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Posts tagged ‘chocolate cake’

London Fog Cake

I have been wanting to make a cake for a while now but lacked inspiration to try something a little different. There is a tendency to stick with the tried and true in both flavors and recipes, not that there is anything wrong with that but sometimes I feel the need to do something different. Since I got the tea from Adagio I have wanted to make another recipe using it that isn’t a cup of hot or iced tea. Yesterday an email appeared in my inbox from Pinterest and I saw this cake and immediately was struck by how utterly delicious it looked but then when I clicked on the link the frosting is flavors with Earl Grey Tea. The cake itself is pretty simple chocolate cake with a earl grey buttercream and then it’s drizzled with caramel. Sounds great right? I thought so too!! I decided to take it a step further and infuse the caramel with tea as well. The recipe is from The Cake Blog and it’s beautifully decorated and photographed. Decorating cakes is not my strong suite nor is photography but irregardless this cake sounds too good not to make. My recommendations are in bold print, I found the earl grey flavor overpowering and would recommend reducing the amount of tea used to infuse the butter. I love earl grey tea but feel that the buttercream needed to be a little more subtle in flavor.

This is my favorite chocolate cake, a recipe from Hershey’s which is on the can of unsweetened cocoa powder, the recipe has also been posted here on the blog many times click here to see it. I’ve made other cake recipes and nothing IMHO even compares. It’s simple, moist and delicious and never fails.

I am going to bring this cake with me to Fiesta Friday #188 and this weeks co hosts are Jhuls @ The Not So Creative Cook and Nimmi @ Adorable Life

Earl Grey Buttercream

Recipe from Theresa Huff for The Cake Blog

Frosts 2 layer 9 inch cake or 3 layer 8 inch cake

2 cups unsalted butter

1/4 cup loose earl grey tea (Recommend to reduce to 1-2 tbs)

1/2 cup plus 2 tbs egg whites ( 150 grams) the whites from 4-5 large eggs

1 1/4 cup granulated sugar

1 1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste or seeds from half a vanilla bean

Place one cup of the butter in a saucepan with the loose tea. Heat over medium heat until the butter melts, reduce heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let tea steep for another 5 minutes. Strain the butter into a bowl and refrigerate until the butter is the consistency of softened butter approximate 20-30 minutes or longer it took over an hour before my butter hardened.

Place egg whites and sugar into the bowl of a stand mixer and hand whisk until foamy and mixed. Place an inch or two of water in a saucepan on medium heat, place the bowl with the egg whites and sugar on top of it being careful not to let the bowl touch the water. Whisk frequently until the sugar melts it should register 155-160 on the candy thermometer or until it’s hot to the touch. Fit the bowl onto your stand mixer.

Fit the mixer with the whisk attachment and beat on high for 8-10 minutes until the mixture holds medium stiff peaks. When done the outside of the bowl should be room temperature and there should be no residual heat, you also should hold your hand over the bowl and you should not feel any heat at all.  Stop the mixer, remove the whisk attachment and replace with a paddle.

With the mixer on low speed add the vanilla, the tea infused butter and the other butter a few tablespoons at a time. Once the butter is incorporated turn the mixer to medium high and beat for another 3-5 minutes. The buttercream will be thick and silky.

Earl Grey caramel sauce

3/4 cup granulated sugar

2 tbs light corn syrup

2 tbs strong earl grey tea

1/2 cup heavy cream

2 tbs butter,diced

generous pinch sea salt

1 tsp vanilla extract

Place sugar, corn syrup and water in a deep heavy bottom saucepan, stir to combine. Heat over high heat swirling occasionally for 8-10 minutes. The sugar mixture will start to rapidly boil before slowing down and darkening in color. Remove the saucepan from the heat once it has reached the desired color, I like a deep amber. Note: my caramel got a bit over done, almost burnt. I cooked on high and all of a sudden it started rising almost to the top of the pot after I removed from the heat. I didn’t want to add the cream and butter until it settled but that was a mistake, I should have added it to cool it down and stop the cooking process. So my caramel is a bit bitter. My advise is to remove from the heat right when it turns a light amber and add the butter and cream. Because it was so bitter I threw away half and replaced that half with a chocolate ganache. The pot I used was too small and it almost boiled over hence the over cooking, the caramel continues to cook even after removed from the heat and what stops that is adding the butter and cream. Because my pot was not big enough I had to wait until the bubbles went down a bit. 

Slowly and carefully whisk in the cream being careful to stand back because it will sputter and foam so stand clear.

Add the butter and continue to stir until melted. Now add the salt and vanilla and stir to combine. Pour into a heat proof container and let cool, it will thicken as it cools.

Assembling the cake

Place one of the layers on your cake stand or serving plate. Spread some of the butter cream to cover the layer and continue until all layers are place. Frost top and sides of cake and refrigerate until cooled at least 20 minutes.

Pour the caramel sauce over the top of the cooled cake letting it drip down the sides.

I made this cake yesterday and wasn’t in love with the flavor, today it tastes better maybe the tea flavor has mellowed but I still recommend reducing the amount of tea used in the buttercream. I love the buttercream recipe it is silky and just the perfect consistency and will definitely be using it again.

Mom’s Texas Chocolate Cake, Happy Mothers Day

 

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A few years ago I got an envelope from my Mom that was chock full of her recipes. Most are hand written, some are clippings from magazines and newspapers. I saw this hand written recipe for Texas Chocolate cake and immediately knew which cake it was, I remember it vividly it was one of my favorites that she made. Deeply chocolate, moist and rich, it’s a fantastic cake that is so simple and so delicious. I decided to make this cake as an homage to my Mom, she is brave, determined, kind and caring and I am so lucky to have her. She is a cancer survivor, she surpassed her doctors expectations and surprised them by remaining cancer free now for over 10 years. She is a great cook,  recipe developer and an inspiring woman.  She has a kind heart, loves animals and was always ready to rescue an animal in distress, her example of love and kindness was engrained in me and from her example I also am an animal lover and try to do my part with rescue. She taught me to love and appreciate and make good food, that it was important for the family to sit down to at least one meal together every day, she was the backbone of our family and thinking back I don’t know how she did it with 5 children only a few years apart. I wish I could be with her this Mothers Day and that we did not live so far apart, we talk often and I am trying desperately to convince her to use the ipad she has that still sits in the box 2 years after she got it. She’s stubborn, smart, and has more energy than I do, still mowing her lawn and gardening, that is how she stays young. She devoted her life to her family, left college when she met and married my Dad but she always emphasized the importance of learning, and when we were all old enough to fend for ourselves Mom went back to college and finished her degree in accounting. Happy Mothers Day Mom (even though she refuses to use a computer and will not see this).

The top picture is some of the recipes she has sent me, I included the cookbook from the Global Family Reunion, they published 5 of the recipes I got from my Mom and I am immensely proud of that.

I asked Mom where she got the recipe for this cake,  she thinks it was circulating at a ladies bridge club thing, she loved playing bridge and was very good at it. It really is a fantastic cake, great to bring to parties or anywhere where you need to feed a lot of people. It is is substantial in size.

Wishing a very Happy Mothers Day to all of you, you don’t have to be a Mother of human children to celebrate this day, how about our fur kids, they count right?  I think Mothers day is a celebration of women, all women who love, nurture and nourish.

I am bringing this Texas size cake to Fiesta Friday #118, I am not just celebrating Mothers and Women but I finished my courses and passed and renewed my Real Estate License. YAY!!! This week sweet Angie has 2 great co hosts  Kaila @ GF Life 24/7 and Laurena @ Life Diet Health!

Thank you all for being here on the sometimes rocky road with me, sticking with me and being so supportive. Happy Mothers Day to all!!

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Makes One 9×13 cake
The cake:
2 cups all purpose flour
2 cups sugar
2 sticks salted butter or margarine
1 cup water
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons good quality unsweetened cocoa
2 large eggs lightly beaten
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch of salt
In large mixing bowl whisk together the flour and sugar and salt, set aside. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour (to optimize chocolate flavor instead of flour use cocoa powder) a 9×13 baking dish.
In saucepan combine butter, cocoa and water. Bring to a boil stirring frequently. When it comes to a boil and is smooth turn off heat.
Lightly beat your eggs in small mixing bowl, measure your buttermilk and add the baking soda to the buttermilk,  stir to combine. Add this to the eggs along with the vanilla. Add the egg buttermilk mixture to the dry ingredients along with the butter and cocoa,water mixture. Mix with hand held mixer until smooth approximately 2 minutes. Pour into prepared cake pan and bake 30-35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean. A few minutes before the cake is done start making the frosting. You pour the frosting on the cake right after it comes out of the oven.

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Frosting:
1 stick butter or margarine
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons milk or cream
1 box confectioners sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
In saucepan on med/high heat add the butter, cocoa and milk,whisking to combine let it come to a boil then remove from heat and add confectioners sugar and vanilla mix well. Pour over hot cake. Let cool on rack. The frosting will be soft and gooey. Serve while cake is slightly warm or room temperature with whipped cream or ice cream

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Chocolate Cake

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This is a recipe from Bon Appetit for Chocolate Cake. What sets this cake apart is the method of preparation. When I read the directions I really wanted to give it a try, I have a simple chocolate cake recipe that I have been using for years and it’s fantastic, it’s a very old recipe from Hershey’s and it’s right on their can of unsweetened cocoa. I love it and have never deviated or tried another recipe, it’s that good.

The method of preparation is the brainchild of the great Rose Levy Beranbaum, she is amazing and I have several of her cookbooks but missed this and it took Claire Saffitz from Bon Appetit to bring it to life. I will let her explain why this method is so genius.

Contrary to the traditional method of creaming the butter and sugar before adding eggs and wet and dry ingredients, reverse creaming does pretty much the opposite. The dry ingredients and sugar are mixed with the fat (oil and butter) plus some of the wet ingredients (eggs + buttermilk + melted chocolate + coffee). The fat coats the dry ingredients and inhibits gluten formation, which would normally result in a tough cake, while the addition of some moisture simultaneously develops just enough gluten to give the cake structure. It’s hard to overmix with this method, giving you a tender crumb. Because there’s less air in the batter due to no creaming, the layers bake evenly and stack up without the need to level or trim. It’s the perfect method for building a layer cake.

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Batter is thick and creamy

Batter is thick and creamy

Cake

Bon Appetit by Claire Saffitz adapted from a recipe by Rose Levy Beranbaum

  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pan
  • 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 cup brewed coffee
  • ⅔ cup unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process)
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1¾ teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1½ teaspoons baking soda
  • 2½ cups (packed) light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • Preheat oven to 350˚. Butter two 9″-diameter cake pans and line bottoms with parchment paper rounds. Butter parchment and dust with flour, tapping out excess.
  • Heat chocolate, coffee, and ⅔ cup cocoa powder in a medium heatproof bowl set over a medium saucepan of barely simmering water (water should not touch bottom of bowl), stirring until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth. Let cool, then whisk eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla into chocolate mixture.
  • Using an electric mixer on low speed, mix salt, baking powder, baking soda, and 2 cups flour in a large bowl just to combine. Add brown sugar, oil, ½ cup butter, and ½ cup reserved chocolate mixture and beat on medium speed until flour is evenly distributed and mixture is smooth, about 2 minutes. Add remaining chocolate mixture in 2 additions, scraping down sides and bottom of bowl as needed and beating until smooth after each addition. Scrape batter into prepared pan and smooth top.
  • Bake cake until top is firm to the touch and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 30–40 minutes. Transfer cake pan to a wire rack and let cake cool in pan 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack. Let cool completely.
cake sunk in the middle

cake sunk in the middle

nice rise

nice rise

Tomorrow I will frost and taste the cake but have to to say so far I am not in love with it, it took longer to bake than the directions, now that could be my wonky oven that I had repaired to tide me over until I get my new stove. So that could have been a factor but the cake feels drier than my go to Hershey’s cake, I tend to like layer and cupcakes that use oil rather than butter, I find the crumb is perfect, they are light and moist. This cake feels more like a brownie that is a bit overdone. I also like that the Hershey’s recipe is one bowl, super fast and easy. This was not difficult but had steps that I normally don’t have to do. It is possible I did something wrong or it was my oven so I cannot say with certainty that there is a flaw in the recipe.

The proof will be in the tasting so stay tuned because tomorrow I will frost and try the cake.

Full disclosure: I got distracted and forgot to add the vanilla.

 

Featured Recipe:Vegan Chocolate Cake And Almond Joy Ice Cream (Vegan)

Vegan Chocolate Cake

I have never really attempted vegan baking before, flourless chocolate cake, yes, but never egg or dairy free. I saw this recipe on a wonderful website Go Bake Yourself, Choc Chip Uru, a very talented  young Australian cook and blogger participated in a Virtual Vegan Potluck and adapted this recipe making a few minor changes. Uru provided a link to another beautiful blog Not Quite Nigella also from Australia.The author is Lorraine Elliott, who by the way has a cookbook coming out this year.  I was really impressed with the beauty of her website, she is an amazing photographer and her posts are engrossing and beautifully written, and of course her recipes are amazing. I had to make this dessert, and I was thrilled that a vegan friend of mine happened to be coming over for dinner. I followed her recipe making only one minor change, instead of adding water I used coconut milk. I am in love with this cake, if I didn’t tell you it’s vegan you would never know. The cake is tender, rises beautifully, has a gorgeous crumb. Instead of making a cake I used my mini bundt pan and made individual bundt cakes. Thank you Lorraine for such a great recipe and also to Choc Chip Uru for introducing me to her website through your wonderful blog.

I also wanted to serve ice cream with the cake and again had never made a vegan ice cream, sorbet yes, but never dairy free ice cream. I used coconut milk both canned and Silk brand in a carton, I added toasted coconut, brown sugar and a generous chocolate swirl. When I tasted it, I was reminded of an Almond Joy candy bar, so thats what I called this ice cream. Since there are no eggs involved I used the method Jeni of Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream uses, making a pudding, using  cornstarch as a thickener for the coconut milk. It’s genius and absolutely amazing ice cream.

The dessert was a huge hit, so I asked if I could post the recipe for this amazing cake and Lorraine generously gave me permission. Please visit both websites. These Aussie girls really have wonderful blogs and fantastic recipes.

Chocolately Rich Vegan Chocolate Cake (Egg & Dairy Free)

An Original Recipe by Not Quite Nigella

  • 1.5 cups plain or all purpose flour
  • 1.5 cups brown sugar
  • 6 tablespoons cocoa, sifted
  • 1.5 teaspoons bi carbonate of soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1.5 cups water
  • 1/2 cup mild flavoured vegetable oil (eg. canola oil)
  • 3 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 75g/2.5oz dark chocolate (dairy free) finely chopped
Chocolate syrup or icing
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup icing or confectioners sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa
  • 100g/3.5ozs dark chocolate, roughly chopped

1. Line a 20cm round baking tin with parchment and preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix together. In a jug mix the water, oil, vinegar and vanilla. Stir in chocolate and then pour into the prepared tin. Bake for 25-30 minutes until a skewer inserted comes out clean.

2. While it is baking, prepare the syrup. Heat the water, icing or confectioners sugar and cocoa until boiling and syrup – this may take a few minutes but you do want this syrupy. When thick add the chocolate and then whisk to remove any lumps and melt the chocolate.

3. When the cake is ready, take out of the oven and leaving it in the tin, poke tiny holes with a skewer. While it is still warm, gently pour the syrup over the cake and allow to cool completely before taking it out of the tin. Alternatively, if you allow this to cool and partially set, it takes on the consistency of icing and you can spread it out over the top which is what I did (who knew that inattentiveness would pay off?

Almond Joy Vegan Ice Cream

Almond Joy Ice Cream
1 can full fat unsweetened coconut milk (13.5 oz)
2 cup Coconut milk (I used Silk all natural in a carton)
1/2 cup light brown sugar (lightly packed)
4 tsp cornstarch
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
3 tbs corn syrup
1/2 cup toasted coconut
1/4 cup chopped toasted almonds
Chocolate Swirl
4 oz dark chocolate chopped
1/4 cup coconut milk
3 tbs corn syrup
Preheat oven to 325, spread coconut on half sheet pan and toast in the oven until the coconut is lightly browned. Move the coconut around occasionally so that it browns evenly. This should take about 15 minutes.
To medium size saucepan add the coconut milk, sugar and cornstarch, whisk until smooth and cook over med/high heat until mixture thickens, it will coat the back of a spoon, swipe your finger making a line that will remain intact, it will be slightly thick. Remove from heat and add the vanilla and toasted coconut. Pour into a heat proof container, let it come to room temperature and then refrigerate for at least 4 hours, overnight is preferable.
When you are ready to process in your ice cream maker stir in 3 tbs of corn syrup, this will help it to be a bit softer so it’s easy to scoop. (You can also add 2 tbs vodka this also helps it not to be hard when frozen, I added both the corn syrup and vodka) Add to your ice cream maker following manufacturers instructions. Just before ice cream is ready add the chopped nuts.  Remove to freezer container when it’s the consistency of soft serve ice cream.
While ice cream is churning make the chocolate swirl, heat the coconut milk in microwave for 50 seconds, add the chopped chocolate, let sit for a minute or two until chocolate is soft,(if the chocolate is not completely melted put back in microwave for 10 seconds)  stir in the corn syrup and stir until its smooth and silky.
To make the chocolate swirl, drizzle some of the cooled chocolate mixture on top of the ice cream and using a butter knife swirl it around, you can do this adding chocolate until you are satisfied with the amount of chocolate swirled into it.
Place in freezer for several hours until it reaches a scoopable consistency.

Featured Recipe: Chocolate Stout Cake With Cream Cheese/Mascarpone Frosting

Chocolate Stout Cake with Cream Cheese/Mascarpone Frosting

An amazing cook, Liz aka mrslarkin on food52 posted this recipe a while ago.  I had made a mental note to try it, but forgot until the other day when I saw her tweet a picture of the cake she made for her daughters birthday. It looked so good I just had to make it, she added red gel color to make it a red velvet cake and frosted with cream cheese icing. I asked her if I could feature the cake here and she graciously gave me permission.  I think what really makes this cake special is the addition of Guinness Stout, strong coffee, sour cream and butter. It’s so moist,  tender and flavorful with a wonderful crumb and it’s not overwhelmingly sweet either, honestly, its one of the best chocolate cakes I have ever had. I’ve talked about the cake now let me tell you about Liz, she is a tremendously talented cook and baker, she is the Pound Ridge Scone Lady, you can find her selling her delicious scones and baked goods every week at the farmers market. She is a contest winner on Food52 whose recipe for Lemon Posset was published in the first Food52 cookbook. You will also find her recipe for Butternut Sage Scones which will be in the second Food52 cookbook due out this October. When you just have to have a cookie, why not make her addictive and delicious Chubby Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies.  You can view all 134 of Liz’s recipes on Food52. Be prepared you will want to make all of them, and be sure to look her up if you are ever in Pound Ridge New York at the farmers market and sample her delicious baked goods.

Makes: A 9 inch layer cake or 24 cupcakes

The Cake:

1/2 cup  Guinness Stout

1/2 cup espresso, or strong black coffee

3/4 cups  cocoa powder

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups all purpose flour

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup light brown sugar (press out any lumps)

1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda (press out any lumps)

1 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

3/4 cups sour cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Set oven rack to middle. Butter two 9 inch round baking pans, line with parchment, then butter again and dust with flour or unsweetened cocoa powder.

Warm the stout and coffee. I do this in the microwave for about 2 minutes. Remove from heat, then add butter and stir until melted. Add cocoa powder and vanilla, and stir till combined.

In large bowl, combine flour, sugars, baking soda and salt.

n mixer fitted with paddle attachment, mix together the eggs and sour cream. Pour in chocolate mixture and mix slowly. Gradually add flour mixture and gently mix until it is all combined. Pour batter into baking pans dividing evenly.

Bake for 30 minutes.  Check with a cake tester to be sure – it should come out clean. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes, then remove cakes from pan(s) and set on cooling rack to cool completely.

Liz made a cream cheese frosting for the cake, I used the recipe I always use.

Cream Cheese,Mascarpone Frosting:

6 oz cream cheese at room temperature

6 oz mascarpone at room temperature

6 oz butter at room temperature

Enough confectioners sugar to make it spreadable you can make it to suit your taste. I find it usually takes about 4-5 cups

2 tsp pure vanilla extract

In electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment cream the cream cheese, mascarpone and butter until smooth, add the confectioners sugar a cup at a time until you reach the desired sweetness and consistency, add the vanilla and beat just to combine.

Frost the completely cooled cake and enjoy!

Simple Chocolate Cupcakes/Cake

This is the easiest, totally fool proof recipe for chocolate cake or cupcakes. I have been using it for years, it never fails me. I tried literally hundreds of different recipes for chocolate cake and one day I noticed this on the Hershey’s cocoa can and decided to give it a try, well the rest is history it’s now the only recipe I will use when I make chocolate cake.  The cake is moist and delicious, you use vegetable oil instead of butter and I suggest you use Hershey’s cocoa it always turns out perfectly.  I will be posting a Valentines Cake recipe using this chocolate cake so consider this a preview of things to come.

Chocolate Cupcake

Makes: 2 9 inch round cakes or 24 regular size cupcakes

  • 1 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cups cocoa (I use hershey’s) the recipe doesn’t specify whether or not to use dutch or natural cocoa since its a hersheys recipe I use what they say to use.
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil (If you want to substitute melted butter for the oil its fine)
  • 1 cup whole milk at room temperature
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature and lightly beaten
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 teaspoons instant espresso coffee (Optional but recommended)
  • soft butter and flour to prep baking pans or you can use cooking spray
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare two 9″ round baking pans, butter the bottom add a parchment round then butter bottom and sides and flour the pan or you can use cocoa powder instead of flour. If you are making cupcakes place liners in two 12 cup muffin tins. In large mixing bowl add your dry ingredients, flour, cocoa, sugar, salt, baking soda and baking powder and whisk to combine. Now add the wet ingredients milk, oil,eggs and vanilla do not add the boiling water yet. With hand held mixer beat for 2 minutes. Now add the boiling water with optional espresso powder, beat just until combined. Pour into your prepared pans (the batter is quite thin) and bake for 30-35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
Let cakes sit in pans for 10 minutes then invert onto cake rack to cool. Use your favorite frosting or ganache. This recipe will make 2 9 inch cakes or 24 cupcakes. If making cupcakes pour batter into lined cup 3/4 full, leave room for them to rise. Bake for 15-20 minutes, depending on your oven, cake should spring back when lightly touched, Be careful not to over bake.