heirloom tomato and corn summer salad.
This deep, rich confection topped with fudgy frosting is ideal for special occasions or simply for chocolate lovers. Martha's uses Valrhona cocoa powder; for best results, use the highest-quality ingredients you can find. For an impressive presentation, let the layers cool completely before assembling, dust off any loose crumbs, and use the better layer for the top.
If you don't own a candy thermometer, this cake offers a good excuse to buy one. It sounds a little nitpicky, but the caramel should reach exactly 238 degrees. (Any less and the cake layers won't hold together properly; any more and the caramel will turn hard.) Precision will also pay off with the chocolate frosting: It achieves its ideal spreading texture after standing for 30 minutes.