There are certain things every woman needs.
The perfect LBD.
The absolute hold-all that is both classy and convenient.
Your 2 am best friend who will pick up the phone no matter what. (Ok I used to read Cosmo and feel all wonderful about being a 2am philosopher and guide to my girlfriends, but once I got married and had a child, this ‘need’ just tumbled off my list. I need my sleep. My friends need theirs. Unless you are seriously in a scrape, you should not be calling anyone at 2am, no matter what time zone they are in.)
More importantly, you also need a perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe, and a fail-safe/go-to chocolate cake recipe.
I know I need these almost as much as I need water.
And after my last bad attempt at chocolate cake, I searched and sifted; tried and tested; and I found my fail-safe/go-to/favourite chocolate cake recipe.
Surprise surprise, it’s from Thanh again!
How can anyone not want to try something that’s called a chocolate pound cake? I know I did.
I made a few tweaks, slipping in a bar of chocolate to make the batter more decadent.
And some almonds, because almonds are another way to add decadence.
And it’s altogether overall oh-so-darn good. Moist and crumbly; smooth and velvety once it’s in your mouth.
CHOCOLATE ALMOND POUND CAKE (Adapted with minimal changes from Eat, Little Bird.)
- 1 cup plain flour
- 2/3 cup cocoa powder, sifted
- 100 grams almonds, coarsely pounded (according to some conversion calculators, this works out to about 7/8 cup…I guess you could use anywhere between 1/2 cup to 1 cup, depending on how crunchy you want the cake to be and how much you like almonds!)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- Pinch of salt
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter
- 1 cup + 1/3 cup castor sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 teaspoon instant coffee powder
- 2 1/2 eggs
- 2/3 cup vanilla yogurt (I used Danone vanilla yogurt…the small pack is 100 grams, I used about 3/4 of that pack.)
- 1/4 cup milk chocolate pieces (I used good old Cadbury’s Dairy Milk)
- Pre-heat the oven to 165 C
- Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt and crushed almonds and keep aside.
- In a small bowl, dissolve the coffee powder in 10 ml of hot water, and add in the chocolate pieces to make a thick chocolatey sauce.
- In a large bowl, beat the sugar and butter together until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla extract + the chocolate coffee sauce and beat some more.
- Add a third of the egg mixture at a time, along with a tablespoon each of the dry ingredients, and incorporate well.
- Next, add what’s left of the dry ingredients and the yogurt. Make sure everything is well combined.
- Pour into a greased and floured baking dish and bake at 165C for about an hour. These ingredients yield ample batter- I poured mine into a 1.5 litre capacity fluted baking dish, and had a little leftover, which I poured into 2 babycake tins!
(That line sounded quite prissy, almost Nigella-like. Sorry folks. But this cake is fiiiine.)