- 2 cups Cake Flour
- 3/4 cup cocoa
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 4 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 6 ounces milk or dark chocolate, chopped (about 1 cup) and melted
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup buttermilk (easily made by adding approximately 1 Tablespoon of lemon juice to regular milk; let sit til thickened, about 5 minutes)
For the Frosting
- 1 cup butter, room temperature (2 sticks)
- 4 cups confectioner’s sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1-2 tsp peppermint schnapps or peppermint extract to taste
- pinch of salt
- Peppermint stripe candies, crushed
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease your pans with butter and dust with cocoa. Cut a piece of parchment to fit inside the pan and grease and dust the parchment with cocoa.
- Combine the cake flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt and mix together with a whisk.
- Place the oil, butter and sugars in the bowl of your mixer and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Stop the mixer and scrape down the bowl. Add the eggs 1 at a time and beat briefly to just incorporate.
- Add the melted milk chocolate, and beat until mixed well. Combine the salt, flour, baking soda, vanilla, cocoa powder and 1/2 cup of the buttermilk. Beat on medium speed for 1 minute. Stop again and scrape the bowl. Add the remaining buttermilk and beat for 30 seconds.
- Pour the batter into the pans and bake: for 8″ rounds, 18 to 24 minutes; for 9″ rounds, 20 to 28 minutes; for cupcakes, 15 to 18 minutes.
- The cake is done when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, with just a few moist crumbs. Rest the cake in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to cool completely.
- Once completely cooled, frost with Peppermint Buttercream and garnish with crushed peppermint candies.
To Make the Peppermint Buttercream:
- Beat the butter in a stand mixer until smooth, gradually add the powdered sugar and beat to combine.
- Add the vanilla, peppermint extract or Schnapps and pinch of salt and beat to combine.