This original recipe for Cake Prague is as decadent as it is beautiful to look at. Your new favorite chocolate cake recipe!
As a self-proclaimed chocolate lover, Cake Prague is near and dear to my heart. When I say it’s chocolate overload, I mean it. The chocolate sponge cake, chocolate cream, and chocolate ganache will quench your sweet tooth for the entire next year. It’s that good!
Cake Prague represents everything that’s great about Soviet baking. It’s ultra-sweet, soaked in sweetened condensed milk, and worthy of bring in the window of the fanciest bakery.
Although the recipe card looks quite long, Cake Prague doesn’t require super technical baking skills to make. There’s a lot of layers and steps, but the prep time is totally worth the luscious result!
What is Cake Prague?
Cake Prague has deep-seated roots in Russian culture. It was dreamt up by legendary pastry chef Vladimir Guralnik, who created over 30 unique Soviet cake recipes including the popular Bird’s Milk Cake. Below, find a rundown of the flavor, texture, and cooking time.
- Flavor: This cake is packed with chocolatey goodness from top to bottom. If you’re a chocolate addict, you’re in the right place.
- Texture: The texture of this cake can only be described as moist and creamy. Your fork will practically “fall” through it.
- Time: From start to finish, this cake takes only a little over an hour to make and is best served after setting in the refrigerator overnight.
How to Make Cake Prague
- Prepare the Chocolate Spongecake: Prepare the chocolate spongecake according to the recipe card. Preheat the oven to 300°F oven. Pour the batter into an oiled cake pan and bake for about 50 minutes or until a toothpick comes out of the center clean.
- Slice & Soak the Cake Layers: Remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool to room temperature. Using a sharp knife, carefully slice the spongecake into four layers. Soak each layer with a generous drizzle of the soaking cream.
- Prepare the Chocolate Cream: Beat the egg yolks, water, and condensed milk until smooth. Place into saucepan, stirring constantly and gradually increasing the heat until the mixture thickens. Remove from heat and add chocolate chips. Mix until combined and allow to cool at room temperature. In a stand mixer, add the butter. Slowly beat in the chocolate cream until fluffy.
- Assemble the Cake: Place one of the four cake layers on a plate or cake stand. Frost the top and add on another layer, alternating these steps until you run out of cake layers. Frost the top of the cake with a cake spatula until smooth. Serve as-is or decorate with ganache and shaved chocolate.
- Allow Cake to Set Overnight: Place cake in an airtight cake container and allow it to set in the refrigerator overnight. Serve cold and enjoy!
Tips for Making the Best Cake Prague
- Avoid opening the oven. While the spongecake is cooking, avoid opening the oven to check its doneness for at least the first 30 minutes. This could cause the cake to collapse in the middle!
- Beat the egg whites until stiff and foamy. The spongecake batter depends on ultra-foamy egg whites to make it fluffy. The foam should be so stiff that you could turn the bowl over without it falling out.
- Don’t over mix the spongecake batter. When you’re folding the foamy egg whites into the batter, be careful not to over mix. This will make your spongecake dense instead of light and fluffy.
- Allow the cake to set overnight. Allowing the cake to set overnight will develop its rich flavors and make it sturdier.
Storing Cake Prague
- Refrigerator: Store leftover Cake Prague in an airtight container (preferably an airtight cake container) in the refrigerator. It should keep for up to a week.
- Freezer: Freeze a fully decorated Cake Prague by placing it on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Pop the cake uncovered into the freezer and allow it to completely freezer for at least four hours. Once it’s frozen solid, wrap it tightly in a layer of plastic wrap, followed by a layer of aluminum foil.
Thawing Tip: To thaw frozen Cake Prague, place it in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours. Slice and enjoy cold!
What kind of flour should I use for Cake Prague?
You should use all-purpose flour. There is no need to use pastry or cake flour.
How long should I allow the cake layers to sit in the soaking cream?
You should allow the cake layers to sit in the soaking cream for at least a couple minutes. By the time you’re done making the chocolate cream, it will have had enough time to settle and moisten the spongecake.
Can I use any oil besides vegetable oil?
You can canola oil if you don’t have vegetable oil. Stay away from strongly flavored oils like avocado or olive oil. They will overpower the delicate flavor of the spongecake.
Do I have to let the cake set overnight?
You should let the cake set overnight for optimal flavor and texture. It’s worth the wait!
What kind of chocolate chips should I use?
Semi-sweet chocolate chips work best. However, if you like it extra sweet you could use milk chocolate chips.
Other Tasty Cake Recipes to Try
- Zebra Cake – Kid-friendly marble cake
- Ferrero Rocher Cake Recipe – Hazelnut + chocolate cake
- Kiev Cake – Hazelnut + jam cake
- Drunken Cherry Cake – Rich liqueur cake
- 1/3 cup chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup whipping cream
- 1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
- 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
Chocolate Sponge Cake
- Whisk together the cocoa, instant coffee, and warm water until fully dissolved and smooth.
- Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites. Set egg whites aside in a small bowl. Whisk egg yolks and sugar together until smooth. Add vegetable oil to the mix and whisk.
- Slowly, stir in the cocoa and coffee mixture.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and baking soda. In thirds, mix the flour into the wet ingredients until well-combined.
- Add salt to the bowl of egg whites. Beat until the whites turn into a thick, sturdy foam. (Note: The foam should be so thick that if you were to flip the bowl upside-down they wouldn't fall out.)
- Slowly and in small portions, fold the foam egg whites into the batter until just combined. Be careful not to over mix.
- Pour the batter into a cake pan and bake in a preheated 300°F oven for about 50 minutes. Check the doneness of the sponge cake by inserting a toothpick into the center. If it comes out clean, the cake is ready.
- Remove the cake from the oven. Let the cake cool to room temperature. Carefully slice it into four layers. In a small bowl, whisk together the sweetened condensed milk and heavy whipping cream to make the cake soak. Transfer the mixture into a squirt bottle or gently spoon it over the cake layers.
- Beat the egg yolks. Add water and condensed milk. Stir until smooth.
- Place the mixture in a saucepan over very low heat, stirring the cream mixture constantly to prevent sticking. Gradually, turn up the heat in intervals without bringing the mixture to a boil. Keep on stirring and slightly turning up the heat until the mixture has a thick texture similar to canned condensed milk.
- Remove the mixture from heat. While it's still hot, pour in the chocolate chips. Give the chocolate chips a few minutes to melt. Mix until well combined. Allow to cool to room temperature.
- Place room temperature butter into the bowl of a stand mixer. Set the speed to medium and spoon small portions of the chocolate cream in until fully combined.
Assembling the Cake
- Place one of the cake layers onto a cake stand or plate. Top it with a layer of the chocolate cream. Stack and repeat with the remaining layers. Using a cake spatula or butter knife, smoothen the top layer of frosting. Serve as-is or move on to the next step to decorate with ganache.
- Optional Ganache Topping: Bring whipping cream to a boil and add chocolate chips to it. Stir until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Allow it to cool to room temperature. Drizzle the cake with the cooled ganache, allowing it to drip off the sides. Sprinkle grated chocolate around the inner rim of the cake top.
- Allow cake to set in the refrigerator overnight. Serve cold and enjoy!