I made a delicious chocolate cake yesterday. I kicked off my day by looking through cake recipes. It had been a long time since I baked a cake, and looking through those recipes, I got excited about cake again. Why had I quit baking cakes?
The cake I baked was dark and decadent and topped with a chocolate ganache that was A+ in my book. Then it fell over. Two hours before I was suppose to be at a dinner party.
I remembered why I stopped baking cakes.
What to do? What to do? I considered giving my broken cake new life in the form of cake balls before another chocolate cake recipe I had bookmarked in the back of my mind surfaced. This is that cake.
I read about this cake, called the Changing Hearts and Minds cake, in A Homemade Life by Molly Wizenberg. All I remembered yesterday was that she baked many of these cakes for her wedding. This was enough for me to attach “simple” and “delicious” to my memory of the recipe. It turned out to be both of those things.
I reread the chapter leading up to this recipe as I sat down to write this post. Molly writes about the cake, “It’s not something you want to serve to someone you feel so-so about.”
Although she was writing in terms of making this cake for a person she would go on to marry, I can wholeheartedly say I do not feel so-so about my friends. I am also fairly certain my friends did not feel only so-so about this cake.
So I failed a little yesterday, and then I succeeded a lot. Something to keep in mind the next time things go wrong. Enjoy!
5-Ingredient Chocolate Cake
7 ounces quality bittersweet or dark chocolate, chopped
7 ounces quality (i.e. high-butterfat) unsalted butter, cut into cubes
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
5 large eggs
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- Grease an 8-inch round cake pan and line the base with parchment paper.
- Melt the chopped chocolate with the butter in a double boiler, stirring regularly to make combine.
- Add the sugar to the melted chocolate-butter mixture, stir until well combined, and set aside to cool for about five minutes.
- Next add the eggs, one at a time, stirring well after each addition.
- Finally, add the flour and stir to combine. The cake batter will be smooth and dark.
- Pour the cake batter into the prepared cake pan and bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for approximately 25 minutes. The center of the cake will look set, and the top will look shiny and crackly. The center of the cake may jiggle, but just slightly.
- Allow the cake to cool in its pan for 15 minutes (the cake will deflate a bit as it cools), then carefully turn the cake out of the pan. Do this by placing a piece of aluminum foil over the top of the cake in the pan, then turning the cake out onto a plate (the foil will be between the plate and the cake). Remove the parchment paper from the bottom of the cake that is facing up, then place the platter on which you wish to serve the cake on the bottom of the cake. Flip the whole thing over again so the prettier, crackly side faces up.
- Serve when the cake cools to room temperature, garnishing with whipped cream and fruit if desired.
The original recipe notes the flavor and texture of the cake are improved even further when the cake is frozen. Wrap the cake tightly in a layer of plastic wrap followed by a layer of foil and freeze for at least one day and up to one month. Once removed from the freezer, allow the cake to rest 24 hours before serving.