I've been eying a chocolate cake with chocolate frosting in the current issue of Cook's Illustrated. I like that magazine because they take a scientific/trial-and-error approach to recipes. In the end they come up with the best way to make a dish. It's very educational and we like learning!
A very astute person took my hints and made the cake for me. The cake was very good, but the frosting was the best. It's fluffy and rich, taking the fluffiness from buttercreams and the chocolate richness from ganaches. So good, in fact, that friends will resort to stealing it from your plate.
Adapted from Cook's Illustrated Magazine
16 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
1/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons corn syrup
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon table salt
1 1/4 cups cold heavy cream
- Melt chocolate in heatproof bowl set over saucepan containing 1 inch of barely simmering water, stirring occasionally until smooth. Remove from heat and set aside. Meanwhile, heat butter in small saucepan over medium-low heat until melted. Increase heat to medium; add sugar, corn syrup, vanilla, and salt and stir with heatproof rubber spatula until sugar is dissolved, 4 to 5 minutes. Add melted chocolate, butter mixture, and cream to clean bowl of standing mixer and stir to thoroughly combine.
- Place mixer bowl over ice bath and stir mixture constantly with rubber spatula until frosting is thick and just beginning to harden against sides of bowl, 1 to 2 minutes (frosting should be 70 degrees). Place bowl on standing mixer fitted with paddle attachment and beat on medium-high speed until frosting is light and fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir with rubber spatula until completely smooth.
- Temperature is very important in this recipe. Remove the mixture from the ice bath and whip at 70 degrees. When they tested it at 75 degrees, the frosting was too warm and did not set up properly. At 65 degrees, the frosting was too cool and seized when whipped.