- Preheat oven to 350° and prepare pans with pan release spray or grease and flour. Three 7” pans or two 8” pans.
- Melt chocolate and water in heavy-duty saucepan over very low heat. Stir constantly until the chocolate has melted and the mixture is smooth.
- Add ½ cup (3 ½ ounces or 99 grams) of sugar and continue cooking and stirring for 2 more minutes. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
- While chocolate cools, Add flour, soda, and salt to a large mixing bowl. Whisk to combine and set aside.
- In bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter. Gradually add the remaining 1 ¼ cups (8 ¾ ounces or 248 grams) of sugar and continue beating until light and fluffy.
- Add eggs, one at a time, beating thoroughly after each egg.
- Add vegetable oil and mix until combined.
- Alternately add flour mixture and milk, beating on low after each addition until smooth.
- Blend in vanilla extract and chocolate mixture.
- Pour into prepared pans.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, or with a few crumbs.
- Cool in pans for 10 minutes. Remove from pans, wrap with saran wrap and let cake layers finish cooling.
- Have ingredients at room temperature before mixing.
- Wrap cake layers in saran wrap while they are still warm but can be handled comfortably. Once completely cooled, refrigerate.
- Cake layers can be made ahead and frozen for up to two months.
- To defrost, remove from freezer and allow to come to room temperature while they are still wrapped.
Here are the pans I use: