Well, I might have said last week was my final holiday recipe. But don’t worry, readers, I have one more left for ya.
I’m sure you are breathing a sigh of relief, as my recipes for the holidays have quickly become your family tradition. OK, maybe not, but let’s pretend and make my new year merry and bright.
This week it is Chocolate Peppermint Cake with Minty Glaze. I have decided to help you unload all those extra candy canes you have. I’m sure it’s a major decision every year, right up there with how much weight should I drop this year, and the Mountain Sun or Southern Sun question. (Southern Sun, FYI.)
Yes, I’ve made the decision on what to do: Smash those babies up and stick them in a cake. Genius, I know. I like the fact that you have to smash them up, get out all that aggression that built up over the last few months. Stomp on them (in a plastic bag, please), smash them with a rolling pin, or just smack the everloving life out of them on the counter.
You’ll be glad you did.
I use four smashed candy canes and then half of one in the glaze. Using pure peppermint extract bumps up the mint factor, and I can’t tell you how much I love the chocolate/peppermint combo. You could throw a little peppermint schnapps in there too. Of course I add two shots — one for the cake, one for the diva — and my New Year’s celebration is always very, very happy. Just helping you out the best I know how.
I like this dessert as a New Year’s treat; it’s rich and smooth and especially great if you are planning some big sugar shut-out for 2011. I always say eat one piece, not five, and you should be OK, but whatever makes us happy is the way to go. I also suggest a little bit of whipped cream for the final touch — go decadent to set the tone for the new year.
Now, follow the directions, put some love into it and invite me over when it’s done.
Chocolate Peppermint Cake with Minty Glaze
2 cups flour
2/3 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup sour cream
1 cup water
1 cup canola oil
1 tsp. peppermint extract
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
4 candy canes crushed (about 1/4 cup)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Grease a 10-inch bundt pan (grease liberally). Melt one cup chocolate chips in double boiler, or slowly in microwave in 20-second intervals. Stir until smooth, stir in crushed candy canes. Set aside.
In small bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
In large bowl, whisk brown sugar and eggs. Mix in sour cream. Whisk in water, oil and peppermint extract until well combined. Add in flour mixture and stir until batter is smooth. Do not over-mix.
Fold in chocolate-candy cane mixture until just mixed in. Pour into prepared pan. Bake for 45 minutes.
Take out, and with small metal spatula, run around the outside and the inside of the cake to loosen. Let cool.
When ready to serve, flip over onto serving platter and glaze, let set. Cut cake into slices, dust with powdered sugar if desired, and serve.
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream (you can substitute milk)
1/4 tsp. peppermint extract (you can add a touch more if extra mint flavor is desired)
Whisk all ingredients in bowl until well combined, add more cream if you prefer a thinner glaze.