This weekend we were invited to a Mexican-themed BBQ at our friends' Jason and Caitlin's place (Caroline's bean dip and Jason's tacos al pastor were both dynamite!). I was assigned dessert and tried to think up a good dessert that would transport easily and hold in hot weather without detriment. The chocolate cake always traveled well, but how to make it fit the theme....add some cayenne and cinnamon and you get....
Mexican Chocolate Cake! Because there is a little kick to this cake, you definitely want to serve the cake with ice cream or maybe some whipped cream, too cool things off a bit. If you want a regular chocolate cake, just omit the cinnamon and cayenne and enjoy!
This cake is very forgiving, if you don't want a 9x13 cake, just halve the recipe evenly on all ingredients and make an 8 inch round or 9 inch square. However, since the cake freezes so well, just make the whole recipe and freeze it in single squares. It is yummy straight from the freezer, or defrosted.
For one cake, 9x13:
- Butter a 9x13 cake pan, line the bottom with parchment paper and butter up that too.
- Preheat oven at 350.
- Measure 1/2 cup milk and add a splash of cider vinegar, let sit while you prepare everything else.
- 2 cups flour
- 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 12 TBS butter
- 1 cup water
- 12 TBS cocoa powder (I use Hershey's)
- 2 tsp high quality cinnamon (I used Extra-Fancy Vietnamese Cinnamon from Penzeys)
- 1/2 tsp cayenne
- 2 cups sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup sour milk (see above- milk plus vinegar)
- 2 eggs
- On a sheet of parchment paper, sift together flour and baking soda, set aside
- Combine sugar and salt together into mixing bowl, set aside
- In a saucepan over low heat, melt butter and water together
- When butter is completely melted, while mixture is still hot, immediately whisk in cocoa, cinnamon and cayenne
- When smooth, immediately add to sugar/salt in mixing bowl and whisk until sugar is melted completely and batter is smooth
- Either by hand or with an electric mixer (standing or hand held), mix in flour mixture until batter is smooth
- Pour in sour milk and beat until batter is smooth
- Beat in the eggs (if by hand, for 200 strokes or 2 minutes, if using mixer, beat for 1 minute)
- Immediately pour into prepared baking pan and bake for 30 minutes.
- Test doneness by putting a toothpick into the center of the cake, if it comes out clean/dry, the cake is done
- Let cake cool in pan on rack for 5 minutes, then turn out cake onto the rack, peel off paper, and flip over carefully
- Dust cake with a mixture of confectioner's sugar and cinnamon, serve with ice cream