I had a birthday in July and this is the cake I chose to make to celebrate. I absolutely love the combination of peanut butter and chocolate and this cake fits the bill. The peanut butter icing is rich without being too sweet, and would also taste delicious spread over a pan of chocolate brownies.
PEANUT BUTTER CHOCOLATE LAYER CAKE
For the Cake - I used this classic Hershey's recipe that never fails: http://www.hersheys.com/recipes/recipes/detail.asp?id=184. I made one and a half times the recipe and baked as directed in three 9-inch round pans.
INGREDIENTS - PEANUT BUTTER ICING
1 cup butter softened
2 cups creamy peanut butter (not natural)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 tablespoons milk, or more as needed
5 cups powdered sugar
INGREDIENTS - GANACHE GLAZE
8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
8 ounces heavy cream
1 teaspoon corn syrup
1. Bake cake and set aside to cool completely.
2. For the icing: Beat butter and peanut butter until creamy. Add vanilla and beat until incorporated. Gradually beat in powdered sugar, adding milk as icing becomes stiff. Use more milk if necessary to achieve desired consistency. Beat for 2-3 minutes until fluffy.
3. For the ganache glaze: Place chopped chocolate in a bowl. Heat heavy cream until almost boiling, then pour cream over the chocolate. Let stand for one minute, then whisk until smooth and silky. Whisk in corn syrup. Set aside to come to room temperature.
4. To assemble: Frost the three layer cake with the peanut butter icing. Place the frosted cake in the refrigerator while the ganache cools. Once ganache comes to room temperature, remove cake from refrigerator. Pour some of the ganache onto the center of the top of the cake. Gently spread the ganache until it runs down over the sides. Work quickly because the ganache will begin to harden on the cold cake. You may not need to use all of the ganache to get a nice glaze.
5. Store cake in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature before serving.