Martha Stewart's Secret Method For Perfect Mile High Cake

Grab your oven mitts, because Martha Stewart has revealed the secret to making the perfect Mile High Cake, and it's about to take your baking game to another level. "I don't like to have favorites — I don't like to have favorite children or favorite babies — but this cake really is a delicious cake," Stewart admitted on Today, while demonstrating the step-by-step process to making it.

If you loved Stewart's classic Mile High Pie, you'll definitely want to try this cake version of it next, especially if you're a fan of rich dark chocolate and ooey-gooey salted caramel. The Mile High Cake comes from the celebrity chef's 97th cookbook, Martha Stewart's Cake Perfection, and is one of her more technically challenging desserts. From cooking the caramel at exactly 238 degrees Fahrenheit, to measuring out the six equal layers of chocolatey batter, Stewart's recipe is no cakewalk, but the flavor is well worth it.

"Baking is an exact science. You can't fudge around here and there," she reminded home bakers on the Today segment. But provided that you follow her advice to T, this recipe will (literally) be a piece of cake.

It's all about the homemade caramel

"The secret for this is really thin layers and then thick, delicious caramel — that you make — in between each layer," Martha Stewart emphasized on Today. While store-bought caramel is convenient and doesn't require you to watch the stove like a hawk, it will only serve to cheapen the taste of your Mile High Cake. More importantly, the texture and consistency is nothing like the from-scratch kind.

"This kind spreads by itself when you let it sit for a minute," she explained as she smoothed out the caramel. The key to achieving this level of spreadability, according to Stewart, is paying attention to the temperature of the caramel, as well as its appearance at each stage, before, during, and after it's removed from the heat. 

The caramel should be dark amber after 14 minutes, it should spatter after the cream is added, then at 238 degrees Fahrenheit, it should be at "soft-ball stage," she specified in the cookbook recipe. Once each layer is filled with all that caramel goodness, the cake can be decorated however you please, though it probably won't be long before you'll be indulging in a slice. As Stewart put it, "It's too beautiful not to cut!"