC Good Food. Be sure to read the recipe to the end before starting so you can best plan the timing of baking, freezing, frosting making, and assembling.

Servings: 24

Fresh
2-3/4 cups (5-1/2 sticks) butter, divided and softened
6 eggs, divided
1-1/3 cups Greek yogurt

Pantry
3 cups self-rising flour, divided
1 cup plus 2 Tbsp. granulated sugar
1-1/3 cups almond meal, divided
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. vanilla extract
6 Tbsp. cocoa powder, divided
2 cups light muscovado sugar, packed, and divided
1/4 cup dark muscovado sugar
4-1/2 oz. dark chocolate
4-1/2 oz. milk chocolate
1-1/4 heavy cream
1/4 cup whole milk
3-1/2 cups Confectioners’ sugar

Make vanilla and chocolate sponges
Preheat oven to 350 degrees-F.  Line each pan with a circle of parchment cut in 8-inch diameter. Grease two 8-inch round cake pans with 2 Tbsp. butter, greasing both sides of the parchment. Combine 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, granulated sugar, and 2 eggs in a mixing bowl and mix until well combined. Add 1-1/2 cups self-rising flour, 2/3 cup almond meal, 1 tsp. baking powder to the mixing bowl and stir until incorporated. Add 1 tsp. vanilla extract and 2/3 cup yogurt and mixing until combined. Pour half of the batter into one cake pan to make the vanilla cake. Mix in 5 Tbsp. of cocoa powder in the remaining batter to make the chocolate cake and pour into the second prepared pan. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Transfer to cooling racks and cool completely.

Make caramel and caramel-chocolate sponges
Preheat oven to 350 degrees-F.  Line each pan with a circle of parchment cut in 8-inch diameter. Grease two 8-inch round cake pans with 2 Tbsp. butter, greasing both sides of the parchment. Combine 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, 1 cup light muscovado sugar, dark muscovado sugars, and 2 eggs in a mixing bowl and mix until well combined. Add remaining 1-1/2 cups self-rising flour, 2/3 cup almond meal, 1 tsp. baking powder to the mixing bowl and stir until incorporated. Add remaining 1 tsp. vanilla extract and 2/3 cup yogurt and mixing until combined. Pour half of the batter into one cake pan to make the caramel cake. Mix in remaining 1 Tbsp. of cocoa powder in the remaining batter to make the caramel-chocolate cake and pour into the second prepared pan. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Transfer to cooling racks and cool completely. With all four layers baked, wrap each in plastic wrap and then in aluminum foil. Freeze cakes overnight.

Make and chill chocolate frosting
The next day when ready to assemble, use a double-boiler to melt milk and dark chocolates over simmering water.  Remove from heat when chocolate is melted and stir in heavy cream. Transfer to a small bowl and chill in the refrigerator for 15 minutes.

Make chill caramel frosting
Melt remaining 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter in a medium saucepan. Add remaining 1 cup light muscovado sugar, stir, and bring to a boil over medium heat, cooking for 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a medium mixing bowl and chill in the refrigerator for 15 minutes. Once chilled, heat milk in a small pan over medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes or until warm but not boiling. Stir milk into chilled caramel, use a hand-mixer to beat until smooth. Add Confectioners’ sugar one cup at a time until icing is desired thickness.

Assemble
Once both frostings are made, remove frozen cakes and discard aluminum foil and plastic wraps. Remove chocolate icing from the refrigerator to let is warm slightly while assembling the cake until it is spreadable. Place 2 Tbsp. of caramel icing in the middle of a cake plate to secure the bottom layer. Place the chocolate layer in the middle of the cake plate. Spread one-third of remaining caramel icing over the top of the cake. Place the caramel-chocolate layer on top and ice top with caramel icing. Place the caramel layer on top and frost with remaining caramel icing. Place vanilla layer on top. Use chocolate icing to cover the assembled cake.

Serve
Decorate further as desired, picture is shown with chocolate savings. Refrigerate for 30 minutes before slicing and serving to let the chocolate icing set. Store in the refrigerator.

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