Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Marble Bundt Cake

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and enjoyed their time with family and friends. I'm sure this week is full of plans for New Year's Eve. After revving up my sweet tooth on Christmas day with the multiple desserts served at my family's luncheon, I decided to make a dessert for this week: a marble bundt cake.

Ok, I know I said I would be doing espresso gingerbread cookies this week. Turns out, I can't find espresso powder around here. So I ordered some and am waiting on it to make its way to my house. In the meantime, I made a marble bundt cake.

Doesn't this look delicious! It should because it is. The chocolate is just right - it doesn't overpower the rest of the cake. But it allows you to get that chocolate hit that all true chocoholics crave (that's me). I didn't put any glaze over the cake because it was perfect just like this. However, Nicole Rees suggests a light dusting of powdered sugar or a chocolate glaze (if you want even more chocolate).

Marble Bundt Cake (Baking Unplugged, by Nicole Rees)
    Makes 16 servings

1 cup of milk, room temperature (divided)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 oz semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, grated (something in the 55-65% range; mine was 59%)
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 cup plus 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, soft
2 cups sugar
1/2 tsp salt
4 large eggs, room temperature

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a 12-cup Bundt pan. Combine the milk and vanilla. In a medium bowl, whisk the cocoa with 1/4 cup of the milk until smooth. Stir in the grated chocolate. In another bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder. In a large bowl (I used my stand mixer), beat the butter, sugar, and salt together until smooth and fluffy (about 2 minutes). One at a time, beat in the eggs. Stir in the flour and remaining milk in 3 additions, starting and ending with the flour. After everything is well incorporated, stir about 1/3 of the batter into the chocolate mixture from earlier until no pale streaks remain. Alternating the white batter with the chocolate batter, place dollops into the Bundt pan until both batters are finished. Rap the pan on the counter to eliminate any air pockets. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until a skewer inserted near the center comes out with only moist crumbs still attached. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 20 minutes then cool completely out of the pan on the rack. Enjoy!

After I get the espresso powder, I'm thinking about adding a little to this recipe along with some ground walnuts to give it a little kick. Stay tuned!

Hope everyone has a Happy New Year's!

Update: I got my espresso powder in today. Yay! Made up another batch of cake mix, except this time, added a few things to make a mocha-walnut marble bundt cake. I added 1 tsp of espresso powder to the initial chocolate mixture and I added 1/2 cup of walnuts, finely ground into the cake batter before taking out the 1/3 to add to the chocolate mix. The espresso powder helped kick up the chocolate flavor and the hint of walnuts running throughout the cake was de-lish! I won't be posting any pics of the new cake because you can't "see" the changes I made, only "taste." And you definitely must taste.

Also, if you like banana cake, try adding 2 cups of fresh pureed bananas to the batter for a different flavor!

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