Layers of rich chocolate brushed with a salted caramel whiskey syrup filled with a caramel whiskey icing and covered it a creamy chocolate frosting.
There is no story or history behind this cake. Just had some salted caramel whiskey in the cabinet and thought, hum, what can I make with that? Chocolate and caramel are a no brainer so of course I was going to make a cake; a Chocolate Caramel Whiskey Cake. The thing about adding alcohol to cake is the taste often gets hidden behind all the other flavors.
I did not want that to happen, so I decided to brush the top of each layer with a salted caramel whiskey syrup to allow the whiskey to soak into the cake. I then added a caramel filling between the layers and frosted it with Hershey’s “Perfectly Chocolate Chocolate Frosting”. For a fun touch I garnished the cake with some caramel popcorn.
~ Prep the pans
Grease and flour three 8-inch cake pans lining the bottom of the pans with parchment paper.
~ The cake batter
In a large bowl combine 2 cups sugar, 1¾ cups cake flour, 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa, 1½ teaspoons baking powder, and 1½ teaspoons baking soda. Add 2 eggs, 1 cup heavy cream, and 1/2 cup vegetable oil. Whenever I make a cake, I like to hand stir the ingredients verses using a mixer. I have convinced myself that it doesn’t overwork the batter and gives me a nice fluffy cake. But another way to look at is, the mixer beats in some air giving me a nice fluffy cake. Moral of this story; use a mixer, or don’t.
Add 1/3 cup salted caramel whiskey to 1 cup of boiling black coffee and whisk into the cocoa mixture. The batter will be thin. Pour into the prepared pans.
Bake in a 350°F preheated oven for 30 – 35 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool at least 10 minutes in the pan before removing.
~ Making the salted caramel whiskey syrup
In a small saucepan combine 1/3 cup salted caramel whiskey, 2/3 cup brown sugar, and 3 tablespoons butter. Heat over medium heat bringing the mixture to a boil stirring often. Remove mixture from heat as soon as it reaches a boil and let cool.
Using a fork poke small holes into the layers creating nice little pockets for the syrup to seep into.
Because the coffee has been “weighted down” with the whiskey it creates this nice darker layer on the bottom of each layer. I love this little detail. It gives the cake some depth.
~ The caramel filling
In a saucepan over low heat, melt 1/4 cup butter. Add 1/2 cup brown sugar and continue to cook on low heat stirring constantly for 2 minutes, or until the sugar dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool. Stir in 1½ cups sifted powdered sugar and 1/4 teaspoon whiskey. Add 2 – 3 tablespoons milk a tablespoon at a time until you reach a desired icing consistency.
~ Assemble the cake
Spread over two layers of the cake. Stack the layers placing the unfrosted layer of top.
Frost the top and sides with your favorite Chocolate Frosting. I used Hershey’s “Perfectly Chocolate Chocolate Frosting”. I love how creamy the frosting is and it spreads really well.
For a touch of whimsy, I outlined the edge of the cake with caramel syrup letting it run down the sides and added some caramel popcorn to the top.
~ Why it works
The crazy thing about this cake is the whiskey evens the sweetness so it isn’t over the top while the sweetness blends out the sharpness of the whisky leaving one damn good cake!
A special shout out to my baby girl: 🎉🎈 𝓗𝓪𝓹𝓹𝔂 𝓑𝓲𝓻𝓽𝓱𝓭𝓪𝔂, 𝓒𝓱𝓪𝓷𝓷𝓸𝓷! 🎉🎈
- 2 cups sugar
- 1¾ cups cake flour
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder
- 1½ teaspoon baking soda
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1/3 cup salted caramel whiskey
- 1 cup boiling black coffee
- 1/3 cup salted caramel whiskey
- 2/3 cup brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1½ cups powdered sugar, sifted
- 1/4 teaspoon salted caramel whiskey
- 2 – 3 tablespoons milk
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Grease three 8-inch round cake pans and line bottoms with parchment paper.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, and baking soda. Add the eggs, cream, and oil; beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Stir in the whiskey and black coffee. The batter will be thin.
Pour the batter into the prepared pans.
Bake 30 – 35 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes before removing from pan.
Combine whiskey, sugar, and butter in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove mixture immediately and let cool.
In a saucepan over low heat, melt butter. Add brown sugar and continue to cook on low heat stirring constantly for 2 minutes, or until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool. Stir in the powdered sugar and whiskey. Add the milk a tablespoon at a time until you reach a desired frosting consistency.
Brush the syrup over the top of each layer letting it soak in a bit. Spread a layer of the caramel over two of the layers and stack the layers on top of on another, the unfrosted layer of top.
Frost the cake with your favorite chocolate frosting. Drizzle some caramel syrup down the sides of the cake and garnish with caramel corn for a touch of whimsey.