Tuesday, June 24, 2008

A Gentleman's Cake, and a Befitting Recipient

This is a long overdue post, but I have been struggling to find time to blog this past week because I had an assignment due today, and a change in my usual work roster. Plus, I have been feeling quite on the down-low recently with the winter blues. So my readers, I apologise.

My younger brother celebrated 18 years of life on June 15. And of course, I made him a celebration cake. I had hoped to make something fancy and complicated for his birthday, but boys seem to have a disinclination towards making life difficult for themselves (a trait I should learn and adapt to sometime soon). When I went to him with this question one week before the due date, he looked up from his pile of homework with eager eyes and said, " Can you make me something with both coffee and dark chocolate in it? Nothing too fancy, I just want a plain cake."

In hindsight, it was probably a good decision on his part. This cake is what I would call a gentleman's cake--elegant, restrained, simple and rich in both texture and flavour. What better for a boy on the cusp of becoming a man?

Happy Belated Birthday, my dearest and only brother. I wish you much luck at university next year, and study hard for the entrance exams! Enjoy all the things that come with the big 1-8, but also remember that you can go to jail now!! *wink, wink*

Coffee and chocolate cake
serves 25


400 g dark chocolate
375g unsalted butter, chopped
330g caster sugar
310ml freshly brewed strong coffee
3 large eggs, lightly whisked
375g plain flour
2 teaspoons baking powder

Chocolate Glaze

300 g dark chocolate, chopped
125g unsalted butter, chopped

Preheat oven to 160C. Grease a 20cm round pan, or a 22cm square pan. Combine chocolate, butter, caster sugar and coffee in a saucepan over medium heat until smooth and combined. Remove from heat, add eggs and whisk until combined. Sift together flour and baking powder, add to mixture and stir to mix. Pour mixture into prepared tin and bake for 1 1/2 hour, or until cake crumbs cling to a skewer inserted into the cake. Leave in pan for 10-20 mins before turning out.

Chocolate Glaze

Combine chocolate and butter in a heat-resistant bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, until mixture is smooth and well combined.

To assemble

Trim top of cake to a flat surface if necessary. Turn cake upside down and place on cooling rack. Place cake and cooling rack over a wide, shallow tray and pour glaze over. Smooth with a spatula. Set cake aside until glaze sets, but do not put cake in fridge while setting or the glaze would lose its sheen.


Vera said...

Happy Birthday to your brother and best wishes!
He is so lucky to have a sister who bakes such wonderful cakes as presents!

Tartelette said...

Happy belated birthday to your brother! The cake is gorgeous! Coffee and chocolate are so good together....very very good choice!

Y said...

That's a great looking cake. I think my brother would love something like that too - simple, and chocolate and coffee flavoured :)

Tara said...

Wow, what a fabulous cake! Welcome to the world of food blogging & the Daring Bakers, it is great to see another fellow Melbournian on the scene :)

Christy said...

Vear and Tartelette: Thank you for the compliments and the birthday wishes! I'll be sure to pass them on to my brother.

Y: Thank you for reading and leaving a comment. It means a lot to me.

Tara: I'm so excited to be a Daring Baker! And thank you for the warm welcome.