Thursday, November 04, 2010

Stout Chocolate Cake

I am complete after I eat chocolate cake. I actually think - wait - I know that it is my favorite dessert. I prefer flour less chocolate cake but can be wowed by a good frosted chocolate cake. Really, it is not that hard. J introduced me into the total indulgence of chocolate cake and a glass of port. Need I say more? How could one not be totally smitten.....

 Some of our good Bellingham friends ventured down to Bend for a long weekend. We filled up a condo, the guys had epic days of skiing (J swears it was one of his best and he has had more than the average), we saw some of our old pals, Jess had a birthday, J and I had our second anniversary, and we toured the Deschutes Brewery (Bryan might be the biggest fan...). We drank lots of beer. It was great. We learn about brewing beer. We bought tee shirts and more beer.
 I love strong pungent flavors and smells. I really enjoy dark, flavorful beer.  I got to sample many of their premium beers, which often come close to a wine and that is the intention. Try the traditional seasonal Jubelale (there is a pack in our fridge right now if have to know) then once that opens the doors dive into these intense beers - which will blow your socks off - it is their Reserve Series.

I walked away with a bottle of the Black Butte Porter. One of my favorite dark beers. When I bought it I had intended to cook with it. It sat in the fridge for a long time. Today it had to go. I need some new things in the fridge to look at - ya know how it goes....

I thought.... beer bread - not today too dense. Stew, beef stew - nope. Cake, chocolate cake - how could I say no!

I just happen to find the most intense, chocolate, porter brew recipe I could find and dove in.

I apologize in advance....

This is not going to help with the post Halloween sugar fest or the pre Thanksgiving fast. This isn't going to make those tight little pair of jeans look any better or motivate you to go for a run. This cake is for pure indulgence purposes. It is good while sitting on the couch reading a good book (I happen to be reading Lamb), drinking coffee (I picked up a pound and a half back in the 'ham), and basking with the creatures that feel no guilt.

Stout Chocolate Cake

yield: Makes 12 servings

Make Sure to use UNSALTED butter. I learned my lesson, finally I am going to always buy unsalted from now on. This is a HUGE recipe - cut it in half unless you have a small army to feed sweets to. I Made mine in two 9 inch spring form pans, perfect. Jam would be an ideal layer between the cake to cut the density a bit. Did I say unsalted butter... double check!


  • 2 cups stout (such as Guinness)
  • 2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder (preferably Dutch-process)

  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/3 cups sour cream

  • 2 cups whipping cream
  • 1 pound bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate, chopped


For cake:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter three 8-inch round cake pans with 2-inch-high sides. Line with parchment paper. Butter paper. Bring 2 cups stout and 2 cups butter to simmer in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add cocoa powder and whisk until mixture is smooth. Cool slightly.
Whisk flour, sugar, baking soda, and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt in large bowl to blend. Using electric mixer, beat eggs and sour cream in another large bowl to blend. Add stout-chocolate mixture to egg mixture and beat just to combine. Add flour mixture and beat briefly on slow speed. Using rubber spatula, fold batter until completely combined. Divide batter equally among prepared pans. Bake cakes until tester inserted into center of cakes comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Transfer cakes to rack; cool 10 minutes. Turn cakes out onto rack and cool completely.
For icing:
Bring cream to simmer in heavy medium saucepan. Remove from heat. Add chopped chocolate and whisk until melted and smooth. Refrigerate until icing is spreadable, stirring frequently, about 2 hours.
Place 1 cake layer on plate. Spread 2/3 cup icing over. Top with second cake layer. Spread 2/3 cup icing over. Top with third cake layer. Spread remaining icing over top and sides of cake.

1 comment:

  1. I made this cake for a friends 50th birthday party and it was perfect. First I must say it weighed about 25lbs and looked gorgeous. I was even more smug after I tasted it. (insert snobby laugh here). I made 4 - 9" layers, used 3 of them for the bday, had to leave one for home. I split the layers, added sweetened whip cream to the splits and the icing on the other....pure delight. I will make this again and again. Great Call Michelle! Vruth