Time for another episode of culinary confessions. I’ve never owned or used a springform pan. Basically because they have always terrified me.
When it comes to things I’m afraid to do, baking in a springform pan ranks right up there with canning and using active dry yeast. (Of course there many things I’m much more terrified of that I’ll never do, e.g. bungee jumping or LSD. But this is a cooking blog so let’s try to stay on topic.)
My fear of canning comes from the distinct possibility that I’ll do it wrong and accidentally poison a lot of people. And I’m sure a number of people share my fear of baking with yeast. Proofing? Fermenting? Kneading? Yikes! I think that one’s pretty reasonable. But I can’t say why it is, exactly, that I’ve never been brave enough to tackle the springform pan. Many a cheesecake have gone unbaked due to this irrational phobia.
Wait. It’s a pan. And it’s in two pieces. How does the batter not leak through the seam and all over the oven? Then how on earth does it break away from the cake without crumbling the entire thing?
Actually, it’s not at all irrational.
But when my friends decided to have a beer themed dinner party, I couldn’t think of a more fitting dessert to bring than the chocolate stout cake that riddles the internet every St. Patrick’s Day. Just one problem. It has to be baked in a springform pan.
So I went to Walmart and wandered down the cookware aisle with trepidation. “Oh my God, am I really doing this? Am I actually going to purchase a crazy two-part pan with a latch and it’s own Wiki page?”. All my fear diminished once I saw the cutest lime green pan ever. I mean, really, What could be scary about lime green bakeware? Ridiculous.
As it turns out, this cake is ridiculous. Ridiculously easy to make, that is. It come together almost entirely in one saucepan and popped right out of that crazy pan with no problem. The frosting is simple, too. You don’t even have to frost the sides!
Be careful not to over bake this. It will appear underdone in the middle giving you the urge to leave it in the oven for an extra five minutes. Don’t do it. I did and I think the result was ever so slightly dry. I prefer a moist cake which this one should be for all the liquid ingredients.
In my opinion Guinness doesn’t really taste like much on it’s own so I definitely didn’t taste it in the cake. I’d love to try this again with a chocolate porter. Now we’re talking!
Oh, by the way, the recipe only calls for 1 cup of Guinness so you’ll have to measure it out and drink the rest of the can. Then you’ll have to have another full Guinness because that was barely any beer, let’s get real.
- 1 cup Guinness stout (or other beer)
- 10 tablespoons (1 stick plus 2 tablespoons) unsalted butter
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa
- 2 cups sugar
- ½ cup sour cream
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2½ teaspoons baking soda
- 1¼ cups confectioners’ sugar
- 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 3/8 to ½ cup heavy cream
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch springform pan and line bottom with a round piece of parchment paper, cut to fit. In a large saucepan, combine Guinness and butter. Cook over medium-low heat until butter melts, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and add cocoa and sugar, and whisk to blend.
- In a small bowl, beat together sour cream, eggs and vanilla. Add to Guinness mixture and mix well. Combine flour and baking soda and then add to the liquid ingredients; whisk until smooth. Pour batter into buttered pan, and bake for 45 to 55 minutes. Place pan on a wire rack and cool completely before removing sides of pan.
- For the frosting, add confectioners’ sugar and cream cheese to a medium bowl. Beat on low until smooth. Add vanilla and heavy cream, and mix until desired consistency has been reached. (I used only 3/8 cup of cream.)
- Carefully remove cake from pan and place on a platter or cake stand. Frost the top of cake only, so that it (slightly) resembles a frothy pint of Guinness.
Adapted slightly from Nigella.com.