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Raspberry & Chocolate Mousse Cake


  • 1 ¾ Cups (7 ½ Ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 Teaspoons Baking Soda
  • 1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1 Teaspoon Salt
  • 2 Cups (14 Ounces) Granulated Sugar
  • 1 Cup (3 Ounces) Unsweetened Cocoa, natural or Dutch-process
  • ½ Cup (3 ½ Ounces) Vegetable Oil
  • 1 Cup (8 ounces) Buttermilk
  • 1 Cup (8 ounces) Boiling Water
  • 2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract
  • 3 Large Eggs
Chocolate Mousse Filling
  • 1 Cup (8 Ounces) Whipping Cream
  • 1 Cup (4 Ounces) Confectioners’ Sugar
  • 1 Teaspoons Instant ClearJel®
  • 2 Tablespoons (1 Ounce) Butter, at room temperature
  • 1 Package (8 Ounce) Cream Cheese, at room temperature
  • ½ Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 2/3 Cup (4 Ounces) Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips, melted
  • ½ Cup (3 Ounces) Mini Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
  • 1 ½ to 2 Pints Fresh Red Raspberries 
Chocolate Frosting
  • ½ Cup (3 ¼ Ounces) Butter-Flavored Vegetable Shortening
  • ½ Cup (1 Stick, 4 Ounces) Unsalted Butter
  • ¼ Teaspoon Salt
  • 4 Cups (1 Pound) Confectioners’ Sugar
  • ½ Cup (1 ½ Ounces) Unsweetened Cocoa, natural or Dutch-Process
  • ¼ Cup (2 Ounces) Milk
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract


Preheat the oven to 325°F. Grease and flour two 8 inch round by 3 inch deep cake pans, or four 8 inch round pans. 

For the cake: Sift together or whisk the dry ingredients through a strainer into a large mixing bowl. Combine the oil, buttermilk, boiling water and vanilla extract in a medium bowl or large measuring cup. Add to the dry ingredients and mix well. Scrape the sides and bottom of the mixing bowl, then beat in the eggs, one at a time. Mix on medium speed for another 2 minutes or until smooth. Pour the batter into the prepared pans. Bake for 50 minutes for 3 inch deep pans or 28 to 33 minutes for more shallow layers, until the layers just begin to pull away from the edge of the pan, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs. Remove from the oven and place on a rack to cool. After the layers are cool, tip them out of the pans. If you baked 2 deep layers, split them in half horizontally to make for layers. 

For the filling: Beat the whipping cream until soft peaks form. Whisk together ¼ cup of the confectioners’ sugar with the Instant ClearJel®, and add to the whipped cream. Beat until the cream has stiff peaks; set aside. In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter, cream cheese, remaining ¾ cup of confectioners’ sugar and vanilla. Mix on medium speed for 2 minutes, or until well blended and smooth. Add the melted chocolate to the bowl and mix on medium speed for 1 minute or until light and fluffy. Scrape the mixing bowl, then fold in the mini chocolate chips. You will use the fresh raspberries when you assemble the cake. Refrigerate the filling until you’re ready to assemble the cake.

For the frosting: In a large bowl, beat together the shortening and butter. Whisk the confectioners’ sugar and cocoa through a strainer to remove any lumps, and add to the butter alternately with the milk and vanilla. Mix on medium-high speed for 2 minutes or until fluffy.

To assemble the cake: Place the first layer on a serving plate (line the edges with strips of waxed or parchment-paper to keep the plate clean); spread it with 1 cup of the mousse filling. Place ½ pint of raspberry halves over the filling. Repeat until all the layers are stacked up; place the last layer bottom-side up for a flat surface on top. Frost the top and sides of the cake, decorating with more frosting and fresh raspberries. Yield: 1 very tall cake, 16 to 20 servings.

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