The Olympics are here! The Olympics are here!
Will you be watching? Will you be cheering? Will you be reenacting your favorite medal moments?
Reliving the winning moves from my events of choice is a critical part of my personal Olympic viewing. Most years these performances are safe (excepting only an unfortunate reenactment of a winning luge run in ’88, which involved my teeth luging into the family coffee table) and all years they are thoroughly enjoyed by my audience.
After all these years I still thoroughly enjoy watching both the summer and winter games. The extreme pageantry and commercialism does turn me off, but the sheer athletic accomplishment is hard for me to tear my eyes away from – it’s pretty exciting.
Specifically, I’m a fan of swimming, diving, tennis (table) and, of course, gymnastics. Archery, rowing, and fencing are pretty fun too. Really, it’s hard to pick a favorite so I’ll likely be glued to the TV watching all manner of Olympic feats for the next few weeks. A. will likely restrict my reenactments to events that involve the least potential for personal harm, though. Given my lack of coordination, I’m thinking that judo and taekwondo are out.
So I’ve been stocking up on some Olympic-sized snacks and desserts to fuel my viewing and reenacting.
Like these Chocolate Chunk Coffee Cake Bars, very specifically formulated to satisfy my caffeine, cake, and dessert bar craving all in one bite. The finished product is closer to the consistency of a cake, but it does retain just a bit of brownie-esque denseness too. And I’ve come to love baking with large chunks of Mexican chocolate since it never really melts completely. It just sits there. Like a big, delicious blob.
What’s? Not? To? Love?
This recipe yields two 8″ x 8″ pans of dessert bars. I’m bringing them to share with some friends tomorrow before coming home and planning a few Olympic-sized meals to keep A. and me going through a busy weekend of early events and reenactments. I hope my friends like these cake bars. I hope A. enjoys his Olympic-sized meals. I hope to see some amazing medal moments over the next few weeks. I just can’t wait.
Chocolate Chunk Coffee Cake Bars
1 c. unsalted butter, softened
2 c. white sugar, granulated
4 large eggs
2 c. all-purpose flour
2 tsp. salt
1/2 c. buttermilk
1/2 c. coffee (I used a robust Mexican coffee here, you can use the coffee of your choice. You’ll want to stick with a plain brew, though, and not use any type of overly-flavored coffee.)
2- 3.15 oz. tablets of Mexican chocolate, roughly chopped (You may substitute approximately 6 ounces of chopped semi-sweet chocolate here, but I would really try to stick with Mexican chocolate.)
Preheat oven to 350°.
Line 2- 8″ x 8″ pans with parchment paper and set aside.
Whisk the flour and salt together in a small bowl and set aside.
Meanwhile, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs. Beat in the dry ingredients alternating with the buttermilk and coffee. Do not overmix. Fold in the chopped chocolate and pour the batter into the prepared pans, distributing as evenly as possible between the two and smoothing the tops. Bake for 26-28 minutes or until a cake tester inserted in the center of one of the pans comes out clean. Cool and cut dessert bars, serving immediately or storing in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
YIELD: 18 dessert bars