The following “Chew This!” column has been reprinted from “The Courier-Times”, Friday, July 3rd 2020 edition. By: Blaise Doubman. This column also appeared in “The Shelbyville News”.
Trisha Yearwood Inspired Chocolate Cake
A couple of years ago my parents and I got the chance to meet country music superstar, Trisha Yearwood at a meet and greet party at the Williams-Sonoma at the Keystone Fashion Mall in Indianapolis. I was really nervous to meet her and was not even sure I would be able to! I remember trying to talk my Grandma Barbra into coming with us, to help ease my nervousness if nothing else but she was too nervous herself and declined. I remember right before leaving the house wondering if Trisha would be allowed to accept gifts of any kind. I grabbed a copy of my first cookbook, “Blaise the Baker Dessert First”, autographed it to Trisha and gave it to my Mom to hide in her purse. Because why wouldn’t Trisha Yearwood want an autographed copy of my debut cookbook? Ha! As we were all standing in line, my stomach in knots, I kept looking in the back part of the store to see if I could see her or not. I could! She looked just like she did on TV. She was smiling, posing for pictures and I could hear her laughing. My nerves settled a little but not by much. As we were standing in line, we were introduced to Mimi Pierce from WTHR and a few other event organizers from WTHR and Williams-Sonoma. It helped pass the time some. Before I knew it, we were next in line. I was a sweaty mess and so nervous! As soon as it was our turn, Trisha came over and gave us all the biggest hug. Instantly my nerves melted away. She was so friendly and so nice. It was like I had known her for years! She really made you feel comfortable and welcomed. She is by far the nicest celebrity I have ever got to meet.
Long story short, she took my cookbook, flipped through it and talked about how delicious everything sounded. She even held the cookbook up in a picture we had taken and talked about how she was going to read it on her tour bus. As I was leaving, I got to thinking about something. Isn’t it something how sometimes when you meet someone, a celebrity for instance, you never really know what you are going to get. But with Trisha, she was exactly the person you have seen over the years on TV and in concert. A total sweetheart. She is such an inspiration to me, in how she has been herself and been true to herself throughout her entire career, regardless of what people may think of her. When developing this recipe dedicated to her, I wanted to create something familiar and yet different. This chocolate cake is traditional and delicious, while the maple syrup spiked frosting is warming and yet different. Scrumptious!
Trisha’s Chocolate Fudge Cake
This cake calls for buttermilk. If you do not have buttermilk, use whatever milk you have and add a tablespoon of white vinegar and allow to sit for about 5 minutes. In a pinch, a squeeze of lemon juice would work as well.
For the cake…
2 cups white granulated sugar
1 ¾ cups white all-purpose flour
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
½ cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup freshly brewed coffee, cold
For the frosting…
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
2 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons whole milk
Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 2 9-inch pans with non-stick cooking spray containing flour. Place inside of each pan a circle of parchment paper and spray again.
In a large bowl combine the white granulated sugar with the white all-purpose flour, unsweetened cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
In a smaller bowl whisk together the buttermilk, vegetable oil, large eggs and pure vanilla extract.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and beat well. Add in the coffee and beat. The batter will be thin, and this is desirable. Be sure to incorporate all the ingredients well.
Pour the batter evenly between the two prepared cake pans. Lightly drop them on the counter a few times to release any potential air bubbles that might have formed.
Bake in preheated oven for 35 minutes. Remove and allow to cool before frosting.
To make the frosting, beat the softened unsalted butter until creamy.
Beat in the pure vanilla extract and pure maple syrup. Beat in the powdered sugar.
Beat in the melted semi-sweet chocolate chips. You may need to add a couple of tablespoons of whole milk to reach your desired consistency. The consistency you are looking for should be that of a thick but spreadable melted ice cream.
Frost the cake inside and out and serve this at room temperature.
Any leftovers should be chilled and will keep for about three days.
Ask and Answer: Do you have any family recipes that you would like to share with readers, here in my column? I am looking for unique, inspirational and generational family recipes that people would be interested to add to their recipe boxes. If so, please contact me via the contact page on my website at https://trailblaise.com/contact I look forward to hearing from you!