Recipe for Cafe Latte’s Turtle Cake – The cake is clearly the most famous dish to come out of the longtime restaurant, where it has been a signature item since Cafe Latte opened in 1985.
- Butter and unsweetened cocoa powder for pans
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1 c. buttermilk
- 23 c. vegetable oil
- 2 c. all-purpose flour
- 1 34 c. sugar
- 12 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tbsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 c. freshly brewed hot coffee
For chocolate frosting:
- 1 c. sugar
- 12 c. whole milk
- 6 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
- 1 12-oz. package (2 c.) semisweet chocolate pieces
- 1 to 2 tsp. freshly brewed hot coffee, optional
- 1 12 c. pecan halves, toasted
- 12 c. purchased caramel ice cream topping
- To prepare cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter bottom and sides of 3 9-inch cake pans and line bottom of each pan with parchment paper. Butter the paper; dust pans with unsweetened cocoa powder and set pans aside.
- In a small bowl, stir together egg, buttermilk and oi and reserve. In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, 1 cup cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Using an electric mixer on low speed, gradually add buttermilk mixture to flour mixture, beating until combined. Gradually beat in coffee.
- Divide batter evenly between prepared pans; layers will appear shallow. (If you only have two 9-inch cake pans, refrigerate 1 of the batter while you bake the other two layers. Clean and prepare one of the pans as directed, and bake remaining batter.)
- Bake until a wooden toothpick inserted near center comes out clean, about 22 to 25 minutes. Remove from oven and cool cakes on a wire racks for 10 minutes. Loosen sides from pans, then invert cakes on racks. Remove cakes from pans. Peel off paper; cool completely.nnTo prepare frosting: In a medium saucepan, combine sugar and milk. Add butter. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add semisweet chocolate pieces. Using a wire whisk, stir until smooth. If frosting is too thick or grainy, stir in 1 to 2 teaspoons freshly brewed coffee. If necessary, let frosting stand several minutes before using.
- To assemble cake: When the cakes are cool, place 1 cake layer, top-side down, onto a serving plate with a lip. Using an icing spatula or wide knife, work quickly to frost the top of this layer with one-third of the frosting. Arrange one-third of the pecans on top and drizzle with some of the caramel topping. Top with the second layer, top-side down.
- Repeat with frosting, pecans and caramel topping. Top with the third layer, top side up. Repeat with remaining frosting, pecans and caramel topping. Chill cake 1 to 2 hours before serving (some caramel topping will ooze from the cake as it chills).
Recipe and Photo courtesy of: StarTribune.com