Happy Birthday Z!

When I think of my friend Amanda, a few things come to mind: little, m&m’s, and coffee. So for her birthday celebration in NYC yesterday, I made a little mocha cake decorated with mocha m&m’s.

Yup, I carried that thing on the train, the subway, and 10 blocks because I just love her THAT much. (I know Amanda doesn’t start with a Z, but her last name does and that’s what everybody calls her)

Last year for Amanda’s birthday Marissa ordered m&m’s with Amanda’s face on them (so cool! and maybe a little creepy… check them out here) and so this year the cake most definitely had to involve m&m’s. Amanda ALWAYS has m&m’s in her apartment, and it’s no surprise I found myself on her couch with a bowl of m&m’s multiple nights a week in college. I love her company, but I also love her chocolate. (She’s one of those freaks of nature who can keep candy in her pantry and not eat it all immediately. Weirdo.) I searched high and low for these premium mocha m&m’s for the cake– they’re very pretty and shiny, tasty too!

The cake didn’t come out as coffee-y as I would have hoped, so I would recommend adding an additional teaspoon or so of instant coffee to the batter to give it more of a kick. It was still a tasty chocolate cake though, very moist and rich. But the frosting, ohhhhhhh the frosting. It was like coffee ice cream in frosting form, so delicious! (For those of you who like coffee ice cream, that is)

It kind of hardened on the cake after awhile, I’m not sure how to prevent that, but it still melted in your mouth and tasted great. This also provided some sturdiness for its bumpy journey to NYC, only 1 m&m fell off!

Here’s a shot of the inside of the cake, mmmm chocolate. The pic was taken with my good ol’ point and shoot, and its just incredible how different the quality is. (Unfortunately my SLR does not fit into any of my clutches)

Amanda loved the cake and we had quite a night of celebration. We also rationalized that this cake would be perfectly suitable for breakfast since your morning coffee’s already baked in!

Mocha Cake with Mocha Frosting

2 cups sugar
1 cup all purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup cocoa
1-1/2 tsp baking powder
1-1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 eggs
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/2 cup melted butter
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup strong coffee
1 tsp instant coffee

1/2 cup butter
5 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup cocoa
1/4 strong coffee
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp whipping cream

– Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
– Stir all of the dry ingredients together
– Add eggs, yogurt, melted butter, and vanilla to the dry mixture and mix well
– Pour in coffee and mix thoroughly
– Pour batter in 2 well-greased 9″ rounds and bake for 35-40 minutes(I wanted to make a smaller cake for ease of transport, so I cut down the 2 cakes by about 1 inch once they were baked)
– While cakes are cooling, prepare the frosting by mixing all ingredientstogether until smooth
Happy 22nd Birthday Amanda!!

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