This recipe works well as either a layer cake or cupcakes. I've used this recipe for both recently, halving it when I made mini cupcakes. The half batch made enough for 24 mini cupcakes and 2 regular-sized cupcakes. As a layer cake, this makes enough for two layers or three thinner layers and you can use either 8 inch or 9 inch round cake pans. The only change from the original recipe is the addition of instant coffee powder, which helps enhance the chocolate flavor of the cake. This ingredient isn't necessary, so if you don't have it then it's fine to omit it. Another good suggestion is to sift all the dry ingredients to avoid lumps.
|Two layer cake with chocolate buttercream frosting|
decorated with shaved chocolate
2 cups white sugar
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon instant coffee powder
1 cup boiling water
1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter or grease two round cake pans or prepare cupcake liners in muffin pans if making cupcakes.
2. In a large bowl, mix together the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
3. Add the eggs, milk, vegetable oil, and vanilla extract into the bowl and mix until incorporated.
4. To the cup of boiling water, mix in the instant coffee powder, and then stir the liquid into to the bowl.
The batter will be thin.
5. Pour batter into cake pans or cupcake liners. Tap the pans a few times to remove air bubbles. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes in the preheated oven until the cake tests done with a toothpick. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
Feel free to use any frosting for your cake. I used a chocolate buttercream recipe which I'm still working on, so I decided not to post the recipe yet. A whipped cream frosting works well with this chocolate cake too.