tasty tuesday: salted caramel pretzel mocha cake (aka: an incredibly late birthday post)

I am more than a little bit ashamed at how late this post is.

This ladies and gentlemen, is my birthday cake........from way back in October.

So yeah, procrastination for the win.

And I'm sure you're extremely surprised that it involves salted caramel, pretzels, and chocolate.  Ha!  Basically my favorite three food groups.  Really, the only three food groups there are.  Although maybe popcorn could be a fourth...

Anyway, this was my birthday cake, and it was pretty rad.  Thanks goes to Jordyn for being the master baker of this one, and complying to my every wish.  She's a pretty darn good sister!

I knew that I wanted chocolate cake, and our mocha cake recipe is simply the best.  And since I always want salted caramel on everything, that was a given.  We added pretzels in just for fun, since we had just made

this ice cream

, and were still pretty obsessed with the caramel pretzel combo.

The result was pretty delicious...although you must serve immediately and eat the whole thing, otherwise the pretzels get soggy due to the caramel.  Or you can just leave them out.  I do suppose it's a bit weird to have pretzels in a cake!

Salted Caramel Pretzel Mocha Cake

mocha cake recipe from: the 

Food Network

Ingredients

3 cups flour

1cup cocoa

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

2 1/2 cups sugar

4 Eggs

3 tsp Vanilla

2/3 cup of strongly brewed coffee or espresso

1 1/2 cup Vegetable Oil

1 1/2 cup hot water

Directions:

1) In a large bowl, sift together dry ingredients.

2) Add in eggs, vanilla, coffee and oil, and mix until batter is smooth.

3) Slowly add in hot water, until well mixed.

4)  Fill three, greased nine inch round pans about 3/4 full (you'll have enough extra batter to make a fourth round cake, or some cupcakes!)

5) Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes.

Salted Caramel Sauce

Ingredients

1/2 cup Sugar

3 TBSP Butter (we used salted butter!)

1/4 cup Whipping Cream

Directions

1)  The most important thing to do first is to assemble all of your ingredients!  Once your sugar mixture has reached the right colour, you'll need to move fairly quickly, and don't want to be fussing around with measuring out the other ingredients.

2)  Place your sugar in a medium saucepan, and melt at a medium heat.  Once it begins to melt, you'll want to start whisking it. (You can also add a tad of water if you don't feel comfortable melting dry sugar!).

3)  Once the sugar starts to boil, you can stop whisking, and wait for it to turn a light amber colour.

4)  When it's light amber, then add your butter, and stir like crazy!

5)  As soon as the butter has completely melted, remove from heat and add the whipping cream.  Again, stir like crazy! (Be cautious when adding the cream as it will foam a lot!)

6)  Let the caramel cool for a bit, and then you can move it to a heat proof container and pop it in the fridge to help hurry up the cooling process.

Buttercream

Ingredients

1/4 cup Butter (or margarine), at room temperature

1 1/2 cups Icing Sugar

1/2 tsp Caramel flavoring (or Vanilla)

1-3 TBSP Cream

Directions

1)  Begin by beating your butter on medium-high until well mixed.

2)  Add icing sugar, vanilla, and a couple tablespoons of cream.

3)  Beat on medium until combined.

4)  Adjust the taste and consistency by adding any of the above ingredients!

Ganache

Ingredients

4.5 oz of good quality dark chocolate, chopped

1 cup heavy cream

Directions

1)  In a small sauce pan, heat cream over medium heat and bring just barely to a boil.

2)  As soon as it comes to a boil, remove from heat and pour over chopped chocolate.

3)  Whisk until smooth.

4)  Wait for the ganache to cool for a bit before pouring over your cake.

Cake assembly:

1)  Start by leveling off the top of each cake so that you have a flat surface to work with.

2)  Place your first cake on a cake plate/serving dish, and apply a generous layer of buttercream just on top.

3)  Press pretzels into the icing, and pour cooled caramel over top.

4)  Add your second cake on top, and repeat steps 2 and 3.

5)  Add your third cake, and pour ganache over it all just before serving!

*You can also double the icing recipe to cover the cake, and do that instead of making a ganache.

Please forgive all the grain in these photos.  The sun had long since set when I was taking these outside, so the iso was cranked super high!

Happy Birthday to me....again, kind of.

Also, sparklers are my favorite.

p.s.

 â™¥ kelsey (& jordyn)