The All-Chocolate Chocolate Cake

All Chocolate Cake

This is NothingChocolate’s first ALL chocolate cake.

I experimented with basically two cake recipes – one consisting of both oil and sour cream and the other using butter – neither worked for me although my tasters thought otherwise. The recipe with oil was way too greasy and being a traditionalist, I believe that cakes need butter to really be a cake. I combined recipes and used butter and, in place of sour cream – Greek yogurt.

The cake was light yet firm and substantive and took to my whipped chocolate frosting easily.

The images here were a fluke as my editor has been experimenting with food photography and we got together to take these. In my opinion, they turned out fabulous! Thank you, Judith Manigault, for taking time out of your very busy day to experiment with me!

Here’s the recipe.

Careful, you’ll be asked to bake this cake again and again. Actually, it’s perfect for Valentine’s Day! Happy V-Day, everybody!

Three Layer Chocolate Cake

Cake Ingredients

1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 1/2 t baking powder
1 1/2 t baking soda

1/8 t salt
1 cup plain Greek yogurt (or sour cream)
3 large eggs
2 1/2 t vanilla
6 T butter, softened
1 cup hot coffee

Process
To make the cake, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare 3 8-inch cake pans and line bottoms with parchment paper.

In a bowl, whisk the following together:  sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In another bowl, combine the yogurt, eggs and vanilla.  In a third bowl melt the butter in the hot coffee.  Combine the contents of all three bowls in batches alternating between the three.  Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cake pans and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 25-35 minutes.

Whipped Chocolate Frosting (Adapted from Divas Can Cook)

Ingredients

1 cup butter (2 sticks), softened, room temperature
½ tablespoon heavy whipping cream

1 teaspoon real vanilla extract
½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted and cooled
½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
2½ cups powdered sugar, sifted (spoon into measuring cup to measure)
pinch of salt

Process
In a large bowl cream butter until fluffy.  Add in heavy cream and mix until light and fluffy.  Mix in vanilla extract.  Mix in melted chocolate chips.  Mix in cocoa powder and powdered sugar until frosting is light, fluffy and whipped.  Stir in salt.  Whip 8 oz of whipping cream with 1 T of confectioner’s sugar and 1 t of vanilla and fold this into the completed chocolate frosting.

All Chocolate Cake All Chocolate Cake

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The Deepest Dark

Deep Dark Chocolate Raspberry Cake

(Recipe From Laura Calder of the Cooking Channel)

Chocolate Raspberry Cake

Still acclimating myself to this new and complex flavor…

I saw Laura Calder of French Food at Home, make this very simple, yet decadent and special chocolate cake.  The simplicity captured my attention and since Valentine’s Day was approaching, I decided to try this special cake in celebration of that special day.

Attempting to understand the differences in chocolates used for cooking and baking, I spent a considerable amount of time in the baking aisle contemplating chocolate’s varied uses and forms.  Fortunate for me, it was well-stocked with numerous types of chocolate for baking.  There were chocolate baking bars, chocolate baking chips, and chocolate baking cocoa.  All the different forms of chocolate weren’t confusing enough, they all contained variant amounts of sugar.  The percentage of cacao indicates the amount of added sugar – 80% cacao contains 20% sugar.  The higher the cacao content, the less sweet and more bitter the flavor.

I picked up three (rather pricey) bars of the following:

Chocolate Raspberry Cake

While I was putting together the ingredients and chopping the chocolate to be melted, I tasted a small piece.  YUCK!  It tasted NOTHING like the chocolate I’ve had!  I could not swallow it!

I realized that the recipe called for “semi-sweet” chocolate and that I had purchased 100% cacao.  (I realized this some time after the cake was baked and eaten.)

It brought me to wonder about the role that sugar played in enhancing the flavor of foods and how much of this flavoring enhancement, to my detriment or not, has got my taste buds so accustomed to it.

In an effort to cook and bake more healthfully, I’ve been experimenting with alternative flours.  Next I plan to begin baking with as little added sugar as possible not only to adjust my customary sugar-enhanced experience, but to optimize the health benefits from the ingredients.

A visualization of the process.
This is the “bain-marie”, also known as the double-boil method.

boiling water bain-marie

Add the chocolate and watch it melt.

Chocolate Raspberry Cake

Slow and easy in the bain-marie.  Tasted the 100% cacao earlier, it was too bitter to enjoy.

Chocolate Raspberry Cake

The sweet butter chunks are added, chunk by chunk.

butter

Although the recipe suggested an unsweetened raspberry puree, here I added a couple tablespoons of sugar to these raspberries since I found them to be a bit bitter.  I realized that this added sugar was the ingredient that pretty much saved the flavor of this cake.

I used frozen raspberries for the puree…

Chocolate Raspberry Cake

… and fresh raspberries for the top layer.

Chocolate Raspberry Cake

After making the raspberry puree, put the mixture through a sieve to remove the seeds.

Chocolate Raspberry Cake

See the raspberry seeds…  What’s left is a luxurious and lightly sweetened, fruit puree which can be used in many different ways.

Chocolate Raspberry Cake

The butter and raspberry puree are mixed into the melted chocolate.  Mmmmmm, this is the ultimate flavor combo!

Chocolate Raspberry Cake

The tightly sealed cake pan is placed in a water bath to promote even and smooth baking.

Chocolate Raspberry Cake

The cake is perfectly baked!

Chocolate Raspberry Cake

The perfectly baked cake is topped with perfectly whipped cream!

Chocolate Raspberry Cake Chocolate Raspberry Cake

And then garnished with fresh raspberries.


Using both bitter raspberries and bitter chocolate could have resulted in a bitter dessert however the end result was a rich, full-of-chocolate-flavor “cake” with a bright burst of raspberry!  I emphasize “cake” because this cake contained no flour and was incredibly moist so moist, it resembled a pudding.  I plan to re-bake this cake using the semi-sweet chocolate and I shiver to think how delicious its flavor will be.

Chocolate Raspberry Cake

A dusting of confectioner’s sugar finalizes this treat.

Chocolate Raspberry Cake

Here, have a slice.

Chocolate Raspberry Cake

Although some of the techniques used in baking this cake stray from traditional baking methods, you’ll be pleasantly surprised with the results!  Give it a whirl!

A chocolate-lovers delight.  Really!

Chocolate Raspberry Cake


Winter White Coconut + Deep Dark Chocolate

Who doesn’t like chocolate and coconut?

Choc Coconut Cupcakes

This is the amazing egg-less chocolate cake recipe once again.  Instead of folding in the freshly whipped cream, we topped it onto the chocolate frosting and added sweetened coconut.  Really simple, really delicious.

Choc Coconut Cupcakes

Flakes of coconut look and taste light and fresh with the additional comforting flavor of chocolate.

Choc Coconut Cupcakes

Both the Egg-less Chocolate Cake and the Chocolate Frosting recipes are listed in the previous post.

This is a definite crowd pleaser!


Get Your Chocolate Egg-Less Cupcake On…

Just wanted to share these photos. This recipe (appearing in the previous post) produces some of the lightest, melt-in-your-mouth chocolate cakes. Or cupcakes, in this instance.

Enjoy…

Egg-less Chocolate Cupcake

IMG_2770


and the Prize Goes To…

Egg-Less Chocolate Cream Cake

Jean from NYC won the 6″ version of this light and fluffy, Egg-Less Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Cream Frosting.

The winning entry was, NothingButChocolate…  Clever, right?!

So clever in fact, the domain has been in use for some time now by another.  I had some other ideas for the new blog name and finally decided on the folowwing:

AndChocolate2

How do you like it????

Here are the other cute and clever entries:

AddingChocolate.com – Eva
Chocolate Cravings  When nothing else will do…  – Yolanda
NothingChocolate Plus – Lydia
Choice Chocolate, Chocolate Connection, Choco Loco  – Kopper
Delicious Chocolate – Claudette
Who gives a fudge, What the fudge  –  Kevin
CHOCOLATE TR-EATS  – Lorna
See Food, See Food City, See Food Bazaar  – Enrique

Thanks to all who entered!

Please join me as I delve into the mysteries of chocolate.  I plan to research the many types of chocolate and to experiment in baking and cooking with all forms of this popular ingredient.  Stay tuned…

In the mean time, here’s the recipe for this cake.

Egg-Less Chocolate Cream Cake

Egg-Less Chocolate Cake

Makes one 6” Layered Cake

Ingredients
Wet
¾ C coconut milk
¾ C sugar
1/3 C canola oil
1 ½ t cider vinegar
1 t vanilla

Dry
1 C flour (use “unbleached” flour, fewer chemicals)
1/3 C cocoa powder
¾ t baking soda
¾ t baking powder
¼ t salt

Process
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Prepare 2 6” cake pans with non-stick spray and parchment paper lining.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk all of the “wet” ingredients together.  In a medium sized bowl, combine the dry ingredients.  Add the dry to the wet and mix only until combined, do not over mix.  Pour batter evenly into the two pans and bake for about 25-30 minutes or until inserted toothpick comes out clean.

If making an 8” cake, double the recipe.

Chocolate Cream Frosting

Ingredients
¾ C unsweetened baking cocoa
¾ C confectioner’s sugar
½ t espresso powder
½ C half and half or milk
½ C butter
pinch of salt
1 C confectioner’s sugar
1 t vanilla

1 C of freshly whipped cream

Process
Combine cocoa, ¾ cup of the confectioner’s sugar and espresso powder in a medium bowl.  Bring milk or half and half to a simmer and whisk it into the coca mixture.  Set aside to cool.
Mix the softened butter, remaining confectioner’s sugar, vanilla and salt till smooth.  Add the cocoa mixture and mix well.
Gently fold in the whipped cream a little at a time.


Name The Sister Blog to NothingChocolate

The sister blog will be born soon.  Please check back.

NothingChocolate will devote this sister blog to all things chocolate.  The name of the blog has been determined by our readers/bakers/chefs/viewers.

The winning name entry:  NothingButChocolate.

Getting this thing started…