To prove we’re not completely booze-obsessed… RECIPE CORNER! Chocolate Whisky Cake

I’ve had a surprising number of enquiries about the recipe for the Whisky Squad Birthday Cake, so it would be foolish not to share it.  Because essentially, I found it on t’internet in the first place.

It’s more or less an adaptation of “Whiskey-Soaked Dark Chocolate Bundt Cake” from “In The Kitchen With A Good Appetite”, by Melissa Clark. (although she used bourbon, which I think’s an entirely different proposition)

Chocolate Whisky Cake

250 g unsalted butter + more for greasing pan
2 cups plain flour + more for dusting pan
150 g unsweetened dark chocolate
1 cup espresso (that’s coffee – instant’s probably ok though)
2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup whisky + some more for sprinkling + whatever you feel is appropriate for tasting before/after/during
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups white sugar
3 large eggs
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking soda

The arcane sequence of events

  1. Preheat oven to 160°C. Grease and flour a large bundt tin (the one I bought was 1.7L), or two 8-inch loaf tins. Melt chocolate in a microwave oven & cool.
  2. Put espresso and cocoa powder in a glass measuring jug. Add enough boiling water to come up to the 1 cup measuring line. Mix until powders dissolve. Stir in the whisky and salt and put aside to let cool.
  3. Beat softened (not melted!) butter until fluffy (2-3 minutes on high). Add sugar and beat until well combined. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well between each addition. Beat in the vanilla extract, baking soda and melted chocolate, scraping down sides of bowl with a rubber spatula.
  4. With the mixer on the lowest speed, beat in a third of the whisky/coffee/cocoa mixture. When liquid is absorbed, beat in 1 cup flour. Repeat additions, ending with whisky mixture (so the sequence to add to the butter/chocolate is liquid, 1C flour, liquid, 1C flour, liquid).
  5. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake until a cake tester inserted into centre of cake comes out clean, about 1 hour 10 minutes for Bundt tin (loaf tins will take less time, start checking them after 50 minutes).
  6. Transfer cake to a rack. Unmold after 15 minutes and sprinkle warm cake with more whiskey. Let cool.
  7. Share cake with your friends.
  8. Prepare to email them the recipe, because they’ll ask.

I made a practice cake before the real birthday cake, and as these things usually go, the practice one turned out slightly better than the real thing (although everyone present seemed to think the actual cake was made of pure awesome).  I suspect my quantities for the 2nd cake erred toward slightly less liquid and slightly more flour, and as a consequence was nowhere near as rich or moist as the test cake (which was – did I mention – bloody staggeringly nice?).

It also appears that the choice of whisky you use doesn’t appear to make a vast amount of difference: Test Cake had Glenturret 10yo in it, and Proper Cake had the rest of my bottle of Bowmore Darkest (old release).  So in hindsight it probably would have proved a useful application for the bottle of Famous Grouse I was recently bequeathed.