I'm posting something sweet because I hope you all had a really nice Valentines Day. Jessi and I sure did! We did not do too much. We don't buy into the Hallmark holiday a whole lot. It seems like going out to eat is a chore in itself due to the hoards of people who all feel the need to do so on this one night. If there was ever a reason to cook a meal at home Valentines day is that reason. Cooking is relaxing (most of the time) and you get to spend time with your loved one. The trick is finding a meal that does not consume your whole evening or stress you out too much so you still get time to enjoy with each other. For us that was a quick filet mignon on the grill, a sweet potato, salad and a quick molten lava cake for two for dessert.
However this cake is not molten lava. This is actually a cake I made for Jessi's 29th birthday last September. Yes, I know, I just posted her 28th birthday cake about a week ago. Well, I've got to get all these old cakes out of the way because we've got a new one coming-up real soon! Mine, Michael's, the big dirty thirty! I don't why it's dirty but it sure does feel old! I even been finding some grey hairs lately.
This was a great cake the only thing was that it was a little dry. It's basically a marble coffee cake with a bunch of Pepperage Farm Mint Milano cookies on top (one of my favorites). I think I might have cooked it a little longer than I should have but I also might add a little more sour cream next time. However, it's nothing some vanilla ice cream can't fix. While it was a great cake I miss the icing for birthdays. From now on I will stay true to the icing for all birthdays. Recipe from Jane's Sweets and Baking Journal.
- One 7.5 oz. package of Pepperidge Farm mint-milano cookies (or the flavor of your choice)
- 9 oz. unsalted butter, very soft (divided use: 6 Tbsp., and 12 Tbsp.)
- 2 oz. unsweetened baking chocolate, coarsely chopped
- 1 and 3/4 cups All-Purpose flour (I used unbleached)
- 1 and 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. baking soda
- 1 and 1/4 cups granulated sugar
- 4 extra-large eggs at room temperature
- 1 cup and 2 Tbsp. good quality sour cream
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter the bottom and sides of a 9" springform pan; cover the bottom with a parchment paper circle, and butter the parchment.
- Over a medium bowl, break up the cookies into pieces about 1/2" in size. Using your hands, quickly mix the 6 Tbsp. of soft butter into the cookie pieces, just enough to coat them. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda. Set aside.
- Melt the chocolate in a small bowl set over simmering water, or carefully and slowly in your microwave. Keep the melted chocolate slightly warm; don't let it cool and harden.
- Put the sugar and 12 Tbsp. of butter in the large bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy.
- Add in the eggs one at a time and beating well after each. Still on medium-high, beat in the sour cream and the vanilla extract.
- On low speed, add in the flour mixture and mix just to combine. Don't over beat.
- Pour 3/4 of the batter into the prepared pan and smooth it out with your spatula.
- Into the remaining batter, pour the melted chocolate and stir until no white batter is visible.
- Dollop the chocolate batter here and there onto the top of the batter already in the pan. Using a couple of knives, make a few criss-cross motions to marble it into the bottom layer of batter.
- Sprinkle the broken cookie pieces evenly over the top of the chocolate batter, and gently press them in slightly.
- Bake the cake until the top is golden, and the cake springs back in the center when lightly pressed. In my oven this cake took barely 45 minutes, but Lora Brody's recipe recommends 60 minutes. Just keep checking on it, and if it appears to be browning too quickly, lightly cover the top with foil. Let the cake cool for about 20 minutes in its pan on a rack before removing the sides of the pan. Cool the rest of the way on a rack.