Wow, my last post here was more than a month ago. Sometimes life just happens, you know? But one of the really exciting things that has been taking up my time is real estate hunting. Yes, Big Man and I are close to choosing a great piece of land to buy so we can start building our home! We are so excited to be moving forward with our dream and amazed by the blessings God has poured out upon us. I’m looking forward to getting back to blogging more often and including posts about the progress of our home-building adventure! But in the meantime, I do have a fantastic chocolate-and-peanut-butter treat to share with you.
When I made this cake I didn’t really intend to post about it; I just wanted an easy recipe that didn’t require lots of ingredients or steps. I figured I’d get a tasty dessert, but it since it wasn’t really creative or beautiful it wouldn’t end up on the blog. But then Big Man and I ate some and agreed that it is possibly that best cake I’ve ever made, so I knew I had to share it here.
This cake is the perfect example of two good things coming together and creating something outstanding. The cake is simple and mixed right in the baking pan, so there is almost no cleanup. I used dark cocoa powder to add a deep chocolate flavor, and the cake’s light texture is a perfect complement to the rich frosting. Speaking of frosting, what happens when you take simple peanut butter frosting and broil it? Magic happens. Pure magic. The flavor takes on great complexity and the top gets a crispy sugar shell reminiscent of creme bruleé. Plus watching the frosting in the oven as it bubbles like sugar-lava is really fun!
If you are a chocolate and peanut butter fan, I hope you’ll try this version of the classic combination. The balance of dark chocolate cake and decadent peanut butter frosting is really spectacular. Plus, this recipe is simple, fast, and full of inexpensive staple ingredients. It’s definitely at the top of our favorite desserts list and I know I’ll be baking this cake again in the very near future.
Dark Chocolate Wacky Cake (adapted from Big Red Kitchen)1-1/2 cups flour 1/2 tsp. salt 3 rounded Tbs. dark cocoa powder (I used Hershey’s Special Dark) 1 cup sugar 1 tsp. baking soda 1 Tbs. white vinegar 5 Tbs. butter, melted & cooled 1 Tbs. vanilla extract 1 cup cold milk
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a 9-inch-square pan, whisk together the flour, salt, cocoa powder, sugar, and baking soda. Make three evenly spaced wells. Pour the vinegar into one well, the butter into another, and the vanilla into the third. Pour the milk over the entire pan and stir until everything is well combined and there are no dry spots.
Bake in the preheated oven for 20-30 minutes, until the center is set and a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool completely before frosting.
Broiled Peanut Butter Frosting (adapted from Tasty Kitchen)1 cup brown sugar 1/4 cup milk 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter 1/4 cup coconut oil* *I used refined coconut oil because I didn’t want any coconut taste to compete with the peanut butter. You could substitute vegetable shortening for the coconut oil
Combine the ingredients in a stand mixer and mix until extremely smooth (we’re talking no lumps at all). I used the paddle attachment on medium speed for about 3 minutes.
Pour/spread the frosting onto the cooled cake.
Set the oven to broil and place the cake on the middle rack. Broil for 2-4 minutes, or until deep golden brown, watching very closely to prevent burning. I actually stand next the oven and hold to door open a crack so I can watch the whole time. The frosting can go from perfectly broiled to burnt in about 10 seconds.
Let cool at least 20 minutes before serving, otherwise the frosting will be too runny.