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Split Layer Cake 101

Moist, chocolate cake is the ultimate, decadent dessert everyone wants to dive into. A split layer cake may look a bit intimidating, but with just a few pointers, like the importance of sifting dry ingredients and knowing how to tell when the cakes are done, you can prepare this chocolate lover’s dream with confidence.

1. Sifting – Using a fine-mesh strainer to sift the flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt is key to ensuring there are no lumps in the dry ingredients. Sifting aerates and evenly disperses the dry ingredients. Sift onto a piece of waxed paper to make it easier to add to the bowl while mixing.

2. When Are the Cakes Done? – The cakes are done when the tops spring back when lightly touched. Inserting a wooden pick into the center of the cakes is another way to test if the cakes are done. The wooden pick should come out with just a few moist crumbs attached.

3. Turning Out Cakes – After the cakes have cooled in their pans on a wire rack for 10 minutes, run a small, plastic knife around the perimeter of the cakes to loosen them from the pans. Then, 1 cake at a time, carefully invert the cake pan onto a wire rack and lift off the pan. Peel off the parchment paper attached to the bottom of the cakes and let them cool completely.

4. Splitting Cakes – To split each cake, lay 1 hand fl at on top and with the opposite hand, position a long, serrated knife parallel to your work surface. Then carefully cut the cake in half using a steady, sawing motion.