Serves a Crowd

Stay-Awake Snack Cake

May  9, 2012
1 Ratings
  • Makes 36 2" squares
Author Notes

This little cake was born out of a series of riffs on a spice bar-cookie recipe. Thinking it was missing a few ingredients and with no set method, I ended up with something entirely different, but very delicious. It should be easy to whip up with basic baking ingredients, when you need a study break or if you suddenly have to bring a treat in to work. Makes plenty of little squares, use several large casserole pans, or even a half-sheet rimmed cookie pan to allow this pourable batter to rise and get chewy, not too cakey (I suspect a deeper volume in the pan would just make a regular cake). Called "stay-awake" because of the high caffeine content...perfect if you need to keep studying all night. The smell is divine, too! —Raquelita

What You'll Need
  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted (3 oz)
  • 2 cups sugar (400g)
  • 1 cup buttermilk (8oz); sub in 1 c. milk plus 2 tsp vinegar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup instant coffee, dry (18g)
  • 1.5 cups whole wheat pastry flour (180g) (or use all white)
  • 1.5 cups all purpose flour (180g)
  • Pinch salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon each of any of the following: allspice, nutmeg, ground cloves
  • 1.5 cups chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup raisins or other dried fruit, more if you'd like
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts or seeds (optional)
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, generously butter or grease at least a 13 by 9 baking dish. I use something close to 13 by 9 and then an additional 9 by 5 loaf pan.
  2. Combine melted butter and sugar, then add in the buttermilk and eggs, all in a large bowl.
  3. Combine the coffee, flours, salt, baking powder, chocolate chips, raisins and nuts.
  4. Stir the dry into the wet ingredients, combining but not overmixing. You should have an ugly batter.
  5. Pour the batter into your pans--the trick is a shallow volume (the cake will rise but get a nice chewy caramelized crust).
  6. Bake 40 minutes, until the middle of the cake is firmed up and springy to the touch.
  7. Cool in the pan, cut into squares or bars.
  8. Stay awake!

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