I baked a chocolate cake the other night. Does anyone really need a reason to do this??? I think not!
It's very easy to make a one-layer cake - bake it before dinner, let it cool, frost it after dinner, enjoy it for dessert. Really!
I took my basic chocolate cake recipe, which I'm proud to say won a Grand Prize in Taste of Home's cupcake contest in 2007. The magazine called them "Special Mocha Cupcakes," and they're great whether baked into individual servings or into one larger cake.
So whether you're looking for a contribution for a bake sale, a birthday cake, or just a treat 'cause it's winter and it's cold and it's dreary ... well, here's just what you need!
Old-Fashioned Chocolate Cake
- 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup baking cocoa
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup cold brewed coffee
- 1/2 cup oil
- 2 eggs
- 3 teaspoons cider vinegar
- 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 6 tablespoons milk chocolate chips
- 1/3 cup butter, softened
- 2 cups confectioners' sugar
- 1 tablespoon brewed coffee
- 1-2 tablespoons half-and-half
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease an 8" cake pan, line the bottom with foil, then grease the foil.
Make the cake: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt, and sugar. In a large measuring cup, whisk together the coffee, oil, eggs, vinegar, and vanilla. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ones, whisk just to combine.
Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let the cake rest for 15 minutes, run a knife around the edge to loosen it, then turn it out of the baking pan. Remove the foil, turn the cake right-side up, and let cool completely.
Make the frosting: Melt the chocolate chips, then place into a large mixing bowl with the butter. Using an electric mixer, beat the chocolate and butter together. Add 1 cup of confectioners' sugar, and beat on "low" just to combine. Add the coffee and beat to combine. Add the rest of the confectioners' sugar plus 1 tablespoon of the half-and-half; beat on "low" to combine, then beat on "high" to whip the frosting. If it's still a bit thick or dry, add the remaining tablespoon of half-and-half.
Place the cooled cake onto a serving platter. Tuck small pieces of foil under the cake and over the edges of the platter, to catch dripping frosting. Spread some of the frosting along the sides of the cake, then spread the remaining frosting over the top. Carefully remove the foil strips, and serve.
Makes 8-12 servings.