Thursday, May 28, 2020

SKILLET CHOCOLATE CAKE: Shelter-in-Place Chocolate Goodness #13

Lately I've been thinking of upping my Skillet game. O.k. I'm Sheltered in Place and have been baking and cooking more than usual, so pots and pans are in my face all day. Of course I have a great old seasoned cast iron skillet, but I was ready for a change. So I decided to get a 'pretty' Le Creuset cast iron skillet. I watched a dozen videos before deciding on Le Creuset for my new skillet. I do have several sizes of Le Creuset Dutch ovens, grill pans, and assorted other pots and pans, so Le Creuset definitely seemed the right choice. I like enameled cast iron cookware, and Le Creuset is beautiful. But more importantly, it delivers on performance, versatility and ease of maintenance.

In the past I've found my Le Creuset cookware at the Flea Market, garage sales, or the White Elephant sale. Not cheap, but cheaper. And, I like to imagine the life each led, the people it knew, the recipes it simmered and baked. Alas, since there are no garage sales or flea markets while SIP,  no one is parting with these precious commodities on NextDoor or elsewhere. So I bit the bullet and ordered the Le Creuset Signature Cast-Iron Deep Skillet from Williams Sonoma -- on sale and free shipping. The only decision I had to make was whether to get a red one or blue one. I'm not into trendy colors, but if you are Le Creuset has a myriad of cool colors. My old O'Keefe Merritt stove is dark blue and all of my Le Creuset cookware is blue, so I went with the red skillet for pop! Don't judge me! And, I opted for the 12" rather than the 11 3/4 because it's deeper and more versatile.

So what to make first in this easy to care for skillet? Chocolate Cake, of course! Here's a great recipe for Skillet Cake that I found on Southern Living a few years ago. It's delicious..with or without the frosting and nuts, but even better with! My new skillet is the perfect size -- 12". My old skillet is only 10". Although the original recipe mentions eating this Skillet Chocolate Cake as a group event right out of the skillet, I wouldn't recommend it given that we're all worried about the Corona Virus. I advise separate servings with separate utensils! This recipe, BTW, is best served warm!

Don't have the Le Creuset Skillet? No worries. You can make this Skillet Chocolate Cake in the one you do have!

Photo: Southern Living

1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips (about 10 oz.)
3/4 cup unsalted butter
4 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup packed light brown sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup whole milk
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Additional Ingredients
1 cup toasted pecan halves, chopped
Vanilla ice cream  


Prepare Cake: 
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Combine chocolate chips and butter in a medium-size microwavable glass bowl. Microwave on HIGH until melted and smooth, about 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds. Cool 10 minutes.
Beat eggs, granulated sugar, and light brown sugar in bowl of heavy-duty stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment on medium speed until thick and creamy, about 5 minutes.
Whisk together flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt. Add flour mixture and melted chocolate mixture to egg mixture in batches, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat on low speed just until each is incorporated.
Pour batter into 12-inch cast-iron skillet
Bake in preheated oven until wooden pick inserted in center comes out with a few moist crumbs, about 40 minutes. Place on wire rack to cool slightly.

Prepare Frosting: 
Combine granulated sugar, butter, milk, cocoa, flour, and salt in small saucepan over medium. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture comes to a boil, about 5 minutes. Cook, stirring constantly, until slightly thickened, about 1 minute (it will still be a bit thin).
Remove pan from heat, and stir in vanilla extract.
Pour into medium-size heatproof bowl, and let cool slightly, about 15 minutes.
Pour warm Frosting over warm Cake.
Sprinkle with chopped pecans.
Serve warm or at room temperature with ice cream.

1 comment:

Lise said...

I love my Le Creuset skillet! I may have to get another one now :-)