This makes a delightfully moist, fluffy and rich-tasting chocolate chiffon cake! I used my trusted recipe for vanilla chiffon cake and adapted it to yield this perfect (well, at least to me!) chocolate version. This chocolate chiffon cake is beautifully suited for tea or celebration cakes that requires a chocolate cake base, such as Blackforest cake.
The thing about chocolate cake – be it butter, sponge, foam or chiffon types – is that the cake really should look and taste chocolate-y! This is where the use of chocolate emulco is essential, not only because it adds depth and enhances the flavour of the cake, but more importantly, it imparts that rich, dark chocolate-y brown colour that we have come to associate (or assume) with a high or rich cocoa content. Though you could incorporate a higher cocoa content to get that rich colour, cocoa is a drying agent and thus, will require that you compensate with an increased ratio of liquid in the recipe. As such, I find that using a good quality chocolate emulco or paste achieves the desired outcome with the least risk of altering the final texture and flavour of the cake.
Chocolate Chiffon Cake
- 102 g sifted cake flour
- 20 g cocoa powder
- 1/2 tbsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3 1/2 egg yolks
- 50 g castor sugar
- 1/4 cup corn oil
- 95 g cold water
- 1 tbsp chocolate emulco
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 1/2 egg whites
- 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
- 70 g castor sugar
- Pre-heat oven to 165 deg C. Prepare two 7-inch cake pans. Lightly grease only the base of the pans, but leave sides free of grease. If baking in a tube pan, do not line with baking paper or grease at all.
- Sift together the cake flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt into a bowl.
- In a clean bowl or jug, combine the corn oil, cold water, chocolate emulco and vanilla extract, and stir thoroughly to mix well.
- Using an electric mixer, place egg yolks and sugar into a mixing bowl. Whisk on high speed until the yolks become light and fluffy (the yolks should triple in volume and turn a pale lemon colour).
- Lower mixer speed to medium, and slowly pour the mixture from (3) in a steady continuous stream into the yolk mixture. Whisk together until just well blended.
- Stop the mixer, and sift in the flour and cocoa mixture all at once. Turn the mixer on, on low speed this time, and whisk the flour into the yolk mixture until most of the flour has been incorporated. Finish mixing by hand, using the whisk (detach from the mixer) or spatula to fold in all the flour until just well incorporated. Be careful not to over-mix or over-fold the mixture. Transfer to a clean bowl and set aside. Wash the mixer bowl and whisk attachment to remove all grease, and dry thoroughly.
- In the cleaned mixer bowl, pour in the egg whites. Using the whisk attachment, beat at high speed. When the egg whites start to get foamy, add the cream of tartar. About 30 seconds later, pour in the sugar in a steady continuous stream. Continue beating until the egg whites reach the stiff peaks stage.
- Add 1/3 beaten egg whites into the yolk mixture and mix using a spatula or hand whisk. Using quick but light moves, gently fold in the next 1/3, and then the last remaining 1/3. Ensure that the egg whites are well incorporated with no visible streaks of unmixed whites in the mixture. Be careful not to over-fold.
- Tap the batter lightly on the counter top, before pouring into the prepared pans with batter equally divided (if making a layer cake). Alternatively, you could pour into a 20 cm ungreased chiffon tube pan. Bake at the lowest rack in the oven for 25 minutes or until skewer inserted comes out clean. Immediately invert pan(s) onto a cooling rack for at least an hour before loosening cake. Serve or fill and frost as desired.