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Serves 8 to 10
Regular, or natural, cocoa like Hershey’s can be used, but you’ll get the best results with Dutch-processed cocoa.
- 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
- 1/4 cup (3/4 ounce) Dutch-processed cocoa
- 1 1/4 cups boiling water
- 3/4 cup (3 3/4 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup (3 ounces ) plain cake flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened but still cool
- 1 1/2 cups packed (10 1/2 ounces) dark brown sugar
- 3 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 recipe Rich Vanilla Buttercream Frosting or Rich Coffee Buttercream Frosting
Adjust the oven racks to the upper-and lower-middle positions; heat the oven the 350 degrees. Meanwhile, grease three 8-inch cake pans and line the bottom of each pan with a round of parchment paper or waxed paper. Combine the chocolate and cocoa in a medium bowl; pour the boiling water over and whisk until smooth. Sift together the flours, baking soda, and salt onto a large sheet of parchment or waxed paper; set aside.
Beat the butter in the bowl of a standing mixer at medium-high speed until creamy, about 1 minute. Add the brown sugar and beat at high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Stop the mixer and scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula. With the mixer at medium-high speed, add the eggs, one at a time, beating 30 seconds after each addition. Reduce the speed to medium; add the sour cream and vanilla and beat until combined, about 10 seconds. Stop the mixer and scrape down the bowl. With the mixer at low speed, add about a third of the flour mixture, followed by about half of the chocolate mixture. Repeat, ending with the flour mixture; beat until just combined, about 15 seconds. Do not overbeat. Remove the bowl from the mixer; scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula and stir gently to thoroughly combine.
Divide the batter evenly among the cake pans and smooth the batter to the edge of each pan with a rubber spatula. Place 2 pans on the lower-middle rack and 1 on the upper-middle rack. Bake until a toothpick or skewer inserted in the center comes out clean, 20 to 23 minutes. Cool the cakes on wire racks 15 to 20 minutes. Run a knife around each pan perimeter to loosen. Invert each cake onto a large plate; peel off the parchment and re-invert onto a rack. Cool completely.
Assemble and frost the cake, then cute into slices, serve, and enjoy!!!!