Chocolate-Malt Whopper Whoopies

Who wants a whoopie?!  I could use anything about now that gives me a hint of a mental boost. I’m sure my readers on the East coast of the U.S. right now will agree. Hang in there- Spring is coming! How can you be mad when you say the word whoopie? My computer keeps trying to auto change it to whoopee every time-clearly hinting to me with a mind of it’s own that I need to whoop it up a bit more than usual. Note taken.

I’ve been wanting to make whoopie pies for a while now, but wanted to forgo the traditional marshmallow filling.  A couple of years ago I made this whopper buttercream for a filling in a buche de noel, and remembered how yummy it was. There are crushed whoppers in the buttercream which boosts the malt flavor even more. Who doesn’t love a good whopper?  I love the flavor combination of chocolate and malt, and now that I have a container of malted milk powder I’m going to have to bust out some more recipes I supposed with malt! These are fun for a party or casual gathering.  If you don’t know what a whopper is, you might know what a malteser is (if you hail from somewhere besides the U.S.) This recipe is adapted from a recipe called Devil Dogs from the Cookbook Baked Elements. Enjoy!

 

Keep the batter spaced well when scooping, as they spread when baked….

 

Chocolate-Malt Whopper Whoopies

yield: ~ 12-13 whoopie pies

 

Chocolate Whoopie Pies

yield: 12-13 assembled sandwiched whoopies

recipe: adapted from “Devil Dogs” in Cookbook Baked Elements

 

2 Cups all purpose flour

1/2 Cup dark unsweetened cocoa powder (such as Valrhona)

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. instant espresso powder

1/4 Cup unsalted butter, room temp

1/4 Cup vegetable shortening, room temp

1 Cup firmly packed brown sugar

2 tsp. vanilla

1.5 oz. dark chocolate (60-72 %), melted and cooled (I used Guittard “Extra Dark” 63 % chocolate chips)

1 large egg yolk

1 Cup whole milk +1 Tbsp. vinegar (Or you can use 1 Cup buttermilk)

 

Whisk the first 6 ingredients in a medium bowl and set aside.

In a glass measuring cup place the milk and vinegar and allow to sit for 10-15 minutes.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and shortening until smooth and creamy, stopping to scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl as necessary.

Add the brown sugar and vanilla and beat (about 3 mins.)  until fluffy-stop to scrape down sides and bottom of bowl as needed. Add the cooled chocolate and yolk and beat until combined. Note: I used the microwave to melt my chips and it took me exactly 60 seconds total heat time-which I stopped several times to stir the chocolate as to avoid burning).

Turn the mixer to low and add the flour mixture in 3 parts, alternating with the milk mixture, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Stop the mixer often to scrape down the sides and bottom of work bowl. Remove the bowl from the mixer and use a spatula to mix gently one last time and gather the batter into the middle of the bowl. Place the bowl in the refrigerator to chill for 10 minutes.

Prepare sheet pans with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 400° F.

Remove chilled batter from fridge. Using a 1 oz. scoop (2 Tbsp.), scoop and place batter onto prepared sheet pans, leaving 2 inches of space to allow for spreading while baking. Bake for 10 minutes or until cakes spring back slightly when gently pressed. Do not overbake. Allow to cool on pans completely, then carefully use a spatula to gently scrape underneath to remove. Note: the original recipe says to chill the cakes on pans for 10 minutes then remove, but I found that the cakes fell apart too easily with this, so I advise allowing the cakes to cool completely on the sheet pans then removing gently. Another helpful tip: I found that chilling the cakes (unassembled for about an hour before filling them also helps the cakes to firm up a bit which helps them stay firmer once assembling).

To Assemble: Scoop a generous amount of buttercream filling (recipe below) between two cakes and serve immediately. If not serving immediately, store assembled cakes in the fridge in an airtight container or in a container covered with foil.

 

Malted Buttercream with Crushed Whoppers

recipe adapted from the Book:  Baked Elements

2 Tbsp. boiling water (I do this in a coffee mug in the microwave)

4 Tbsp. (1/4 C)  malted milk powder (such as Carnation)

1/2 Cup heavy cream

6 Tbsp (1/4 C + 2 Tbsp. ) whole milk

1/4 Cup  flour

1 Cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temp

1  3/4 C confectioners sugar, sifted

1 tsp. vanilla

1 Cup Whoppers Malted Milk Balls + more (if desired for garnishing outside of pies)

 

Dissolve the malted milk powder in the boiling water and using a spoon, stir and  smoosh the powder as necessary against the side of the mug to ensure all of the powder dissolves.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, stir together the cream, milk, and malted milk mixture. Whisk in the flour gradually and stir constantly until mixture reaches a boil and becomes thick, about 3 minutes. Set the mixture in the refrigerator to chill for about 10 minutes.

Cream the butter and confectioners sugar in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat until fluffy. Remove the cooled malt mixture from the fridge and slowly pour in the mixture with the mixer on low. Once all the milk mixture is added, add in the vanilla and turn up the mixer and beat on medium speed until mixture is fluffy.

Place the Whoppers in a freezer type ziplock bag and using a heavy saucepot crush the candies until coarsely crushed.

Fold in the crushed whoppers into the buttercream.

Note: You can make the buttercream a day in advance if desired and store in an airtight container in the fridge. When ready to assemble whoopies- let the buttercream come to room temperature and rewhip by hand (vigorously) with a spoon to allow the buttercream to become fluffy again.

Note: you can crush additional Whoppers and roll the finished/assembled whoopies in crushed candies if desired.


Pumpkin Coffee Cake with Pecan and Pumpkin Seed Streusel

Pumpkin Coffee Cake with Pecan and Pumpkin Seed Crumble

Are you tired of pumpkin spice yet? Not me. I’ll find any reason to come up with a new coffee cake recipe. This time of year I always have a can or two of pumpkin puree for when the mood strikes.

The house smells amazing as this bakes, and the cake is divine. That’s all you need to know.

Pumpkin Streusel Coffee Cake with Pecan and Pumpkin Seed Streusel

Pumpkin Streusel Coffee Cake

Pecan & Pumpkin Seed Streusel:

1 Cup all purpose flour

1/2 Cup sugar

1 stick unsalted butter (1/2 Cup), cut into small pieces and kept cold

3/4 tsp.  cinnamon

1/8 tsp. ground ginger

1/8 tsp. nutmeg

1/2 tsp. salt

3/4 Cup pecan pieces

1/4 Cup pumpkin seeds

In a bowl of a stand mixer place the flour, sugar, spices and salt. Stir to combine. Add the cold butter pieces and mix on low speed for about 5-6 minutes until mixture resembles coarse wet sand. Do not allow to form a dough. Mix in the pecan pieces by hand. Reserve the pumpkin seeds to sprinkle over later. Remove the streusel to a bowl and chill until ready to bake.

Cake:

1 Cup all-purpose flour

1 tsp. baking powder

3/4 tsp. kosher salt

1/4 tsp. nutmeg

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. ground ginger

1/8 tsp. ground mace

3/4 Cup unsalted butter, room temp

3/4 Cup sugar

2 Lg. eggs, room temp

1 tsp. vanilla

3/4 Cup pumpkin puree

Preheat the oven to 350° F. Spray a 9×9 square baking pan with baking spray.

In a small bowl combine the flour, baking powder, salt, and spices and set aside.

In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time and mix until combined. Add in the vanilla and pumpkin and mix until combined; don’t overbeat-note mixture will appear curdled but don’t worry. Add in the flour mixture all at once and mix gently on low until combined. Don’t overbeat. Pour the batter into prepared cake pan and smooth out top.

Remove streusel from the fridge and sprinkle over cake batter evenly (it will seem like a lot but use it all). Sprinkle the pumpkin seeds over the top of the streusel and bake in preheated oven for about 35-40 minutes. Cover with foil for last several minutes if seeds appear too brown.

Note: I finished my cake by placing under the broiler on lowest rack for a couple minutes to brown the streusel a bit further.

Allow to cool over a wire rack and serve warm or at room temp.


Boozy Bourbon and Coke- Bundt Cake Bites

Bourbon and Coke Cake Bites

This is an ADULT dessert cake bite, so plan accordingly… The bourbon packs a punch and definitely is assertive, front and center. These are conveniently bite size and although they look dainty, they are meant to be popped into the mouth whole for one glorious bite. The perfect boozy bite of chocolaty goodness. This is NOT your wall flower kind of cake bite. There is no hiding in the corner. Bring these to your next Uker, Bunko or Poker party cause it’s about to get rowdy….you’ve been warned.

Bourbon Chocolate Cake Bites

Boozy Bourbon Cake Bites

(recipe adapted from Cake Simple by Christie Matheson)

yield: 5 Cups of batter- about 60 mini cake bites

1/2 Cup unsalted butter, room temp

1/2 Cup (packed) light brown sugar

1/2 Cup + 2 Tbsp. granulated sugar

1 large egg + 1 egg yolk

3 oz. unsweetened chocolate, melted & cooled

1 1/2 tsp. vanilla

2 Tbsp. natural (not dutch- processed) cocoa powder (such as Hershey’s)

6 Tbsp. (90 ml) boiling water

1/2 Cup bourbon (preferably 100 proof-I used Knob Creek brand)

1 Cup all purpose flour

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. salt

1. Preheat oven to 325° F. Spray two mini bundt bite (tea cake size pans) generously with nonstick (baking with flour spray) and set aside. You can also use a small bundtlette size pan; both work well as I have tested the recipe in both. Conversely you can double the recipe and bake in a 10 Cup size large Bundt pan.

2. In a small bowl place the cocoa powder and pour the boiling water over and mix with a spatula to dissolve cocoa. Add the bourbon and stir to combine; set aside to cool to room temp. In another small bowl:  whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt and set aside.

3. Using an electric mixer, cream together the butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add in the egg and egg yolk and beat until combined. Hand stir in the vanilla and melted chocolate until combined. (You want to avoid overbeating batter in order to keep it moist). With the mixer on low add the flour mixture (in three increments) alternately with the cocoa/bourbon mixture (in two increments) beginning and ending with the flour mixture until just combined (avoid overbeating). Note: the cocoa/ bourbon mixture will seem like too much- but trust me it will mix in.

4. Pour the batter into the wells of the tea cake pans filling them 3/4 full. Note: I find it easier to put the batter into a pastry bag with a round tip and fill the wells this way- you have better control.

5. Bake in a preheated oven for 10 minutes. For the larger bundt (but still mini) bundts I baked them for 18 minutes. If confused: this particular size Bundt wells hold 6 Tbsp. of batter.

6. Allow cakes to cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then turn pans over to remove and allow to cool over a wire rack. Drizzle tops of cakes with Bourbon and Coke Chocolate Glaze. Store in an airtight container. Note; because of their size they tend to dry out quickly- they are best served the day they are made.

Bourbon & Coke Chocolate Glaze

recipe from Southern Living

1/4 Cup unsalted butter

3-4 1/2 Tbsp. Coke soft drink

2 1/2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder

2 Cups + 2 Tbsp. Confectioners sugar, sifted

1 Tbsp. bourbon (preferably 100 proof-I used Knob Creek)

In a small sauce pan over low heat melt butter. Add in the cocoa powder and 3 Tbsp. of the coke, and whisk to combine, cooking for 1-2 minutes over low heat. Remove from heat and add in the bourbon. Add the sifted confectioners sugar a little at a time and whisk until smooth. If too thick add a little more coke a teaspoon at a time until desired consistency.


Pina Colada Cake

I’m not gonna lie; this is an ambitious cake with many components which you may decide to make only parts of. I recently made this for both my nephews graduation party. The oldest graduated from college, and the younger graduation from high school, so excuse my not so great pictures as I only spent a few minutes taking pictures of the cake at the party.

I love nothing more than a good three layer dramatic cake. Of all the things I make- 3 layer cakes are still my favorite. If you love the taste of pina colada, then this is the cake for you. As I always say, make it your own. If you decide you want to leave out the curd filling and just make a coconut cake with a simple filling, then by all means. I have made this cake many times with different variations. I will also give the variation for this cake in 2 layers at the end of the post for those who want just a 2 layer cake.  If you can find the large flake unsweetened coconut- it is an especially elegant cake; Bobs Red Mill makes a good version of the large flake coconut if you can find it.  Another variation is to fill it with store bought lemon or lime curd. Dickensons makes a great lime curd if you can find it. Since I cover the cake with sweetened coconut I purposely leave the coconut buttercream on the subtle side. If you like a real full on coconut taste you may also decide to flavor all of the buttercream with more coconut extract. Just play around with it- by adding a little at a time until you like the taste. The cake takes a while to make and assemble, so when I am planning to make it- I like to make the syrup, pineapple curd and the buttercream the day before to save time. Just keep all 3 components chilled overnight.

* If you don’t like the visible flecks of vanilla bean in the frosting then you can use vanilla extract instead. I personally like the flavor of the vanilla bean paste over the vanilla in this buttercream as it adds a more pronounced flavor.

Coconut Pina Colada Cake

Pina Colada Cake 1

Pina Colada Cake 2

PIna Colada Cake 3

Pina Colada Cake 5

Pina Colada Cake

 

Pineapple Curd

recipe: adapted from Donna Hay

300 gms Fresh Pineapple, chopped coarse

2 tsp. lemon juice

3 egg yolks

2 Tbsp. cornstarch

1/2 Cup caster (superfine) sugar

150 gms unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon pieces.

In a food processor or vitamix, or super powered blender; process the pineapple until smooth. Strain pineapple directly into a small saucepan. Add in the lemon juice and stir with a heat proof spatula. Add in the sugar, egg yolks and cornstarch and stir vigorously or whisk to combine. Place over medium heat and stir continuously with the spatula or non metal whisk until thickened; about 6-8 minutes. Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter in pieces. Place in a bowl and cover directly with plastic wrap over surface. Chill until ready to use. Makes about 1 1/2 Cups; you will have a little left over. The curd will keep in the fridge for up to one week.

 

Rum Cake Syrup

1/2 Cup sugar

3/4 Cup water

2 Tbsp. dark rum

1. In a small saucepan, combine the sugar and water to a boil, stirring to ensure sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and stir in rum. Set aside to cool at room temperature while you prepare the cake. Note: you can also prepare this a day or two ahead and keep in refrigerator to chill. Makes about 1 cup and you will have some leftover.

 

Coconut three-Layer Cake

4 3/4 + 2 Tbsp. Cake Flour
1 1/2 Tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt

1 1/2 Cup unsalted softened butter (3 sticks)
2 1/4 Cup sugar
9 egg whites (if using liquid egg whites from a carton- use 1 1/2 cups liquid measured)
zest of one lemon- finely grated/zested
2 tsp. vanilla or vanilla bean paste. (I like to use the paste)
1 tsp. coconut extract

1 Cup (full fat) coconut milk [shake several times before opening]
1 Cup whole or 2 % milk

1 Cup sweetened flake coconut + more for covering sides and top of cake.

1. Preheat oven to 350° F. Prepare three 9 inch cake pans by spraying with nonstick baking spray and lining with parchment circles, then spray lightly again.
2. Whisk first 3 ingredients in a medium bowl and set aside. In bowl of stand mixer cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy; about 2-3 minutes. Mix coconut milk and whole milk in a 2 cup glass measuring cup, set aside. Add egg whites to butter sugar mixture one at a time or slowly if using liquid whites; stopping frequently to scrape down bottom and sides of bowl. Add extracts and mix. Note: mixture will look really loose and curdled (this is okay and normal)- it will come together in the end. In 3 additions on medium speed, alternate adding 1/3 of the flour mixture with 1/3 milk mixture starting an ending with flour mixture.  Fold in sweetened coconut with a spatula. Divide batter equally between the three pans.
3. Bake at 350° F for about 25 minutes or until cake pulls away from sides and a wooden skewer comes out clean. Be careful not to over bake. It’s okay if you get a few moist crumbs on skewer. Let pans cool on a wire rack until completely cool, then flip out cakes.

Vanilla Bean & Coconut Swiss Meringue Buttercream

6 egg whites (note: I do not use liquid egg whites for this)

1 1/2 Cups sugar

5 sticks unsalted butter, room temp (slightly softened)

2 tsp. vanilla bean paste

1/2 tsp. (+ more to taste) coconut extract

In a medium to large saucepan place an inch of water. In the bowl of your stand mixer place the egg whites and sugar. Place the bowl directly over the pan of water and bring water to a simmer; whisking continuously. Whisk the whites and sugar until mixture is 160 degrees F. If you don’t have an instant read thermometer- just heat until you no longer feel any sugar granules and mixture is warm to touch. Remove bowl; wipe off the bottom of any water and place on mixer with whisk attachment. Whisk on medium high speed until a meringue forms and is shiny and stiff; about 5 minutes. Continue to whisk until the bottom of the bowl is no longer warm. Reduce speed to medium and add in one tablespoon of butter at a time until buttercream is smooth. Stop as necessary to scrape down sides and bottom to ensure you are getting on the meringue mixed in. NOTE: It will go through a grainy curdled phase- but don’t worry (this is normal) it will come together- just keep adding in the butter and continue to whip. Once smooth, stop and remove about 1 1/2 cups and place in a bowl large enough to mix. Mix the 1 1/2 cups of buttercream with the coconut extract, then set aside. Mix the remaining buttercream with the vanilla bean paste until all the paste is incorporated.

 

To assemble:

1. Trim off cake tops with a large serrated knife to level any domed tops. Flip cakes over and also shave off a thin layer of the cake that has turned brown; this helps the syrup soak in a bit more.

2. Place a small dollop of buttercream onto a cardboard cake round. This helps “glue” the cake, so as not to slide while assembling. Place one cake layer down over the dollop of buttercream, being careful to center on cardboard round. Brush cake liberally with the rum syrup. Frost this first layer with the coconut buttercream, until buttercream is level and smooth.

3. Prepare a second cake layer by brushing with syrup and carefully flipping cake over so syrup soaked side rests over the coconut buttercream. Brush the top side of cake also with syrup. Place a generous amount of the pineapple curd over the cake layer and smooth to the side of cake leaving about 1/2 inch boarder as curd will spread a bit. If you want extra assurance; you may pipe a border of vanilla buttercream (about 1/2 inch tall) along the outside edge border of the cake and place the pineapple curd inside the piped boarder. If you like a thicker layer of curd this is a way to get a thicker layer without having to worry about it seeping out the sides of the cake. If you don’t have a piping bag you can simply use a plastic ziplock bag and snip off one of the corners and pipe that way. If find I like this way (using the piped border) as some of the curd tends to soak into the cake after assembling and you can get a thicker layer of curd this way.

4. Brush the third and final layer of cake with syrup and place it soaked side down over the curd layer. Brush the top layer of the cake also with syrup and spread a thin layer of vanilla buttercream over the top and sides of cake to “crumb coat”. Place the crumb coated cake into the fridge for 30 minutes. Frost the cake top and sides with remaining vanilla buttercream until smooth and cover top and sides of cake with flaked coconut. Keep cake chilled in refrigerator. Remove cake about 1 hour before ready to serve to come to room temperature. Store any remaining cake in the refrigerator.

 

For a 2 layer cake: Follow directions as above but reduce amounts as per below and prepare two 9 inch cake pans and bake as above. Prepare a 5 egg white buttercream.

3 1/4 Cups cake flour

1 Tbsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1 Cup unsalted butter

1 1/4 Cups

6 large egg whites

1 tsp. lemon zest (fine)

1 1/2 tsp. vanilla bean paste (or vanilla)

1/2 tsp. coconut extract

2/3 Cup coconut milk

2/3 Cup whole or 2 % milk

3/4 Cup sweetened flake coconut + more for finishing cake

 

Five egg white Swiss Meringue Vanilla Bean Buttercream

Follow method directions as above for buttercream

(enough to frost and fill a 2 layer cake)

5  egg whites

1 1/4 Cup sugar

4 sticks unsalted butter

1 1/2 tsp. vanilla bean paste OR (Coconut extract to taste if you want coconut buttercream)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


New York Style Crumb Cake

I remember as a little girl we would have “snack cake” after school. It was usually some type of apple or banana cake. Something that was easy and a little “something something” to tide you over until dinner. This is NOT your mother’s snack cake. No offense Mom.  New Yorkers will know this cake; this is a simple recipe but something you will be craving at all times of the day- not just after school or work. I changed the crumb topping slightly from the original recipe (which used half granulated and half dark brown sugar) because I was out of dark brown sugar and did not feel like running out to the store to get some. I like it just fine that way.

New York Crumb Cake

NY Crumb Cake 2

NY Crumb Cake 4

New York Crumb Cake

recipe adapted from Cook’s Illustrated

yield: 8×8 inch square (about 8-10 servings)

Crumb Topping

1 3/4 C (7 oz.) cake flour

2/3 C light brown sugar (original recipe calls for 1/3 C sugar, plus 1/3 Cup dk. brown sugar)

3/4 tsp. cinnamon

pinch salt

1 stick (1/2 C) (113 g) unsalted butter, melted but still warm

1. In a bowl whisk the flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt. Pour the warm butter over mixture and stir with a large metal spoon. Push down the mixture with the spoon to compact to mix and then “rake” the mixture back and forth to break it up but allow clumps to form. Set aside.

Cake

1 1/4 cups cake flour (5 ounces)
1/2 cup granulated sugar (3 1/2 ounces)
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon table salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter (3/4 stick), cut into 6 pieces, softened but still cool
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup buttermilk*
Confectioners’ sugar for dusting

*If you don’t have buttermilk; take1/3 Cup milk and stir in 1 tsp. white vinegar and let sit for 10 minutes

1. Prepare a 8x8x2 inch square pan with a parchment sling. Spray liberally with non-stick baking spray. Preheat oven to 325° degrees F. Place rack in middle to upper middle position.

2. In the bowl of a stand mixer with a hand whisk; whisk together the flour, sugar, soda, and salt. Fit the mixer with the paddle attachment and on low speed mix in the butter one piece at a time until the crumbs resemble no lumps; about 2 minutes. Mix the buttermilk, eggs and vanilla in a measuring cup and add in slowly with mixer on medium. Mix until smooth and light and fluffy about 1 minute. Careful to scrape down bottom of bowl and sides. Spread the batter into prepared pan evenly and top with crumb mixture starting on the outsides of the pan and working towards middle. You want pea size as well as larger clumps to stay intact including crumbs. Bake at 325° F for 35-40 minutes until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack and when completely cool dust generously with confectioners sugar.


chocolate and peanut butter collide…Chocolate Peanut Butter Lava Cakes

Flash back to the 70’s and cue one of my favorite tv commercials for Reeses peanut butter cups. Two people walking down the street; the sun is shining, they are each lost in their own little unicorn world, and BAM!!  both oblivious they serrendipitously bump into each other coming around a corner.

The first person is holding a rather plain chocolate candybar as the second person with an open jar of peanut butter crashes into him, his candybar falls into the open peanut butter jar. The candybar man retorts  “You got peanut butter on my chocolate!” The peanut butter jar person exclaims “You got chocolate in my peanut butter!” After a Hmmpf! is exchanged between the two of them they each taste the mistaken calamity (in perfect slow motion tv unison) and quickly pronounce with a huge corny smile what a genius they are as the point man cues the Reeses peanut butter cup…

You almost immediately forget what idiot walks around with an open peanut butter jar on the street?

Chocolate and peanut butter ever colliding into sweet bliss. Yes it was super cheesy. Did we like it? You betcha. Some of the corniest commercial are the ones we remember. A real life Don Draper was smiling and knocking back a neat scotch I’m sure when that little nugget was produced. Chocolate and peanut butter will always be colliding–even on purpose. If you are more of a purist and like your chocolate cake flowing with an oozy chocolate center then leave out the peanut butter and instead insert a big square piece of chocolate in the cake batter instead. I won’t mind.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Lava Cake

Chocolate PB Lava Cakes

Chocolate PB Cake

Chocolate Peanut Butter Lava Cakes

recipe adapted from Donna Hay

yield: 4 individual cakes

200 gm dark chocolate, chopped (I used Ghiradelli bittersweet bars)

100 gm unsalted butter, chopped

2 Lg eggs

2 egg yolks

1/2 Cup castor sugar

1/4 Cup all-purpose flour

8 teaspoons smooth peanut butter

1. Preheat oven to 400° F or 200° C. Generously butter 4 dariole molds. If you don’t have dariole molds I think a popover pan would also work fine. (Note her original recipe calls for using 1 cup capacity molds but mine were 3/4 cup and it worked perfectly).

2. In a saucepan over low heat melt the chocolate and butter until smooth–stirring constantly to avoid burning.

3. Place the eggs, yolks and sugar in a bowl and whisk until combined. Slowly add the chocolate mixture while whisking until smooth. Using the whisk stir in the flour until combined.

4. Spoon 2/3 mixture into each dariole mold. Spoon 2 tsp. dollops of peanut butter into each cup and gently press the dollop into the chocolate. Spoon the remaining chocolate batter evenly into each cup using up all the batter. Using the back of a spoon level off the batter in each cup. Place the cups on a tray and bake for 13-16 minutes until tops appear dry and are slightly puffed. Do not overbake. Cakes can have a slight crack on top but not too much cracking. Let cakes rest for about 2 minutes until warm enough to handle and turn out onto a plate for serving and dust generously with cocoa powder.


Lime Syrup Cakes

It’s no secret I love citrus desserts. Frankly I like citrus anything. Anytime I can make a dessert wrapped around a piece of citrus I’m happy. These cakes pack a very bright citrus punch but the syrup balances out the cakes so they are not too tart. This is the recipe you make when limes are on sale. Limes were on sale the other day so I grabbed a bag and walked home thinking about how to impart them into a dessert. If you like you can make one standard size loaf cake. I happen to have a silicon bundtlette pan that I like to use for individual minis. These cakes are bright in taste and perfect after a spicy meal or after a meal where you want something not too heavy.

Lime Syrup Cakes

Lime Syrup Bundtlettes

Lime Syrup Cakes Closeup

Lime Syrup Loaf Cake Cut

Lime Syrup Cakes

yield: 12 mini (1/4 cup capacity) bundtlettes OR one regular 9×5 size loaf cake

Cakes:

1  1/2 Cups all-purpose flour

2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1 Cup thick yogurt

1  Cup sugar

3 Lg. eggs, room temp

zest of 2  1/2  large limes

3/4  tsp. vanilla

1/2 Cup vegetable oil

1. Preheat oven to 350°  F or 180° C. Prepare a mini bundtlette cake pan by brushing with melted butter and dusting with flour.

2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt and set aside. In a medium bowl whisk together the yogurt, one cup of sugar, eggs, zest of 2 limes (reserve the rest of zest for decoration), and vanilla until combined. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and whisk until combined. Using the whisk, fold in the vegetable oil until combined. Fill wells of bundtlettes to 3/4 full.

3. Bake at 350° until toothpick inserted comes out clean. My bundtlette pan size is a bit smaller than most-the wells hold a 1/4 cup filling and my baking time took 18 minutes, so check often until done as I’m not sure the standard size. If using a standard loaf pan the time will take about 45-50 minutes.

4. While the cakes are baking make the lime syrup by placing the 1/3 cup lime juice with the 1/3 cup sugar in a small saucepan and heating until sugar is dissolved, and simmer for 1 minute.

5. Allow the cakes to cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then remove and place a piece of parchment paper under the rack. Pokes holes in the top of the cakes with a toothpick about 1/2 inch apart. Dunk the cakes into the lime syrup by dunking all of the cakes except the very bottom. Turn the cakes upward so the tops are facing up. After 30 minutes, dunk the cakes one more time and sprinkle lightly with remaining lime zest. Allow cakes to cool completely. If making a large loaf-poke holes in the top of the cake and pour the syrup over and down the sides of the cake; after 30 minutes repeat the process using all of the syrup and sprinkle with lime zest.

Lime Syrup:

1/3 Cup fresh lime juice

1/3 Cup sugar