Ghirardelli Chocolate/Lisa Silmser
Lisa Silmser's cake is another original hailing from the Minnesota State Fair. After her batter "splashed" a mess in the kitchen, she decided wild chocolate decorations should commemorate the "disaster" with a Ghirardelli Hot Chocolate Splash Cake. This decadent dish proudly features with three types of chocolate, which she makes so eye-catching with her decorating skills using a bull's-eye of milk and white chocolate and spreading it out with a knife.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 8-inch round pans. Sift together the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl. With an electric mixer, beat in the eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla, mix for 2 minutes on medium speed. Carefully pour in the hot cocoa at the last moment — batter will be thin. Pour into prepared pans. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes.
Cream together the butter, cocoa powder, and salt. Add the powdered sugar, then the milk and vanilla. In a separate bowl, whisk together the heavy cream and hot cocoa mix. Slowly add to the frosting until you’ve reached the desired consistency. Drink whatever is leftover while you stack and frost your layer cake.
Melt the chips in separate containers in the microwave on medium heat for 30-second increments, stirring often. Repeat until fully melted and smooth. On a parchment-covered tray, pour approximately 16 quarter-sized dollops of bittersweet chocolate 4 inches apart. Then pour a circle of milk chocolate around each dollop. Repeat with a circle of white chocolate. The dollops will have a target-like pattern. Using a skewer or thin paring knife, drag across the 3 types of chocolate into irregular, 3- to 4-inch splash-like patterns. Avoid over swirling. Place tray in refrigerator to set for about 15 minutes.
When the chocolate has set, gently peel the "splashes" from parchment and use to decorate the frosted layered cake. To make a tiered effect, cut a ½-inch deep groove into the top of the cake, 1 inch from the edge. Slide the chocolate splashes into the groove to create the faux top tier of the cake.