Brownie Skillet Cake

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Many sushi restaurants have a slim dessert menu of ice cream, mochi ice cream, or the occasional chocolate molten cake served with ice cream. As an ice cream fan myself, I kudos their selective menu only open to the most delicious desserts. Ice cream is good, but a la mode certainly is the way to go…that is, brownie skillet cake a la mode.

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This molten chocolate cake tastes like a giant brownie that can be made just by using a brownie mix. Usually, I don’t endorse baking from mixes, especially from cake mixes, but brownies are my exception to the rule. Feel like an accomplished pastry chef and bake a homemade gooey chocolate explosion, or use your box-opening skills to follow Sandra Lee’s “semi-homemade” recipe trend. Either way, this brownie skillet cake is so delicious and addicting that it cannot disappoint. For bonus points, serve warm with your favorite ice cream and I promise your skillet will be clean in seconds!

Ingredients:
1/4 pound (1 stick) unsalted butter
4 ounces plus 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, divided
1 1/2 ounces unsweetened chocolate
2 extra large eggs
2 teaspoons instant coffee granules, such as Nescafe
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, divided
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 pint vanilla ice cream (optional)

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Melt the butter, 4 ounces of chocolate chips, and the unsweetened chocolate together in a medium bowl set over simmering water. Set aside for 15 minutes. In a large bowl, stir (do not beat) together the eggs, coffee, vanilla and sugar. Stir the chocolate mixture into the egg mixture and allow to cool to room temperature.
In a medium bowl, sift together 1/4 cup of the flour, the baking powder and salt and add to the chocolate mixture. Toss together the remaining 1/2 cup of chocolate chips and one tablespoon of flour in a medium bowl and add them to the chocolate mixture. Spoon the mixture into a cast iron skillet and place on a sheet pan. Bake for 25 minutes. Don’t over bake! Serve warm with a scoop of ice cream on top.
(Recipe courtesy of Ina Garten)

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OR THE SHORTCUT VERSION……

Ingredients:
1 pkg. Brownie mix
Brownie mix required ingredients

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Coat a skillet (or an 8” or 9” pan) with butter.
Follow the directions located on the Brownie Mix Package.
Pour brownie batter into the pan and bake for 30-45 minutes. (Cake should be firm to touch, but an inserted toothpick should not come out totally dry.) Don’t over bake!
Let cool for about 15 minutes and enjoy with a scoop of ice cream!

— Carissa Brones