Thursday, June 4, 2009

Birthday Brownie Cake

When I got together with my sisters a few months ago it was, in part, to celebrate our birthdays. A birthday celebration, of course, means a cake. Our birthdays are getting to have rather large numbers attached to them, and to combine all our birthdays and put that many candles on a cake would likely set off the smoke detector.

So we opted to use the occasion as an excuse to make a recipe that's been hanging around in the "I want to try this" pile of recipes. It's labeled as a cake, but really turns out like a brownie. A very fancy, upscale brownie that is decadently delicious. It was worthy of the occasion and well worth the effort.

Chocolate-Mint Brownie Cake

- adapted from Bon Appetit April 2003

2 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon (Optional)

6 oz good-quality white chocolate, chopped
3 Tbsp whiipping cream
3/4 tsp peppermint extract

6 Tbsp whiipping cream
6 oz bittersweet or semisweet chcolate, chopped

Chocolate curls, mint leaves, strawberry slices

White chocolate curls for presentation (optional)

For cake:
1- Preheat oven to 350 deg. F. Butter and flour 8-inch square metal cake pan. Line bottom of pan with parchment paper. Butter and flour parchment paper.

2- Stir chopped chocolate in top of double boiler set over simmering water until chocolate is melted and smooth. Remove from over water and set aside.

3- Using electric mixer, beat butter in medium bowl until smooth. Gradually add sugar and beat until well blended. Beat in eggs 1 at a time, blending well after each addition. Beat in melted chocolate and vanilla. Add flour (and cinnamon); beat just until blended. Spoon cake batter into prepared pan; smooth top.

4- Bake cake for about 25 minutes, until tester inserted into center comes out with moist crumbs attached. Cool cake in pan on rack 20 minutes. Run small knife between edge of cake and pan to loosen. Turn cake out onto rack; remove parchment paper. Cool completely.

For icing: Stir white chocolate and whipping cream in top of double boiler set over simmering water until melted and smooth. Remove from over water. Stir in peppermint extract. Spread icing evenly over top of cake. Place cake in freezer until icing is firm, about 30 minutes.

For glaze: Bring cream to simmer in heavy small saucepan. Remove from heat. Add chocolate; whisk until melted and smooth. Cool chocolate until lukewarm but still pourable, about 5 minutes.

Place cake on rack set over baking sheet. Pour half of glaze over top of cake. Spread glaze evenly over top and sides of cake. Freeze until glaze is set, about 10 minutes. If necessary, rewarm remaining glaze just until pourable. Pour remaining glaze over cake; spread glaze smoothly over top and sides of cake. Refrigerate cake until glaze is firm, about 2 hours. Let cake stand at room temp. at least 3 hours before serving.

Transfer brownie cake to platter. Top cake with chocolate curls, mint leaves, or strawberry slices.


  1. Yum! What a great treat! Marking this one to make soon.

  2. what a decadent cake! hahaha the part about the smoke detector craked me up!

  3. This is so pretty and sounds delicious

  4. Beautiful as from a bakery! Made by you I know it's 100% fabulous taste!! Great to have sisters birthdays!!

  5. I once attended a b-day party where they put 70 candles on the cake. It really did set off the smoke detector! I love this b-day brownie, Lynn--so decadent.

  6. WOW -- that is gorgeous! My birthday is in November, if you're looking for another excuse to make this cake... :)

  7. oh lynn. not only are these perfect to the naked eye--i love those clean layers--but they're also undoubtedly delicious. i say this with confidence since the chocolate-mint combo has never let me down. :)

  8. That's funny about the smoke detector! The cake sounds and looks great!

  9. Could you really wait *3 hours* before serving this from the refrigerator?
    My husband and daughter would be all over that cake, like flies on honey the second it sat on the counter.

  10. Oh my! I am seriously thinking I need that as my birthday cake! I have been on such a mint kick as of late.

  11. Mmmm that looks and sounds insanely delicious?!

  12. Chocolate, white chocolate, cream and Veggie Girl would say, "Holy Yum!"

  13. Oh man, this is going on my to do list. Looks great.

  14. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  15. Looks so tasty! I love a brownie now and then.. a birthday is the perfect occasion.
    (My french is pretty rusty but I'd delete the comment before mine from anonymous)

  16. Belated Happy Birthday! This looks like it would be worth every delicious calorie :-)

  17. You had me at 'brownie'... The fact that it's 'upscale' is pure bonus. Definitely a bit different, and one to put on the 'must try' list.