I thought I would explore combining the flavors of chocolate and cinnamon in one recipe, but in separate layers. I wanted to save time and not have to bake two different cakes. I started out with a small batch then went on to adjust the proportions to make this cake.
I liked the idea of being able to make two different flavors out of one recipe. Then I thought I would also add raisins and walnuts to the cinnamon layer. I know, I know, the whole kit and caboodle, throw in everything but the kitchen sink. But I wanted to try it out anyway, because I could. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.
Then to echo the flavors of the cake, I filled and frosted the cake with buttercream flavored with cinnamon….
…then piped chocolate frosting just on top of the cake.
A quick and easy way to frost a cake is to slather a thick layer of frosting all over the cake, then remove the excess frosting by running a cake comb to create a pattern on the surface. You can also improvise a cake comb by cutting out a pattern on the edge of a stiff cardboard.
The sky’s the limit when it comes to cakes. Just have fun.
I make the cake layers a few days ahead of time and freeze them, then make the frosting later when I’m ready to assemble the cake.
I baked the chocolate layers in three pans at the same time for 30 minutes, took them out of the oven and then baked the cinnamon layers in two pans for 25 minutes. The baking time for your ovens may be slightly different, so start checking after about 20 minutes.
The flavors of the chocolate and the cinnamon raisin in the cake layers were distinct, and I thought worked well together. I also liked the difference in texture. The chocolate was moist and slightly fudgy against the nutty texture of the cinnamon layer. As for the frosting, the cinnamon buttercream was sweet, fragrant and delicious. The recipe for the cinnamon buttercream below is enough to fill and top all five layers, but since I wanted the frost the entire cake, I multiplied the recipe by 1.5. The chocolate frosting was the same recipe I used in this earlier post. Both frostings made for a good combination as well.
- 3 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate
- ½ cup cocoa
- 1 cup butter
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 ½ cups cake flour
- 2 ½ teaspoons baking soda
- 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup buttermilk
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ cup finely chopped raisins
- ½ cup finely chopped walnuts
- ½ cup butter
- ½ cup shortening (use Spectrum, if possible)
- 6 – 8 tablespoons milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 8 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 3 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate
- 6 tablespoons milk
- 3 cups sifted powdered sugar
- 6 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Pre-heat oven to 350 F. Spray five eight-inch round baking pans with non-stick cooking spray.
- Melt the chocolate in a double boiler and set aside.
- Sift the cocoa, ½ teaspoon baking powder and ½ teaspoon salt together. Set aside.
- Sift together the flour, baking soda, the rest of the baking powder and salt.
- In a large mixer bowl, cream butter until light and fluffy.
- Add sugar gradually and beat until creamy.
- Add eggs one at a time beating well after each addition, and then add vanilla.
- At low speed, add sifted flour mixture alternating with the buttermilk. Beat just until well blended.
- Remove 3 cups batter from the mixing bowl. To this separated batter, add cinnamon, raisins and nuts and mix by hand.
- To the remaining batter in the mixing bowl, add the melted chocolate and mix well. Then add cocoa mixture and beat until well combined.
- Divide the chocolate batter among three prepared pans and bake for about 25 – 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Remove the chocolate layers from the oven and allow them to cool for about 20 minutes in the pans before turning out onto cooling racks.
- Meantime, divide the cinnamon batter between two pans and bake for about 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Remove from oven and allow them to cool for about 20 minutes in the pans before turning out onto cooling racks.
- Frost with Cinnamon Buttercream. Pipe optional Chocolate Frosting around the cake.
- Using a stand mixer, beat butter until creamy and free of lumps.
- Add shortening and beat until well blended.
- Add about 4 tablespoons milk and vanilla extract. Beat until well combined. Reserve the rest of the milk for after the powdered sugar is added.
- Gradually add powdered sugar. Add the rest of the milk as needed, a tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached.
- Add cinnamon and mix well.
- Melt chocolate in a bowl over a pot of simmering water.
- Remove from heat and set aside.
- Whisk milk in a pot and heat until boiling. Remove from heat and add powdered sugar all at once. Whisk until smooth and cool to lukewarm.
- Beat butter until creamy. Add salt, vanilla then gradually add the sugar mixture. Beat until smooth.
- Add the melted chocolate and beat until smooth and shiny.
Chocolate and Cinnamon Raisin Cake