Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Chocolate Cake

I have never been a big fan of cake. I think this is because I have had a lot of mediocre cake in my life and not enough great cakes to say, "I love cake!" Also, I am not a big fan of frosting so whenever I eat cake, I am basing my opinion on the cake alone. Now I know, some of you are reading this and screaming duh to why I don't like cake because the frosting is usually what "makes" a cake good. Frosting aside, isn't a cake suppose to be moist, flavorful, and have a nice texture to it? Yes! This is what has been lacking my cake eating experience. I have also had cakes that had just the wrong cake to frosting ratio where there was so much frosting that I might as well have eaten frosting from a can. This is not to say that I am a frosting or cake hater - gosh no! Surely when I have came across a good cake, I would eat it...ALL!

Focusing on this post, I have come across a cake that is moist, flavorful, and great texture. How could the Barefoot Contessa ever get it wrong? I knew once I saw the episode where Ina made this chocolate cake, that it had to be good. I think there are two things that make this cake fantastic. First, good quality cocoa really makes a difference between an ordinary chocolate cake and a good chocolate cake. Second, the coffee brings out the richness of the cake and makes it taste like it is from a professional. As you can see, there is a thin layer of frosting on the cake. I chose to try a ganache and it complemented the cake very well but the cake is good enough to eat solo!

Chocolate Cake
compliments of Ina Garten

1-3/4 cups flour
2 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup cocoa powder
2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 extra large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup freshly brewed coffee
Chocolate Ganache 1/2 c. heavy cream
9 oz semisweet chocolate chips
1 tsp instant coffee granules

1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
2. Sift together flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in bowl and mix until combined
3. In another bowl, combine buttermilk, eggss, and vanilla
4. On low speed with a mixer or by hand, add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients
5. Add coffee until just combined
6. Pour in two 8 or 9 inch round cake pans
7. Bake 35-40 minutes. Cool for 30 minutes 

8. (for ganache) Heat all ingredients on a double boiler over simmering water until smooth and warm

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