While this may look like your typical chocolate cake it's not. It has a kick. Well, not so much a kick but just an interesting ingredient. Whiskey. It definitely gave a flavor to this cake that I quite liked. And before you pass on this cake because you don't like whiskey I can tell you I hate whiskey...but it works in this Chocolate Whiskey cake. Though there is an alcohol based flavor, it melds really well with the chocolate. As the recipe states, 'most of the alcohol in this cake cooks off, but a distinct whiskey flavor remains'.
This is my September entry for gourmet, unbound. It came from the September 2005 issue of Gourmet. The article the recipe was featured in was called "A Little Bit Country: Big sky, big Stetsons, big songs about big love and bigger heartbreak join flavors that go right to the heart of the country" and featured recipes for deviled eggs, garlicky fried chicken and slow-cooked collard greens.
This was an easy cake to make. Very moist too. The recipe mentioned that the cake improved with flavor if let sit a day and they were correct. Though Mr. L and I had to try a teensy bit of the warm cake out of the oven, the flavors were even better at room temperature the next day.
As far as the whiskey to be used in the cake...the recipe calls for an "American" whiskey. A brief article states how American whiskey is made by the sour-mash method and that because the flavor of whiskey is a major ingredient in the cake, you should chose a whiskey you like. The article also mentioned that there was no reason to spend money on an expensive "overproof bottling", a good bourbon such as Wild Turkey or Jack Daniel's would work. Alas, the only whiskey we had in the house was some really good Single Barrel Vintage, that some of my relatives threatened to tar and feather me, for disgracing the whiskey by using it in a cake. Haha on them because the cake tasted pretty dang good!
CHOCOLATE WHISKEY BUNDT CAKE
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch-process) plus 3 tablespoons for dusting pan
1 1/2 cups brewed coffee
1/2 cup American whiskey
2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 cups sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
Special equipment: a 10-inch bundt pan (3 1/4 inches deep; 3-qt capacity)
Accompaniment: lightly sweetened whipped ream
Garnish: confectioners sugar for dusting
Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Butter bundt pan well, then dust with 3 tablespoons cocoa powder, knocking out excess.
Heat coffee, whiskey, butter, and remaining cup cocoa powder in a 3-quart heavy saucepan over moderate heat, whisking, until butter is melted. Remove from heat, then add sugar and whisk until dissolved, about 1 minute. Transfer mixture to a large bowl and cool 5 minutes.
While chocolate mixture cools, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Whisk together eggs and vanilla in a small bowl, then whisk into cooled chocolate mixture until combined well. Add flour mixture and whisk until just combined (batter will be thin and bubbly). Pour batter into bundt pan and bake until a wooden pick or skewer inserted in center comes out clean, 40 to 50 minutes.
Cool cake completely in pan on a rack, about 2 hours. Loosen cake from pan using tip of dinner knife, then invert rack over pan and turn cake out onto rack.
Note: I served this plain, no whipped cream or confectioners sugar.
Not a bad cake at all. A great way to use up whiskey if you tend to have it in the house but don't drink it.
Other interesting recipes from the Gourmet September 2005 "Music" issue that are on my list to make: Roasted Corn with Chipotle Mayonnaise, Elvis Presley's Favorite Pound Cake, Elvis Presley's Hot Peanut Butter and Banana Sandwich (There was a wonderful Jane and Michael Stern article entitled "Fit for a King"), Rosemary Lamb Chops with Swiss Chard and Balsamic Syrup, Skillet Corn with Bacon and Onions, and Chocolate Mink (like gooey flourless chocolate pudding cakes).