Guinness Chocolate Walnut Cake
I went to the Las Vegas Highland Games and while there I spotted a chef I remembered from the year prior. He had on offer some cookbooks he had written with recipes from the eight Celtic nations; one of which is Ireland. One recipe was for Guinness Chocolate Walnut Cake.
The festival featured two days of live music, traditional Scottish food, a bagpipe competition and Scottish heavy athletics. Not just Scottish stuff though as Chef Eric W. McBride is known as The Celtic Caterer.
(Read to the end to learn what the other seven Celtic nations are.)
I bought the cookbook, which probably wasn’t my wisest purchasing decision of the day, because A) I try to limit my cookbooks to those about dessert, sweets or bread B) I try to limit my cookbooks to those written before 1980 C) I already have a ton of cookbooks, many of which do not meet the above criteria and D) I am trying to cut down on the amount of my possessions. This book has over 50 recipes but only eight are about desserts. Still, Chef McBride was there and he seems nice and offered to sign the book for me so I got it.
But what really sold me on the book? There is a recipe for Guinness Chocolate Walnut Cake. And since that sounds delicious and in the spirit of expanding my knowledge base and supporting a fellow chef, I got the book.
So, let’s make some Guinness Chocolate Walnut Cake…
1) Make a roux using butter and flour.
(Start by melting a some butter in a pan. Stir in a little bit of all-purpose flour. Continue to stir flour into the butter. Cook it for a few minutes so that you don’t have that raw flour flavor. This can be a lot more to it depending on how fancy you want to get but, you know, don’t sweat it.)
Honestly, this part kind of threw me because, as far as I know, a roux usually has equal parts butter to flour and 1 1/4 cups of flour weighs about 6 1/2 ounces. When I was making the roux I noticed it was really think. I mean really thick. So I threw caution to the wind and added two more ounces of butter. Not saying that was the ‘right’ thing to do. It is just what I did. You do what feels right to you.
Also, I have said it time and again, I really do not like measuring ingredients by volume. It has been proven that a cup is not always a cup but 100 grams is always 100 grams.
2) In a large sauce pan mix Guinness and chocolate chips over medium heat. Use a wood spoon to evenly combine the melted chocolate with the stout.
3) Remove both pans from heat and add melted chocolate and Guinness mix to roux and combine thoroughly.
4) Add remaining ingredients and mix together. Save some of the walnuts for later. Pour into a 9 inch round cake tin or similar cake pan. Top the cake mix with remaining walnuts. Bake for 45 minutes at 350° or until center is cooked.
Yep, I practice what I preach!)
5) In a sauce pan melt the butter for the icing. Remove from heat then add cocoa, powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Gently whisk until smooth.
6) When chocolate sauce has cooled, add egg and whisk until thickened. Pour icing on top of Guinness Chocolate Walnut Cake and serve.
PRO-TIP: Transfer the icing to some sort of container with a pour spout such as a Pyrex measuring cup.
So there you have it. Guinness Chocolate Walnut Cake. Personally, the cake is not sweet enough for me. Also, I found the cake actually tasted a bit better the next day after all that icing poured on top soaked into the cake. So if you like cake that is super moist and not too sweet, give this one a try and let me know in the comments how it worked out for you.
So… Those other seven celtic nations? Scotland, Wales, Manx, Cornwell, Brittany, Galacia and Asturies. The more you know…
Follow The Celtic Caterer & Chef Eric W. McBride on his Facebook page and order his cookbooks from his website link at the beginning of the post.