|Root Beer Bundt Cake|
I have a mad crush. My crush, or I should say crushes, and I are separated by several states but really, why should that stop me? We share a love of all things sweet and traveling to destinations solely based on cuisine. If those commonalities are not enough, I am sure we can survive on my infatuation with their cookbooks. I am talking of course about Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito. I have now made several recipes from their “Baked” books and I am smitten.
There are a lot of low quality cookbooks on the market by big name people.* So, when a book comes along that has cool and unique recipes that actually turn out well, I become a crazy person who checks out the books for months on end until I cannot renew them anymore. Librarians
*Note: just because you are famous or say, a spouse of someone famous, does not mean you should be writing cookbooks.
|Ready for the Oven|
My basic rule is that if I check out a cookbook more than a few times, I then allow myself to buy it. I used to buy way too many cookbooks which was a dumb move from an economic perspective not to mention from a space perspective. This is especially true for a single Mom on a limited income and living in a small space.
I will stop waxing poetic about the Brooklyn dream-boats and doing time on the library hit list long enough to talk about this cake. It’s like a root beer float cake, provided you put a scoop of ice cream on the side. A Root Bear Float Cake! Genius!
I have a special place in my heart for root beer floats since I used to inhale them on our summer family vacations (think Griswold) in Frankfort, MI. So to put that tasty nostalgia in a cake makes me swoon. Also, this cake is incredibly moist and truly does taste like an over-the-top root beer float injected with dark chocolate goodness.
Did I mention I have a mad crush on Matt and Renato?
Root Beer Bundt CakeAdapted from "Baked, New Frontiers in Baking"
For the Bundt Cake:
2 cups root beer (I used Chicago's own Goose Island Root Beer)
1 cup dark unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 1/4 granualted sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
1 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 large eggs
For the Frosting:
2 ounces dark chocolate, melted and cooled slightly
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/4 cup root beer
2/3 cup dark unsweetened cocoa powder
2 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
Optional but highly recommended: Vanilla ice cream for serving
Make the Bundt Cake:
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Generously spray the inside of a 10-inch bundt pan with nonstick cooking spray.
In a saucepan, heat the root beer, cocoa powder, and butter over medium heat until the butter is melted. Add the sugars and whisk until dissolved. Remove from the heat and let cool. (Note; let this cool a lot. If you add the eggs in too soon and don't quickly whisk them, they will scramble.)
In a large bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda and Kosher salt together.
In a smaller bowl, whisk the eggs until just beaten, then whisk them into the cooled cocoa mixture until combined. Gently fold the flour mixture into the cocoa mixture. The batter will be lumpy - do not overbeat, as it could cause the cake to be tough.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 35-40 minutes (I did mine in a dark bundt pan for 38 minutes and it came out perfectly and unbelievably moist), rotating the pan halfway through the baking time (um, sorta neglected to do this and my cake still came out awesome), until a sharp knife inserted into the cake comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool completely. (Very important; when they say let cool completely, they mean it. I didn't let mine cool completely and when I turned it onto the stand, some of it was left inside the pan. I am pretty sure that would not have happened if I had let it cool completely.)
Make the Root Beer Fudge Frosting
Put all the ingredients in a food processor or stand mixer. Blend until the frosting is shiny and smooth. (My frosting was a lot lighter than the picture and did not go on the cake easily. I even added extra root beer into the frosting to loosen it up and it was still tough. I might have added a tad more powdered sugar than I should have because once again, I had my attention in a few different places.)
Use a spatula and frosting spatula to spread the frosting over the crown of the bundt in a thick layer. Serve with vanilla ice cream. So incredibly delicious, even with my mistakes.