Monday, January 26, 2015

orange chocolate chunk cake.

The one plus side of cooking as much as I do, is that in situations like this (i.e. THE BLIZZARD OF 2015), you aren’t going to find me waiting on a 3 block long line to enter into Whole Food or Trader Joe’s to buy pita chips, hummus, and bananas (this is the kind of food I think people who don’t cook a lot survive on).  Instead I am digging into my (overly stocked) pantry and (stuffed to the brim) freezer to cook, bake, and roast us an epic meal.   We are all set Sir Juno so bring on your 24 inches of snow, I have books and magazines and double chocolate orange cake to survive on.  

Yes!  DOUBLE Chocolate orange cake.  I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to talk about this cake because this cake is one of my most absolute favorites.  I know some people scoff at the combination of chocolate and fruit but to me, there is no better combination.  I like the tartness and the acidity that fruit brings to chocolate.  This is why I always toss dried cherries into my brownies and go absolutely insane for passion fruit truffles (Tyler if you are reading this a box of 12 for Valentine’s Day from Xocolatti would be swell, THANKS).  But this cake, this cake is perfect for blizzards and winter and general hibernation time.  It’s dense and buttery and positively moist from the orange syrup.  But the real kicker is the chocolate ganache which makes the cake the perfect indulgence for a snowy winter day. 

Orange Chocolate Chunk Cake
Recipe from Ina Garten

Recipe can EASILY be halved and baked in a loaf pan (or if you don’t have a bundt pan you can bake it in 2 loaf pans).  Oh and Ina loves extra-large eggs, but trust me, large works fine.   

For the Cake
1/2 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups sugar
4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1/4 cup grated orange zest (4 large oranges)
3 cups all-purpose flour, plus 2 tablespoons
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
3/4 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups good semisweet chocolate chunks

For the Syrup

1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

For the Ganache
8 ounces good semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules

Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease and flour a 10-inch Bundt pan.

Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment for about 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, then the orange zest.
Sift together 3 cups flour, the baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. In another bowl, combine the orange juice, buttermilk, and vanilla. Add the flour and buttermilk mixtures alternately in thirds to the creamed butter, beginning and ending with the flour. Toss the chocolate chunks with 2 tablespoons flour and add to the batter. Pour into the pan, smooth the top, and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until a cake tester comes out clean. Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, make the syrup. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, cook the sugar with the orange juice until the sugar dissolves. Remove the cake from the pan, set it on a rack over a tray, and spoon the orange syrup over the cake. Allow the cake to cool completely.

For the ganache, melt the chocolate, heavy cream, and coffee in the top of a double boiler over simmering water until smooth and warm, stirring occasionally. Drizzle over the top of the cake.

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