This is my first chocolate cake from Heavenly Cakes, although I think there must be a few dozen different chocolate recipes. I love chocolate, but I've noticed that if I have four desserts to choose from, the chocolate one is almost never my first choice. Not because I hate chocolate--how sad would that be?--but because it's likely to be the least interesting offering. Given the same four desserts, Jim is likely to choose the chocolate one, so I think this was his favorite cake so far.
Like the first two choices, this one is also easy. Although I guess easy is relative. As I sat down to write this post, I got an email from an old friend of mine, who told me that her latest food discovery is a three-minute chocolate cake you make in a mug in the microwave. "It's making the rounds on the net," she said. I googled cake & microwave & mug, and, sure enough, I found about 179,000 references to this fabulous cake. Compared to cake-in-a-mug, the black chocolate party cake requires the skills of a French pastry chef.
The first thing you do is roast some walnuts for seven minutes and then rub the walnut skins off with a dish towel.
This is where my faith in Rose comes in. My palate is not so refined that I could tell whether the walnuts had been toasted or not, had been skinned or not, and had been in the oven for 7 minutes, or 8 minutes or 9 minutes. But I believe that Rose can tell, and so I will follow where she leads. So far, anyway. At some point, I'll have to decide whether to follow her into quail egg territory, but we're not there yet.
After the walnuts have been toasted, skinned, and ground, the cake is pretty much a cinch. You mix sour cream, cocoa, and eggs until they look like "slightly lumpy muffin batter."
Then the rest of the batter is mixed up, and the cocoa mixture is added to the batter, and it all goes into a bundt pan.
Did you know that the bundt pan was devised by Nordic Ware for a Minneapolis chapter of the Hadassah Society? And that more bundt cakes are used in Minneapolis than in any other city in the world? Well, actually I made up that last part, but the Nordic Ware/Hadassah factoid is true. And you can't go to a potluck in Minnesota without seeing a few bundt cakes on the dessert table.
But you don't find that many bundt cakes that have been saturated with cocoa syrup, which is what makes this cake incredibly moist and delicious. This is the cake as it comes out of the oven.
Here is the top of the cake after the cocoa syrup has been brushed over it.
You then invert the cake on several pieces of plastic wrap and brush on the rest of the syrup, lifting up the wrap and pressing it against the cake so that all the little drips soak into the cake.
I ate mine with a scoop of coffee ice cream, and that was good, but it didn't really need anything.
Rose says you could serve it with "squiggles of caramel ganache," although that might be gilding the lily. Most of the people who ate this cake just took a slice and ate it unadorned.
Karen: "Wonderful texture, wonderful taste."
Jim: "It's good. Make it again. Don't take it all to work."
Teddie: "Your cake is delicious!"
Doug: [who found a piece of cake left on his doorstep] "That cake is wonderful. When I came home and saw it, I thought, 'there is a God.'"
Betty: "I love the nuts--it was like biting into a big candy bar!"