Sunday, February 19, 2012

Chocolate Pound Cake

I made this cake for a friend of mine whose birthday is coming up.  Her birthday is the same day as my dad's. I did way too much baking for everyone else this month and did no baking for myself!  I did a taste-test of this cake because it was one of the first cakes I baked in my new oven.  I wanted to make sure it wasn't overcooked.  I was actually going to make another one but I had to make the cookies and coffee cake for my dad so I talked myself out of it.  It looks like a good cake to make again. Maybe I can do it as a "marble" loaf instead of all chocolate.  I wouldn't have made something so plain except that I was told she would prefer this type of cake to anything with frosting or glaze.  I hope she likes it!

Chocolate Pound Cake
makes one 8 x 4 x 3 inch Loaf

¼ cup unsweetened Dutch-processed cocoa powder
3 tablespoons boiling water
3 large eggs, room temperature
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1-1/4 cups sifted cake flour (~125 grams)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar (175 grams)
13 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature (cut into pieces)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Butter or spray with vegetable spray, an 8 x 4 x 3 inch loaf pan.  Line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper.  Set aside.

2. In a medium bowl, mix together the cocoa powder and boiling water until thoroughly combined.  Let cool to room temperature.

3. Once the chocolate mixture has cooled, whisk in the eggs and vanilla extract.  Set aside.

4. In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), combine the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, salt and sugar) and mix on low speed for about 30 seconds or until blended.  Add the butter and half of the chocolate/egg mixture.  Mix on low speed until the dry ingredients are moistened.  Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat for about one minute to aerate and develop the cake’s structure.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl.  Gradually add the remaining egg mixture, in 2 additions, beating about 30 seconds after each addition to incorporate the egg and strengthen the cake’s structure.

5. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with an offset spatula or the back of a spoon.  Bake for about 50-60vminutes total or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  About twenty minutes into baking, cover the cake with a lightly oiled piece of aluminum foil to prevent overbrowning.

6. Remove the cake from oven and place on a wire rack to cool for about ten minutes.  Remove the cake from the pan, reinvert, and cool completely on a lightly buttered wire rack.  Top with a light dusting of powdered sugar, if desired.

7.  Will keep, well wrapped, several days at room temperature, about one week when refrigerated, or it can be frozen for two months.


The Creative Cook