Saturday, September 28, 2013

Self-Frosting Chocolate Cake - Blue Monday

If you're looking for a dessert to serve on Valentine's Day, you might want to try this self-frosting chocolate cake. It's really easy to do and can be made as one large, or eight smaller, portion controlled, cakes. I always opt for the latter. It helps prevent me from overeating, which I have, on occasion, been known to do. The cake can be made a day before serving as long as you follow the directions for reheating that are in the recipe. If you decide to make this, be sure to use the finest bittersweet chocolate and raspberry jam available to you. This is one of those recipes where quality really pays off. If you like ease of preparation, the taste of bittersweet chocolate and raspberries, you'll love this treat. Just remember this is a dessert that should be served warm, and that means the cakes, large or small, can't be unmolded until you are ready to serve them. If you carefully follow the recipe instructions and say a prayer or two or three, you'll have no problems. I make these for family and good friends. I have, over the years, become a very relaxed hostess. If you do a great deal of formal entertaining, I have a caution for you. While these are luscious, they are probably too homely for a more formal dinner party. Here's the recipe.

Self-Frosting Chocolate Cake



3 ounces fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened)

1/2 cup seedless raspberry jam (about 5 ounce)

1/2 cup heavy cream

Cake Batter

1/2 cup boiling water

1/3 cup plus 2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa

powder (not Dutch process)

1/4 cup whole milk

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/3 cup seedless raspberry jam (about 3 1/2 ounce)

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

1/3 cup packed light brown sugar

1/3 cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs

1 cup all-purpose flour

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 pint raspberries (for garnish)


1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Generously butter a 9 x 2-inch round cake pan or 8 (8-oz.) custard cups. Set aside.

2) To make frosting: Break chocolate into small pieces. Place in a small saucepan with raspberry jam and cream. Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally, until smooth. If making one large cake, pour mixture into prepared pan. If making individual cakes, pour an equal portion of mixture into each custard cup. Set aside.

3) To make cake batter: Whisk boiling water and cocoa powder together until smooth. Whisk in milk, vanilla extract and jam. Place butter and both sugars in a large bowl Beat with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Sift flour, baking soda and salt into another bowl. Add to egg mixture in batches alternately with cocoa mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat well after each addition. Pour an equal portion of batter over frosting. If making one large cake, bake in center of oven for 30 to 35 minutes. If making individual cakes, bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Use a cake tester to check for doneness. Remember frosting will still be liquid. Transfer pan or custard cups to a wire rack. Let cool for 10 to 20 minutes. Cake may be made 1 day ahead, cooled completely in pan and left in pan, covered, at room temperature. Reheat cake, uncovered, at 350 degrees F for 10 to 15 minutes.

4) To unmold: Run a thin knife around edge of pan and twist pan gently back and forth on a flat surface to loosen cake. Invert a cake plate with a slight lip over cake pan and holding pan and plate together with both hands, invert cake onto plate. Serve cake garnished with raspberries if desired. Yield: 8 servings

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