As I have mentioned before, I am a big fan of the book 'Baked Explorations' by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito. It is an incredible collection of classic American baking recipes, and so far every one has been flawless.
Last Sunday I made their 'Sunday Night Cake.' Actually it was Saturday, but I don't think my abuse of the recipe's namesake negatively impacted the deliciousness of the cake.
This is kind of like the Little Black Dress of cakes, if I was forced to come up with a metaphor. It's simple, elegant, and would work in any situation (i.e, dinner party, family dinner, potluck...)
Matt Lewis explains that the reason for the name is that it is a perfect dessert for Sunday night - it is so ridiculously easy, it is perfect to make on a lazy Sunday. The frosting is a little more involved, but it is so rich and delicious it should not be skipped.
- 1 3/4 cups cake flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 3 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 cup sour cream
- 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 3 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons dark unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
- 6 tablespoons (3 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces, at room temperature
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line an eight inch square pan with parchment paper, and butter the bottom and sides.
In a large bowl combine the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. In a standing mixer, cream the butter and sugars until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time. Next, add the flour mixture one spoonful at a time, alternating with the sour cream. Begin and end with the flour mixture. Bake the cake for about 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove from the oven and let cool for at least 30 minutes before flipping the cake over onto your desired surface.
For the frosting:
In a medium saucepan, whisk together the sugar, cornstarch and cocoa powder. Add the chopped chocolate. Pour 1 cup boiling water into the pan, wait 30 seconds, then whisk until mixture is combined and the chocolate is melted.
Turn the heat to medium-high and whisk continuously for about 5 minutes, or until the mixture begins to thicken.
Remove the pan from the heat and pour the mixture into the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on high until the steam escapes and the mixture is room temperature. Add the butter and mix for an additional 2-3 minutes, until the frosting is light and puddinglike. If you prefer a fluffier, more spreadable frosting, continue to mix for a few minutes longer.
Frost the top of the cake, allowing a little of the frosting to drip down the edges. Chill for 5 minutes to set the frosting. Serve immediately.
Labels: Baked, Dessert