Texas Pecan Cake
It prevent crumbling, once the cake layers have cooled, wrap them in plastic wrap and freeze them for 30 minutes or up to 2 hours. This will make assembly easier.
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 1 3-layer 8-inch cake
For the Texas Pecan Cake:
  • 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon fine salt
  • 5 large eggs, separated then brought to room temperature
  • ½ cup (1 stick, 4 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • ½ cup buttermilk, room temperature
  • ½ cup full-fat ricotta cheese
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ cups pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped
For the Texas Sheet Cake Frosting:
  • 12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • ½ cup (1 stick, 4 ounces) unsalted butter
  • ⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons corn syrup
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ¼ fine sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup sour cream
To make the Chocolate Fudge Boarder:
  • ⅓ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 to 4 cups sifted powdered sugar
  • pinch of fine salt
  • ¼ cup (½ stick, 2 ounces) unsalted butter room temperature
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
To assemble the Texas Pecan Cake:
  • Toasted pecans
To make the Texas Pecan Cake:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 3 8-inch round cake pans with baking spray. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl whisk together 2 cups of the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the egg whites until stiff, but not dry, peaks form. Pour beaten egg whites into a separate bowl.
  4. In the cleaned bowl of the stand mixer, add the butter and brown sugar. Use the paddle attachment to beat on a medium speed until creamy and smooth, about 3 minutes. Add the oil and beat for an additional 4 minutes. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
  5. Reduce speed to low and add the egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  6. In a separate bowl whisk together the buttermilk, ricotta, and vanilla.
  7. Finally in another small bowl toss the toasted pecans with the remaining 2 tablespoons of flour, set aside.
  8. With the speed still on low, add the dry mixture in 3 additions followed by the wet ingredients in 2 additions. Begin and end with the dry mixture. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl down as needed. Add in the pecans. Fold the stiff egg whites into the pecan batter.
  9. Pour into the prepared cake pans and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, rotating halfway. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out mostly clean. Let the cakes cool in the pans for 5 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely. Wrap in plastic wrap until you're ready to assemble.
To make the Texas Sheet Cake Frosting:
  1. Using a double boiler, melt the chocolate, stirring frequently until smooth. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  2. In a small sauce pan over medium-low heat, melt the butter. Once melted increase the heat to medium. Add in sugar, corn syrup, vanilla, salt, and cinnamon. Stir occasionally until the sugar is dissolved, about 4 to 5 minutes.
  3. Add the melted chocolate and the butter mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer, stirring to combine. Place the mixing bowl over an ice bath and whisk the mixture constantly until the frosting thickens and begins to harden against the sides of the bowl, about 3 to 5 minutes.
  4. Attach the bowl to the stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and beat on medium high until it lightens in color and thickens even more. If the frosting isn't thickening, wrap an ice pack on the sides of the mixing bowl as it beats. The cold, combine with the mechanical beating, will thicken the frosting.
  5. Pour into a container and let it set up for 30 minutes in the refrigerator. Mix in the sour cream. Store in air tight containers in the refrigerator until you are ready to assemble.
To make the Chocolate Fudge Boarder:
  1. In a medium bowl sift together the cocoa powder, powdered sugar, and salt. Set aside.
  2. In the the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment beat the butter and cream cheese on a medium-high speed until lump-free and fluffy, about 3 to 4 minutes, scraping the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Add in the vanilla. On a low speed, add the cocoa-powdered sugar mixture 1 cup at a time. Raise the speed to medium-high and beat for a final 20 to 30 seconds. You don't want to over whip this frosting or else you'll lose the fudgey taste and color.
To assemble the Texan Pecan Cake:
  1. If the cakes have domes, use a serrated knife to level off the tops. Place a spoonful of frosting to secure the first cake layer onto a plate or cake board. Spoon on some of the Texas Sheet Cake frosting. Top with the next layer and repeat with frosting the top. Finish with the final cake layer. Use an off set spatula to press the a thin layer of frosting to the outside of the cake. This will be the crumb coat. Place in the freezer for 10 minutes to seal in crumbs. Frost with final bit of Texas Sheet Cake Frosting. Using a piping bag fitted with a star tip pipe on rosettes around the border. Press the remaining of the toasted pecans to the top and sides of the cake.
Cake recipe adapted from Texas Coop, Frosting recipe adapted from Cooks Illustrated
Recipe by Layer Cake Parade at https://layercakeparade.com/texas-pecan-cake/