Monday, March 22, 2010
This cake is chock full of the good stuff. It's got cheesecake in it, lots of chocolate throughout, and a yummy sprinkling of coconut, chocolate chips, nuts, and sugar on top. This neat thing happens where both the cheesecake and the topping are placed on the top surface of the batter during assembly, but sink into the cake during baking; the result is that every bite has everything!
Whatever the technology is behind that sinking effect (is it just gravity or is there magic at work?), it's certainly not complicated. This is a cake that's fancy without the trouble. A winning combination! I served it at a dinner party and there was a roomful of smiles. It's great alongside vanilla ice cream but you could also brave it alone. It's chocolaty, but it's not Death by Chocolate (though that would be a-okay, too). Baking mastermind Marcy Goldman has done it again!
Deep, Dark Fudge Confection Cake
Recipe by Marcy Goldman and Yvan Huneault in The Best of BetterBaking.com
Cream Cheese Part
4 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
1 tablespoon sugar
3 tablespoons unsweetened shredded coconut
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup warm brewed coffee
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
Confectioners' sugar for dusting (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9-inch springform pan or a 9-inch round cake pan with a round of parchment paper. Spray the pan and paper with nonstick cooking spray. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
For the cream cheese part, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine all the ingredients and beat on the lowest speed until smooth.
For the chocolate-coconut part, stir all the ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.
For the batter, combine the cocoa, flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk to blend. Make a well in the center and whisk in the coffee, oil, and vinegar. Blend well to make a smooth batter.
Spoon the batter into the prepared pan, and then spoon on the cream cheese mixture, depositing it in dollops over the surface. It does not have to be even. Sprinkle the chocolate-coconut part over the top. The two mixtures will sink into the cake during baking.
Place the pan on the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 25 to 35 minutes, or until the cake springs back when gently touched. This cake is quite moist due to the cream cheese part, but it should be set in the center. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for at least 45 minutes, then unmold onto the wire rack and let cool completely. (The cake is a little fragile until it sets up.) Dust with confectioners' sugar, if desired.
Step-by-Step in Pictures
For the cream cheese part, combine all ingredients...
For the chocolate-coconut part, stir all ingredients together...
For the batter, combine all dry ingredients, then create a well in the center and whisk in the coffee, oil, and vinegar...
Blend well to make a smooth batter...
Spoon the batter into the prepared pan, then dollop the cream cheese part on top...
Finally, top with the chocolate-coconut part...
Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 35 minutes...
Let cool on wire rack...
Slice and serve!