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Sweet and Salty Cake

April 9, 2011



It was two years ago, this month, Foodo became a reality.  Happy Birthday Foodo!


Hands down, this has been one of my favorite cakes! And, as most of you know, I’ve made a plethora.


Any time I make a chocolate cake I always think of, my brother, Kevin. He liked baking as a teenager and one time he was in the midst of mixing the batter for ‘Feathery Fudge’ cake and we didn’t have any buttermilk. No problem, he knew the solution: just add some vinegar to some milk.  Except we were out of vinegar…. We lived on a hilltop – in the country! The nearest neighbor was more than a city block away!  I still have the picture, in my head, of him walking down to the neighbors to get a tablespoon of vinegar, with a tablespoon, and playing the balancing act all the way up the hill, being careful not to spill a precious drop.  Makes me laugh to this day, and it’s rare you get to laugh at Kev.  Ok, so now I guess he’s probably laughing too.


I had to finish up this cake in a tipsy state of being, because we had ‘stepped out’, I had a few too many cocktails, and we were leaving in the morning – with the cake. I had to get the frosting made, frost the cake and take the photo before going to bed. Well, there are more photos, even ones of a slice, too bad for us they’re all too blurry to make out in any way, shape or form. Funny how that happens, even when you’re using a tri-pod.



Sweet n Salty Cake

altered only slightly from “Baked”


– this was the perfect chocolate cake, slightly on the light side with a deep chocolate flavor and the perfect amount of moisture.

Preheat oven to 325°

Butter three 8″ round cake pans, line the bottoms with parchment paper, butter again and lightly dust with flour.


In a medium bowl whisk to combine:

3/4 Cup Dutch Process or Dark Cocoa Powder

1 1/4 Cups Hot Water or Coffee

2/3 Cup Sour Cream

In another bowl combine and set aside:
2 and 2/3 Cup Flour
2 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Salt

With an electric mixer beat until light and fluffy:

¾ Cup Butter

½ Cup Crisco

Then add and mix until combined:

1 Cup Granulated Sugar

1 Cup Brown Sugar Firmly Packed

Add one at a time:
3 Large Eggs at room temp.

1 Tbsp Vanilla Extract

Alternately add the Dry and wet ingredients in three additions. Begin and end with the dry.

Divide the batter equally (a scale works great) among your three 8” rounds.

Bake at 325° for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Let cool completely, and store tightly wrapped, in the freezer until ready to frost. A thawed cake is almost too delicate to frost.


In a small saucepan combine over VERY low heat and stir until dissolved:

½ Cup Heavy Cream

1 tsp Fleur de Sel or large crystal sea salt

In another small saucepan combine and cook over high heat until mixture reaches 350°

¼ Cup Water

1/2 Cup Brown Sugar 

1/2 Cup White Sugar

2 Tbsp Corn Syrup

Once mixture has reached 350°, remove from heat and let cool for one minute then whisk in:

The warm cream mixture

¼ Cup Sour Cream

Let cool to room temp and store in an air-tight container in the fridge until you are ready to assemble your cake.


In a medium heat-proof bowl place:

8 ounces Dark Chocolate (60-70% cacao) I used Ghirardelli 60% chocolate chips

Set Aside.

In a small saucepan over low heat, warm:

1 ½ Cups Heavy Cream

In another small saucepan combine and cook over high heat until mixture reaches 350°

¼ Cup Water

1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
1/2 Cup White Sugar

2 Tbsp Corn Syrup

Once mixture has reached 350°, remove from heat and let cool for one minute then whisk in:

The warmed cream

Stir slowly to combine then pour the mixture over the chocolate and stir until it’s all melted. Let the mixture cool completely COMPLETELY! Then transfer to an electric mixing bowl with a paddle attachment.

Mix on low-speed until the bowl feels cool to the touch (if it’s the slightest bit warm, your butter will melt and your frosting will FAIL) er on the safe side and make sure this mixture is COOL to the touch!

Increase your speed to medium high and add 2 tablespoons at a time:

2 Cups Butter

Beat until thoroughly incorporated, scrape down bowl then beat on high-speed until the mixture is fluffy.


Level each layer if necessary then evenly distribute the caramel between all three layers. Spread to within a ¼” from the edge.

Place about 1 cup of frosting on each layer and carefully spread trying not to disrupt the caramel layer.

Arrange one layer on a cake stand or serving platter and proceed to place the other two layers on top. At this point I secured my cake with some wooden skewers – the caramel can be slippery if you press too hard while frosting and/or cutting the cake.

Finish frosting the rest of the cake and top with a sprinkle of Fluer de Sel or Large crystal Sea Salt.

Enjoy! This cake is AWESOME!

12 Comments leave one →
  1. April 9, 2011 10:12 am

    Wow! I am already blown away by the beauty and lusciousness of the cake but when I see what is in it, especially the salted caramel filling, I am stunned! Down on my knees! What a fabulous cake and now I definitely need to get in the kitchen and get baking! Beautiful! And I love the story of your dedicated, passionate brother!

    • foododelmundo permalink
      April 9, 2011 11:57 am

      What an exuberant comment! Thank you Jamie!
      Now, please do, get in your kitchen and bake this cake. It is the best.
      ~ Mary

  2. April 9, 2011 11:22 am

    This looks absolutely awesome! I think I drooled on my keyboard 😉

  3. Sherri permalink
    April 9, 2011 12:20 pm

    This is gorgeous! I’ll need to experiment …need to create a vegan version, yum! The presentation is simple and elegant –love it. I am eyeing the lovely cake stand, as well! What a find, where’s it from?

    • foododelmundo permalink
      April 9, 2011 3:00 pm

      It’s from an old bakery that unfortunately shut down. I hope you are able to get your vegan version, but how would you do that without butter?!

  4. Sherri permalink
    April 9, 2011 3:14 pm

    …the butter is easy:

    I’d likely use a favorite vegan cake recipe that doesn’t require eggs.

    And for the cream I’d use So Delicious non-dairy creamer:


    So where did you find the cake stand!?

    • foododelmundo permalink
      April 9, 2011 5:00 pm

      Then all I can say to you is GET ON IT GIRL! Make this cake, you won’t regret one delicious bite.

      The cake stand was from an old bakery that shut down, I got a few little great finds from it.

  5. Sherri permalink
    April 9, 2011 5:27 pm

    Oohhhh –other great finds, too? I’m envious, it’s fabulous! (Sorry, I misunderstood your initial answer in your first reply.)


  6. Pat permalink
    April 9, 2011 6:59 pm

    This sounds DELICIOUS!! Should I try to make it for Mick and Niki’s visit Monday? Maybe!
    That story about Kevin is classic!!
    I remember when my sister was learning to bake. She asked my mother, “What’s a ‘pinch’ of salt?”
    Zetta told her it was a little salt between your fingers.
    Into the living room comes Sue carefully balancing salt in the crux of her first and second fingers.

  7. April 13, 2011 2:37 pm

    Wow! This looks decadent! I’m itching to try this recipe. Thanks so much for sharing =]

  8. April 15, 2011 2:42 pm

    I’ve just had the most wonderful time visiting your blog and I’m blown away by this cake! Funny story about your brother walking with the teaspoon…and your with your fuzzy photos! I’m going to follow your blog from now on!
    Happy blog birthday!
    KC Quaretti-Lee

    • foododelmundo permalink
      April 15, 2011 7:39 pm

      Muchas Gracias KC!
      make. this. cake!

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