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This deep, rich confection topped with fudgy frosting is ideal for special occasions or simply for chocolate lovers. Martha's uses Valrhona cocoa powder; for best results, use the highest-quality ingredients you can find. For an impressive presentation, let the layers cool completely before assembling, dust off any loose crumbs, and use the better layer for the top.

Source: Martha Stewart Living Television, May 1999



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How would you rate this recipe?
  • cekutilek
    10 JUN, 2018
    Made this cake for my grandson’s 9th Birthday. Everyone loved it! I watched the video beforehand and that helped a lot. I even bought cake pans with 2” sides. The cake turned out perfect and I frosted it with Martha’s Ultimate Chocolate Frosting. I will definitely make this again!
  • Crooked1
    25 OCT, 2012
    I made this using normal high grade flour as I couldn't get cake flour, also subbed half the white sugar for brown. I followed the rest of the recipe exactly, using Cadbury cocoa and 5 small eggs. I was disappointed with the end result, it didn't taste any better than a 5 minute one bowl cake, I was expecting it to be outstanding. It's fairly rich and moist but not as much as I prefer, and seemed a waste of such a large amount of good ingredients and time. Won't bother making again.
    • thecakedkitchen
      15 DEC, 2017
      I have made this cake numerous times, never gone wrong. Maybe try following the recipe :)
    • haybay86
      14 JAN, 2015
      Are you serious? Don't rate a recipe unless you follow it exactly. Using all purpose flour if going to give you a completely different result. SMH.
  • MS10573409
    8 JUN, 2014
    I remember watching Martha make this cake over ten years ago on her first show, I made it immediately. This is truly the chocolate cake recipe that you look for, and when you find it, you don't stop making it. I find the cake is moist and the icing perfect, reminds of Grandma's house. The best part is the cake is even better the next day. I have to go now, I am making it for my friend's Birthday.
  • Ilhomecook5
    28 JAN, 2014
    This recipe yielded too much batter for the 8 inch pans and the cake turned out dry.
  • chelseabuns
    8 JAN, 2014
    Most fabulous chocolate cake I've ever made, this is now the 4th time. Used Lindt chocolate powder which is like the best in the world!!! Used half the frosting recipe as it is waaaayyyyy too much and such a waste of ingredients. Rate this recipe 5/5 thanks Martha, can never go wrong using your recipes :D
  • ilovebrooklyn
    21 DEC, 2013
    This recipe is perfect! I frosted this cake with Martha's ''Dark-Chocolate Ganache'', (which is the easiest most amazing frosting I've ever made). The cake is so rich and moist. Make sure to not overbake, I baked for 35 minutes exactly.
  • OhMyHoneyBee
    25 OCT, 2013
    Made this cake several times already and it turns out perfect every time. Cake flour isn't available in my country, so I use all purpose flour and replace 10 g per cup of it with cornstarch. I think that works just as fine.
  • Lori2009
    23 AUG, 2013
    This will be my go to chocolate cake! Rich, decadent chocolate flavor. This is definitely a grown up cake. The crumb is so fine and delicate, be sure to use cake flour as directed, it has a lower protein count and that is what keeps this cake light and moist. I did cheat and use a hand mixer instead of beating by hand...shhh don't tell Martha.
  • MS11598944
    17 AUG, 2013
    I made this today as written, Valrhona cocoa and all. The cake was decent but not intense enough for me. I'm a chocolate fanatic and I was hoping for something "ultimate" from this cake, given its title. My kids disagreed with me on the cake not being chocolaty enough. I doubled the accompanying frosting recipe because I like frosting, and there was just barely enough. The cake was not bad, but it was not great either. I don't think I'll be making this again.
  • malzak
    25 JUL, 2013
    Does anyone know where to get Valrhona cocoa? I googled it, and websites are listing it from $88-$110! Is it generally that expensive?

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