I'm a sucker for specialty pans. I don't think I want to know how many fancy Bundt pans I have, cheesecake pans, tart pans. I even have pans that make a cake in cupcake and beehive shapes. It's a sickness, I'm telling you, and so far I've not found a support group to help get me out of this. My only recourse is to not open the various kitchen catalogs I get and to stay out of Williams Sonoma. While in the labor & delivery waiting room last month, waiting on the birth of my grandson, I was perusing the mail I had brought from home. In the mail was a Williams Sonoma catalog. In a moment of weakness I opened it. Immediately I saw this cake pan. To make matters worse, there is a Williams Sonoma in Bakersfield where we were. The next day I went "just to look". All I have to say for myself is that this is the only thing I bought. But, I love it and am not feeling too guilty about it, even though I did have to do some cabinet rearranging to make everything fit!
It is a cute pan to have on hand for Valentine's Day. Fresh fruit, pudding or cream can be added to the center opening for an even prettier presentation. It really is cute. I told you I had a cake pan problem!
I've used the cake pan twice, both times making this Chocolate Sour Cream Bundt cake. It's moist, it's rich, it's very chocolaty and best served with a glass of cold milk (although Zinfandel wine and chocolate go quite nicely together, too!) The first time I made it I glazed it with a chocolate ganache. The second time I added a cup of chocolate chips to the batter and sprinkled confectioners' sugar on it. It is a rich cake so I liked the second option the best.
Chocolate Sour Cream Bundt Cake
1 cup unsalted butter
1/3 cup cocoa powder (I use Dutch processed from Penzey's spices)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup water
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 3/4 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
2 large eggs
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (optional)
Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 350 degrees. Butter and flour (or use baking spray) a 10 or 12-cup Bundt pan and set aside.
In a small saucepan, combine the butter, cocoa powder, salt, and water and place over medium heat. Cook, stirring, just until melted and combined. Remove from the heat and set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, and baking soda. Add half of the melted butter mixture and whisk until completely blended. The mixture will be thick. Add the remaining butter mixture and whisk until combined. Add the eggs, one at a time, whisking until completely blended. Whisk in the sour cream and the vanilla extract. Whisk until smooth. Stir in chocolate chips, if using.
Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, 40-45 minutes. Let the cake cool in the pan for 15 minutes and then invert onto a rack. Let cool completely before sifting confectioners' sugar over the top.