I am not much of a baker at all. For one thing, I don’t have much of a sweet tooth (unless we’re talking about highly processed Haribo sweeties, but that’s another matter), so if I’m going to be spending time in the kitchen, usually it will be making something savory. I’m also just not very good at baking. I’m very imprecise, and this does not yield good results with the delicate chemical reactions required for baking.
But when you see a recipe called Mayan Chocolate Glazed Bundt Cake, and you remember that there happens to be a Bundt pan lurking under your kitchen sink, it’s easy to make an exception. Especially when you’re assured that Bundt cakes are “very hard to screw up”. Sold!
While this is probably not a recipe made by any Mexican abeulas, the combination of chocolate, cayenne, and cinnamon is certainly reminiscent of Mexican flavors. As you might have been able to guess by their respective quantities, it’s the cinnamon which really takes front and center in the final product, while the cayenne hits a much more subtle note. If you’re a big fan of chili-chocolate, as I am, feel free to up the cayenne a bit, but do be careful. That stuff isn’t messing around.
For the glaze I used dark chocolate (72%) instead of bittersweet (they are essentially the same thing), because it’s easier to tell the exact amount of cocoa solids. In my mind, 72% is the absolute perfect chocolate. The glaze is absolutely delicious, but this recipe did make a huge amount of it. I used at most 2/3’s of it on the actual cake, and probably closer to half, so I would definitely cut down on that (unless, of course, you have someone around who will happily eat the glaze with a spoon. Ahem). I ended up not topping my cake with anything, but I think it would be really nice with dried cherries on top.
If you’re feeling extra-decadent, I served this with a little creme fraiche on top. If you’ve been turned off by the price of creme fraiche, or just have no clue what it is, worry not. It’s ridiculously easy to make at home, and I’ll be posting about it soon. For now, have some cake…
Mexican Chocolate Bundt Cake
115g (1/2 c.) salted butter
1 c. cocoa powder (unsweetened)
3/4 c. water
1/2 c. buttermilk
1.5 c. sugar
1 tbsp vanilla
2 c. flour
1 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (more if you feel bold)
For the glaze (makes a generous amount):
1/4 c. unsalted butter
1/2 c. cream
1/2 c. powdered sugar
5 oz. dark chocolate
Preheat your oven 175°C (350°C). Flour your Bundt pan by buttering the inside, then lightly coating with cocoa powder. Tap out the excess.
In a saucepan, melt the salted butter over low heat. When it’s fully melted, whisk in the cocoa powder until it’s fully incorporated. Whisk in the water, and remove the saucepan from the heat. Whisk in the eggs, buttermilk, sugar and vanilla until everything is well incorporated.
In a large mixing bowl sift the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and cayenne together. Pour the chocolate mixture into the bowl, whisking continuously until you have a uniform batter. Pour the batter into the Bundt pan and bake for about 40 minutes, a butter knife should come out clean when the cake is done. Cool on a cooling rack for 15 minutes, and then tip onto a plate and cool for a further 10 minutes.
While the cake is cooling, make the glaze. Chop the chocolate finely. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. When it’s melted, add the cream, powdered sugar, and chocolate. Stir until smooth, then remove from the heat and let it cool for 5 minutes. Pour the glaze over the bundt cake. Eat!