Chocolate Guinness Cake

Chocolate Guinness Cake Recipe

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour
 

Ingredients

  • 1 cup stout or porter beer, such as Guinness
  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 1/2 cups superfine sugar
  • 1/2 cups dark brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cream cheese frosting recipe

Method

1 Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 8 or 9-inch springform pan with butter and line the bottom with a round of parchment paper.
2 In a large saucepan place the beer and butter. Cook over medium-high heat until the butter has melted. Add the cocoa powder and sugars and whisk together. Take off heat and allow to come to room temperature.
3 In another bowl beat together the sour cream, eggs, and vanilla extract until very, very well combined. Add to the butter-beer mixture and whisk together.
4 In another bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Add to the beer-butter mixture and whisk together until it just comes together. Pour into the prepared pan and give the pan a few short drops onto the countertop to shake the air pockets in the batter to the surface and out of the cake. Bake for 50-60 minutes. Allow to cool on a wire rack. Run a knife around the edge to separate the cake from the pan and pop the ring off the springform.
5 Spread frosting on the cooled cake and serve.
Yield: Makes one 8 or 9-inch cake


Chocolate

Chocolate is a raw or processed food produced from the seed of the tropical Theobroma cacao tree. Cacao has been cultivated for at least three millennia in Mexico, Central and South America. Its earliest documented use is around 1100 BC. The majority of the Mesoamerican people made chocolate beverages, including the Aztecs, who made it into a beverage known as xocolātl, a Nahuatl word meaning “bitter water”. The seeds of the cacao tree have an intense bitter taste, and must be fermented to develop the flavor.
After fermentation, the beans are dried, then cleaned, and then roasted, and the shell is removed to produce cacao nibs. The nibs are then ground to cocoa mass, pure chocolate in rough form. Because this cocoa mass usually is liquefied then molded with or without other ingredients, it is called chocolate liquor. The liquor also may be processed into two components: cocoa solids and cocoa butter. Unsweetened baking chocolate (bitter chocolate) contains primarily cocoa solids and cocoa butter in varying proportions. Much of the chocolate consumed today is in the form of sweet chocolate, combining cocoa solids, cocoa butter or other fat, and sugar. Milk chocolate is sweet chocolate that additionally contains milk powder or condensed milk. White chocolate contains cocoa butter, sugar, and milk but no cocoa solids.
Cocoa solids contain alkaloids such as theobromine and phenethylamine, which have physiological effects on the body. It has been linked to serotonin levels in the brain. Some research found that chocolate, eaten in moderation, can lower blood pressure. The presence of theobromine renders chocolate toxic to some animals, especially dogs and cats.
Chocolate has become one of the most popular food types and flavors in the world. Gifts of chocolate molded into different shapes have become traditional on certain holidays: chocolate bunnies and eggs are popular on Easter, chocolate coins on Hanukkah, Santa Claus and other holiday symbols on Christmas, and chocolate hearts or chocolate in heart-shaped boxes on Valentine’s Day. Chocolate is also used in cold and hot beverages, to produce chocolate milk and hot chocolate.
Theobroma cacao, native to Mexico, Central and South America, has been cultivated for at least three millennia in that region. Cocoa mass was used originally in Mesoamerica both as a beverage and as an ingredient in foods.
Although cocoa is originally from the Americas, today Western Africa produces almost two-thirds of the world’s cocoa, with Côte d’Ivoire growing almost half of it.

History of Chocolate

The history of chocolate begins in Mesoamerica. Chocolate, the fermented, roasted, and ground beans of the Theobroma cacao, can be traced to the Mokaya and other pre-Olmec people, with evidence of cacao beverages dating back to 1900 BCE.
Chocolate played a special role in both Maya and Aztec royal and religious events. Priests presented cacao seeds as offerings to the gods and served chocolate drinks during sacred ceremonies. All of the areas that were conquered by the Aztecs that grew cacao beans were ordered to pay them as a tax, or as the Aztecs called it, a “tribute”.
The Europeans sweetened and fattened it by adding refined sugar and milk, two ingredients unknown to the Mexicans. By contrast, they never infused it into their general diet, but have compartmentalized its use to sweets and desserts. In the 19th century, Briton John Cadbury developed an emulsification process to make solid chocolate creating the modern chocolate bar.
For hundreds of years, the chocolate making process remained unchanged. When the Industrial Revolution arrived, many changes occurred that brought the hard, sweet candy to life. In the 18th century, mechanical mills were created that squeezed out cocoa butter, which in turn helped to create hard, durable chocolate. But, it was not until the arrival of the Industrial Revolution that these mills were put to bigger use. Not long after the revolution cooled down, companies began advertising this new invention to sell many of the chocolate treats seen today. When new machines were produced, people began experiencing and consuming chocolate worldwide.
Although cocoa is originally from the Americas, today Western Africa produces almost two-thirds of the world’s cocoa, with Côte d’Ivoire growing almost half of it.

Guinness

Guinness  is a popular Irish dry stout that originated in the brewery of Arthur Guinness (1725–1803) at St. James’s Gate, Dublin. Guinness is directly descended from the porter style that originated in early 18th-century London. Guinness is one of the most successful beer brands worldwide. It is brewed in almost 50 countries and is available in over 100. 1,800,000,000 US pints (850,000 m3) are sold annually.
A distinctive feature is the burnt flavour that is derived from roasted unmalted barley (though this is a relatively modern development since it did not become a part of the grist until well into the 20th century). For many years a portion of aged brew was blended with freshly brewed product to give a sharp lactic flavour (which was a characteristic of the original porter). Although the Guinness palate still features a characteristic “tang”, the company has refused to confirm whether this type of blending still occurs. The beer’s thick, creamy head comes from mixing the beer with nitrogen when poured. It is popular with Irish people both in Ireland and abroad, and, in spite of a decline in consumption since 2001, is still the best-selling alcoholic drink in Ireland where Guinness & Co. makes almost €2 billion annually.
The company had its headquarters in London from 1932 onwards. It merged with Grand Metropolitan plc in 1997 and then figured in the development of the multi-national alcohol conglomerate Diageo.

History

Sign at the Market Street entrance

Crane Street Gate

History of Guinness

Arthur Guinness started brewing ales from 1759 at the St. James’s Gate Brewery, Dublin. On 31 December 1759 he signed (up to) a 9,000 year lease at £45 per annum for the unused brewery.Ten years later, on 19 May 1769, Guinness first exported his ale: he shipped six-and-a-half barrels to Great Britain.
“Stout” originally referred to a beer’s strength, but eventually shifted meaning toward body and colour.
Arthur Guinness started selling the dark beer porter in 1778. The first Guinness beers to use the term were Single Stout and Double Stout in the 1840s. Throughout the bulk of its history, Guinness produced ‘only three variations of a single beer type: porter or single stout, double or extra and foreign stout for export’.
Already one of the top-three British and Irish brewers, Guinness’s sales soared from 350,000 barrels in 1868 to 779,000 barrels in 1876. In October 1886 Guinness became a public company, and was averaging sales of 1,138,000 barrels a year. This was despite the brewery’s refusal to either advertise or offer its beer at a discount. Even though Guinness owned no public houses, the company was valued at £6 million and shares were twenty times oversubscribed, with share prices rising to a 60% premium on the first day of trading.
The breweries pioneered several quality control efforts. The brewery hired the statistician William Sealy Gosset in 1899, who achieved lasting fame under the pseudonym “Student” for techniques developed for Guinness, particularly Student’s t-distribution and the even more commonly known Student’s t-test.
By 1900 the brewery was operating unparalleled welfare schemes for its 5000 employees. By 1907 the welfare schemes were costing the brewery £40,000 a year, which was one fifth of the total wages bill. The improvements were suggested and supervised by Sir John Lumsden.
By 1914, Guinness was producing 2,652,000 barrels of beer a year, which was more than double that of its nearest competitor Bass, and was supplying more than 10% of the total UK beer market.
In the 1930s, Guinness became the seventh largest company in the world.
Before 1939, if a Guinness brewer wished to marry a Catholic, his resignation was requested.
Guinness brewed their last porter in 1973.
In the 1970s, following declining sales, the decision was taken to make Guinness Extra Stout more “drinkable”. The gravity was subsequently reduced, and the brand was relaunched in 1981. Pale malt was used for the first time, and isomerized hop extract began to be used.
Guinness acquired the Distillers Company in 1986. This led to a scandal over a £5.2 million kickback received during the takeover bid to one of the directors, Mr Ward, approved by the chairman, Mr Saunders. In the case Guinness plc v Saunders the House of Lords declared that the payment had been invalid.
The company merged with Grand Metropolitan in 1997 to form Diageo PLC. Due to controversy over the merger, the company was maintained as a separate entity within the Diageo and has retained the rights to the product and all associated trademarks of Guinness. The Guinness brewery in Park Royal, London closed in 2005. The production of all Guinness sold in the UK and Ireland was moved to St. James’s Gate Brewery, Dublin.
Guinness has also been referred to as “the black stuff” and as a “Pint of Plain” – referred to in the famous refrain of Flann O’Brien’s poem “The Workman’s Friend”: “A pint of plain is your only man.”
Guinness had a fleet of ships, barges and yachts.

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