I made a double batch of the recipe for my extra large 13 x 19 -pan and after the cake cooled, frosted it with buttercream that will be very hard to recreate. I had some raspberry and salted caramel buttercreams in my freezer left over from making macarons, so I added to those to a package of cream cheese, a stick of unsalted butter, vanilla, a cup of cocoa powder and 1/2 cup of powdered sugar and whipped it until it was smooth and creamy. My nephew who is my official taste tester said "oh, that's gooood," when he took a taste.
It's fun getting creative and using leftovers to make something special. And really, just about any frosting would be great with this easy cake.
Here's the recipe:
1 1/2 cups boiling water
3/4 cocoa powder
2 teaspoons espresso powder
2 1/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
1 cup granulated sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
3 large eggs
Grease and flour a 11 x 17 baking pan and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the water, cocoa powder and espresso powder until smooth. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
In another medium-sized bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder and sea salt and set aside.
In a stand mixer, whip together the butter, sugars and vanilla until smooth and creamy. Add the eggs, one at a time, and whip after each addition until the mixture is smooth and well-combined.
Alternately add the flour and cocoa/water mixture in three additions, beating after each on low speed until blended.
Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Let the cake cool completely in the pan before frosting. Enjoy!