Heck, even my chocolate chip cookies have bacon in them.
or brown butter.
or peanut butter.
See what I mean? Every time I bake something, there is something that makes it just a little bit different from the rest. 2 weeks ago, I made chocolate cupcakes for Imports@CPP. When asked, I replied with just that--and then I was met with blank stares, dropped jaws and people asking me "thats it?".
But it wasn't.
It had a Butterscotch Swiss Meringue Buttercream. Drizzled with a butterscotch ganache. topped with chopped butterscotch chips.
I have a problem....
However! Today I decided to make something simple. Something delicious. Something...chocolate.
And then I decorated it! See! I'm so proud of my frosting skills here. well, not the stars, but the fact that my frosting came out smooth (until I textured it), and even.
adapted and slightly modified from MyBakingAddiction
2 cups sugar
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup Hersey's Special Dark unsweetend cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup strong black coffee (I used instant espresso)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1. Heat oven to 350°F. Line 2 9-inch round baking pans or one 13x9x2 - inch baking pan. Grease and lightly flour. Set aside.
2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or in a large bowl with an electric mixer, combine the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder. Mix on low until dry ingredients are thoroughly combined. Add eggs, buttermilk, coffee, oil and vanilla. Beat on medium speed for about two minutes; the batter will be thin. Pour batter evenly into prepared pans.
3. Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes for round pans, 35 to 40 minutes for rectangular pan or until wooden toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely.
Dark Chocolate Buttercream
from Savory Sweet Life
1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks or 1/2 pound), softened (but not melted!)
3 1/2 cups confectioners (powdered) sugar
1/2 cup cocoa powder (I used Hersey's Special Dark)
1/2 teaspoon table salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract or 1 teaspoon almond extract4 tablespoons milk or heavy cream
- Cream butter for a few minutes in a mixer with the paddle attachment on medium speed. Turn off the mixer. Sift 3 cups powdered sugar and cocoa into the mixing bowl. Turn your mixer on the lowest speed (so the dry ingredients do not blow everywhere) until the sugar and cocoa are absorbed by the butter. Increase mixer speed to medium and add vanilla extract, salt, and milk/cream and beat for 3 minutes. If your frosting needs a more stiff consistency, add a little more sugar. If your frosting needs to be thinned out, add additional milk 1 tablespoon at a time.
I only made 3/4 of this because I only have 3/4 cup of butter left in my fridge. It was still enough to frost the entire cake with a thin layer of frosting. Also, after I frosted the cake, I let it "crust" a bit. Once it was dry to the touch (didn't stick to my finger when touched lightly) I smoothed out the frosting using an every day paper towel. Just lay it where the frosting need to be smoothed out a little, and rub it very lightly with your fingers. Gently peel away the paper towel and you will be left with a smooth, slightly textured frosting. Not to mention, it makes your frosting job look flawless =]
No wonder I'm gaining weight.