Monday, June 9, 2014

Tunnel of Fugde Cake

Whether it's someones retirement or someones birthday, I always have to make that person something extra special. Something special and extra sweet. When it came time for my dear coworker Stephanie's 50th birthday, I knew I had to come up with something just right for her. Especially since it was her big 5-0. I didn't tell you that though. She may hurt me for saying that. Not really. Well, maybe. You'd never know it though - she doesn't look a day over 21! Seriously. No joke.

I usually lean towards cupcakes or layer cakes when I make someone a special treat, but this time, I wanted to do something different. I just couldn't decide what. Baker problems! To gain some inspiration, I searched through my pantry for assistance, but nothing jumped out at me. Then, I looked through all my baking pans and there it was - my bundt pan. I rarely use that darn thing, and it was time to dust it off. The bundt pan makes such pretty cakes, but it is really underused. At least I don't use it very often. Sad. To be honest, I think the only thing I've ever made with mine is a coffee cake (and that's only because I searched high and low for a reasonably priced angel food cake pan and couldn't find one!).

My problem with bundt cakes is that I don't have many recipes for them. My momma always made a zucchini chocolate cake in the bundt pan, but all other recipes I've seen online or found in cookbooks often call for a boxed mix. I have nothing against box mixes (they make things easier sometimes when you are in a pinch!), but I wanted to get away from that, if all possible. Especially since I have almost ever baking essential in my pantry. I searched high and low and then forwards and backwards before I came across the perfect recipe for dear Stephanie - tunnel of fudge cake! This cake was developed at the famous Pillsbury Bake-Off (oh, how I dream of being there!) and somehow comes out of the oven with this warm and gooey fudge layer in the middle. Hence the name, tunnel of fudge. Not to mention, it's topped off with a fudge icing! I can't explain this cake other than it's incredibly wonderful and something totally unexpected when you cut into it. This cake may not be difficult to make or super fancy, but boy is it so rich and delicious. This chocolaty bunt cake is definitely now on my top favorite chocolate cake list. Bet you didn't know I had one of those lists, did you?

don't mind my recovery powder amongst the ingredients

hot water  + chocolate

adding the eggs and vanilla to the butter and sugar

sift the cocoa to help eliminate lumps!

same with the flour

make sure to spray your pan reallllly good.

of course I had to add sprinkles.

Tunnel of Fudge Cake (Annie's Eats)

To prep the pan:
Coat with nonstick spray

For the cake:
½ cup boiling water
2 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 tsp. salt
5 large eggs, at room temperature
1 tbsp. vanilla extract
1 cup granulated sugar
¾ cup packed light brown sugar
20 tbsp. (2½ sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

For the glaze: 
¾ cup heavy cream
¼ cup light corn syrup
8 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
½ tsp. vanilla extract
 Preheat the oven to 350˚ F.  Spray bundt pan with nonstick spray.

In a medium bowl, pour the boiling water over the chopped chocolate.  Let stand for a minute, then whisk until smooth.  In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cocoa powder, confectioners’ sugar, and salt.  Combine the eggs and vanilla in a liquid measuring cup and beat lightly.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the granulated sugar, brown sugar, and butter.  Beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.  With the mixer on low speed, add in the egg mixture just until combined.  Add the chocolate mixture and mix until incorporated.  Blend in the dry ingredients until just combined.  

Spread the batter into the prepared pan.  Bake for about 45 minutes or until the edges of the cake begin to pull away from the pan. Allow the cake to cool on a wire rack for 1½ hours before inverting onto a cake platter.  Allow to cool completely, about 2 more hours.

To make the glaze, combine the cream, corn syrup, and chocolate in a small saucepan.  Heat over medium heat, stirring frequently, until smooth.  Blend in the vanilla.  Set aside for about 30 minutes, until slightly thickened.  Drizzle the glaze over the cake and let set for at least 10 minutes before slicing. Enjoy!

This cake may just become your new favorite chocolate cake!


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