happy marriage

August 9th, 2015

Some people are meant to be together, just as some foods shine brighter in combination with something else. Both instances represent my favorite equation: 1+1=3. George Burns and Gracie Allen, beans and cornbread, Victoria and Albert, green eggs and ham, Marie and Pierre Curie, fish and chips, Scarlett and Rhett, and my favorite marriage of all time, chocolate and peanut butter.

Anyone who doesn’t remember the iconic Reese’s commercials featuring a man walking down the street eating a chocolate bar who collides with a man eating peanut butter from a jar is too young to be reading this blog. More to the point, anyone who walks down the street eating peanut butter from a jar probably needs something more than a random run in with a chocolate bar, and yet, this is how happy marriages seem to happen.

It’s all a bit of whimsical magic, I think, and with that in mind I set about conceiving a dark chocolate something with a peanut butter whatever. Some sixth sense had me purchase a quart of buttermilk at the store today, even though biscuits and cornbread aren’t crayoned on the calendar. I also bought a tin of Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa and a pound of unsalted butter.

Clearly, someone had a cake in the back of her mind and when this morning dawned with a pleasant chill in the air and 5:30 a.m. not nearly as bright as it had been three weeks ago, she set about a-measuring and a-mixing and a-baking and again a-mixing and periodically, awaiting, and then a-cooling and finally a-frosting a batch of little Black Velvet Cakes with Freakishly Good Peanut Butter Frosting, a-sprinkled, willy-nilly, with Valrhona Chocolate shavings.

Black Velvet Cake with Freakishly Good Peanut Butter Frosting

Related Recipes

Black Velvet Cake with Freakishly Good Peanut Butter Frosting

Over the top moist and chocolatey!

For the cake:

Butter and flour, for preparing the cake pans

  • 2 cups cake flour (or 1 ¾ all-purpose flour)
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • ¾ cup dark cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup freshly brewed coffee warm)
  • good quality dark chocolate, shaved, for garnish

Butter and flour two 88-inch cake pans. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Measure the dry ingredients into a mixing bowl. Whisk thoroughly to combine and remove any lumps. Combine the wet ingredients, except for the coffee, in a separate bowl. Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture and stir with a rubber spatula until combined. Stir in the warm coffee. Divide batter between the two cake pans and bake for 35-40 minutes or until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean.

Let cakes cool in the pans for 20 minutes. Remove cakes from pans and allow to cool on a wire rack for an additional 40-60 minutes. Frost the cakes and sprinkle with chocolate shavings.

For the frosting:

Note: If you prefer a sweeter frosting, double or triple the confectioners sugar.

  • 12 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2/3 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1  cup confectioners sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

With a hand or stand mixer, cream the butter, cream cheese, peanut butter and vanilla until smooth and fluffy. Slowly add in the sugar until combined. Spoon into a piping bag and frost the cake. Sprinkle the top with chocolate shavings and/or crushed peanuts.

Copyright © Katherine Stetson, all rights reserved.