Thursday, April 4, 2013

Chocolate Cake/Cupcakes

I LOVE a good chocolate cake. This is one of my favorite go-to recipes. It's so easy to make, it turns out perfect every time and I always have the ingredients in my pantry. It's just as easy to make as using a cake mix and tastes SO much better.

One of my favorite memories from growing up was making this cake on Sunday evenings with my family. Sundays were church and family day and after Sunday dinner it was kind of tradition to make some type of treat (or Mollicks as we like to call them in my family). My brother, Andy, always seems to be the unofficial person that made this cake. It was kinda his thing. We would take a piece of warm cake right out of the oven and pour cold milk over it and devour it. We also affectionately referred to this cake as "snacking cake" because it is so delicious by itself that you don't need any frosting. Not that a good frosting would hurt this cake, but it really is so yummy plain. I made these cupcakes for my birthday with a fresh strawberry frosting that was so yummy. Honestly, this is my favorite chocolate cupcake recipe.

This recipe is versatile because it makes a great cake, double-layer cake or cupcakes. The cupcakes are slightly dense and very moist. They also hold up really well when doing filled cupcakes.

Here's what you need:
-1/2 C butter (one stick), room temperature
-1 1/2 C sugar
-2 eggs
-2 tsp. vanilla
-1/4 C cocoa powder (double this if you want a more intense chocolate flavor)
-2 C all-purpose flour
-1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
-1 tsp. salt
-1 1/4 C water

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine butter and sugar in a medium mixing bowl. Cream together until fluffy, about a minute. Add eggs and vanilla and mix to combine evenly.

2. In a separate bowl combine all dry ingredients and whisk together to incorporate them. If you want to sift them together you can, but I just give it a quick stir with a whisk to make sure all dry ingredients are incorporated.

3. Pour half of the water into first wet mixture  Mix just until combine. Pour in half of dry mixture and mix just until combine. Pour the remaining half of water into bowl and mix until combine. Mix in the remaining dry ingredients.

4. Grease and flour baking pan or use cupcake liners. If using (2) round pans, I always line the bottom of pan with a circle of parchment paper to ensure that cakes can be easily removed from the pan.

Cupcakes: Fill liners 2/3 full and bake at 350 degrees for 18-20 minutes.
Cake 9x13: Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes
(2) 9-in round cakes: Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes

**Cakes are done with you touch the center of the cake and it springs back without leaving an indent of your finger. Or when you insert a toothpick and it comes out clean. I always bake the minimum time and then recheck it every minute or two until done. 

5. For round cakes and cupcakes: Remove pan(s) from oven and allow to rest for about 5 minutes. Remove cake or cupcakes and transfer to a cooling rack. You can frost once cake is completely cooled.
    For 9x13 cake: Remove from oven and eat cake while warm or allow to cool completely in pan before frosting.

Chocolate Cupcakes with Fresh Strawberry Frosting

Here is the printable recipe.

Enjoy and Happy Baking!

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