Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Espresso Glaze

Espresso Cake

Chocolate Cake
What you’ve gotta have:
1 ¼ cups flour
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 cup warm water
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp white vinegar

What you’ve gotta do:
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9” baking pan and set aside.

Mix flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt in a medium-sized mixing bowl. Add water, vanilla extract, oil and vinegar and blend until the batter is smooth (no dry ingredient lumps). Pour the batter into the baking pan and bake for about 30 minutes, or until a knife comes out clean. Remove and let cool in the pan.

Chocolate Espresso Glaze
What you’ve gotta have:
½ cup sugar
4 tbsp butter
2 tbsp milk (I’ve used everything from almond milk to skim, it’s a small enough amount that the thickness will only affect the consistency of the glaze slightly)
2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tablespoon finely ground espresso

What you’ve gotta do:
Mix the sugar, butter, milk, and cocoa powder in a medium saucepan on medium heat until the butter is completely melted, stirring frequently. Add the espresso, and continue to stir. I used a sifter to ensure only the finest grounds made it into the glaze; you can also use instant espresso mix to maintain the smoothness. Dip your finger in and see if it’s espresso-y enough for you - add more to your liking. Reduce the heat to a simmer and continue to mix for several minutes. Add the vanilla.

Pour the glaze over the cake and allow to cool. The warmer the cake is, the more it will absorb the glaze. This isn’t a bad thing, but if you like a nice thick layer of glaze on top, be sure to hold off making the glaze until the cake is cool, as it should be poured immediately onto the cake.

* This cake is best served directly out of the pan. It rarely comes out of the pan cleanly. If you decide to tempt fate and fail as I did, why don’t you try making cake balls with your heaping mess of cake? I did. Here’s how.
* This recipe can easily be made vegan - simply replace the butter with margarine and use a non-dairy milk (almond, soy) in the glaze.
* H/t aliciak, from whom this recipe was adapted.