Have any of you tried Julia Child’s Mocha Brownie Cake? Well, neither have I, but I came across the recipe in my ‘Baking with Julia’ manual and I decided to give it a go for my hubby’s birthday yesterday. He’s a self-reported chocoholic, so I wanted to make something that was luxurious and indulgent and ultra chocolatey. I was also looking for something with a simple decoration that would look great with candles and this particular dessert fit the bill.
The one major change I made to the recipe was adding chocolate chips. I wanted to make sure there were gooey chunks of chocolate with every cake bite, so I made this slight tweak. I’m thinking walnuts would taste wonderful too, but I didn’t go there this time around.
One other thing. In Julia’s recipe, she asks that you slice the cake in three parts and fill each layer with ganache before piling them back on. I skipped this part as I felt the cake was too thin to slice. I liked the texture the way it was out of the oven and decided to just pour the ganache all over it rather than in it. If you do this, you’ll have a lot of ganache left over. I’m thinking of making chocolate chip cupcakes today and topping them off with the left over ganache! Stay tuned for THAT recipe.
This is a great dessert for chocolate-loving kids and adults alike. Perfect for birthday celebrations or just because.
~ 3/4 cup all purpose flour
~ 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
~ 1/2 teaspoon salt
~ 4 1/2 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
~ 2 1 /2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
~ 3/4 stick (3 ounces) unsalted butter
~ 5 large eggs
~ 1 cup sugar
~ 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
~ 3 tablespoons sour cream
~ 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
~ 1 1 /4 cups heavy cream
~ 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
~ 3 tablespoons sugar
~ 12 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
~ 1/4 cup hot strong brewed coffee
~ Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch round cake pan and dust with flour, tapping out excess; set aside.
~ Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in small bowl and reserve.
~ Heat an inch of water in the bottom of a double boiler. Put the semisweet, unsweetened chocolates and butter in the top of the double broiler, and heat, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is fully blended and smooth. Remove pan from heat.
~ Put the eggs, sugar and vanilla in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, or use a hand mixer, and whip on high speed for 4 – 5 minutes, or until eggs are slightly thickened and doubled in volume.
~ Add the melted chocolate and mix at medium speed for 15 seconds. Don’t worry if chocolate is not fully incorporated – it will blend in as you add the other ingredients.
~ Remove the bowl from the mixer and, working with a rubber spatula, gently but thoroughly fold in the dry ingredients. Give the sour cream a vigorous turn or two with a whisk to loosen it, and fold it into the batter. The batter will be quite thick.
~ Toss the chocolate chips in 1 teaspoon flour and fold into the batter.
~ Pour the batter into the pan and, with a spatula, smooth and level the batter. Bake the cake for 45 – 50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer the cake to a cooling rack and let cool in the pan for 20 minutes.
~ Turn the cake out onto a round dish and refrigerate for an hour.
~ For the ganache, heat the heavy cream, butter, and sugar in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until sugar is dissolved and the mixture reaches a boil.
~ Put the chopped chocolate in a large bowl and pour in the boiling cream and the hot coffee. Set the mixture aside for 5 minutes, then stir until smooth.
~ The ganache must cool thoroughly. You can leave it to cool at room temperature – for an hour or so – or you can refrigerate it. The ganache thickens as it cools. You want to use it when it just begins to thicken and can be poured rather than spread over the cake.
~ Remove the cake from the refrigerator. Pour the ganache all over the top and sides and smooth all over using a long icing spatula. Allow the icing to set at room temperature.