Thursday, October 29, 2015

Wellesley Chocolate Fudge Cake

I bake a lot of cakes and chocolate happens to be a particular favorite, go figure. Although I have quite a few in my repertoire there are several that I go back to again and again and again and this cake is one of them. 

What I love about it is that it is:

A. It's chocolate
B. It has a  fabulous chocolate fudge icing. 
C. Is moist and stays that way for days.
D. And it mails well, yes I have mailed this cake to several friends and it always arrives in one piece and is still fresh!

This recipe is one that I found while perusing Pinterest. What did we ever do without Pinterest by the way? The recipe is from Sifting Focus, it is a little long but worth it.

Wellesley Fudge Cake 

21/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup hot water
1/2 cup dutch processed cocoa powder
2 sticks of butter cut into 16 pieces, softened
2 eggs
2 cups sugar
1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

31/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup of cocoa powder
1/2 stick of butter cut in half and softened
11/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup half and half
4 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cake: Place oven rack in the middle position and preheat oven to 350. Prepare two 8" square pans with cooking spray and line with parchment paper. 
Whisk flour, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. In a small bowl, whisk the cocoa powder and the hot water until smooth. In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs 1 at a time and mix until incorporated. Add flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with the buttermilk. Mix until combined. Reduce speed and slowly add the cocoa/water mixture and the vanilla, until incorporated.

Divide the batter evenly between the 2 pans. Bake about 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few crumbs attached. Cool the cake in the pan for 15 minutes, then turn out to cool on a rack. 


Sift together the powdered sugar and the cocoa. Set aside. Heat 4 tablespoons butter, brown sugar, salt, and 1/2 cup of half and half in a large saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until bubbles occur around the edges. About 4-8 minutes. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring frequently until the mixture thickens and turns golden brown about 8-10 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and add 4 pieces of butter, stir well then add the remaining half and half with the other ingredients. Add the chopped chocolate and vanilla, then stir until smooth. Slowly whisk in the cocoa/powder sugar until incorporated. Cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally. Then refrigerate for 30-40 minutes until frosting reaches desired consistency.


Place 1 layer of cake on a platter, spread a cup of frosting over the surface. Add second layer and the frost the rest of the cake. Can be stored at room temperature or in the refrigerator. Serve and enjoy. 

What do you think? Doesn't this cake look fabulous? I hope you enjoy it!

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Connie's PMS Brownies

A few weeks ago I shared a recipe from Extreme Brownies my new favorite cookbook. I have been going from cover to cover baking each and every recipe. These "PMS" brownies are another rich, chewy, chocolaty brownie that I have made and shared several times now, they are quite popular in my house and will be in yours too I believe. 

Connie’s “PMS” Brownie

3 sticks unsalted butter

2 cups,60% bittersweet chocolate chips

6 large eggs, at room temperature

3 cups sugar

1 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

1 1/4 cups cake flour

1 cup and 2 tablespoons  Dutch-processed unsweetened 

     cocoa powder

Adjust the rack to the middle level of the oven and preheat to 350 F.  Prepare a 9 x 13 inch  baking pan with heavy duty aluminum foil, spray foil with cooking spray or grease with vegetable shortening

Cut the butter into 1- inch chunks. In a small, heavy saucepan, melt the butter pieces over low heat; add the chocolate chips. Stir with a small whisk until combined and the chocolate is melted and smooth. Turn off the heat but leave the saucepan on the burner until ready to use.

Using a whisk, lightly beat the eggs in a large mixing bowl. Place the sugar and salt in a separate small mixing bowl, then whisk into eggs just until incorporated. Briefly whisk the melted chocolate mixture, then gradually whisk into the egg mixture until just combined, whisk in the vanilla.

Place the flour and cocoa powder in a small mixing bowl; whisk to combine. Sift through a strainer directly into the batter; stir into mixture with a spatula until just combined. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly.  Bake for 34 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a cooling rack and let cool at room temperature for at least 15 minutes, then refrigerate the pan for 7 or 8 hours, or overnight. 

Remove brownies from the pan then peel off and discard the foil. Place the slab of brownies on a cutting board. Cut brownies with a sharp knife that as been heated in hot water. Enjoy!