Firm with an airy structure this Chocolate Sponge Cake holds up well with a silky Chocolate Ganache.
Once again I was stumped for a centerpiece when putting together my last tablescape so I decided to make an edible one. When searching for this recipe I had something else in mind. Not so much the cake itself but the pan I wanted to bake it in. Have you ever heard of a Mary Ann pan? This is a Mary Ann cake pan.
From my searches I found that the Mary Ann Pan was first introduced in the United States in 1921, “Mary Ann’s Cake Shell Pans” were designed to bake light cake shells to hold everything from fresh fruit to rich custards. The Mary Ann pan produces one round cake with fluted sides and an inverted well for spooning in whipped cream, fruit curds, custard, fresh fruit or even ice cream.
I have lots of cake pans and I was sure I had one, somewhere. I didn’t. Tart pans, yes. Flan pans, yes. Mary Ann pan, no. You can also guess by now that I had all of the ingredients prepped and ready to go, which was absolutely not the way to do things. I’m blaming that glaring error on being snowed under. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!
All jokes aside friends, I am not always as prepared as needed. Sometimes I wing it and things come out good. Thankfully, this was one of those times. This cake was the bomb diggity! There’s a commercial where a family is eating yogurt and they keep saying, “umm” because the yogurt is so good. That’s what Gabbi and I did when we sampled this cake. I am so happy that this was only a half cake. The ganache on this baby was e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g and the sponge cake was light but held together like a dream. I kept thinking how much my kids would like this and I know a full size cake will be in order for them.
Whether you bake in a Mary Ann pan or not give this one a try. You may hear lots of “umms” when your family tastes it.
- ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder, plus more for dusting
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ tsp salt
- 1 ¾ tsp baking soda
- 2 ¼ cups granulated sugar
- 2 cups boiling water
- 12 TBS (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, melted
- 3 eggs
- 2 ½ tsp vanilla extract
- For the Ganache
- 3 oz. semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
- ⅓ cup heavy cream
- Chocolate Buttercream (Optional)
- Garnish (Optional)
- White chocolate candy curls
- Preheat oven to 350° and prepare a 9-inch round cake pan for non-stick baking.
- Sift together the flour, salt and baking soda, set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the ¾ cup cocoa, the sugar and boiling water, set aside.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the melted butter, eggs and vanilla, pour into the cocoa mixture and whisk to combine.
- Whisk in the flour mixture in two additions.
- **Pour the batter through a fine-mesh sieve into the prepared pan.
- Bake until the cake springs back when gently touched and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 45 minutes.
- Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool for 15 minutes.
- To Make the Ganache
- Put the chocolate in a small bowl.
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, warm the cream until bubbles form around the edges of the pan.
- Pour the cream over the chocolate.
- Let stand for 1 minute, then slowly whisk until smooth.
- Let cool for 10 minutes before using.
- How to Assemble the Cake
- Split the 9-inch layer into two layers, then cut each layer in half vertically.
- Place one half layer on a cake plate and spread with a thin layer of ganache.
- Place another layer on top and spread with a thin layer of ganache, repeat for remaining layers.
- Spread remaining ganache on top of the cake.
- If using chocolate buttercream spread or pipe it on the sides of the cake.
- Refrigerate the cake for at least 30 minutes to set the ganache.
- Garnish with white chocolate candy curls if desired.
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I’m sharing my Chocolate Cake at the following link parties.
Party Gals Linky Party