Sofia attempting a cake concoction of juicy summer berries and a bittersweet chocolate-coffee combo? It’s more likely than you think. As the end of summer approaches, taking advantage of every blueberry, raspberry, blackberry, any-and-every-kind-of-berry has been my number one priority besides y’know, school (gotta love college application season!). And so I’ve attempted this lovely, minimalistic berry chocolate espresso cake.
I will admit, as I started with cake, I wasn’t completely sure where I was going with it. I had baked up a couple of 8 inch chocolate cakes and I had two boxes of blueberries and blackberries on the verge of going bad if not eaten soon. And as it is for most situations, my first thought was coffee.
I whipped up my favorite espresso buttercream which is simply a vanilla buttercream with enough ground coffee to taste beaten in. I sometimes will even put a dash of fresh black coffee for an even stronger frosting. I also added a couple drops of purple and blue gel food coloring to get a nice berry color to really contrast the berries I was going to use decorate. I love all the little specks of espresso you can see on the cake!
I then got to frosting the cake which ended up being a herculean task as it was about 95 degrees and let me tell you, my frosting and I were not having a good time at all. With the air conditioning on full blast, I pushed my way through, carrying the cake to and from the refrigerator about every 10 minutes.
Inspired by this beautiful cake from Pinterest, I made a quick chocolate ganache by melting together about two parts heavy cream and one part semi-sweet chocolate. After the ganache cooled down, I poured it into a piping bag with the tip snipped off and proceeded to drip the chocolate onto the edges of the cake. This technique really gives an elegant touch while also hiding any streaks/imperfections from the icing, a real two birds-one stone kinda deal.
I let the ganache set to avoid my clumsy self from accidentally ruining it when placing the berries on top. The blackberries and blueberries were placed randomly along the circumference of the cake, making a nice border.
For a final pop of color, I plucked a few fresh mint leaves from our little herb garden out back, and spread them out between the berries.
And that’s basically it! A real simple, but tasty treat filled with summer vibes that’ll last you through the rest of the year!
As always, thanks for reading and happy baking,