Sunday, January 8, 2012

Brooklyn ......Oh Brooklyn!!!


This last holiday I was able to get back to the East Coast to spend time with family.  I can say I love the getting back there. The history of each small town right around the corner. How close everything is....it's just a great time!!!! (Plus....hanging with family is always a plus and a lot of fun.) 

This year, there was a house full of great people, amazing food, and a lot of fun times with my 2 yr old nephew. I now have been educated on Thomas and all his "friends". I think there are times I still hear that song playing over and over in my head....ha ha!!! Too much fun.....

Well, to get to the good stuff. Today I wanted to share with you Chocolate Blackout Cake. This cake originated in Brooklyn years ago and is an amazing rich dessert. I took it to a neighborhood party for New Years and it was a hit!!!! I was lucky to get one small piece to bring home. (Usually a good sign...I say). The fun part of this cake is no frosting is used. Instead the entire cake is covered with homemade pudding and sealed by cake crumbs. 

Let me just say....the cake portion of this dessert is the easy part. If you have never made homemade pudding before....I can attest...patience is the most important part in making it. I had to learn the hard way and make it twice. But in the end, it was sooo worth it!!! 

So I wish you a wonderful 2012......a little patience and an amazing result!!!! Enjoy!!!

Chocolate Blackout Cake
adapted from Cook's Country

Pudding
1 1/4 C Sugar
1/4 C Cornstarch
1/2 Tsp Salt
2 C Half-and-Half
1 C Milk
6 oz Bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 Tsp Vanilla

Cake
8 Tbsp Unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing pans
1 1/2 C Unbleached Flour
2 Tsp Baking Powder
1/2 Tsp Baking Soda
1/2 Tsp Salt
3/4 C Dutch-processed Cocoa 
3/4 C Espresso Coffee, cooled
1 C Buttermilk
1 C Brown Sugar
1 C Sugar
2 Eggs
2 Tsp Vanilla

To make pudding:
Combine sugar, cornstarch, salt, half-and-half, and milk in large pan. Set pan over medium heat. Add chocolate and whisk constantly until chocolate melts and mixture begins to bubble (Be patient with this step - keep cooking until chocolate is smooth and thick). Stir in vanilla and transfer pudding to large glass bowl. Put plastic wrap directly on surface of pudding and refrigerate until cold, at least 4 hours or up to 1 day.

To make cakes: 
Turn oven on to 325 degrees. Butter and sugar two 8-inch cake pans. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in bowl. In a separate pan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in cocoa and cook about 1 minute. Remover from heat, whisk in coffee, buttermilk, and sugars until dissolved. Add in eggs and vanilla, then put in flour mixture.

Divide batter evenly between prepared pans and bake until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 40 minutes. Cool layers in pans and then invert onto wire rack and cool to room temperature. (Note: Be sure cake and pudding are completely cool or you will have a mess on your hands).

To assemble the cake: 
Divide each cake in half. In a separate bowl, crumble one cake layer and set aside. Place one cake layer on cake stand and pread 1 cup pudding over cake layer and top with another layer. Repeat with 1 cup pudding and last cake layer. (Hint: if you want to keep your stand clean, place three pieces of wax paper on a plate like a triangle to cover edges of plate then place first cake layer down). Spread remaining pudding evenly over top and sides of cake. Sprinkle cake crumbs evenly over top and sides of cake, pressing lightly to secure crumbs. Place in the fridge for at least 1 hour to let the cake set.  

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