Hey friends! Today I’ve teamed up with Fair Trade USA to help spread the word about their new Mother’s Day campaign called FairHer. There are a great number of women who work for Fair Trade companies, including moms who are working to provide better lives for their families. Each time you purchase a Fair Trade product, you’re empowering women in agricultural communities, fighting poverty and promoting environmental sustainability.
I mean – wow. You do all that just by buying chocolate! I can’t think of a better win-win situation. Speaking of chocolate…
I always look forward to baking with Fair Trade ingredients, and this year’s goodie box was filled with the most amazing baking cocoa and wafers. I decided to honor them in the best way I know how – by baking them into fluffy chocolate cake layers!
Thanks to our sponsors! Wholesome Sweet, Allegro Coffee, BarkThins, Lake Champlain Chocolates, Nutriva, Numi, Guittard, Frontier Co-Op, Marich Chocolates, Barefoot & Chocolate, Alter Eco, Nourish Organic, Eco Lips, Spectrum Naturals, TCHO Chocolate.
Each year Fair Trade USA pairs a blogger with a Fair Trade farmer to tell their story. Read below to discover how buying Fair Trade products positively impacts the people who grow our food.
Natividad Nagua, 53, an organic banana producer affiliated to UROCAL since 2004, declares: “Before I used to produce conventional bananas, but I was not happy with all the pesticides we used, as it damages our environment. I attended a conference with a representative from UROCAL and I immediately joined. We now produce clean, healthy, organic bananas, and the advantages of Fair Trade are incomparable. The stability of the price we get for our product makes us feel happy, and at home. I am very worried about the environment and the effects it has on everyone’s health. Of course we all need to make a living and get ahead financially, especially to keep our children from migrating. I want them to study, but at the same time I don’t want them to forget their land, their roots. My message to the consumers in the United States is: Please buy our bananas because they are clean, healthy, they come from a small organic farm, and you can give them to your kids, parents, grandparents, grandchildren, without any worries.”
Now. This cake!
The recipe starts with my favorite chocolate cake layers. It’s an unbelievably moist cake with the softest crumb. It’s covered with salted caramel buttercream and then topped with drippy ganache. It’s finished with a heaping helping of caramel corn and all the Fair Trade chocolate bars and candies I could throw at it!
As a caramel fanatic, this may be my new favorite version of chocolate cake. With its crown of crunchy caramel corn and chocolate munchies, it’s over-the-top in the best way possible.
Caramel Chocolate Moxie Cake
Chocolate cake layers
- 3 ounces Guittard semisweet chocolate
- 1 1/2 cups 360 ml hot brewed coffee or hot water
- 2 1/2 cups 300g all-purpose flour
- 3 cups 600g granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 cups 185g Lake Champlain unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
- 3 large eggs
- 3/4 cup 180 ml vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 cups 340g full fat sour cream
- 3/4 teaspoon vanilla
Salted caramel frosting
- 1/2 cup 100g granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup 60 ml water
- 1/2 cup 120 ml heavy whipping cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 pound unsalted butter
- 1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
- 3 cups 380g confectioners’ sugar
- 4 oz. semisweet chocolate chopped
- 1/2 cup 120ml heavy cream
- 1/4 85g cup dark corn syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Chocolate “moxie” toppings
- 2 TCHO chocolate bars 70 grams each
- 2 TCHO chocolate squares .28 oz. each
- 1 package 50g Marich milk chocolate salted caramel popcorn
- 1 package 50 g Marich dark chocolate salted caramels
- 1 1/2 cups about 2.5 oz. caramel corn
- 2 Alter Eco Truffles velvet and salted caramel
- Make the cake: Preheat oven to 300°F. Grease three 8-inch round pans with shortening. Line bottoms with rounds of parchment paper and grease paper.
- Finely chop chocolate and combine it in a bowl with hot coffee or hot water. Let mixture stand, stirring occasionally, until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth.
- Sift together flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl. In another large bowl with an electric mixer beat eggs until thickened slightly and lemon colored (about 3 minutes with a standing mixer or 5 minutes with a hand-held mixer). Add oil, sour cream, vanilla, and melted chocolate mixture to eggs, beating until combined well. Add flour mixture and beat on medium speed until just combined. Divide batter between 3- 8” pans and bake in middle of oven until cake springs back when pressed in the center, approximately 40-50 minutes.
- Cool layers in pans for 15 minutes on racks. Run a thin knife around edges of pans and invert layers onto wire racks. Carefully remove parchment paper and cool layers completely. Cake layers may be made 1 day ahead and kept, wrapped well in plastic wrap, at room temperature.
- Make the frosting: In a 2 quart saucepan, stir together the granulated sugar and 1/4 cup of water. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat. Cook without stirring until the mixture turns deep amber. Remove the pan from the heat source and slowly add the heavy whipping cream in a thin stream while whisking constantly. Be careful with this addition; the mixture will bubble and steam when the cream in added. Use a long handled whisk to avoid a steam burn on your hand; stir in the vanilla. Transfer the caramel to a separate bowl and let cool until just barely warm but still pourable.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter and salt together until lightened and fluffy. Reduce the speed to low and add the confectioners’ sugar. Mix until thoroughly combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. With the motor running on low speed slowly pour in the cooled caramel. Beat on medium-high speed until completely combined, about 2 minutes. Cover the bowl with a damp tea towel so the frosting doesn’t dry out as you assemble the cake.
- Make the chocolate glaze: combine chocolate and heavy cream in a small saucepan and heat over medium-high until the milk begins to steam. Remove from heat and let stand 2-3 minutes; whisk until chocolate and cream and smooth and combined. Add corn syrup and vanilla. Whisk again until smooth. Place mixture in the refrigerator until thick but still pourable, about 10-15 minutes.
- Assemble the cake: Place a chocolate cake layer on a serving plate or cake stand. Cover with a layer of caramel frosting; repeat once more and top with the third cake layer. Frost the outside of the cake with the remaining caramel frosting. Pour the cooled ganache over top of the cake and allow it to overflow and run down the sides. Insert candy bars standing upright into the top of the cake; top with caramel corn and chocolate candies.
What wouldn't I love to make with all of these products?! Of course I'd try this cake out first, then maybe some decadent chocolate cookies with SEA SALT, and then I'd try really hard not to just eat the chocolate by itself
I would make a cake!
I could make some soap with some of the products and of course cupcakes 🙂
That caramel corn topping totally makes it! Wow! And I love the organic coconut oil!
Oh gosh I can't help but say I want to attempt to make my own truffle with this amazing box! With those ingredients I just might succeed and impress the bosses!
This cake is gorgeous! I love the toppings too, but most importantly that it supports FairTrade! How do you decide which great product to choose as a favorite? I love the Bark Thins, Coffee and of course, anything chocolate!
Hmmm, well, I think I would also make a chocolate cake with some peanut butter filling and icing and eat all that lovely covered popcorn as it baked in the oven!
I would use the blue agave to make the most amazing margarita! This cake recipe would go nicely with it 🙂
I'd love to make some kind of delicious, wholesome treat! Recently, I've been grooving on muffins. 🙂
OMG, decadent doesn't even come close to describe your cake. If I had all of those ingredients, I'd use the cinnamon and tea to make some fun scones, the chocolates would probably be some kid and adult friendly beverages and baked goods, and the popcorn and bars would make movie night more heavenly.
I am so glad that you support Fair Trade products. I've been choosing Fair Trade coffees and chocolates (because they're the easiest to find). Now, where can I get some Fair Trade wine? 😉
I would love to make a batch of Blondies and Brownies with these Fair Trade products. EMS591@aol.com
I would probably make a cake out of it, maybe cupcakes! 🙂 Beautiful cake
I'd like to make the biggest, baddest pancakes with these products!
This cake is beautiful! And, I would love to make beautifully-decorated cupcakes with this haul!
I think this cake would be the perfect thing to try first!
I would make the richest, most chocolatey batch of brownies ever!
I would make brownies. My husband loves them))
I would make my husband a belated birthday cake! We were travelling over his birthday, so the cake kind of got skipped. 🙁 I normally make him a chocolate cake with caramel icing, so this post really resonated with me!!
Brownies sound really good. They're my favorite thing I love to indulge in!!
I would combine all that chocolate and coconut into a delicious concoction!
So fabulous! We are baking desserts for a local shelter's mothers day event… this cake might just go on the menu! How lovely! I'd use the coconut oil to whip up some sugar free chocolates for myself. What a generous and indulgent give away! Yum!
I would make a chocolate cake!
I would put the coconut oil on my skin and make brownies with peanut butter frosting
I recently made a similarly over the top cheesecake, topped with all manner of tasty chocolates. I'd probably made a second version of that, inspired by whatever flavors in the box inspire me! Or I might just eat it, since I'm 9 months pregnant. Chocolate doesn't last long here!
Gosh, what a lovely giveaway! Since I have a major craving for chocolate chip cookies, I would make them using large chunks of chocolate and sprinkling some sea salt on top. I'd also love to try switching out the butter with coconut oil. Thank you so much for the chance to win. 🙂
I would try really hard to bake something…but then probably just snack on it all. Ha!!
I would try really hard to bake something with all that chocolate…but I would probably end up snacking on it all. Ha!
My birthday is soon, I'd love to make myself some treats! I've been obsessing over your nebula cake, but perhaps something a little different might be in order! Thank you for doing this give-away! It's so fun to enter these things!
I would try to bake something…but would probably end up snacking on it all. Ha!
Maybe some sort of chocolate/coffe/mocha cake?
I think I would mix the popcorn with some marshmallows and melt a bunch of that chocolate to make some popcorn 'rice krispie' treats
i would definitely make some sort of batch of cookies, and while they'd be delicious, they wouldn't be as awesome as this cake!
I would make this cake of course! Or this might be the year I make my own birthday cake, or perhaps I could make it for mothers day… so many choices, but they all come down to needing this cake!
Oh…so many nice things. I would probably start by eating all that TCHO chocolate, haha. Then maybe a flourless chocolate torte? Something southwestern inspired with the agave? Lots of possibilities 🙂
Hmmm…so many ideas!! But maybe some super indulgent truffles w/that good chocolate???
Wow. Such great products. I can use most of them in my baking..:)
I would make a really rich chocolate cake.
Hmm! I would probably make an epic chocolate cake with these! Or brownies! Or both!
I would love to make some chocolate pastries
I would make magic shell out of the wafers and coconut oil! Can't wait for ice cream season…
I want all of those things in that basket but I wonder if I could combine the coconut oil and LLC hot chocolate for a decadent drink..!
Would definitely be making some cupcakes with hi-hat marshmellow frosting! 🙂
I would use the coconut oil to make a delicious coconut cake with salted caramel frosting!!
I would make chocolate gelato, Mayan mocha mix, brownies, and of course, chocolate cake!
Cookies! Or cake! Or maybe even cupcakes!!
chocolate avocado mousse! yummy!
Cupcake versions of the cake would be awesome!
Oh, I would make that cake for my birthday! It is SINGING my name!
I'd love to make some kind of loaded candy bar brownies with these ingredients
I am a Bark Thins addict (pretzel variety) and with this selection I coul try my own bark combinations, too!