I was already craving chocolate cake when I read a long scene in Louise Erdrich’s The Round House about chocolate cake– cut in four pieces and served up with ice cold milk.
So after the treacherous drive home from church, I pulled out my favorite recipe, for “Six-minute Chocolate Cake,” from my tattered copy of Moosewood Cooks at Home. This cake has many benefits, one of which is that you can make it directly in the pan and the ingredients are readily available. Depending on how fast you can assemble the ingredients, it really doesn’t take much more than 6 minutes before you put it in the oven. And it is rich and chocolatey and comes with a chocolate glaze recipe that is also to die for. I’d choose this over any box brownie mix any day.
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup cold water or brewed coffee
2 tsp vanilla
2 Tbs vinegar (White vinegar is best, but I’m sure I’ve used other types. This is the key ingredient! as the cake rises due to interaction between the baking soda and vinegar.)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees
Sift togeher the flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt and sugar in an ungreased 8-inch square pan or 9-inch round pan. In a 2-cup measure (or large cup) measure and mix the oil, water/coffee and vanilla. Pour the liquid ingredents into the baking pan and mix the batter with a fork. When batter is smooth, add the vinegar and stir quickly. There will be pale swirls in the batter where the bakign soda and the vinegar are reacting. Stir just until the vinegar is evenly distributed throughout the batter. Bakd for 25-30 minutes. Set cake aside to cool and reset oven to 300 to make the glaze.
For the glaze, melt the chocolate in a small ovenproof bowl or heavy skillet in the oven for about 15 minutes. Stir the hot liquid and the vanilla into the chocolate until smooth. Spoon over the cake. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.
YUM!! Enjoy the blizzard!