This week has just been one big Chocolate Cake Emergency for me. I’m making a couple of big changes and I am a walking, talking ball of stress. Logically, I know that sweets cannot (and will not) fix any of my problems, but on a week like this, they sure can’t hurt.
Enter this Everyday Chocolate Cake: a nine-ingredient one-bowl wonder with no need for layering, frosting, or anything else. There are no difficult-to-find ingredients, unusual methods, or long processes—this is an easy, straightforward recipe with spectacular results. Really, this soft, fluffy, deeply chocolaty dessert is just what I want when a Chocolate Cake Emergency arises.
As I said before, this cake doesn’t need any sort of adornment; I prefer to eat it by its lonesome or with a light dusting of confectioners sugar. If you want to get a little fancy, I recommend topping a slice with a scoop of ice cream (current favorite: Trader Joe’s Salted Caramel Gelato) or drizzling the whole cake with ganache.
Everyday Chocolate Cake
makes 1 9×5-inch loaf cake
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1 cup light or dark brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup Dutch process cocoa powder (I like Droste)
1 1/2 baking powder
1/4 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
3/4 cup milk (not skim or nonfat)
confectioners sugar, for dusting (optional)
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease and lightly flour a 9×5-inch loaf pan. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, use an electric mixer to beat butter and brown sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, followed by vanilla.
Sift in flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt. Mix just until combined. Add milk and mix on low until combined.
Transfer batter to prepared pan. Tap on counter to release any air bubbles. Bake 38-42 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool completely in the pan on a rack.
Run a small, thin knife around the edge before inverting. Dust with confectioners sugar, if desired. Slice and serve.
Leftovers will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days, or in the refrigerator for up to five.