Book Nerd Bites #1

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Book Nerd Bites is an original monthly feature created by Becca from Becca and Books, Cyra from Rattle the Pages, Kristie from Lost in Ever After, Natasha from A Binding Attraction, and Valerie from He Said Books or Me as part of the Book Blogger Creativity Project hosted by Nori from ReadWriteLove28. Each month we will be sharing exciting recipes inspired by some of our favorite books. Feel free to join in, but please make sure you link your post back to us so we can enjoy your favorite bookish delights as well!

Welcome to my very first Book Nerd Bites post!

Today we will be digging into two of my favorite things: Chocolate and the Throne of Glass series. If you’ve read any of the ToG books then you know that Celaena loves chocolate cake as much as I do.

All I’m saying is that I’d like some chocolate cake every now and then.” –Celaena, Crown of Midnight, p. 145

And bless Chaol for being so understanding. “For you, I’d say that chocolate cake is most definitely a need.” -Crown of Midnight, p. 173

I went to culinary school, so I’ve had my share of amazing chocolate cakes, but my mom’s 7-layer chocolate cake (8 layers if you count the frosting on the outside) is my favorite. She uses a basic Devil’s Food boxed mix for the batter, but the secret is her frosting. She has been making this stuff for as long as I can remember (she used to make cakes for a living), however, she would only make this cake for our Christmas parties because it was so decadent.

For the sake of simplicity, I am going to focus on the frosting because there’s nothing wrong with boxed cake mix.

Chocolate Frosting (This is enough for a stacked cake using two 6 inch pans)
Ingredients:
8 Cups Powdered sugar
2 Cups Unsweetened cocoa powder
1 lb (4 sticks) Butter
1 Cup Hot water
1 tsp Salt
*Optional: Add a teaspoon of flavoring, such as vanilla or peppermint

Directions:
Sift dry ingredients together in a mixing bowl and set aside.20160724_174833

 

Melt your butter in a microwave safe dish.      20160724_175248

Start mixing your dry ingredients while slowly adding the melted butter.

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Continue to mix while you add the hot water.20160724_175713

Keep mixing until there are no lumps (about 30 seconds).20160724_175854

The frosting should be between the consistency of cake mix and brownie batter.

 

Here is where the patience comes in. Put the lid on your container and just leave it on your counter. That’s right folks, you are just going to set it and forget it for 3-5 days. I say 3-5 because the size of the batch and the temperature in your house may cause the frost to set slower or faster.

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Tip: You can keep it in the fridge to help it set faster, but it is easier to frost cakes with it at room temperature

Feel free to open the lid and progressively taste it if you want, but you don’t need to stir it or anything. Once your frosting has set it will be pretty thick. Give it a stir with your spatula before you frost your cake just to get it all mixed up and smooth.

 

 

I generally make 2 round cakes (or square ones during the holidays because it is easier to decorate like a present). Make sure to line your cake pans with parchment paper (not wax paper…that won’t end well). After the cakes have cooled, you can take a long serrated knife and run it across the top keeping it level with the pan. This will flatten it out so it will stack better.

Tip: To keep your cake moist, cover it in plastic wrap after the pan cools. If you don’t plan on frosting the cake immediately, put it in the freezer overnight. This will make it easier to cut it half and you’ll have fewer crumbs when you go to frost it.

You will definitely want to use the freezer trick with this cake because the frosting is so thick that it will just tear apart your cake if you don’t. I use cake boards that are one size larger than the cake pan size because it gives you a little more stability. This cake gets pretty heavy with all of the layers. Cut your cakes horizontally through the middle. Don’t forget to remove the parchment paper before you start stacking! Then layer the chocolate frosting in between as you stack them on the cake board. After your cake is stacked you can frost the outside.

Tip: You can put a little bit of frosting in the middle of your board to act as an anchor so your cake doesn’t slide while you’re frosting it.

This cake is incredibly rich so you won’t need to cut huge slices to enjoy it. I’d definitely recommend having a glass or milk or vanilla ice cream with it to balance the richness.

And there you have it…a chocolate cake worthy of a badass assassin (and every other chocolate lover out there)!

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What recipes have you tried that were inspired by books? Have you ever been eating something and it reminded you of a book or character? Do you love chocolate cake?

Don’t forget to use #booknerdbites if you want to share your food inspiration with us on twitter or instagram!

Here is this week’s schedule for the rest of the group:
Monday – Cyra
Tuesday – Natasha (Me)
Wednesday – Becca
Thursday – Kristie
Friday – Valerie
Saturday – Nori

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