Thursday, May 26, 2011

Not-So-Classic Chocolate Cake

25 May 2011 - My Not-So-Classic Chocolate Cake

Sorry for my lack of baking posts recently. I did bake a couple of times in the last 2 months, but it was a repeat recipe, like Orange Butter Cake, Chocolate Muffins and Brandy Fruit Cake, so I did not want to bore you with the same recipes.

Anyway, due to my recent hectic life, I was searching for my cupboard for ingredients and I finally settled down to Ju's Classic Chocolate Cake recipe. Mainly because I have all the main ingredients there is - butter, flour, chocolate.

But things went very wrong from the very start. I planned to halve the recipe like Ju did, because I only have a small 19-inch springform pan. But I forgot and started measuring the full recipe measurement. By the time I realized, it was too late. I already poured the batter into the pan. Lazy to take out another pan, I went ahead with it, praying for the best.

During the baking time, my batter rose until the brim of the pan and still rise higher. I knew that this is trouble because the top is getting so near the heating element of the oven. I used a foil and covered the top. It cracked of course, but luckily it did not burnt.

It required 50% more baking time in the oven than required because I used a much smaller pan for a full batter. And my cake was like so high, but thankfully it did alright, although with a cracked top.

My so high cake with a burnt top

So I knew then that I can't just pour the chocolate fudge icing on top of the cake, because basically there is nowhere to pour as the batter rose above the brim of the springform pan.
After the cake has cooled down, I cut it horizontally in the middle using my Wilton Cake Leveller. Then I spread the chocolate fudge icing on the top base of the cake and sandwiched it with the top layer.

Cake cut horizontally in the middle and spread with the chocolate fudge icing

The result is this. But the burnt top looks ugly, so I dusted some icing sugar on top.

Ta now looks like this. Something like a strawberry shortcake but without strawberries and it is chocolate all over. So it ended up as a My Not-So-Classic Chocolate Cake!

So how's the taste? It is rich but not overly rich. And it is not sweet. Not sweet at all. I further reduced the sugar and I used Tudor's 55% Dark Cocoa Chocolate Bar for both the cake and the chocolate fudge icing. It is really good.

Recipe: Not-So-Classic Chocolate Cake (adapted from The Little Teochew)
Serves 8

- 1 1/3 cups (200g) plain flour
- 2 tbsp cocoa
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 200g good-quality dark chocolate, chopped
- 225g unsalted butter, softened, chopped
- 1 cup (220g) caster sugar - (I reduced it to 190g)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 4 eggs
- 1/2 cup (125ml) milk

* Note: I used Hershey's Unsweetened Cocoa Powder and Tudor 55% Dark Chocolate for this cake.

1. Preheat the oven to 160°C. Grease and line a 24cm round springform cake pan.
- I used a 19cm springform pan, which was why my cake turned out too-high and batter rose over the brim of the pan.

2. Sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda into a bowl. Set aside.

3. Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water (don't let bowl touch water). Cool slightly.

4. Beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. With beaters on medium speed, add vanilla, then add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Pour in cooled chocolate and beat until well combined. Beat in a third of sifted ingredients, followed by a third of the milk. Repeat until all ingredients are incorporated, beating until smooth.

5. Pour mixture into the pan and bake for 45-55 minutes until risen and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Cool in the pan on a rack for 10 minutes, then invert onto rack to cool completely.
- Because of my too-small pan, my batter rose over the brim of the pan, so I used a foil to cover the top so that I won't have a burnt top.
- Because of my too-small pan, I ended up baking for 1 hour 15 minutes in the oven. Check for doneness regularly with a cake tester.

6. Cut the cake horizontally into half and spread the Chocolate Fudge Icing (see recipe below) in the middle. Sandwiched the cake back and dust the top with some icing sugar.

Chocolate Fudge Icing
(from Donna Hay)
- I halved the recipe and it is just enough for me to spread it into the middle of the cake.

- 250g dark chocolate, chopped
- 1/2 cup (125ml) pouring (single) cream - (I used Anchor Whipping Cream)
- 70g butter, chopped

1. For the chocolate fudge icing, place the chocolate, cream and butter in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and stir until melted and smooth. Remove and set aside to cool completely.

2. Beat in an electric mixer until thick and fluffy. Spread icing on the cooled cake. Serves 10.