|Best excuse, ever.|
|Cake + Martini glasses = at least 23% more romantic|
|The whole mixing and baking stage is a little less spontaneous. I recommend planning ahead.|
Dutch-process cocoa powder, as opposed to "natural" cocoa powder, is washed with alkali to reduce its acidity and deepen its color. This results in a somewhat lighter, more "pure" chocolate flavor and intense ebony hue for the finished cake, but Dutch cocoa also seems rather hard to find in our area. If you've only got natural cocoa, omit the baking powder and double the baking soda - the additional acid in the natural cocoa changes the leavening formula.
For the cake:
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen
1/2 c (1 stick) butter, softened
1 c dark brown sugar, firmly packed
1/2 c granulated sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 c buttermilk
1 tbs vanilla extract
1 1/2 c cake flour
3/4 c Dutch cocoa powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
For the chocolate hazelnut cream:
4 oz mascarpone cheese
4 oz chocolate hazelnut spread (nutella, nocciolatta, etc.)
2 oz fresh raspberries
Preheat the oven to 325°F and grease a 9x5 loaf pan.
In a large bowl, cream the butter until smooth.
Add both sugars and beat until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Add the eggs and beat well, then mix in the buttermilk and vanilla.
|Rich and chocolatey|
Blend lightly but do not overmix. Scrape down the batter in the bowl, making sure the ingredients are well blended.
Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake 60-70 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then unmold from the pan and cool completely.
To prepare the chocolate hazelnut cream, simply whisk the mascarpone and chocolate hazelnut spread together in a medium bowl until smooth.
|There will be extra cake. Is that a bad thing?|