This morning I let my little girl watch Charlotte’s Web. She was really into it.
And then Charlotte died.
As Munchie cried into the couch, I tried to persuade her to play a game with me, build a fort, paint my toenails, start a fire with 2 sticks, anything! The sniffling continued.
“What will make you feel better?” I asked as I rubbed her back and tried to console her.
“I think…I think we should bake a cake and write ‘To Charlotte’ on it and eat it,” she sniffled.
What could I do? Say no? This woman doesn’t say no to cake and I certainly don’t say no to cake when I’ve traumatized my innocent child.
So we put on some Christmas music (what? too soon? never too soon in this house) and got to it. This is my favorite chocolate snack cake. Here’s why I call it a snack cake: It has a lighter chocolate flavor than more dessert-like chocolate cakes, I make it in an 8-inch square pan which is very petite and snack-like in my book, and if I call it a snack cake I can eat it when I like. So there. Snack cake.
We usually enjoy this moist cake without frosting and sometimes sprinkle it with a bit of powdered sugar. But after mourning the loss of a friend she only knew for an hour, my Munchie girl wanted to spice it up with a bit of frosting. We decided to add a little sweet Biscoff buttercream to it today. If you’ve had Biscoff, you’re all in, right? If you haven’t had Biscoff, well…
I don’t know what to say. Get it.
A little history: Biscoff is the name given to the traditional Speculoos biscuits popular in Europe (Trader Joe’s carries at Speculoos) and hails from Belgium. The spread came after the popular cookie and the Biscoff website says that the name is “derived from the combination of words Biscuit and Coffee, simply because their caramel flavor and crisp texture make these cookies the perfect accompaniment to a cup of coffee or espresso drink.”
I agree. The spread is essentially crushed Biscoff/Speculoos cookies–it’s smooth, buttery, and creamy with a hint of cinnamon flavor. You can use it many ways: I know people who dunk chocolate bars in it, spread it on toasted bread, slather it over shortbread cookies. I haven’t found the Biscoff cookies at any stores nearby, but I had them on a flight to Europe (which is how they became popular internationally) and in a hotel in Copenhagen. So I’m merely a consumer of the spread…for now. I’m just glad we can find Biscoff in the states these days! Woo! Thank you Belgium!
We didn’t add “To Charlotte” on the cake today. Instead, my little one settled for chocolate sprinkles. I think Charlotte would approve.
Enough of the history lesson. Here’s my recipe for an incredibly moist Chocolate Snack Cake with Biscoff Buttercream. Add a cup of coffee or cold glass of milk and enjoy!
Chocolate Snack Cake with Biscoff Buttercream from Biscoff
- •1½ cups flour
- •1 cup sugar
- •3 Tbsp baking cocoa
- •1 tsp baking soda
- •1/2 tsp salt
- •1 tsp instant coffee granules
- •6 Tbsp vegetable oil
- •1 Tbsp vinegar
- •1 tsp vanilla extract
- •1 cup cold water
- Frosting: (from Biscoff)
- •1/4 cup butter, softened
- •1/2 cup creamy Biscoff spread
- •3/4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
- •milk, if needed (I add about 1 tablespoon)
- Grease an 8 inch square pan and preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, mix flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, salt, and instant coffee. With a flat rubber spatula or your hand, break up any cocoa clumps. Then make 3 wells in the flour mix. Add the oil into one, vinegar into another, and vanilla into the last well. Pour the water over all ingredients slowly. With a hand blender, beat all on low until combined. This will be a thinner batter than most cake batters. Don't worry! :) Pour into greased dish and bake for about 30-35 minutes until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean. Cool. Once cooled, add frosting or dust lightly with powdered sugar.
- Frosting: In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and Biscoff spread until smooth. Sift in the powdered sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Add milk a tablespoon at a time until you reach desired texture. I usually add only about 1 tablespoon of milk. Spread over cake.