Wednesday, November 23, 2011

A Chocolate Thanksgiving Dessert

Every Thanksgiving, my extended family gathers at my cousin's house for a big potluck hoopla. (More on this later.) Since it's about an hour and a half from my house, I can't bring anything that needs to stay hot, so I tend to select a dessert, salad, or appetizer. This year I'm bringing a dessert for the dessert buffet table, and my offering is Anne Byrn's "Darn Good Chocolate Cake," a Bundt cake featured in her cookbook, Chocolate from the Cake Mix Doctor (page 116-117).

Darn Good Chocolate Cake, by Anne Byrn (with notes from me)
1 pkg (18.25 ounces) devil's food or dark chocolate fudge cake mix (I chose Duncan Hines devil's food because all Duncan Hines cake mixes were BOGO)
1 pkg (3.9 ounces) chocolate instant pudding mix (Be careful here! Jell-O brand was the only instant that measured correctly)
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup water*
1/2 cup vegetable oil (I used canola)
4 large eggs
1 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips (I used Hershey's Special Dark chips)

* You know I tinker with recipes. Instead of using plain water, I heated 1/2 cup of water in my microwave til hot and then stirred in one heaping teaspoon of instant coffee. I let it cool before proceeding with the recipe.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray with nonstick spray and then flour a 12-cup Bundt pan, shaking out excess flour, and set aside. (I used Pam for Baking, which includes flour.) Place in a large mixing bowl cake mix, pudding mix, sour cream, water, oil, and eggs.

Blend with electric mixer on low for 1 minute. Stop machine and scrape down sides of bowl. Blend for 2-3 minutes more on medium, stopping to scrape down sides again if needed. Batter will be thick. Fold in chocolate chips, distributing them well throughout the batter.

Velvety smooth goodness!

Pour batter into prepared pan and smooth out with rubber spatula.

Place pan in oven. Bake til it springs back when touched lightly, about 58 to 62 minutes. Remove pan from oven and place on a wire rack to cool for 20 minutes. Run a long, sharp knife around edge of cake and invert it onto a rack to cool completely.

At this point, you could dust with confectioners sugar, but I did as Byrn suggests. I gilded the lily with her "Martha's Chocolate Icing," because, with chocolate, there's no such thing as too much of a good thing.

Martha's Chocolate Icing
1 cup granulated sugar
5 T butter
1/3 cup whole milk
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Heat sugar, butter, and milk in a medium sized saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir til mixture comes to a boil. Continue stirring until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and stir in chocolate chips, stirring until chocolate has melted and mixture is smooth. Pour icing over cake and let it flow over the sides.

I opted to use a ladle to pour the icing, and I found it set up quickly, hence the uneven appearance. I tried to smooth it out with a spatula, but that made things worse, so I let well enough alone. There was a bit of icing left over, which I quickly scarfed down. That stuff is wonderful!

The cake is now resting in my cake saver, awaiting the moment tomorrow when it will be revealed in all its glory.

Happy Thanksgiving!

1 comment:

  1. Ok. My all-time, favorite, easy cake just got better! Yours is the exact recipe I've used for 20 years - from my friend Marva! But boy oh boy - can't wait to try it with coffee and topped with even more chocolate. Awesome. Thanks Ellen!


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