Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Eat: Chocolate Mud Cake & Kahlua Coffee Cookies

My recent flurry of travel has reminded me how fortunate I am to have people I can count on for time-consuming favors. Like dropping me off at and/or picking me up from: the train station, the bus station, and the airport. Such dependability and helpfulness should be rewarded...with baked goods! Here are a few of the recipes I've tried lately.

Chocolate Cobbler Mud Cake

For my parents, I baked a chocolate cake. I inherited my seriously sweet tooth from them and had a feeling this confection would hit the spot. My parents spoke so well of it that I made a second cake for my coworkers (snagging two pieces for myself and Matt first!). The original post on Southern Plate refers to this dessert as a "cobbler", which is definitely a misnomer as it features neither fruit nor crumbly crust. The finished product has a thick layer of chocolate pudding with fudgy cake on top; therefore I am renaming this concoction a "mud" cake. It is wonderfully rich and moist, plus all of the ingredients are likely to be found in the average kitchen pantry.

1 cup self-rising flour
3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup cocoa
1 3/4 cup hot tap water

Mix together the flour, sugar, and cocoa. Then stir in the milk, vanilla, and oil. Pour the batter into a greased 8x8 inch pan.

Combine the brown sugar and cocoa in a small bowl. Sprinkle the blend evenly over the cake batter. Very slowly and gradually, pour hot water over the entire thing. Bake at 350 degrees F for 40-45 minutes.

Kahlua Coffee Cookies

For my in-laws, I baked a batch of to-die-for cookies. Imagine a normal double chocolate cookie but with coffee grounds and Kahlua. Oh my word. Fortunately, I did save a few of these for us! I love coffee-flavored desserts and these are so dark and flavorful that just one or two make for a satisfying snack. I slightly modified a recipe from the Food Network . I wanted to make a large batch, so I used smaller spoonfuls of dough. The end result was thin, crispy cookies. If you prefer the opposite (thicker but fewer cookies), adjust the spoonfuls accordingly.

1 cup flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup chocolate chips + grated chocolate, to taste
1 stick of butter, softened
1 egg, beaten
4 tablespoons Kahlua
2-3 tablespoons instant coffee (or espresso) granules
1 tablespoon coffee grounds

Mix together all of the dry ingredients first, then add the remaining. Scoop heaping tablespoons onto a baking sheet (a few inches apart) and bake for 8-10 minutes at 375 degrees F. Let cookies sit on the baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.

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