The Kowalski’s Great Chocolate Cake Contest Winner at the 2022 Minnesota State Fair was this phenomenal “MN Blackout Cake.”
With its three layers, pudding filling, chocolate drip, and decoration, this cake is a chocolate lover’s dream come true. It’s intense color and flavor are going to wow you, just like it did us and the judges.
Replicating it as we did, takes time, but every bite makes it worth the effort.
Kudos to Michelle Seywerd who was the Great Chocolate Cake Contest Winner at the 2022 Minnesota State Fair with this inspired creation.
Michelle’s husband loves Guinness chocolate cake which was her first idea of what to enter. Then she recalled the notorious Brooklyn Blackout Cake. Michelle’s winning recipe is a twist on it. She used this recipe as her base and then adapted a Food Network pudding filling. She added the fun chocolate shards on top too. We were shocked to learn Michelle had barely baked a cookie before the pandemic but really got into it with her daughter, who was a toddler at the time. They started with basic baked goods, watched a lot of YouTube channels, and worked up to more challenging recipes. “It’s been quite a journey,” Michelle shared.
Decadently Dark Cake
In her own words, Michelle describes her MN Blackout Cake here:
A decadently dark cake perfect for the dark chocolate lover in your life! I created a twist on the classic Brooklyn Blackout Cake by featuring black cocoa. Black cocoa is used to give Oreos that distinct color and flavor. Here, I’ve featured chocolate in 4 ways – layers of moist cocoa cake, filled with black cocoa pudding filling, dripping with a semi sweet chocolate ganache, and topped with intense dark chocolate shards. The result – the boldest and richest chocolate flavor possible without use of food coloring. Enjoy with a nice glass of cold milk! Thank you!
Baking Tips: Great Chocolate Cake Contest Winner
Some random tips we got from Michelle and learned along the way, are these:
- You’ll want to double the cake portion of the recipe if you want to recreate Michelle’s 3-layer version she won with at the fair. You’ll have an extra single layer that works great to taste and decorate separately. We did crushed salted peanuts on ours (4th unused layer) and loved it. You could also go for a 4 layer cake, but that’s mighty big.
- If you opt to not double the cake and don’t want extra of the pudding filling, you’ll want to cut that recipe portion in half or do 2/3. The thick filling layer makes this cake a show stopper in our opinion. I would eat that pudding filling as a solo dessert. It’s that good.
- We got our black cocoa from King Arthur and loved the results. Get yours here.
- Using black cocoa over the buttered parchment helps the cake keep its intense color.
- With chocolate drip, if you’re starting with a chocolate bar (versus chocolate chips), chop it into small pieces until they’re about the size of chocolate chips. You’ll get a smoother, more efficient melt.
- If you can’t find 90% cacao chocolate, use 100% (2 ounces) and semi-sweet chocolate (1 ounce) as a substitute.
- When we did the chocolate drip, we started with the edge. We worked by the spoonful for more control and to get the drizzle/drip look we wanted.
- Michelle says this cake is not a fast one to make, but the payoff is totally worth it.
We invite you to re-create the magic of this MN Blackout Cake. Be sure to share on social media and tag @blueribbonfoodies. We want to see what you’re baking!