Sunday, November 27, 2011

The Most Delicious Chocolate Cake EVER

I did it! I successfully cooked an entire Thanksgiving Dinner on my own! Ok, ok, you caught me! I DID have help from Kit and Grandma. BUT I think I did a pretty great job. Of course I served "the" mashed potatoes (whose recipe I've already had numerous requests for and can be found here), a turkey, and everything else! I must say, though, that my chocolate cake for dessert was one of the most incredible things I made that night. My mouth it watering right now just thinking about it. Theres coffee in the cake itself and in the icing. HELLO!!! What's better than coffee and chocolate?! Anywho, I feel as though it's only fair for me to share the recipe for you. It is a Barefoot Contessa recipe that you can find here. I've made the cake a few times now and have since made a few changes that worked out very well. 

This is what you'll need for the cake:
¾ cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
¾ cups cocoa powder
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 cup non-dairy creamer (yes, I promise it works just as well as buttermilk will)
½ cup vegetable oil (canola oil works here, too. NOT OLIVE OIL. NO NO NO!!!) 
2 extra-large eggs (AT ROOM TEMPERATURE!!!)
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 cup freshly brewed coffee
2 round cake pans

1. Preheat oven to 350*
2. In one bowl, sift together (fancy word for put through a metal strainer to get out all of the lumps) the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
3. In another bowl (preferably in the bowl of an electric mixer), combine the milk, oil (either canola or vegetable), eggs, and vanilla until smooth. 
4. Once the wet ingredients are mixed well, slowly add the dry ingredients, a little bit at a time (of you try to add it all at once, you'll be wearing a beautiful flour-covered shirt).
5. After you've mixed the wet and dry ingredients, slowly add in the HOT coffee. Make sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to get all of the bits of batter. ***IT WILL BE VERY LIQUIDY. THAT'S OK!!! IT'S SUPPOSED TO BE, SO DON'T WORRY!!!***
6. Evenly distribute the batter into the two pans and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
7. Make sure you let them cool for AT LEAST 30 minutes before you ice the cakes.

What you'll need for the icing:
6 ounces food semisweet chocolate chips (about ½ of the bag)
½ lb. unsalted butter (2 sticks AT ROOM TEMPERATURE!!!)
1 extra-large egg yolk (AT ROOM TEMPERATURE!!!)
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
¼ cup sifted confectioners' sugar (fancy word for powdered sugar)
1 tsp. instant coffee dissolved into 2 tbs. HOTTEST (but not boiling) water

1. Place the chocolate in a heat-proof bowl set over a pot of simmering water. (This is called a "double-boiler. It's VERY important NOT to boil water and to NOT let it touch the bottom of the bowl. THE CHOCOLATE WILL BURN IMMEDIATELY!!!)
2. Once melted, let sit at room temperature to cool for about 10 minutes.
3. In the bowl of an electric mixer beat the butter until it is light and fluffy.
4. Add the egg yolk and vanilla to the fluffed butter.
5. SLOWLY add in the sifted powdered sugar, scraping the sides and bottom of the bowl every so often making sure to get it all mixed very well. 
6. Add the dissolved coffee and melted chocolate to the butter and powdered sugar mixture and mix for about 1 minute on LOW (you don't want to whip it, you want it to remain thick and rich)
7. Once the cakes are cool, place on a plate and ice!!!
1. Line your plate or cake pan with FOLDED pieces of wax paper. It will keep the plate clean and they easily slide off when you're ready to serve.
2. To make sure that the cakes ice evenly, slice horizontally off the tops of the cakes, making them flat on the bottom and top. 
3. Place the first layer with the flat side down and cut side facing up. Ice the top, then add the second layer of the cake with the flat side facing UP and the cut side facing down (so, both CUT sides facing each other). 
4. Your cake will be flat all over and evenly iced.

enjoy :)

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