this mini stack tower cake has been in my dreams for awhile now. i kid you not. ever since my open-faced whoopie pie birthday cake, i've dreamt of all the fun of baking cakes in ramekins. once again i used my favorite go-to cake recipe. the chocolate sour cream cake. it is the most adaptable recipe i've come across yet. bake it in layers, bake it in a rectangle, bake it in cupcakes, bake it in ramekins. pair it with fudge frosting, pair it with buttercream, eat it plain out of the pan. here is the whole story, in case you ever need a tower of mini cakes.
gather your ramekins. grease and sugar them. my mom taught me to spray them with pam and dust them with granulated sugar. then pour in your batter. i love this cake batter because it is thick and industrious like mousse. bake them a bit longer than cupcakes. watch them in the oven and do the toothpick test. i baked mine 26 minutes, however my oven is the most fickle thing on the planet.
while your ramekin cakes are cooling–but before you flip them–whip up your favorite frosting. (don't worry, this dessert is worth all the dishes in the sink.) when baking chocolate cake i turn to the classic white buttercream frosting. use about 2 1/2 to 3 cups powdered sugar, 1 tsp. vanilla and 1 cube unsalted butter. beat or whip the mixture for a good long while to whip it into a fluffy frosting. if it gets too thick, add a teaspoons of milk (one at a time) until you get your desired consistency. the key is to beat it for longer than you think. all the while praying that those itty bitty cakes come out of their ramekins. turning cakes out gives me major anxiety.
loosen them, ever so gingerly, with a plastic knife. i feel that plastic knives give the most give to my precious little cakes. when you feel you are ready, turn and pat gently. if they are ripe, they will usually plop right out into your palm like good little girls and boys. if they resist and tug, that means they are gonna give you a run for your money.
one of my little cakes was naughty. it didn't want to come out and play. so benji and i shared a mid-morning treat; a chocolate cake stump. yum.
when cakes turn out nicely, i am so elated, i feel like giving an acceptance speech. seriously, a feat like this is such a rare occurrence in my life. the sugar crystals give the edges a bit of a crunch, which i'm obsessed with. this is the reason i do not frost over them. after cooling, toss the pretty cakes into the freezer for ten minutes or more.
frozen cakes are much easier to slice layers into. skim off the curved tops. which made me a little sad. but like director gary marshall always says, sometimes you have to cut your darlings. slice the cakes into halves or even thirds with a serrated knife. begin dolling the layers up with serious amounts of fluffy frosting. stack them into cake towers or one giant leaning tower of pisa. go wild. i resisted the urge to plaster mine with sprinkles. (for the record, i still think that would be super cute for easter.) and voila. a mahvelous mini cake fit for sharing.
when it comes to cake, i love sharing a plate and taking turns taking bites.
wishing you a happy easter weekend.