Dec 6, 2010

Chocolate Velvet Fudge Cake


If I were naming this cake, I think I'd just call it Plain Chocolate Cake. Not plain as in ugly, but plain as in unadorned, simple, essential. If you only had one chocolate cake in your baking repertoire, you'd want to give serious thought to making it this one.

First of all, unlike some of the other recent cakes which seemed easy, but weren't on the Q&E list, this one really is. That is, it's on the list, it's quick, and it's easy. Easy enough that I had it almost entirely put together by the time Jim went upstairs and got his camera. (He's kind of a slow walker).

In fact, the hardest part was picking the pan. I already announced I wasn't going to buy a new silicone bundt pan when I'd mortgaged the house for various Nordicware pans. I decided it was time to bring out the Christmas wreath pan again.

Here's how you put it together.
1) Mix cocoa and boiling water.
2) Mix eggs, water, and vanilla.

3) Mix flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, butter, and cocoa mixture.


4) Add egg mixture.


5) Put in pan.


6) Bake

Really. If you can make a cake mix, you can make this.

My cake took a few minutes less than the minimum 50 minutes, probably because the pan was wider and flatter than a typical bundt pan.

The simple decoration of powdered sugar brought out the ribbon and pine cones that you couldn't see before sugar was sifted over the cake.
And that's it--eat, taste, love.

You could also serve it with ice cream or whipped cream, if you wanted to gussy it up. If you wanted to further gussy, you could put some chocolate sauce on the ice cream that sits next to the cake. (Maybe you have some leftover sauce from the Bostini?) But I like it best plain.
Even writing the blog was quick and easy. Whereas it took me hours to write about the Lemon Canadian Crown cake, and required multitudes of photos, not to mention a fair amount of complaining, this blog virtually wrote itself. Thanks, Rose. I needed that.

TASTING PANEL:
Jim: "Really good chocolatey taste. I like the light texture. I think I'd like it even better with whipped cream."
Rachel: "Delicious. I don't think it needed anything else."
Steve: "I'd eat it with ice cream or with frosting or plain because I'm so agreeable."

24 comments:

ButterYum said...

Yep, sounds quick and easy indeed - q&e enough for me to throw together in December.

:)
ButterYum

Katya said...

I think I like your friend Steve.

Lois B said...

I'm glad you're getting to use the Christmas Wreath pan again.

My daughter that this cake might need a ribbon of fudge or marzipan running through the middle.

Marie said...

ButterYum,
You're probably going to be baking fussy little Christmas cookies all month long--this is the perfect break from anything fussy and complicated.

Katya,
You'd like him even more in person.

Lois,
I know! I was afraid it would never see the light of day again. And I really liked the way this cake turned out as a wreath.

Jenn said...

Gorgeous cake Marie! And what a great use of your wreath pan! I love that you use this pan instead of a bundt. And yes this cake is really super easy.

Anna said...

"eat, taste, love"

Perfect title for a cookbook, don't you think ??

HanaĆ¢ said...

What a great use of the wreath cake pan. Your cake looks great. Love the dusting of powdered sugar on top. The one I made last year was covered in Chocolate Cream Cheese frosting and that was good too! I did a rewind this week: Choc Genoise with regular Ganache (no PB) and I made it gluten free by subbing corn starch for the flour. Everybody at work loved it. They all loved how “light” and “soft” the cake was.

evil cake lady said...

i like the use of the wreath pan! poor jim; such a slow walker.

lois, a ribbon of fudge or marzipan running through it sounds like a great idea!

Rose Levy Beranbaum said...

anna--i totally agree re the name of a book being eat, taste, love! marie you never fail to make me smile. and what a fabulous use of the wreath pan--inspired sugar 'snow' really does bring out the decoration's detail.

Marie said...

Jenn,
Yours looks a lot fudgier than mine. I wonder if it's the difference in cocoa? Or in baking time?

Anna,
Yes. And now it's mine, so anyone who wants to use it will have to pay.

Hanaa,
Oh, yes, chocolate cream cheese frosting sounds very good. And loved that genoise too. Hmm. Maybe you need two chocolate cakes in your repertoire.

ECL,
Poor Jim. He never knows what I'm going to say about him until he reads the blog.

Rose,
I still have a bunch of pans I've only used once. I'm not sure that the pumpkin shaped pan is going to be as versatile as the wreath.

Jenn said...

Marie, I think this cake will get a re-do from me - with a different cocoa powder. I really like the taste of it, just not the texture so much.

Vicki said...

Really lovely! Gotta love Nordic Ware.

Jenn said...

Marie, which cocoa powder did you use?

Katya said...

Just fyi for those of you who follow these things, the peanut butter ganache is going to make its next appearance on the birthday cake of a friend--we are doing a banana chocolate cake (or a chocolate cake with banana and dulce de leche filling), with the whipped ganache and some toffee crumbled over...any other thoughts on going more over the top?

Jenn said...

Katya, you can make chocolate or caramel decorations. Either one would go well with the chocolate cake and the dulce de leche filling.

Marie said...

Jenn,
I've been using Perugina cocoa, which I ordered on-line, and I've been very pleased with it.

Katya,
Good lord. You want more?

Monica said...

My cake is officially gone (just eat the last piece, as I was typing this)...

once more I'm in total cake pan envy mode.

Baking Sorceress' Apprentice said...

That is really funny, I was just thinking about the beautiful wreath pan today, resolving that I didn't want to make the fruitcake. And now I open up to the blog and here is the answer. This just looks aawesome! I made the chocolate fudge in a swirl pan and it was so delicious that I am eager to try it again in the wreath pan with snow all over it.

Marie said...

Monica,
I put the last few pieces in the freezer, so I wouldn't be immediately tempted. Now I want a piece, but it's frozen.

Joan,
Lots of possibilities for cakes with powdered sugar "snow"!

Andrea said...

Your cake is so pretty with the wreath pan! I finally made the cake late last night. I had intended to put some sort of glaze on it, but I ran out of time so I might try powdered sugar. I haven't cut a slice yet, but I think my husband wants to try it this morning. He said he was afraid to cut it because he didn't know if I was taking it to work or something.

Jenn said...

For those who are interested, Michaels are having a sale for the wreath pan, it is $19.99 (instead of $30-something). I'm not trying to promote Michaels, just went there and saw the pan :).

Jenn said...

Marie, with all the fuss about cocoa powder, how about we do a tally of which cocoa powder everyone use? (Granted the fuss is mostly my own fuss, but I'm curious). I don't mind compiling the information, doing the tally, and writing the post. Let me know.

Rose Levy Beranbaum said...

ok now i'm cracking up too. i'm laughing more than i have in a long time and all alone in the room! i should mention that when i made the candle the first time my cleaning lady happened to be there and she took one look and our eyes met and we both starting cackling. when i brought the cake with candle to the restaurant, i was impressed by how they sliced to lay a piece on each serving. i thought they must have surgical tools--it looked like a frozen slide biopsy. i'll have to see if i can find a photo of the original to send to marie so she can post it. oh yes--i think i posted it on the blog as i remember birthday boy jens's nose was pointing in the same direction as the sliced candle and it was amazingly symmetrical. well...you'll see if you agree.

Rose Levy Beranbaum said...

ok--two photos sent to marie. and i see that, in fact, jens's nose was pointing the opposite direction which made it somehow even more effective!a