chocolate whiskey cake

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Dave was watching a Cleveland Cavelier’s basketball game while I made this cake. When LeBron James, doing what LeBron James does, executed some crazy maneuver that only he could have pulled off, the announcers praised his creativity. Dave noted that for anyone else, the move would have been called stupid, but then for anyone else, the move wouldn’t have worked.

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Putting prunes in chocolate cake is basically the same thing. If it works, you’re creative. If not, you’re…something else.

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For this cake, prunes are chopped, softened in hot water, and flambéed.  The prunes are mixed with egg yolks, sugar, melted chocolate and butter, flour and ground nuts, and beaten egg whites. The cooled cake is topped with a rich chocolate glaze. Put this way, it sounds a lot simpler than over an hour of baking and at least six dirty bowls proved it to be.

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Baking the cake is where I, and it seems a number of other people, ran into problems. Dorie instructs that the cake is done when the sides are pulling away from the pan, the top is crisp, and a knife inserted into the center is “streaky.” Hm…”streaky” isn’t very definitive. My cake seemed to pass all three of those conditions and even unmolded cleanly, but when I cut into it, I realized it was gooey in the center. A better indicator of doneness would be a final temperature to be reached, to be read with an instant-read thermometer.

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Regardless, I hereby decree Dorie creative, and not crazy, because a gooey center could not detract from just how delicious this cake is. If I hadn’t known, I would not have been able to identify the prunes in the cake, and certainly not the whiskey. However, there was definitely something more to this cake than a regular chocolate cake. I have two-thirds of it left, and it’ll be a miracle if I get through the day without stealing tiny slices here and there. It’ll be a miracle if I get through the next hour, honestly. (I did not make it. It’s half an hour later and I’m eating cake. And I agree with Dorie that it’s better at room temperature, but it isn’t half-bad cold either.)

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Lyb has the recipe posted. I used whiskey instead of Armagnac, prunes instead of raisins, and ground almonds instead of walnuts. I wouldn’t change anything about the ingredients, but if you make this, err on the side of less streaky on a knife inserted into the middle at the end of baking. This cake is so moist that I think it would be a challenge to dry it out.

One year ago: Raspberry Bars

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Comments

  1. Delicious! I also made a few modifications myself :)

  2. Are you in Cleveland????? If so, please send me an email :-)

    GORGEOUS CAKE!!

  3. WOW this looks fantastic. and with WHISKEY!?!? I must try this!! :)

  4. What a beautiful cake! I bet the almonds gave it a great flavor.

  5. Looks lovely! Enjoy!

  6. juju73 says:

    WOW! Nice job! I do love the pictures of the cake and the ingredients…but I equally love the picture of the matches! I always love pictures of things in groups!

  7. Good Gravytrain these pictures are too much!! Gorgeous!

  8. Waaaahoo! I love everything, Bridget! Sooo lovely, so clear and perfectly photographed!

    The cake is beautiful, the plates are amazing… all is nice, but I have to say… I looooove the matches picture.

    Very, very well done!

  9. Your cake looks beautiful, gooey center and all!

  10. Mmm, I think your gooey center cake looks pretty inviting!

  11. Yum! Even a little gooey it still looks delicious!

  12. Love your cake and dishes!

  13. I bet your hubbie is just so happy that the Cavs have been winning.

    Your cake looks great.

  14. pinkstripes says:

    Wonderful pictures! Your cake looks gorgeous. I’m glad it was a hit for you.

  15. I used to live in Cleveland. I love the Cavaliers. I also love your plate for your cake! Great photos.

  16. that gooey center is looking pretty good to me!

  17. des photos fantastiques et vraiment très gourmandes ! c’est de toute beauté :)

  18. Wow. Gooey deliciousness!

  19. gooey is a good thing, especially with your cake —that looks delicious!!!

  20. Jillian says:

    Molten Chocolate Whiskey Cake – yum!

  21. I’m all for a gooey-centered cake! I was sold when I heard chocolate and whiskey uttered in such close proximity :D

  22. I almost used the almonds, but stuck with the pecans. The cake was a hit at my house, too, and I didn’t even frost it!

  23. woww.. beautiful pics and cake !!! well done !!

  24. Hey, I’ve never been known to pass up a gooey cake :) The glaze looks out of this world. And– I think chocolate and dried fruit is a fantastic combination, even if the rest of my family doesn’t seem to think so :)

  25. Your gooey center looks delicious! Great job. I too was a bit confused on the “streaky” instruction – I think I may have overbaked it a bit.

  26. teaandscones says:

    That cake looks wonderful.

  27. Your pics are fabulous and your cake looks fantastic! I’m glad you liked it! Thanks for baking along with me! :)

  28. Wow, that’s absolutely fabulous. Nice comparison to basketball (as a born-and-bred Hoosier, I’m a bit of a bball fan). I agree that the fruit and alcohol elevated this cake a bit above the average chocolate cake, and yours looks especially wonderful. Great job!

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