I ended up making the Chocolate Passion and it turned out very nicely, even though it was time-consuming.
Glad you liked it, it is a different texture from other cakes, almost reminds me of biscuit de savoie, but more moist. The flavor reminds me of the dark milk chocolate bars my family is so fond of. Did you pair it with anything?
1) How well would part clarified butter and part oil work in this cake?
I’ve been wondering the same thing. Lately, I seem to be missing the butter flavor in cakes that I make without it. Perhaps I just got so hooked on the cocoa powder/butter style of chocolate cake that I’m having trouble switching gears to the chocolate bar-flavor cakes.
Nut oil would probably be a successful substitution. Butter is more saturated, and so acts differently, the cake would be less moist (so be sure to use a version with syrup) and may bake up more dense/shorter with smaller holes. It would be interesting to try.
2) Is there any reason why the milk chocolate syrup wouldn’t improve any of the chocolate butter cakes?
Rose uses cream for some versions of this cake, milk for some, and no syrup for others. I find it an interesting feature of RHC that each recipe is customized to an extent not found in the Cake Bible, where the approach is more of versatile building blocks.
I think the chocolate syrup technique works in general for butter cakes, but some cakes are more rich (like Rose’s sour cream chocolate cake) and might need a water base, while others would work with cream or milk. Milk solids have a mellowing (some might say dulling) effect on chocolate, while milk fat has an amplifying effect. So cream, with its higher fat and lower milk solids, will amplify more while milk, with higher solids and lower fat, will have a stronger mellowing effect. I wouldn’t use milk or cream with the Cake Bible’s chocolate fudge cake, which has a bittersweet style that would be dulled by a dairy syrup.
It would be pretty easy to add syrup to just a slice of cake (or a cupcake) to check for compatibility. Let us know if you try it!