Monday, January 14, 2008

Chocolate Spice Cake

Another dinner party dessert, but a different breed. The pudding cake party was casual, but decorous: Mr. B and I were home by midnight. This dinner party featured china and crystal but was thrown in order to watch a friend's performance in a Lifetime movie premiere. Drinking games for the teens' angsty pluck, please, and why don't we all try on the flannel onesie that someone got for Christmas? More important, what to bake? This cake is easy enough to make that it won't matter that no one will remember what it tasted like.
This is my family's birthday cake, so I felt a bit funny tinkering with it. My mom puts in 1tsp. of cinnamon and leaves it at that, but I wanted to try and recreate a truffle made by a chocolatier in Charlottesville, Gearhart's. Most prominent in that confection are orange zest and cayenne, but I wanted cloves to balance the orange. Oh, and lastly, I know this is one of those 1950's style quick cakes scorned by many, and that's fine - more for me and my onesie.
Do this:
Sift together 2 c. sugar and 2 c. flour. In a saucepan bring to a boil 4 T cocoa, 1 stick butter, 1 c. water, and 1/2 c. oil. Pour over sugar and flour and beat well. Add 1/2 c. buttermilk, 2 eggs, beaten, 1 t cinnamon, 1/4 t cloves, 1/4 t nutmeg, 1/8 t cayenne, the grated zest of one orange (or a little less). Mix well, pout in 13x9 pan, bake at 350 for 45 minutes.
Here's the best part: A few minutes before cake is done, bring to boil 1 stick butter, 6 T milk, 4T cocoa, 1 c. nuts (I used salted macadamias here) and 1 lb powdered sugar (or a little less). Boil a few minutes, and when the cake comes out, poke holes all over it and pour the icing over. Turn the oven off anf put the cake back in for five minutes. Happy Birthday!

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Aaron Kagan said...

why poke holes? for absorption?

Carol said...

I think that's the cakes always dome in the middle, so the glaze pools in the corners whether I poke holes or not. Sometimes with good hole-pokage you get a nice glazing on the top and the bottom.