Sunday, September 11, 2011

Restless Baking

I was restless all weekend .. and when I'm restless I tend to bake. A lot. I've recently discovered the joy of really really good dark cocoa powder. The good stuff, not the stuff you find at your local grocery store. (I love ya Hershey but your cocoa powder is lame). I buy 5lbs at a time and a little bit goes a long long way because it adds such a depthness and richness to chocolate cake. When baking a chocolate cake with cocoa powder and not melted chocolate, you're going for a rich moist cake rather than a dense crumb cake.

The photos I'm about to post are SOOC (straight out of the camera). I apologize for some of the blown out photos. I was too lazy to cover up my windows to soften up the glaring light. I'm posting SOOC photos so you can actually see how dark the chocolate cake comes out all on its own. This recipe is also phenomenal in that it requires ZERO leveling. The cake bakes level. I kid you not. I've never had to level out this cake, ever.

SOOC cake3 SOOC cake1 SOOC cake2SOOC cake

Notice how dark and rich the cake color is .... I used a super basic vanilla buttercream frosting and the cake tasted like a cake version of an oreo. The crumb on this cake is to die for and it's super duper moist.

cake final

By the time I got finished crumb coating the cake, I didn't really want to add on anymore frosting so I piped some simple shell borders on the top and bottom of the cake and called it a day.

But I said I was having a bake-a-thon weekend, right? So I didn't stop there. I mean the damn oven was on, right? So I also baked a brioche loaf. Unfortunately I was also really hungry so as soon as the dang thing came out of the oven, I snapped up on lame photo and then proceeded to slice it up to eat. Speaking of which, I should make some french toast with the bread!


Finally, because things don't stop there ... I also baked up my famous soft chewy chocolate chip cookies. These are not my "normal" chocolate chip cookies in that I normally like one with more of a crunch factor. But for whatever reason, I was craving some super duper soft and chewy cookies. Like as though they were straight out of the oven no matter how many days the cookies have been sitting out on the counter. So I made these ... vanilla pudding cookies.

Again, I have to apologize for the blown out photos. I'm lazy, what can I say.

cookies on pan cookies on pan1 cookies on pan2

Cookies cookies1 cookies2cookies3 cookies4

If ya'll want recipes, let me know. I'll type them up so you can whip up a batch of chocolate cakes or chocolate chip cookies at your leisure. The cookies take all of 10 minutes to whip up and another 10-12 minutes to bake. So this is a no brainer if you're not the patient kind - like me.

Since you've asked ... here are the recipes for the cake and cookies! I hope you enjoy!

Chocolate Chip Cookies:

2 sticks butter at room temperature (leave them out for 15 minutes on your counter)
3/4 cup of brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
1 3.4 oz package of vanilla instant pudding mix
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/4 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cream the butter and sugars until the sugar has completely incorporated with the butter. Add in the pudding mix, eggs and vanilla extract. Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and mix only until combined. Add chocolate chips and mix in the chocolate chips into the batter with a spatula or by hand.

Drop the a spoonful of cookies onto a baking sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes until slightly golden. Remove cookies and let them cool for 10 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.

Don't overcook these cookies. Take them out at 12 minutes. If you're making big ole cookies, then you'll need to adjust your cook time. Keep your eye on them because if they turn darker than golden you're not going to get that chewy soft consistency.

Chocolate Cake Recipe:

1 3/4 cup flour
2 cup sugar
3/4 cup cocoa powder
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 eggs
1 cup strong black coffee that's been cooled
1 cup buttermilk at room temperature (if you don't have buttermilk, add 1 tbsp of white vinegar or lemon juice to your milk. Let it sit for 2 minutes and you'll have buttermilk)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tbsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare 3 9" cake pans with butter and flour.

Sift all the dry ingredients into a bowl. Add all of the wet ingredients into the sifted dry ingredients. You don't need a mixer for this because the batter is very wet. Mix well until everything is incorporated. Divide into the 3 cake pans. I'm OCD so I weigh mine out, but you can go by eye.

Bake for 20 minutes. Rotate the pans. Bake for another 12-15. DO NOT OVERBAKE. A cake tester should have crumbs attached to it. As long as it's not undercooked, you're good to go.

Cool on a wire rack for about 20 minutes. Then gently remove the cakes from the cake pan. As a word of caution, this is a super moist cake. So it will be sticky .... as in when you try to remove the cake, it will cling to whatever it touches. Be careful not to crack the cake.

Once the cake is cooled, use any frosting of choice. Then be prepared to be AMAZED at how rich and good the cake is.


  1. Recipes please! Everything looks so good!

    your cokies looks soo delicions :)))

  3. Those cookies look so good! How interesting that you used pudding mix in the batter - love that stuff! :)

  4. These look so delicious! Love your blog :)

    Bianca @Sweet Dreaming

  5. Hi, I was wondering what brand of cocoa powder you are now using, pls share. I thought your pictures looked great, as is!

  6. Everything looks soo good! What brand of cocoa powder are you using? And where do you pick up some of the really good stuff?

  7. Hi everyone! Sorry to respond so late ... I use Cacao Barry Extra Brute Cocoa Powder. I buy mine at amazon. I've tried all the expensive and gourmet brands and this one is hands down the best cocoa powder. Here's the link:

  8. These cookies look amazing! and the cake!! it looks amazing! and looks like a breeze! Can i use butter instead of oil?

  9. What kind of flour are you using for each recipe?

  10. SOOC pictures are awesome! They definitely have me hungry for some cookies and cake now =)

  11. I use AP (all purpose) flour for each recipe.

  12. The chocolate chip cookie recipe is AMAZING. they're in the oven now and the first batch out is DIVINE!

  13. Wondering if you are going to post the recipe for the brioche bread. Thanks.

  14. I just baked the chocolate chip cookies and they are so amazing!!! Thanks so much for sharing the recipe!

  15. My husband loved the cookies they were very moist and delicious!

  16. do you use margine? unsalted butter or regular butter?

  17. I use unsalted butter. If I only have salted butter, I omit the salt from the recipe. Sorry this is being responded to so late!

  18. I use plain ole All Purpose flour

  19. I used whole wheat flour and salted butter (omitted the salt).
    They turned out great!!!!! :D I just wished I shaped the cookies a little better... they turned out tall and small lol.
    I'm an amateur... I'll get there. I'm sure my teachers will still appreciate these!
    Thank you Ang!

  20. Just put my last batch in the oven. Just heavenly! My kids and I made a few variations by adding mini marshmallows or Heath milk chocolate toffee or both.

  21. Love. And so easy. I can't wait to try your other recipes.

  22. Love. And so easy. I can't wait to try your other recipes.

  23. Love. And so easy. I can't wait to try your other recipes.

  24. I love this recipe! I have even tryed it with different flavors of pudding. Chocolate for chocolate chocolate chip, banana for banana chocolate chip cookies and added coconut and a bit of chopped almonds for almond joy chocolate chip cookies.

  25. How many cookies does this make?