Sunday, November 30, 2008

Chocolate Bundt Cake

My family has quiet holidays that are usually just the four of us, so every Thanksgiving I have the opportunity to go to my boyfriend's for dessert. He has lots of family over, and to me it's exactly what holidays should be- loud, with tons of food, family, and friends. Plus, I look forward to it because it's an excuse to bake a cake!

This year, the dessert had to meet a few qualifications:
1. Able to be baked ahead of time(despite double ovens, getting in the kitchen when my mom's cooking a holiday meal is impossible!)
2. Chocolate (boyfriend's dad is a massive chocoholic)
3. Travel well (no four layer, buttercream smothered confections here).
I also wanted to avoid typical Thanksgiving desserts like pumpkin or apple pie, since I knew they'd have those already.

After a truly obscene amount of recipe searching and deliberation (especially for the piece of cake-pun intended- that I chose), I settled on the Too Much Chocolate Cake recipe from, since it had 5 stars from about 800 people. I figured if 800 people raved about it, chances are the family would too. It's a simple pudding-enhanced chocolate cake mix, which meant it was simple to bake and also moist and dense enough to allow me to bake it up the night before without drying out. I used a bundt pan, but you could use anything, and topped with a chocolate glaze from Carole Walter's Great Cakes.

Here is the recipe (a fattening one!) with my alterations:

Too Much Chocolate Cake
1 (18.25 ounce) package devil's food cake mix
1 package instant chocolate pudding mix (the recipe calls for a 5.9 oz but I used a normal 3.9 oz with no issues)
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup milk
4 eggs
1/2 cup warm water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
In a large bowl, mix together the cake and pudding mixes, sour cream, oil, beaten eggs, milk, and water. Pour batter into a well greased 12 cup bundt pan.

Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until top is springy to the touch and a wooden toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool cake thoroughly in pan at least an hour and a half before inverting onto a plate.

Quick Chocolate Glaze
1.5 oz unsweeted chocolate, coarsely chopped
1.5 oz semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 tbsp unsalted butter
1 cup strained confectioners' sugar
3 tbsp boiling water (you may need an extra tbsp)
1 tbsp light corn syrup
3/4 tsp vanilla extract

Place the chocolates in a double boiler, stirring until melted and smooth. Off the heat, stir in the sugar and water alternately, beating well. Blend in corn syrup, then vanilla. The glaze should be glossy and pourable, so here is where you may need that extra bit of boiling water (I did).

The glaze was perfect for the cake- shiny and attractive, but not too sweet, since the cake was already over-the-top chocolately and sweet.

Simple, easy, and a big hit at Thanksgiving!

Difficulty Rating: 1

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