## Saturday, August 4, 2012

### Quadruple Chocolate Cake

Let's talk about equations.  I'm not a math major, but I miraculously passed Calculus, so I suppose that gives me some authority to discuss these things.

Chocolate cake = yum.  (Chocolate cake) ^ 4 = exponential yum

Here are some other important equations you should memorize:

100 x [(hours before 8-page research paper is due) - (hours spent on Facebook) x (hours spent watching funny cat videos on Youtube) x (hours spent watching laughing baby videos on Youtube) = percentage screwed

Price of a small cup of your favorite herbal tea + a sunny late afternoon + a good conversation with a friend = a lot more than the price of that cup of tea

(Some big and important number) x (depth of laugh lines around the mouth (in millimeters) + depth of laugh lines around the eyes) = a number indicating life's joy (note: this number does not signify, as some wrongly believe, ounces of anti-aging cream to be applied to the face).

(number of swipes of homemade frosting eaten off your finger from the bowl) / (number of baby carrots and good green things eaten) = who's counting, right?

That's enough math.  A piece of cake to cheer you up, perhaps?

Quadruple Chocolate Cake (chocolate cake ^ 4)
Slightly adapted from allrecipes.com

Yields: about 16 slices

Ingredients:

1 (18.5 ounce) package Devil's food cake mix
1 (3.9 ounce) package instant chocolate pudding mix
2 scant cups sour cream
1 cup butter, melted
5 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 3/4 cups mini semisweet chocolate chips

3 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
4-5 strawberries (optional)
powdered sugar

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease a 10-inch Bundt pan well.

Stir together cake mix and pudding mix in a large bowl.  In a separate bowl, mix together sour cream, melted butter, eggs, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.

Make a well in the center of the bowl with the dry ingredients.  Pour the egg mixture into the well and beat with a mixture on low speed until well-blended.  Scrape the bowl and beat mixture on medium speed for about 4 minutes.  Mix in chocolate chips.  Pour batter into Bundt pan.

Bake cake at 350 degrees F for 50-55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.  Cool the cake in the pan for about 10 minutes.  Then, carefully loosen cake from the side of the pan with a small spatula, invert, and gently shake to remove cake from pan.  Allow cake to cool completely on a wire rack.

For glaze

In a small saucepan, melt 3 tablespoons of butter and 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips with honey and 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract.  Stir until chips are completely melted and the mixture is smooth and satiny.

Dip strawberries in glaze.  Drizzle glaze over the top of the cake and use it to "glue" the strawberries onto the top of the cake.

Dust the top of the cake with powdered sugar just before serving.

Cake stores well for up to a week when covered with aluminum foil.