Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Eggnog Chocolate Cake

For most people this time of year is all about pumpkin. Well for me it is all about Eggnog! As soon as I see that yellow liquid in the cooler I instantly grab a pint or two and proceed to drink my weight in Eggnog. Obviously this is not a good time of year for a diet....good thing I don't believe in them, huh?!  

The other night while I was supposed to be listening to my professor lecture about the latest topic in Multicultural Education, I couldn't stop thinking about cake, more specifically eggnog chocolate cake. While my professor rambled on I was creating my delectable recipe.

It took all my will power not to leave class go home and make that cake. It absorbed all my thoughts. Unfortunately I didn't get to make this awesome cake when I got home either :( I have class at night and decided that if I was going to make a cake this good (at least I was hoping it was going to be good) then I was sure going to get some pictures of it! So with all the strength I had left I put the cake off until the following day. 

Naturally with this cake consuming all of my thoughts, and dreams, as soon as I was awake I immediately began prepping this cake. As you make this cake one of the first things you will notice is that it is very dense, so don't expect them to rise too much.

After putting this awesomeness into the oven I quickly realized that I had no idea what I was going to top it with. So, as my cakes baked ideas swam through my head like fish at feeding time. Regrettably, none of the ideas struck me with that ah ha feeling. I was starting to get worried about lack of inspiration when finally it hit me.

Whip Cream! Yes, whip cream indeed! Not much in this world is better than made from scratch whip cream! And it tasted like a little cloud of heaven, in fact I had to duct tape my husband to the couch in order to prevent him from eating it all. Okay not literally, but I did have to guard the whip cream with my life otherwise there would have been none for the cake. I will be honest I had the guard it from myself as well, it was that good :)

Now that you have the perfect whip cream make sure to allow your cakes to completely cool before placing between the layers, otherwise you are going to have a whip cream puddle. When I cool my cake I allow them to rest in the pan for about 5 minutes then I gently remove them and cool them the rest of the way on a wire rack.

This would be a really good time to make the chocolate ganache, because this too needs to cool. I know that I am really testing your patience here, but trust me it is all worth it in the end. Just bear with me a little longer! And I promise it is super easy, it's as simple as melting chocolate in cream.

Okay so now that everything has cooled you are ready to build this drool worthy cake. Place one cake round top down on a plate or cake stand, then pile as much of that fantabulous whip cream that you want on there, making sure it is even, because you want to make sure every piece gets some of that fluffy greatness. Then gently place the other cake round on top, top side up. At this point it sort of reminded me of a giant oatmeal cream pie!

Now comes the fun part, pouring all that chocolate deliciousness on top! Starting in the middle pour some of your ganache on the cake, then using a rubber spatula gently push the liquid gold to the edges of the cake allowing it to pour over the side. Repeat until all the sides and top of the cake are completely covered.


Kind of looks like a moon pie! Anyways now you can either put it away for later, which I had to do because I still had to cook dinner. Although there was a moment where my logical parenting side and my screw it I want cake side debated on whether or not to have this cake for dinner. Needless to say my logical parenting side won out and I had to wait, again, to eat this cake. With all the waiting I had to do I should have been able to eat the entire thing by myself.

Okay so onto the goods, the actual recipe! But before I dish out the goods I want to give you a few other tips. First, I did not put a lot of sugar in this recipe, so if you like things on the sweeter side then you should either add 3/4 cup of sugar or use semi-sweet chocolate when making the cake. Or you could use semi-sweet chocolate for the ganache which should allow you to reach the same goal. Second, you may want to consider adding a teaspoon of nutmeg to the cake recipe in order to help bring out the eggnog flavor, but you don't have to. I didn't, but next time I make it I am. Third, if you would like to try for some kicked up eggnog flavor try making the ganache with eggnog instead of cream. That is how I am going to do it. I will let you know how it turns it. So, that's it the end of my ramblings.....on with the recipe!

Eggnog Chocolate Cake
Yield: app. 10 slices (depends on how big you slice it)
Bake: 375 for about 20-25 minutes or until toothpick comes away clean when stuck in the middle 
   *to be honest I just cook my cakes until they are springy in the middle, I don't really pay attention to the time

1/2 cup Bittersweet Chocolate Chips
1 cup Eggnog
1 1/2 cups Flour
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1/2 cup Sugar or 3/4 cup for additional sweetness
1/4 cup Oil (vegetable or canola)
3 Whole Eggs
1/2 tsp. Salt
1/2 tsp. Vanilla

Grease and flour 2 9 inch round cake pans and preheat oven to 375. In a medium saucepan heat eggnog and chocolate over medium heat stirring continually in order to prevent chocolate from burning. As chocolate begins to melt whisk to blend together. Set aside to cool. In a large mixing bowl add dry ingredients. Mix until blended. Then slowly add cooled chocolate mixture into the flour, making sure to mix well after each addition. Once the chocolate has been completely incorporated add vanilla to mixture and mix one more time. Usually when you make cake it is a good idea to alternate between liquid and dry ingredients ending with dry ingredients, but with this cake it doesn't really matter.

Whip Cream
Yield: 6-8 cups

1 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
1/2 cup Granulated Sugar or Powdered Sugar (granulated sugar can break down your whip cream, but if you plan to use it immediately then don't worry about it)
1/2 tsp. Vanilla

Place metal mixing bowl and wire whisk in freezer for about 5 minutes or until cold. If you don't do this it won't be the end of the world. Your whip cream will still turn out. Now I have a stand mixer, but if you don't then you can use a hand mixer or just whisk it by hand. Whichever you prefer. Place whipping cream, sugar and vanilla in mixing bowl and begin to mix on medium speed until you can form medium peaks in the cream or the cream stands up when you pull the whisk out. This will take a little bit, but just keep working it. Place to the side.

Chocolate Ganache

1 cup Bittersweet Chocolate Chips
3/4 cup Heavy Whipping Cream

This process is exactly the same as when you melted the chocolate for the cake. In a medium saucepan heat cream and chocolate over medium heat, ensuring to whisk constantly. Once chocolate has completely melted set aside to cool.

Now stuff your face in that cake, you know you want to!

Please let me know your thoughts on this recipe and anything else, I love to hear from you!!!

"Devouring worlds one book and recipe at a time."