Chocolate Orange Baby-Cakes Covered in Semi-sweet Ganache

I made these little cakes as a sweet treat for my extended family on Valentine's Day and they were fantastic! The cake itself is moist beyond belief, rich and chocolaty with a lovely orange undertone to it, and when wrapped in the silky, semi-sweet ganache is dangerously addictive! This is truly the BEST chocolate cake I have ever eaten- you MUST try it!

Chocolate Orange Baby-Cakes Covered in Semi-sweet Ganache
~Serves me (or 10 other people :) ha ha!)

Chocolate Orange Baby-Cakes
(adapted from this recipe by Pioneer Woman)

4 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
3/4 cup boiling water
2 cups sugar
2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 eggs
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup buttermilk (or 1 1/2 teaspoons vinegar and 1/2 cup milk allowed to sit for 15 minutes)
zest and juice from one medium orange

1. melt butter over medium heat in a saucepan, while you boil water in a separate pot
2. add cocoa powder to melted butter and mix well
3. add boiling water and allow to bubble for 30 seconds, then remove from heat and set aside
4. in a bowl combine flour, sugar, and salt
5. add chocolate mixture and stir together a little to cool chocolate
6. in a separate bowl add beaten eggs, buttermilk, baking soda, and orange juice and zest
7. add the buttermilk/egg mixture to the chocolate/flour mixture and stir together well
8. pour into ungreased mini cake pans or a sheet cake pan (I like using small ones because then I'm less likely to eat the whole thing myself with a fork... :) Believe me- it's that good!)
9. bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes
10. allow to cool completely and make ganache...



Semi-sweet Ganache

2 cups of semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. put the chocolate chips into a glass bowl and set aside
2. bring cream to a boil over medium heat
3. pour cream over chocolate chips and let sit for 5 minutes
4. add vanilla extract and stir mixture until smooth
5. pour over cooled cakes

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