This cake is rich and slightly fudgy, almost but not quite a brownie. It is my favorite dark chocolate cake recipe taken to a higher level with a good shot of Irish Whiskey. The nice thing is you can really taste the whiskey in this cake and oh man, is it every good. Matt and I ate every scrap that was leftover from cutting it into shamrocks. I was afraid the whiskey would be harsh in it (especially as I am not a huge whiskey fan), but it is quite mellow. It goes well with the bittersweetness of the chocolate and oakiness of the vanilla.
To make it even more fun, I cut the cake into small shamrock cakes using a heart cookie cutter I had in my collection.
Chocolate Whiskey Cake
1/2 c (4 oz) unsalted butter
1/4 c Hersey's Special Dark Cocoa (or other Dutch processed cocoa)
6 T Irish Whiskey
1 c white sugar
1 T vanilla
1/4 c buttermilk (or if you don't have buttermilk, mix a little lemon juice into regular milk)
1 c all-purpose flour
1/4 t baking soda
1/2 t baking powder
1/8 t salt
green food coloring
Preheat oven to 350 F. Prepare a round 8" cake pan by greasing and flouring it well. (If you are picky about this type of thing you can dust it with cocoa instead of flour.)
In a saucepan, melt the butter over low heat. Whisk in the cocoa until smooth. Whisk in the whiskey, again until smooth. Remove from heat. Then one at a time whisk in the sugar, egg, vanilla and buttermilk. Stir in the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt, it will be slightly lumpy.
Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 20 - 25 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out relatively clean. Cool on a rack before flipping out of the pan.
Served with whipped cream that has been dyed green.
Makes a single layer 8" cake.
How to make the cake into shamrocks:
8" round single layer chocolate cake (brownies would work good too)
long serrated knife
2" heart cookie cutter
Trim the cake so it is flat and not much thicker than your cookie cutter. A long serrated knife works well for this.
Using the cookie cutter cut out eight hearts along the outer edge of the cake and one in the center. Make sure you are pressing the cutter all the way through the cake so the hearts don't get stuck an break. Save three of the little triangle pieces between the hearts for stems. Eat the scraps.
Arrange the hearts into a shamrock shape.
Before serving top with the green whipped cream.
You will get three shamrocks out of one 8" cake. Matt says each shamrock is one serving and I say they could easily be two.
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