Friday 4 December 2009


My nifty new NordicWare bundt pan is called "Bavarian".  I purchased it at the CookShop in City Square and immediately started looking for new recipes to try out.  I have Rose Levy Beranbaum's new book, Rose's Heavenly Cakes, which is chock full of interesting recipes.  I chose the "Chocolate Velvet Fudge Cake" because I had all the ingredients in my pantry and it seemed so straight-forward.
After taking the pictures of the whole baked cake, I was impressed by the intricate grooves that showed up quite nicely in the cake.  I took a hot sliver of the chocolate bundt and ate it.  It was soft and fine textured but left a dry taste in my mouth, kind of like the dryness of cocoa powder.  I was perplexed.  It looked moist inside.  It seemed chocolatey.  It wasn’t over-baked.  In fact, I followed the instructions for a dark metal pan by baking it at 325degrees F and I took the cake out at the 50 minute mark.  I weighed my ingredients instead of using volume measurements.  I think perhaps this is just the way the cake is meant to be. 
Anyhoo, the girls liked it.  However, I wanted something to help the dry mouth feel and so I decided to make a chocolate glaze.  I mean, how can you go wrong by adding more chocolate?
In a glass measuring cup, I quickly melted 4 oz of dark chocolate pieces in the microwave along with 4 tablespoons of butter.  I stirred in 1 Tablespoon of corn syrup and mixed thoroughly.  While it was still warm, I poured it over the whole cake.  It looked so lovely.  Bebe came up and took a peek.  She said, “Mommy, it looks like a really big chocolate doughnut!”.  She licked her lips. 
It did look like a huge glazed chocolate doughnut.  The girls liked the cake much better with the glaze and it does go well with a cup of milk or some tea.  My mother of course, didn’t really dig it because she likes “wet” cakes. 
from Rose Levy Beranbaum’s Rose’s Heavenly Cakes
  • 3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon (sifted before measuring) /2.2 oz/63 grams unsweetened (alkalized) cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup/4 fluid oz/4.2 oz/118 grams boiling water
  • 3 large eggs, at room temp
  • 1/2 cup/ 4 fluid oz/4.2 oz/118 grams water
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons, sifted into the cup and levelled/8.3 oz/235 grams cake flour
  • 1 1/2 cups/10.5 oz/300 grams superfine sugar
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoons salt
  • 16 tablespoons/2 sticks/8 oz/227 grams unsalted butter (at 65degrees to 75degrees F/19degrees to 23 degrees C)
Special Equipment:  one 10-cup fluted tube pan, preferably silicone, coated with baking spray with flour and set on a wire rack on a baking sheet.
Preheat the Oven:  Twenty minutes or more before baking, set an oven rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 350degreesF/175degreesC (325degreesF/160degreesC if using a dark metal pan).
Mix the cocoa and water:  In a medium bowl, whisk the cocoa and boiling water until smooth.  Cover with plastic wrap to prevent evaporation and cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes.  To speed cooling, place it in the refrigerator.  Bring it to room temperature before proceeding.
Mix the remaining liquid ingredients:  In another bowl, whisk the eggs, the 1/2 cup water, and the vanilla just until lightly combined.
Make the Batter:  In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the flat beater, mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt on low speed for 30 seconds.  Add the butter and the cocoa mixture.  Mix on low speed until the dry ingredients are moistened.  Raise the speed to medium and beat for 1 1/2 minutes.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
Starting on medium-low speed, gradually add the egg mixture in two parts, beating on medium speed for 30 seconds after each addition to incorporate the ingredients and strengthen the structure.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl.  Using a silicone spatula or spoon, scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the surface evenly with a small metal spatula.
Bake the Cake:  Bake for 50-65 minutes, or until a wire cake tester inserted between the tube and the side comes out clean and the cake springs back when pressed lightly in the center.  The cake should start to shrink from the sides of the pan only after removal from the oven.  If using a metal pan, the cake will take the shorter baking time.
Cool and unmold the cake:  If using the silicone pan, remove it still on the baking sheet and set the sheet on a wire rack.  (Avoid disturbing the cake until it is no longer hot in order to prevent the sides from collapsing.)  Cool the cake in the pan for 1 hour, or until completely cool.  Cool for 15 minutes if using the metal pan.  Unmold the cake onto a serving plate.


Y said...

Mmm giant chocolate donut can't possibly be a bad thing! Too bad about the unusual 'dry' ness of the cake though.

Manggy said...

Oh boy! I'm actually reviewing this book and I'm not going to enjoy publishing it!! :( (Duncan's just editing it right now.)
However, I will say that the pan is a beautiful, beautiful thing and I so envy you!!

Deeba PAB said...

Nom nom nom...I think the glaze did the trick. That's one gorgeous bundt pan. Love the way the lines came out. Pity the cake was dry, but HEY, you fixed it beautifully!!

Palidor said...

Chocolate on top of chocolate? Sounds perfect to me! I love the design on the cake. I have a bundt pan, but not with such an intricate design.

Heather said...

What a beautiful cake! I have Rose's book - it's so difficult to choose what to make. i like the idea of a nice chocolatey fudge cake without too many bells and whistles.

Pei-Lin said...

My god!! The name of the cake itself is good enough to kill me ... Velvet fudge ... Who can resist it ...


Clumbsy Cookie said...

The cake is beautiful, I love those kinds of pans. Even if it was dry, addind the icing was clever. Plus who doesn't love anything that looks like a giant donut???

Cakebrain said...

I had to give away the rest of the cake because it was just too big for us. :( It was way too giant.
Oh no! if you're not going to enjoy publishing it, does that mean you have come to a similar conclusion as me with my results here? I'll have to check it out! Well, you've got to be honest, right?
Yes, it definitely needed a glaze of some sort! I am starting to really like collecting bundt pans. Oh no. Not another collection of things...
We think alike. Great minds love chocolate!
I was looking for a straightforward bundt recipe too! Still on my quest for a chocolate one!
Dodol & Mochi,
Chocolate is my weakness too! It's like kryptonite!
Everything changes when you look at it like a giant doughnut! I agree...who can not smile when eating a doughnut?

Zurin said...

I am so jealous of that pan....its beyoootiful... ...and like you I live by chocolate on chocolate.:)

Mélanie said...

It's true that this new pan is gorgeous!! Too bad that the recipe was not as good as you'd wish. It was a good idea to improve it with a chocolate glaze. Another idea would be to serve it with a light custard sauce. I know my father always ask for some when I serve a chocolate cake...

Cakebrain said...

We think alike! It's so nice to meet kindred spirits :)

what a great idea! thank you for reminding me! I have often had cake in restaurants with a custard sauce, but never thought to do the same at home!

Anonymous said...

That is a gorgeous cake - even if it was inedible it would still be worth it because its a little work of art!
Yesterday I just gave my family the hint that Nordic Ware pans are always welcome in my kitchen so maybe I'll get another one for Christmas. I think I'm going to put pegs up on my wall to hang them on because they are so pretty!

Juliana said...

Nice bundt pan...and the cake looks amazing, moist and very chocolaty -

Karine said...

Even if the cake was a bit dry, it still looks stunning! :)

Cakebrain said...

I hope Santa brings you a Nordic Ware pan!
Looks can be deceiving. Chocolatey, but not so moist unfortunately :( However, that's why we covered it all with more chocolate!
thank you for your kind words!

Beth said...

The cake is beautiful. That pan is amazing, and i'm seriously tempted to order one!

Dry chocolate cake is so sad. It's a waste of good chocolate!

Beth @ 990 Square

Cakebrain said...

Oh yes, I concur. It is so sad to see good quality chocolate go to waste. I loathe it.

Anonymous said...

I've been very curious about this book. Thanks so much for sharing!

Lori said...

Bummer about its dryness- it sure does look pretty though.

Hanaâ said...

I love that pan. It's beautiful. I've made this cake early this year. It was delicious and I didn't have any dryness issues (and I'm not just saying that cuz I'm a Rose fan - I also made the choc butter cupcakes from the same book and found them to be a tad dry but still tasty). Not sure what happened with yours. Did you use the specified flour? Did you weigh your eggs (not all eggs are created equally)?

Cakebrain said...

thanks for attempting to figure out the source of the dryness issue.
Yes, I used the specifed flour. When I test a recipe for the first time, I always use the specified flour. In fact, I am thinking totally the opposite to what you just postulated about the flour and eggs. I think that not all flours are created equally; whereas I believe that all eggs are created equally as they are regulated strictly by weight and quality in Canada (I'm not too sure if they are in other countries). The place where flours are grown affect the levels of protein etc. and that may make more of a difference than any problem with eggs. So even if I did use a cake flour, not all cake flours are created equally and vary from brand to brand. So the brand of flour may be the source of the problem.
Yah. Love that bundt pan. It's a winning design!


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