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In Season: Chocolate Yogurt Ring, 1979

Thu, 02/15/1979 - 08:36

Although at least 100 chocolate cake recipes have passed through my ovens in 18 years of marriage to a chocoholic, I know I have scarcely scratched the surface of possibilities in this enchanting subject. While many of these have become favorites, I’m just as ready to try something new.

More of them have been discarded in the reading than have made it into the mixing bowl. For example, insufficient chocolate will banish a recipe from my files. Only a sadist would propose a two-layer cake using a mere two ounces of chocolate, enough to produce a chocolate color without the deeply gratifying taste.

Bizarre ingredients such as mayonnaise (why not call for egg yolks and oil and leave out the salt, mustard, and vinegar?) don’t find favor with me either. Icing is also dispensable. Rather than layers that require gobs of buttercream to connect them, my family prefers fairly dense loaf, tube, or single layer cakes merely dusted with confectioner’s sugar or served with a snowy cloud of freshly whipped cream.


Ideally the cake should be so rich that the cream is best left unsweetened for contrast. 

As often as I consult a cookbook, I will also try my own combinations. The dead of winter is a fine time to experiment with things like this. The following recipe was a recent felicitous experiment assembled with remarkable ease. The quantities of some of the ingredients, like the sugar and the yogurt, were dictated by supplies on hand (I was cleaning out the sugar canister).

Since I did not have the foresight to take the butter out of the refrigerator to soften, I allowed it to cream in the food processor while I mixed the other ingredients, adding it to the batter at the end. Not the most scientific recipe design but since it worked in a retesting, I left it alone.

Chocolate Yogurt Ring

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1 cup plus 2 Tbsp. sugar
1 1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon instant coffee
1 cup plain yogurt
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup very soft butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
Confectioner’s sugar, whipped cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour an eight or nine inch tube pan.

Mix flours, cocoa, sugar, baking soda, salt and coffee together in a large bowl (an electric mixer bowl if you have one). Add yogurt and eggs and beat at low speed until the ingredients are mixed.

Add butter and vanilla and beat just enough to combine all the ingredients. Spread into prepared pan and bake about 45 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool, then remove from pan. Dust with confectioner’s sugar when cool and serve with whipped cream.

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