Monday, May 16, 2005

Cappuccino Squares

Cappuccino Squares (Adapted from Baking From My Home To Yours)

For the batter

3/4 cup milk
3 1/2 teaspoons instant espresso powder, divided
1 1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
1 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons cinnamon, divided
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3 ounces (about 1/2 cup) finely chopped bittersweet chocolate

For the frosting

6 ounces chopped bittersweet chocolate
2 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into cubes

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

To prepare the batter

In a microwave safe bowl, add milk and 2 teaspoon espresso powder - heat in the microwave until the milk is warm and the powder has dissolved. Set aside to cool completely.

In a small bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons sugar, 2 teaspoons cinnamon and remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons espresso powder - set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, remaining sugar, baking powder, salt and remaining tablespoon of cinnamon.

In a medium bowl, whisk together cooled milk, eggs and vanilla. Pour into the dry ingredients and mix just until combined. Pour in melted butter and fold batter together just until incorporated.

Scoop about one-half of the batter into an 8" square baking pan coated with nonstick spray and spread to an even level. Evenly scatter reserved sugar mixture and finely chopped bittersweet chocolate over the top. Place dollops of the remaining batter over the top and spread to cover.

Place into the oven and bake until a toothpick placed into the center comes out mostly clean with a few moist crumbs attached, about 35-40 minutes. Remove from the oven and let sit for 15 minutes - invert cake onto a rack, place another rack on top and invert again so the top is right side up. Let cool completely.

To prepare the frosting

In a medium microwave-safe bowl, add chocolate and butter - heat in the microwave, using 50% power, stopping every 30 seconds to mix, until the chocolate can be stirred smooth. If the frosting looks too thin to spread, let sit for a few minutes to thicken. Scoop frosting on top and spread with an off-set spatula to coat the top.

Makes about 9 to 12 servings.

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