Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Root Beer Float Cake

Root Beer Float Cake whole

My youngest is a root beer nut. We don’t allow the boys to drink much soda, but on the rare occasion that they can order it in a restaurant or have it at a party or as a special treat, Evan always chooses Root Beer or Dr. Pepper. He also loves root beer floats. Brown cows as we call them here. A few times a year I’ll pick up some good root beer, break out the tall sundae glasses and vanilla ice cream and make ourselves some root beer floats.

When I stumbled across this recipe for Root Beer Float cake I knew I just had to make it. I followed the recipe from New Frontiers in Baking for the cake, and the adapted recipe from Joy the Baker for the frosting. The cake was moist and chocolaty and had a deep, rich flavor with hints of root beer peeking through. The frosting was…well, how should I put this?? Strange. It almost had a bubbly taste. I wasn’t crazy about it. Next time I may skip the root beer frosting all together and just go for a milk chocolate frosting. It wasn’t bad….it just wasn’t as good as the cake. The kids gobbled it up nonetheless.

Root Beer Float Cake slice

Root Beer Float Cake
Printable recipe
Adapted from Baked: New Frontiers In Baking by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito
2 cups root beer (do not use diet)
1 cup dark unsweetened cocoa powder
½ cup unsalted butter, cut into ½ inch cubes
1 ¼ cups granulated sugar
½ cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
2 cups all purpose flour
1 ¼ teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs

Preheat the oven to 325. Spray a 10-inch Bundt pan with nonstick cooking spray, or butter generously and dust with flour, knocking off the excess.

In a small saucepan, heat the root beer, cocoa powder and butter over medium heat until the butter is melted. Add the sugars and whisk until dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool.

In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt.

In a small bowl whisk the eggs until just beaten. Whisk in the cocoa mixture until combined. Gently fold the flour mixture into the cocoa mixture. The batter will be slightly lumpy. You can give it a quick whisk if you like, but don’t over beat the batter or it could cause the cake to be tough. Don’t worry if the batter is very loose.

Pour into Bundt pan and bake for 35 to 45 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through. Bake until a sharp knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Loosen edges with a butter knife and turn onto a cake plate.

Chocolate Root Beer Frosting

2 ounces dark chocolate (60% cacao), melted and cooled slightly
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted
butter, softened
1 teaspoon salt (not kosher)
¼ cup root beer
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 ½ cups powdered sugar

Put all the ingredients in a food processor. Pulse in short bursts until the frosting is shiny and smooth.
2. Use a spatula to spread the fudge frosting over the crown of the Bundt in a thick layer. Let the frosting set before serving, with the ice cream on the side.

Root Beer Float Cake TS
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