Oh chocolate! How I love thee, let me count the ways… There are four ways in this cake. Cocoa powder, chocolate chips, chocolate syrup, and dark chocolate shavings. Rich, moist, and for real chocolate lovers. I found this recipe a while ago and had been saving it for a special occasion. I decided to bake it for my family’s Christmas celebration. My niece loves chocolate as much as I do and I knew she would enjoy the cake. I remember the two of us eating bars of chocolate in the car as we were driving across the magnificent countryside of Germany. European chocolate is so good.
Extra good chocolate went into this cake. I had purchased some high quality Trinitario cocoa powder from a chocolate shop on Small Business Saturday. Ghirardelli chocolate chips were in my pantry just waiting to be used. My friend Asta, @DoorHardwareLux on twitter, sent Pergale dark chocolate from Lithuania to me for Christmas. I never had Lithuanian chocolate before and was so excited to try it. Putting all these ingredients together made this cake so special and so delicious. I will have a hard time eating regular chocolate cake from now on.
A food processor is needed to make this cake. It is unusual and another one of the reasons I saved the recipe. The typical method of using a mixer, creaming the butter and sugar, is all I have ever used. This gave me the opportunity to try something new. The original recipe is by the beautiful Nigella Lawson and I found it on Food Network’s website. I adapted it with a few changes in the method/instructions and baking time.
The cake is best served slightly warm. The easiest thing to do is to put a slice on a plate in the microwave and cook on high for 10 seconds. (A cooking tip I learned from my brother). Serve with whipped cream or ice cream. Enjoy!
Quadruple Chocolate Loaf Cake
Adapted from Nigella Lawson’s recipe
For the cake:
1 ⅔ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ cup cocoa
1 ⅓ cups sugar
1 ½ sticks unsalted butter, softened
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
⅓ cup sour cream at room temperature
½ cup boiling water
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
For the syrup:
1 teaspoon cocoa
½ cup water
½ cup sugar
1 ounce dark chocolate shavings (use a peeler on a bar of dark chocolate)
Put a baking sheet in the oven. Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line a loaf pan (about 9½ X 4½ X 3 inches) with non-stick aluminum foil. Be sure to press the foil into the corners and have at least an inch or so of overhang (this will keep the syrup from spilling later). Make sure all ingredients are at room temperature (except boiling water).
Put the flour, baking soda, cocoa powder, and sugar in a food processor (10 cup capacity or larger) fitted with a knife blade. Pulse a few times to combine. Add butter, eggs, vanilla, and sour cream and process until you have a smooth, satiny batter. Scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula and process again while pouring the boiling water down the tube opening. Scrape down the sides and process a few seconds to fully combine. Pour batter into a large bowl. Stir in chocolate chips. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan. Place the loaf pan on the baking sheet in the oven and bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes or until a toothpick or cake tester comes out clean (or mostly clean).
In the last 10 minutes of baking time, put the syrup ingredients into a small sauce pan and bring to a boil. Boil for 5 to 9 minutes until you have a thin syrup. Turn off heat and set aside.
When you take the cake out of the oven, place it on a cooling rack. Turn up the sides of the foil. Poke holes in the cake (I used a long wooden pick) then pour the syrup over the cake. Let the cake cook completely in the pan. Once cooled, remove the cake from the pan and foil and place on an oblong platter. Sprinkle the chocolate shavings on top of the cake.