For Chocolate Cake
2 cups cake flour
2 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking powder
¾ cup water
¾ cup buttermilk
½ cup shortening
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 squares unsweetened chocolate,
melted and cooked

For Buttercream Frosting
½ lb. butter
1 cup shortening
1 ¼ lb. confectioners’ sugar
⅓ teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch salt
¼ cup milk

For Chocolate Ganache
1 pound semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 cups heavy whipping cream

For Chocolate Cake
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Grease and flour two 9-inch round layer pans.

2. In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients. Beat for 30 seconds on low speed, stopping to scrape sides and bottom of bowl occasionally.

3. Beat for 3 minutes at medium speed. Pour batter into prepared pans.

4. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean. Cool completely.

For Buttercream Icing
1. Beat the butter and shortening together with an electric mixer until light and fluffy, scraping the bottom of the bowl.

2. Add remaining ingredients and mix on low speed till combined switch to high speed until light and fluffy.
for ganache
In a sauce pot on medium heat melt chocolate chips and whipping cream together until smooth. Remove immediately from heat and let cool until thickened slightly.

Assemble the Cake
1. Place 1/3 frosting between layers. Ice the cake with the remaining frosting.

2. Pour semi-thickened ganache over the top and gently bring to the edge of the cake so that it drips over.

Recipe by Patti Oliverio Simon, Almost Heaven Desserts, Bridgeport

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Nikki Bowman
Written by Nikki Bowman
Nikki Bowman, a West Virginia native, is the founder and owner of New South Media, Inc., which publishes the critically acclaimed WV Living, WV Weddings, West Virginia Focus, Explore, and Morgantown magazines. In January 2015, her company also took over the editorial and design of Wonderful West Virginia magazine. She graduated from West Virginia University and received her master’s degree in Writing from DePaul University in Chicago.