October 24, 2015

Browned Butter Cookie Dough Chocolate Cake

This cake is so good, it's ridiculous.  The chocolate cake is dense and moist, the icing is incredible and the browned butter taste really comes through.  Plus, the cookie dough part of things doesn't have any raw egg!

Recipe adapted from: Bright-Eyed Baker
Ingredients - 3 tier 15 cm (6 inch) cake
500g white sugar
250g flour
75g cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp bicarb soda
1 tsp salt
115g butter
2 eggs
240g buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla essence
225g hot coffee

Ingredients - browned butter brown sugar icing
400g butter (you will brown this)
165g brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
350g icing sugar
20g cream

Ingredients - cookie dough icing
25g butter (you will brown this)
55g brown sugar
1 tbsp cream
40g flour

Method - cake
1. Preheat the oven to 175C (350F).  Butter three 15cm cake tins (or equivalent) and line the bottoms with baking paper.

2. Combine the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, bicarb and salt in a mixing bowl - I used the bowl of my stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.

3. Melt the butter and set it aside to cool slightly.

4. Mix the eggs, buttermilk, vanilla and melted butter into the flour mixture until smooth.

5. Add the hot coffee and stir into the batter.  It will be very liquid.

6. Evenly distribute the batter between the three cake tins and bake in the preheated oven for 30-40 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out with just a few crumbs.  It should still be moist.

7. Let the cakes cool in the tins for about 15 minutes then invert the cakes onto wire racks to cool completely.

Method - browning butter
1. Both the cookie dough and icing use browned butter, so you can do both at the one time - however, if you like, you can do it separately.

2. Place the 25g butter for the dough and 400g butter for the icing in a saucepan.  Heat the butter over medium-low heat until the butter starts frothing, whisking it occasionally.  Keep it cooking while whisking until the butter turns a golden colour and brown flecks form on the bottom of the pan.  It will smell really amazing!

3. Remove the butter from the heat and transfer it into two bowls, splitting the amounts into approximately 25g and approximately 400g amounts (keep in mind that after browning the weight might have decreased, so eyeball it a bit!)  I recommend using something metal as you are going to put this in the freezer and you don't want your bowls to crack from the temperature change.  

4. Take the larger amount of butter (the one you'll be using for the icing) and mix the 165g brown sugar into it.  Leave the smaller amount of butter with no additions.

5. Freeze both the browned butter bowls until the butter is firm (but not completely hard)

Method - brown sugar icing
1. Using the larger amount of browned butter that you mixed the brown sugar into, and place it in the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.  The butter shouldn't be rock hard, but you can use a knife and cut it a bit to make it easier to beat.

2. Beat the butter with the vanilla essence until fluffy.

3. Add the icing sugar (sift it for a lump-free icing!) and beat until light and fluffy.

4. Finally, add the cream and beat.  The cream just makes the icing smoother, more spreadable and takes away some of the gritty sugar feeling that buttercream can get.

5. Set the icing aside and make your cookie dough!

Method - cookie dough icing
1. Take the smaller amount of browned butter, beat the 55g brown sugar into it until light and fluffy.  Since there was such a small amount I just used a wooden spoon.

2. Mix the cream in, and finally the flour until you have a smooth paste-like dough.

3. Take about a cup of the brown sugar icing and beat it into the cookie dough for an amazing cookie dough flavoured icing.

Method - assembly
1. Place one (completely cool) cake layer on your desired serving plate and top with a third of the cookie dough icing.

Add the next cake layer, another third of the cookie dough icing and finally the last cake layer - top this with the rest of the cookie dough icing.

2. Ice the rest of the cake with the remaining brown sugar icing.

3. Decorate as you please or just dig in!

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