Do you know what it’s like to stand barefoot in your kitchen and eat freshly bubbling caramel sauce off of a spoon?
Neither do I. Because I wore socks.
But I do have taste buds so burnt that even a whole jalapeno couldn’t bring me to shed a tear.
Back in the day of purple silk shirts and paisley vests, after I’d spend 3 hours hopping over my Skip It in my glittery pink jelly shoes, my mom and I used to make this cake that we called turtle cake. Now that I’m an immature 28 year old, it has dawned on me that this cake is probably what some refer to as better-than-sex cake. Back then, the only thing that I assumed was better than sex was the new Lisa Frank folder I bought at Ames.
It was evident that I spent a little too much time eating this turtle cake – with the fluffy chocolate cloud that we poked holes in with the end of a wooden spoon, covering it in jarred caramel sauce that sunk into the cake crevices and topping it with a fluffy whipped cream and a sprinkling of crushed Heath bars – as my favorite rolled jean shorts began to fray and I’d start to resemble a cased sausage. The cake was best chilled, and long after I’d changed into my New Kids on the Block nightgown I’d find myself creeping towards the fridge, opening the door and plunging my fork into the cool, gooey treat.
Clearly times haven’t changed much.
Except I finally made my own caramel. It was easy. And creamy. And holy heavens was it hot. I used it to drench a chocolate cake that I’ve made before and devoured in a matter of hours. Not helpful to that whole cased sausage look.
Double Chocolate Loaf Cake
from Nigella’s chocolate loaf cake
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup cocoa
1 1/3 cups sugar
1 1/2 sticks soft unsalted butter
1 tablespoon good-quality vanilla extract
1/3 cup sour cream
1/2 cup boiling water
1 cup chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees, putting in a baking sheet as you do so.
Add the flour, baking soda, cocoa, sugar, butter, eggs, vanilla, and sour cream into the processor and blend until smooth. Scrape down the sides and process again while streaming in boiling water.. Remove lid and fold in chocolate chips.
Scrape and pour the batter into a buttered and floured loaf pan and put into the oven. Bake for 50-55 minutes. When ready, the loaf will be risen and split down the middle. Let cake cool, then poke holes throughout the top with a fork or knife. Press all the way down into the cake so the caramel sauce can sink in.
Salty Caramel Sauce
caramel from Ina Garten
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/3 cup water
1 1/4 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon sea salt, crushed until fine
Mix water and sugar in a saucepan and heat over low heat without stirring until sugar dissolves. Increase the heat to medium-high, allowing the mixture to come to a boil. This will take about 5-7 minutes, and you can occasionally swirl the pan to stir. Once a golden amber color, remove heat and add cream, vanilla and salt – it will bubble up. Turn heat back down to low and stir continuously until mixture is smooth. Remove from heat and let sit at room temperature for 2-4 hours where it will thicken.
Once cool, drizzle over chocolate cake, making sure to hit all of the poked holes so the caramel sinks down in. Serve with additional caramel.
It.is.good. Almost better than a Lisa Frank folder, if you know what I mean.