Sweetheart Cake

I apparently have a thing for decadent desserts as of late. This one is no exception. Inspired by a raspberry cake I recently saw online, I decided to make a similar cake for my birthday this year, but with strawberry compote instead of raspberry filling.

This cake is the perfect combination of moist, chocolate cake layered with creamy chocolate mousse and tangy, sweet cinnamon strawberry compote with a rich chocolate ganache to top it off.

Perfect for any strawberry and chocolate lovers, this cake would make a scrumptious addition to any Valentine’s Day celebration. Add freeze dried strawberries to top it off, if desired, or simply enjoy it plain. Either way, it is sure to be a show-stopper that everyone will enjoy.

As always, let me know if you make this dessert and tell me what you think! I hope you enjoy it as much as we have! Happy Valentine’s Day in advance!

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”

1 Corinthians 13:7

SWEETHEART CAKE

Chocolate Cake Ingredients

  • 2 ½ c cake flour
  • ¾ c cacao powder
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 2 t baking powder
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 t cinnamon
  • 1 c granulated sugar
  • 1 c brown sugar
  • 1 c milk (minus 1 tablespoon)
  • 1 T white vinegar*
  • ½ c vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 c boiling water

Chocolate Mousse Ingredients

  • 4 oz bittersweet chocolate baking bar (I used a 60% cacao Ghiradelli bar)
  • 1 c heavy whipping cream
  • ½ c powdered sugar
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened (I used 1/3 less fat)
  • 1 t vanilla

Cinnamon Strawberry Compote Ingredients

  • 16 oz strawberries, diced
  • 1/3 c sugar
  • 1 lemon, juice of (divided)
  • 1 ½ t cinnamon
  • ¼ t cloves (scant quarter teaspoon)
  • 2 T cornstarch

Chocolate Ganache Ingredients

  • 8 oz semi-sweet chocolate*
  • 1 c heavy whipping cream

For the Chocolate Cake:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a small ball, combine the milk and vinegar in a small bowl and set aside. Meanwhile, mix together the flour, cacao powder, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. In a separate bowl, combine the granulated sugar, brown sugar, oil, and eggs and beat together with an electric beater. Add the milk mixture and blend, then add the hot water and blend with the beater to combine. Evenly distribute between two 9 inch greased and floured cake pans, then bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool in pans.

For the Chocolate Mousse:

Break the chocolate bar into pieces and melt over the stove on medium low heat until completely melted. Set aside to cool slightly. In a mixing bowl, beat the whipping cream with an electric beater until peaks form, then gradually add the powdered sugar and continue to beat until well incorporated.

In a separate bowl, beat the softened cream cheese with an electric beater until smooth, then add the chocolate and vanilla and beat until combined. Add the whipping cream to the cream cheese mixture and beat together. Set aside in the refrigerator until ready to be used.

For the Cinnamon Strawberry Compote:

Follow recipe as found here: https://anticipatingadventure.com/2021/02/10/cinnamon-strawberry-compote/. Cool completely before using.

For the Chocolate Ganache:

Heat the heavy whipping cream over the stove on medium heat until small bubbles begin to form. Remove from heat and add the chocolate chips, making sure that each are covered by the heavy whipping cream. Cover the mixture with a lid and let sit for five minutes, then stir together to combine well. It will take several minutes to mix together and get a smooth consistency. Once combined, let sit an additional ten to fifteen minutes before pouring over the assembled cake.

For the Cake Assembly:

Cut each cake lengthwise to form four circles. On the first circle, spread a third of the mousse evenly over the top, then gently spread the compote on top, forming a slightly smaller circle over the compote. Repeat each step with the second and third cakes, then top with the final cake. Spoon the ganache over the top and sides of cake until the cake is covered in ganache. Top with freeze dried strawberries, if desired, and enjoy. Refrigerate any leftovers.

*If desired, use 1 c buttermilk instead of the milk and vinegar.

*The 8 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate should be measured according to weight and not by a cup. If you are not able to measure the chocolate, I suggest using the entire 12 oz bag of semi-sweet chocolate with 1 ½ c heavy whipping cream.

Cinnamon Strawberry Compote

Tangy and sweet with a hint of spicy warmth, this strawberry sauce makes for a special, winter treat.

In need of a special, last-minute Valentine’s Day dessert? This cinnamon strawberry compote would make an elegant addition to any store-bought cheesecake, ice cream, or angel food cake. Or make an extra special breakfast that day by topping waffles, pancakes, or toast with this rich, red sauce.

This compote combines the fresh and tangy taste of strawberries and freshly squeezed lemon juice with the sweetness of sugar and a hint of spice and warmth from cinnamon and cloves, making this sauce a special winter treat. The ingredients blend beautifully over the stove in a matter of minutes and can be served hot, or can be placed in the fridge for a few hours to be served chilled. It’s entirely up to you. Either way, this compote is good, and you’ll find yourself wanting to make it over and over again!

So, if you need a quick recipe, here you go! And as Valentine’s Day approaches, let us remember to love well and to love deeply, just as God loves us.

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.  Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”

1 Corinthians 13:4-7

CINNAMON STRAWBERRY COMPOTE

Ingredients:

  • 16 oz strawberries, diced
  • 1/3 c sugar
  • 1 lemon, juice of (divided)
  • 1 ½ t cinnamon
  • ¼ t cloves (scant teaspoon)
  • 2 T cornstarch

Directions:

Mix the diced strawberries, sugar, and 1 teaspoon of lemon juice together and simmer over medium heat for five to seven minutes, stirring often. Stir in the cinnamon and cloves and place on low heat for one more minute. Meanwhile, stir the cornstarch into the remaining lemon juice, one tablespoon at a time, until combined. Slowly add the cornstarch mixture to the strawberry sauce while stirring constantly. Once combined, remove from heat and serve or let chill. Enjoy!