Chocolate Cake (made with Coffee)

I discovered this recipe during my first months of teaching. While I was wondering what I had gotten myself into, I decided to test out having cake for breakfast. The secret to this cake is coffee, which practically makes it a coffee cake and therefore easy to justify as breakfast. The coffee makes it a rich and moist chocolate cake, and instead of topping it with frosting, fresh whipped cream is spread over the top, in the same way as a tres leches. 

Chocolate Cake (made with Coffee)

  • 1/4 cup cocoa
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons flour 
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup regular olive oil 
  • 1 cup strong coffee
  • 1 egg whisked

1. Make at least one cup of coffee, line an 8-inch cake pan with parchment paper, and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

2. In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients: the cocoa, sugar, salt, flour, and baking soda. Use a whisk to sift the dry ingredients until mixed thoroughly and airy; try to eliminate any lumps of cocoa.

3. In a medium bowl, combine the wet ingredients: the vanilla, olive oil, and coffee. 

4. Add the wet ingredients to the center of the dry ingredients, mixing it together with a large spoon - just until mixed. 

5.  Last, add the egg, mixing it in - just until mixed. If you're a baker, this batter will be instinctually wet, but that's okay - it's supposed to be. 

6. Pour the batter into your prepared pan and bake for 25-30 minutes. The cake is done when the center is no longer wobbly and an inserted knife comes out clean with no crumbs. 

7. Allow the cake to cool completely, before topping it with Whipped Cream (see the recipe below). 

Whipped Cream 

  • 2 cups whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt 

1. Using an electric beater (or a whisk if you have amazing upper arm strength and stamina), beat the cream until it thickens, careful not to overbeat it and make butter. Soft peaks should form. 

2. Add the sugar and salt, just folding it in with a rubber spatula. You may use the same spatula to spread the whipped cream over your cake or put it in a container for later. I love reserving some of this whipped cream for putting on top of coffee at home. 

Topping this cake with cherries is optional, but highly recommended. This is a cozy cake, making it perfect for having coffee with in the morning or as an afternoon snack. 

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