Saturday, February 23, 2008

Cocoa Cake

Yesterday afternoon I found myself at home without much to do. I decided to make my favorite cake from scratch. It's so simple yet turns out delicious every time. After a quick trip to the market downtown for some key ingredients (can't have cocoa cake without, you know, cocoa), I was ready.

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 3/4 cups packed light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/3 cups water
  • Confectioner's sugar for dusting

I'm very big on mise en place, which is having everything you need prepped and close at hand before you even start cooking. Above you can see all my ingredients and equipment assembled and ready to use.

My KitchenAid stand mixer is by far the king of all of my appliances. I believe no kitchen should be without one of these mixers. It is the gold standard of mixers. I love mine dearly.

Beat together the butter and brown sugar until pale and fluffy.

OK, so it's not really "pale" nor truly "fluffy." If I had more patience I would have let the butter come to room temperature naturally. However, I followed my usual procedure and warmed it in the microwave on very low power for about 45 seconds to soften it.

Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition, then add vanilla and mix well.

Whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. Add the flour mixture and water to the batter alternately in batches, beginning and ending with the flour mixture and mixing until just combined.

Here I am adding some water to the batter.

The cake batter, all mixed and ready to go.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9- by 2-inch round cake pan and dust with flour, knocking out excess. I use springform pans for all of my cake baking. The convenience cannot be beat.

Pour the batter into the cake pan and shake to level. Here is my cake ready to slide into the oven. Of course I licked the spatula!

Bake in middle of oven until springy to the touch and a tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 55 minutes to 1 hour.

Cool in pan for 1 hour.

Doesn't that look yummy! It also smells divine while it's cooking and when it is fresh out of the oven.

Once cake has cooled, release it from pan, then turn right side up and dust with confectioner's sugar.

Slice and enjoy!

1 comment:

Tina said...

*drool* That sounds yummy! I'm so with you on the KitchenAid mixer thing; I love mine dearly, too!