Friday, January 1, 2016

Warm and Gooey Chocolate Cake

I believe that our New Year's resolutions for eating healthy should begin at the start of a Monday, so this is your official permission to go ahead and eat whatever you want through the end of this weekend. I am recommending that this chocolate cake be a part of your weekend festivities.

This recipe comes from the Fearless Baker cookbook, which was a Christmas present from my older sister this year. I had quickly scanned the cookbook to find recipes that looked good to me, and the warm and gooey chocolate cake definitely stood out as something that I needed to try. I celebrated my 25th birthday (again, can you believe it) on the 29th of December, and I knew that if I wanted to eat birthday cake on my birthday that I would have to make my own cake. I looked over the recipes I  had marked in the cookbook and the only one that I could make with the ingredients that I had on hand in my kitchen was the warm and gooey chocolate cake. While Wendy napped,  I made the cake. Luckily it was really easy to make and it did not take long to bake, because she did not grant me with the birthday present that I wanted from her (a super long nap). I was able to finish the cake, and then Wendy and I headed up to my parents' place in Columbia with the cake in tow. Greg met me up there after finishing his work day so he could treat me to dinner at one of my favorite restaurants, the Tomato Palace. Although we could have gotten a tiramisu on the house, we decided to pass it up and we headed back to my parents' place to dig into the chocolate cake. Everyone in the family had a piece of the cake, and it was a major hit all around. I do not want to downplay this cake, so I will tell you that it was absolutely heavenly. Although it was totally amazing on its own, it was brought to a ridiculous level when topped with fresh whipped cream, chocolate sauce, and strawberries.

The nice thing about this cake (besides it being the best thing on this planet) is that it is super easy to make, and it can be made in under 45 minutes. Chocolate is the shining star in this cake, as it should always be. If you are a chocoholic like I am, you will definitely fall head over heels in love with this warm and gooey chocolate cake. Enjoy!

*I have made this 2 times and still haven't taken the time to take a really good picture. I will surely be making it again soon, so if it isn't devoured before I get a fresh picture, I will probably be replacing the one that is in this posting. I just was really eager to share the recipe with YOU!

Recipe for Warm and Gooey Chocolate Cake

6 ounces of dark chocolate, 58% - 62% cacao (I used Scharrfen Berger semisweet 62% cacao baking chocolate), chopped into 1-inch pieces
8 Tbsp. of unsalted butter, divided
3/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp. of pure cane sugar (or granulated sugar), divided
3 eggs
Large pinch of kosher salt
2 Tbsp. of unbleached all-purpose flour

For topping
Fresh whipped cream
Chocolate Sauce
Strawberries or raspberries

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Prepare an 8 x 8 round metal cake pan. Use 1/2 Tbsp. of the unsalted butter to generously butter the bottom and sides of the pan (you may not use all of the butter). Then add 1 Tbsp. of the sugar to the pan and coat the bottom and sides by shaking and tapping the pan over the kitchen sink. Add another tablespoon of sugar to the pan and repeat until the pan is coated with sugar. Find a larger baking dish that will allow the round 8 x 8 pan to fit inside of it (you will use it during the baking process). Set aside.
Put an inch of water in the bottom pan of a double boiler and bring it to a simmer over medium high heat. Put the chocolate and the remaining 7 1/2 tablespoons of the unsalted butter in the top pan of the double boiler and set it over the pan with the simmering water. Stir, almost constantly, until the butter is melted and the chocolate is smooth. Remove the pan with the chocolate from the heat and set aside.
In a medium sized mixing bowl, use a fork to whisk together the eggs, 3/4 cup sugar, and kosher salt until well blended. Pour the chocolate mixture into the mixing bowl and mix well. Add in the flour and stir until just blended.
Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Set the pan into the larger baking dish. Fill a 2-cup liquid measuring cup with hot water from tap. Pour the water into the larger baking dish until it comes halfway up the sides of the pan with the chocolate batter in it, being sure to be careful so water does not splash into the batter. Then very carefully transfer to the oven. Bake for 25 - 30 minutes or until a toothpick or tins of a fork are inserted into the cake and it comes out a bit fudgey. Remove from the oven. Allow to cool for 10 minutes, then lift the cake pan out of the pan with the water.
Cut into 8 slices and serve immediately, or cover with foil and keep at room temperature for up to 24 hours. If you don't serve right away, reheat in oven at 325 degrees for five to ten minutes, being careful not to heat for too long.
Serve each slice with whipped cream, chocolate sauce, and berries (or if you have to choose just one, do the fresh whipped cream)!

Recipe makes 8 servings
Recipe Adapted from: Fearless Baker Cookbook