Friday, May 10, 2013

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake

One week, two peanut butter-chocolate cakes.  Okay, okay they weren't actually made in the same week, but I am backed up on posting so its double peanut butter, double devil's food this week.  For the second go round, I made a two-layer cake instead of cupcakes and it has a chocolate chip cookie layer in the middle.  An idea I totally stole from a restaurant I ate at in Dallas in early April.  The cookie added great texture and flavor, although the peanut butter kind of took away from having full cookie flavor.  Next time I am going to try this in a more basic cake.  I went the "naked" route with this cake, since I knew that it was already going to be a very rich cake and the extra peanut butter frosting might just take it over the top and not in a good way.  But none the less the birthday guy was happy, and ultimately that was all I was really hoping for.  Really when it comes to birthdays that is really always my goal.  To make a cake that is exactly what someone wants, because for one day a year in the office they get to decide what I make...which lets be real is easy for me, because then I don't have to decide what to make without any direction.  Instead, I can take what someone else wants, maybe put a spin out it, and try to make it the very best I can.  So the question then is, what is your favorite birthday dessert?
Oh and earlier this week I got to spend sometime in Southern California...take a peek...
Wish I was still there with sunrises like this...
And a view like this...

Time for cake:

First layer down...I ran out of parchment paper so I use aluminum foil to cover my server.

First layer of peanut butter frosting; two more to come.

Spread out evenly then...

Cookies crumbled plus...more cake and frosting.

A side view...this cake's best side for pics.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake:
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
9 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup strong coffee, room temperature
Chocolate Chip Cookies: (recipe adapted from Ina Garten)
1/4 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature 
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/8 cup granulated sugar 
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 
1 large egg yolk, at room temperature 
1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup pounds semisweet chocolate chips
Peanut Butter Frosting: (Recipe from Ina Garten - Kathleen's Peanut Butter Icing)
1 cup confectioners' sugar
1 cup creamy peanut butter
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/3 cup skim milk
1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
Prep: Bake the cookies a day in advance or allow to fully cool.
1.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
2.  Cream the butter and two sugars until light and fluffy in a medium bowl using the back of a fork or an electric mixer. Add the vanilla, then the eggs, one at a time, and mix well. Sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt and add to the butter with the mixer on low speed, mixing only until combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.
3.  Using a tablespoon or cookie scoop, scoop balls of dough onto cookie sheet about 1 1/2 inches to 2 inches apart.  Bake for 12-14 minutes or until golden brown.  Move to cooling rack and allow to cool fully. 
Prepare the cake: 
1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Line two 9-inch cake pan with parchment paper on the bottom and spray the sides with non-stick cooking spray.  Set aside.
2.  In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar until well combined.  Add in vanilla and eggs, mix well until combined.

3.  In another large mixing bowl sift together cocoa powder, flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder.

4. Combine milk and remaining coffee in a measuring cup.

5.  Add the flour and coffee mixtures to the sugar-butter mixture, alternating between flour and coffee, mixing between the addition of each.  Begin and end with flour.

6.  Divide the batter evenly between the pans.

7.  Bake for 20-24 minutes, or until tester comes out clean.   Let cakes cool in pan for 10 minutes and then gently remove to cooling rack to finish cooling.  While cakes are cooling prepare peanut butter frosting and crumble cookies.

8.  In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter and peanut butter until light and fluffy.  Then mix in one cup powdered sugar, salt, vanilla extract and heavy cream.  If the frosting is not the desired consistency, mix in a half a cup of powdered sugar at a time until desired consistency is reached.

9.  Once cakes have cooled, flip one over so the top is facing down.  Frost with 1/3 of the frosting, and then top with crumbled cookies.  Then take the 2nd layer, and lightly frost the bottom and place on top of the bottom layer.  Use the remaining frosting to frost the top.  Then using a double boiler, melt the semi-sweet chocolate, stirring with a fork.  Once it is melted through, pour the chocolate in the center of the top layer of peanut butter frosting and spread out evenly in a circle.

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