The dried cranberries soak in the rum for at least two hours or overnight, so plan accordingly. Pour the reserved rum over the cake as it cools for an extra boozy kick.
Makes: 8 servings
Prep: 30 mins
Cook: 45 mins
- 3 cups dried cranberries (such as Ocean Spray Craisins)
- 2 cups dark rum
- 2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- 14 ounces semisweet chocolate chunks (2 1/2 cups)
- 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 8 large eggs
- 1 1/3cups all-purpose flour
- 2/3cup plus 1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 cups heavy cream, chilled
- In a medium bowl, soak the cranberries in the rum for at least 2 hours or overnight.
- Drain the cranberries and reserve them and the soaking liquid separately. Set aside 2 tablespoons of the rum to flavor the whipped cream. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees . Grease two 9-inch round cake pans (or springform pans) with cooking spray, then cover the bottom of each with a circle of parchment paper and spray again.
- In a medium saucepan, stir the butter and chocolate together over low heat until melted. Remove the mixture from the heat and scrape it into a bowl. Whisk in 2 cups of the sugar and the salt until well combined. Whisk in the eggs, 1 at a time, then sift in half of the flour, 1/3 cup of the cocoa and the baking powder and stir until no floury streaks remain. Repeat with the remaining flour and 1/3 cup of cocoa. Fold in the cranberries. Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cake layer comes out clean.
- Cool the cakes on a rack for 10 minutes. Loosen the cakes from the sides of the pans with a knife and invert, 1 at a time, onto a plate and remove the parchment paper. Turn the cakes right side up and return to the rack. Prick the tops of the cakes with a toothpick in several places and drizzle with the reserved rum. Let the cake layers cool completely. (They will stay fresh for a couple of days when covered with plastic wrap and stored at room temperature.)
- Up to 3 hours before serving, pour the heavy cream into a deep bowl, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar and 2 tablespoons of reserved rum and whip with an electric beater until thick and billowing. Do not whip the cream to stiffness or it will separate.
- Place 1 cake layer on a serving plate and spoon a 1/2 inch of the whipped cream on top, then add the second layer and pile on the rest of the cream. Sift the remaining 1 teaspoon of cocoa powder over the top.