Recipe: Chocolate Sour Cream Bundt Cake

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI’ll be honest – I am not a great baker. I do bake from time to time, but I limit it to recipes that are easy to follow and hard to screw up. I am not one for rules; making precise measurements and refraining from tinkering with things is not really my style. I do, however, enjoy delicious things, so every now and then I’ll make a sacrifice and follow a recipe to the T. This is a requirement if you want to bake a cake, as explained in this video.

Recently, a good friend was throwing a holiday party and I wanted to bring something to share with people and to commemorate her mom’s birthday, who was in town visiting at the time. I needed something fast, easy, and fuss-free. Perhaps I could employ that bundt pan which I have owned for a year but hadn’t used even once? I knew my friend’s madre liked chocolate, and a quick google search for Chocolate Bundt Cake returned one of my favorite food blogs – Two Peas and their Pod. They had an intriguing looking Chocolate Sour Cream Bundt Cake recipe that looked easy to follow and hard to screw up. Perfect!

The key with this cake is the quality of the chocolate you use. Do not skimp here! I used Scharffen Berger bittersweet chocolate baking chunks for the topping and Guittard Dutch Process Cocoa for the cake. Be sure to get a Dutch process cocoa, the authors of the recipe insist on it. That’s what I used and the recipe came out great.

Everyone at the party loved this bundt cake, and I liked it so much I wanted a second piece. Generally speaking, cake doesn’t do much for me. This cake is the exception to that. It would be perfect for a potluck, housewarming party, birthday, or any other occasion that requires feeding cake to a lot of people quickly and easily. It’s rich, gooey, moist, perfectly sweet, and big enough to have leftovers to take home.

Chocolate Sour Cream Bundt Cake
adapted from Two Peas and their Pod

Yield: Serves 10
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes

For the cake:
1 cup unsalted butter, plus more for the pan
1/3 cup cocoa powder (we use Dutch process)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup water
2 cups all-purpose Gold Medal flour, plus more for the pan
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
2 large eggs
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the chocolate glaze:
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons corn syrup (or agave nectar)
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour a 10 or 12-cup Bundt pan and set aside.
2. In a small saucepan, combine the butter, cocoa powder, salt, and water and place over medium heat. Cook, stirring, just until melted and combined. Remove from the heat and set aside.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, and baking soda. Add half of the melted butter mixture and whisk until completely blended. The mixture will be thick. Add the remaining butter mixture and whisk until combined. Add the eggs, one at a time, whisking until completely blended. Whisk in the sour cream (or Greek yogurt) and the vanilla extract. Whisk until smooth.
4. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes. Let the cake cool in the pan for 15 minutes and then invert onto a rack. Let cool completely before glazing.
5. While the cake is cooling, make the chocolate glaze. Place the chopped chocolate and corn syrup (or agave) in a medium bowl and set aside. Combine the heavy cream and sugar in a small saucepan and put over medium heat. Stir until the cream is hot and the sugar is dissolved. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and whisk until smooth.
6. Generously drizzle the glaze over the cooled cake, allowing it to drip down the sides. Cut into pieces and serve.