Saturday, May 7, 2016

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cake

Standing on a stool next to the kitchen counter, watching (and persisting in trying to help) my mom mix up cookie dough, pie crust or bowls of frosting was one of my favorite things.  My brother and sister and I would always remind her - as though she could forget - to save enough for us to lick the bowl, spoons and beaters, but just in case, we'd sneak as many spoonfuls as we could get away with before any of the dough actually made it into the oven.

With tomorrow being my first mother's day, even though I haven't done much worthy of noting yet, other than growing this little baby boy inside me for the last five months, I've made this cake for everyone who looks back as fondly as I do on those memories that helped to establish their love of baking.

This cake is completely decadent with a full three pounds of cookie dough, three layers of pound-cake-esque chocolate chip coconut milk cake, and vanilla bean buttercream.  I garnished the sides of the cake with chocolate chip swags (chocolate chips are one of the easiest ways to decorate a cake if piping isn't your thing), and salted cookie dough balls on top.  Of course, a cold glass of milk is absolutely essential.

Happy Mother's Day!

It should be noted that this cookie dough is made without eggs or leavening, so you'd be disappointed in the results if you tried to bake it into cookies.  This cookie dough is meant to be eaten raw.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cake

  • 2 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/3 cups unsweetened, full-fat coconut milk
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon meringue powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste, or seeds scraped from 1 vanilla bean
  • 2-3 tablespoons cream or milk
  • extra chocolate chips (both regular size and mini) for garnishing the cake

Preheat the oven to 350 and grease three 8-inch pans, then line the bottoms with a circle of parchment paper.

In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the sugar, cream cheese and butter on medium speed for 5 minutes, scraping the bowl occasionally.  Beat in the vanilla, and the eggs, one at a time, beating for a full minute before adding the next one.

In a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda.  With the mixer on low, add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the coconut milk, starting and ending with the flour.  Stir in the chocolate chips.

Divide between the pans, spread the batter out to evenly cover the bottom of the pans and bake for 25-30 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.  Cool completely in the pans, on wire racks, covered loosely with clean kitchen towels.

In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the butter and shortening for 1 minute until smooth.  With the mixer on low, stir in the powdered sugar and meringue powder until moistened.  Add the vanilla bean paste and the cream/milk, then increase speed to medium high; whip for 4-5 minutes until very light and fluffy.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder
  • 1/3 - 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 1/2 cups bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup chopped pecans

In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugars for three minutes.  Scrape the bowl down and beat in the vanilla.

In a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon and espresso powder.  Add the flour mixture to the butter, mixing on medium low to combine, then add the milk, until the dough is moistened, but still very thick.  Stir in the chocolate chips and pecans.

A food scale is helpful for the next few steps so you can portion out the dough evenly.  Weigh out 8 ounces of the dough, and divide into 8 one-ounce balls to garnish the top of the cake.  Set in the refrigerator until needed.

You'll have about 40 ounces of dough remaining - divide into two 20-ounce portions.  Take a cake pan (the same size that you baked the cake in) and line the bottom with a circle of parchment paper.  Press one 20-ounce portion of dough into the pan, using your hands to press it out as evenly as possible.  Set another circle of parchment paper on top of the dough, and use the bottom of a glass to smooth the dough out completely.  Turn the pan over to remove the disk of cookie dough and set aside.  Repeat with the other 20-ounce portion, so you have two cake-sized disks of dough.

Place one cooled cake bottom side up on a cake pedestal or cardboard cake circle.  Set one of the disks of cookie dough on top of the cake (after removing the parchment paper).  Repeat with the rest of the cake and cookie dough so that you have three layers of cake filled with two layers of cookie dough.

Frost the cake all over with a thin crumb coat of the buttercream, then chill for about 20 minutes.  Finish frosting the cake and smooth the buttercream all over.  Garnish the top of the cake with the eight balls of cookie dough, and press the chocolate chips (pointed side in) around the cake for decoration.  Finish the cookie dough balls on top with a sprinkling of salt.

Recipe from Curly Girl Kitchen