The perfect chocolate cake

During my years as a professional baker in my cake design shop, I spent a great deal of time perfecting our recipes. One of the recipes I had pleasure working on was our chocolate cake recipe. Since our cakes were mostly decorated cakes, we had very specific needs. The cake should be firm enough to hold-up to being stacked up high, it should be moist (nobody likes a dry cake), it should look chocolaty and it should have a powerful chocolate flavor.

The recipe I present to you is the final recipe we came up with for our cake shop. It hits all the right spots. A rich, almost creamy chocolate experience. So tasty you can eat it on it's own, yet balanced enough you could add filling and toppings.


  • 440g of castor sugar
  • 275g of flour
  • 240g of whole milk
  • 240g of strong coffee (expresso would be best if you can)
  • 100g of 50% cocoa powder
  • 110g of peanut oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 12g of white wine vinegar
  • 8g of baking soda
  • 8g of sodium bicarbonate
  • 8g of salt
  • the seeds of a vanilla pod


  1. Start off by making your coffee. 240g is roughly a cup. You could replace the expresso with an instant coffee. Just make sure it's strong.
  2. Pre-heat your oven to aproximately 180ºC - if you are using a convection oven, the temperature should be ~155ºC.
  3. In a large bowl, sift and cobine all dry ingredients.
  4. In a separate bowl, beat/whisk the oil, eggs, milk, vinegar and vanilla seeds until completely blended.
  5. Lightly grease and line a 20cm diameter baking pan with partchment paper.
  6. Pour in the liquids onto the dry ingredients and combine. You could use a hand mixer or a whisk.
  7. Pour batter into the baking pan and put it in the oven.
  8. In 20-25 minutes, your cake should be looking nice an glossy. Resist the urge to open the oven before this time.
  9. Put a knife or skewer in the middle of the cake. If it comes out clean, you're done.

Let the cake cool down in the baking pan on a wire rack for about the amount of time it cooked, before you try to mess with it. This will allow the cake to settle down and end cooking.

As I said earlier, this cake can be eaten on it's own or it can be iced, layered, coated with pretty much anything.

At the bakery, layering this cake with argentine dulce de leche was a great favorite of our clients, but a good ganache was just as good.