Yield
18 servings (serving size: 1 slice)
Photo: Randy Mayor; Styling: Fonda Shaia

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 350°.

Step 2

Coat bottoms of 2 (9-inch) round cake pans with cooking spray (do not coat sides of pan); line bottoms with wax paper. Coat wax paper with cooking spray; dust with 1 tablespoon flour.

Step 3

Combine butter, vanilla, and cream cheese in a large bowl; beat at medium-high speed of a mixer 2 minutes. Gradually add sugar, beating at low speed just until smooth. Add hot water; beat just until smooth. Add chocolate; beat just until smooth. Reserve 1 3/4 cups chocolate mixture for frosting; cover and chill 2 hours. Add shortening to remaining chocolate mixture in bowl. Beat at medium speed of a mixer until well-blended (about 1 minute). Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.

Step 4

Lightly spoon 1 3/4 cups flour into dry measuring cups, level with a knife. Combine 1 3/4 cups flour, milk powder, baking powder, and salt, stirring well with a whisk. Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture alternately with milk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture.

Step 5

Pour batter into prepared pans. Sharply tap pans once on counter to remove air bubbles. Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans 10 minutes on a wire rack; remove from pans. Remove wax paper. Cool completely on wire rack.

Step 6

Place 1 cake layer on a plate; spread with 1/2 cup frosting, and top with remaining cake layer. Spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake; sprinkle top of cake with chopped malted-milk balls. Chill 1 hour. Store cake loosely covered in refrigerator.

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