Source: Campbell's Recipes

Chocolate Birthday Cake
Don't wait for a birthday to enjoy this delectable cake.
Serves: 8
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time:


4 eggs
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
8 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup apricot preserves melted and strained

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour a 9-inch layer cake pan; tap out the excess flour.
Melt the chocolate in the top of a double boiler over hot, not simmering, water. Set aside to cool to lukewarm.
Beat the eggs and 3/4 cup sugar in a bowl until thick and lemon colored. Fold the flour and melted chocolate into the batter, a third at a time until just combined. Stir in the almond extract.
Pour the batter into the cake pan and bake for about 45 minutes or until a cake tester inserted in center comes out clean.
Leave the cake in the pan for 5 minutes, then unmold it onto a wire rack. When cake is cool, split it into 2 layers.
To make the frosting, in a saucepan boil 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 cup water until the sugar melts and the syrup is clear. Cool to lukewarm.
In the bowl of an electric mixer set on medium speed, beat the egg yolks, adding the syrup in a slow, steady stream, until thick. Continue beating for about 5 minutes or until the mixture has more than doubled in bulk.
In a clean bowl and using the electric mixer, beat the butter until light and creamy. Add the butter to the yolk mixture, a little at a time. Spread the buttercream on one of the cake layers Top with the other cake layer.
To decorate the cake, melt the bittersweet chocolate in the top of a double boiler over hot, not simmering, water. Line a baking sheet with wax paper and spread the melted chocolate in a thin layer over the paper. Freeze for about 15 minutes until the chocolate is brittle.Brush the warmed, strained preserves over the top of the cake. Crumple the wax paper to break the chocolate into pieces. Scatter the broken chocolate over the top of the cake.

TIP: If you decide to write on the cake, double the buttercream amounts and omit the broken chocolate. Spread the buttercream on top of apricot preserves, and then write on the smooth surface with red or another color of decorating gel.