Orange Spiced Chocolate Cake with Penuche Frosting

In my last recipe, I ended making too much penuche frosting. I hate wasting food so I had to figure out a way to use up the rest of the frosting that I had stored in an air-tight container. The frosting itself was buttery and sweet with a hint of nuttiness, which I knew would pair well with a cake that was a little lighter. After searching all over the place for a recipe that I felt would fit the bill, I decided to simply mix-and-match recipes to get what I wanted.

For this orange spice chocolate cake, I used the chocolate yogurt cake snacks recipe from Smitten Kitchen and the spices from variety of spiced chocolate cake recipes (here and here). The spices and chocolate make the cake feel very festive.

Orange Spiced Chocolate Cake

7 ounces (200 grams) bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup (125 ml) olive oil
1/2 cup (125 ml) plain, whole-milk yogurt
1 cup (200 grams) sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups (200 grams) flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 pinch allspice
1 teaspoon orange zest
1 pinch cayenne
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

I made this in a round cake pan since I didn’t have a cupcake pan, but I think they would have turned out better in cupcake form.

First, preheat the oven to 350F. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler with 1/4 cups of olive oil. What that really entails is putting chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pot of boiling water.

As the chocolate is melting, in a medium-sized bowl, stir together the yogurt, sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract. By now, your chocolate should be melted. Set the chocolate aside to cool a little. In a large bowl, mix your dry ingredients together (flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, allspice, orange zest and cayenne). Pour the yogurt mixture into the dry ingredients bowl and mix.

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Last but not least, pour your melted chocolate into the batter and combine till smooth.

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Now you can pour your batter into a pan. Don’t forget to grease the pan! And then you can pop it into the oven. The original recipe called for it to be baked for 20 to 25 minutes if you are making them as muffins. However, since I made it into a cake, it took closer to 35-40 minutes. An easy way to check is to insert a toothpick in the middle and see if the batter is dry.

Once the cake is done and let it cool before frosting it with some penuche frosting (recipe found here).

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