As you may remember, my mom made me a Ding Dong cake for my birthday. Well, kind of. The thing is, I love the combination of chocolate and marshmallow. So I didn’t really care about having the chocolate ganache at the top. I just wanted lots of marshmallow-y goodness all over.
Because this is a lot of stuff, I usually “sift” using this mesh thingy instead of an actual sifter. I just use a spoon to stir it and push it through. It is way easier. Also, you may note that my mother’s fingernails match my mixing bowl (and my stand mixer, and my hand mixer…). That wasn’t on purpose… so she says.
If you’d rather do this like an actual Ding Dong/Hostess Cupcake/etc., you can. I will include a link to a chocolate ganache recipe that you can use. And then you can just use the seven-minute frosting for the filling.
The thing about this seven-minute frosting is that you need to heat it over a double boiler (or a makeshift one… which can be a bit of a pain when you only have one bowl that fits in a pot, and it is small and made of glass. Oy.) And it like, quadruples in size. So even if you need to make two batches worth (like we did), you will probably need to do one and then the other.
Also, if you don’t have an egg separator you may want to use packaged egg whites. I usually separate them by hand (literally — I wash my hands and crack the whole egg in my hand, then switch it back and forth so the yolk stays in my palm and the egg drips down into a bowl) but my mom was not a big fan of that idea. So now I have an egg separator. Woohoo!
What you see above is what happens if you only make one batch of the frosting. I would recommend two if you are trying to cover the whole cake. Also, if you’re wondering, my mom used a tube of pink gel frosting for the writing. And those pink and white hearts are leftovers from a Barbie decorating kit, I think. (As you may have guessed, I kind of like pink.)
3 ounces good quality semisweet chocolate
1 1/2 cups hot brewed coffee
3 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process)
2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
3 large eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups well-shaken buttermilk
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Butter three 9-inch round cake pans or two 10-inch round cake pans. Line the bottoms of the pans with parchment or wax paper and then butter the paper.
Chop the chocolate and combine it with the hot coffee in a bowl. Let the mixture stand, stirring occasionally, until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth.
Sift sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt together into a large bowl. In another large bowl, beat eggs with an electric mixer until slightly thickened (about 3 minutes with a stand mixer or 5 minutes with a hand-held mixer). Slowly add the oil, buttermilk, vanilla and melted chocolate mixture to eggs, beating until combined well. Add the sugar mixture and beat on medium speed just until combined well.
Divide batter between pans and bake in center of oven until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean, about 45 minutes (about an hour if only using two pans).
Cool layers in pans on racks. Run a thin knife around the edges of pans and invert layers onto racks. Carefully remove the paper paper and cool layers completely. Cake layers may be made 1 day ahead and kept, wrapped in plastic wrap, at room temperature.
** You will need two batches of this if you plan to frost the whole cake with it **
2 large egg whites
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup light corn syrup
2 tablespoons water
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Combine the ingredients with a pinch of salt in a double boiler or metal bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water. Beat with a handheld electric mixer at high speed until frosting is thick and fluffy, 6 to 7 minutes. Remove from heat and continue to beat until slightly cooled. Use frosting the day it is made.
1/2 pound good quality semisweet chocolate
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/4 stick (2 tablespoons) unsalted butter
Chop chocolate into small pieces. In a 1 1/2- to 2-quart saucepan over moderately low heat, bring cream, sugar, and corn syrup to a boil, whisking until sugar is dissolved. Remove pan from heat and add chocolate, whisking until chocolate is melted. Cut butter into pieces and add to frosting, whisking until smooth.
Transfer frosting to a bowl and cool, stirring occasionally, until spreadable.
*To assemble a giant Hostess cupcake, place one cake layer on a plate. Frost with a thin layer of seven-minute frosting, leaving a bit around the edges unfrosted. Cut a hole in the middle of the second layer, then remove (and “taste test”) the center. Place the layer with a hole in it on top of the first layer. Fill hole with seven-minute frosting, then spread more on the top of that layer (still allowing a bit unfrosted around the edges). Place the last cake layer on the top and cover the top and sides with chocolate ganache. Allow to cool.