Chocolate Stout Snack Cake with Espresso Buttercream

Chocolate stout snack cake with espresso buttercream.

Robust stout, dark cocoa and sour cream combine to create this irresistibly moist snack cake. Frosted with espresso buttercream and finished with a decadent topping such as dark chocolate shavings, it’s bold and beautiful.

Chocolate Stout Snack Cake with Espresso Buttercream

Serves | 9 |

Chocolate Stout Snack Cake

  • ¾ cup stout
  • ¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter
  • ½ cup, plus 1 Tbsp, Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract

Espresso Buttercream

  • 5 large egg yolks
  • ½ cup freshly brewed espresso or dark coffee
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1½ cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

| Preparation – Chocolate Stout Snack Cake | Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with parchment paper and lightly spray with nonstick cooking oil spray.

In a saucepan, bring stout and butter to a boil; stirring constantly, cook until butter is melted. Remove from heat; whisk in cocoa powder to combine. Set aside to cool.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, sour cream and vanilla; whisking, add cooled stout mixture in a steady stream. Add half of the flour mixture; whisk to incorporate. Fold in remaining flour mixture.

Transfer batter to prepared baking pan; bake until cake is slightly domed and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs, 43 to 45 minutes. Remove from oven and set on wire rack to cool completely.

| Preparation – Espresso Buttercream | Add egg yolks to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whip attachment; on medium high speed, whip yolks until pale and thick, 4 to 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, add espresso and sugar; set over medium-high heat and cook until mixture reaches 240°F on a kitchen thermometer and then immediately remove from heat. Decrease speed of stand mixer to medium low; slowly stream hot espresso syrup down the side of the bowl and into the whipped yolks. Increase speed to high and mix until cool (the bottom of the bowl should no longer be warm to the touch). Add butter, 1 to 2 tablespoons at a time, waiting to add more until the previous pieces are incorporated. Stop and scrap down the sides and bottom of the bowl and then whip buttercream for an additional 2 to 3 minutes until smooth. Leftover buttercream can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks or in the freezer for 3 months.

Troubleshooting: The final buttercream should be smooth and light. If the buttercream appears dense, transfer 1 to 2 tablespoons to a small heatproof bowl and heat in microwave just until it begins to melt, approximately 5 seconds. Add heated portion back into the bowl of buttercream and whip until fully incorporated. Repeat the reheating process as necessary until buttercream reaches desired consistency. Alternately, if the buttercream is too soft, simply place the entire bowl in the refrigerator until it begins to firm slightly, 10 to 15 minutes (check and stir every 5 minutes). Remove from refrigerator and whip chilled buttercream until light and fluffy.

| To Serve | Dollop a large mound of buttercream on top of the cake and spread out with an offset spatula. Make light “swooping” motions with the offset spatula or the back of a spoon to create swirls in the buttercream. Top with dark chocolate shavings or any edible decoration of your choice. Cut into nine even squares and serve. Store leftover cake in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days.

Teresa Floyd is a Kansas City-based food writer, editor for the online food publication feedfeed and contributing monthly columnist for Feast Magazine’s Sugar Rush. Find her current creations on Now, Forager, a pastry blog featuring seasonal desserts.

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