They say necessity is the mother of inventions. But there are times when shortage in the ingredients list also leading to discoveries. I was making my all time favorite chocolate cake from Hershey’s when I realized that I was short on milk. I went ahead and substituted buttermilk and the cake came out wonderfully nice.
Now I wish I could say that it was an Eureka moment, but the thing is this recipe (“Perfectly Chocolate” chocolate cake) has been there forever and every possible alteration has been done to it. The base structure of the cake is same; about 2 cups of flour and sugar each, 3 teaspoons of leavening agents, 2 eggs, 1/2 cup oil and 1 cup of milk. This is followed by a cup of boiling water which thins down the batter considerably. This recipe has been improved by many in many ways. The eggs have been replaced by 1/2 cup of yogurt, milk replaced by buttermilk and boiling water improvised to weak coffee by adding a spoon of instant coffee powder.
The cake takes in all the changes and yet gives good results.
This is my go to recipe for chocolate cakes (with eggs) and I still prefer the original recipe with the addition of coffee. But I have tried the buttermilk version also 3-4 times now with pleasing results.
Read on for the age old recipe that’s been through so many modifications and yet remain the same and popular as ever!
Recipe adapted very slightly from Hershey’s Kitchen
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 cups sugar
- 1.5 teaspoon baking powder
- 1.5 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup buttermilk (or milk)
- 1/2 cup odorless oil like sunflower or canola
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup hot water + 1 teaspoon instant coffee powder (or one cup weak coffee)
- Heat oven to 350F/ 180C. Grease and line two 9″ round pans with parchment paper.
- In a big bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Make sure everything is combined well.
- Beat the eggs separately. Now add in the eggs, buttermilk (or milk), oil and vanilla extract to the flour mix. Mix well with a whisk or wooden spoon or a hand mixer.
- Add the coffee powder to the hot water. Mix it in. Add this (or one cup of weak coffee) to the cake batter. Slowly and carefully mix it in.
- Pour into the prepared cake pans and bake for about 35-40 minutes. Check whether the cake is done by inserting a wooden skewer into the middle. If it comes out free of crumbs, the batter is cooked and the cake is done. Take off the oven and let it rest for at least 10-15 minutes in the pan before taking it out.
Note: This cake is very soft, so make sure the pan is lined and the cake is allowed to rest for sometime before trying to take it out of the pan. Else it might just break into pieces.
Check out the Blogging Marathon page for more recipes from other participants.