Serves: 8 | Prep: 15 min | Cook: 25 min | Ready: 40 min
1 cup all-purpose flour
⅓ cup cocoa powder
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. kosher salt
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
1 tsp. instant espresso powder
½ cup sour cream
6 T. salted butter, melted
1½ tsp. vanilla extract
Cut an 18-inch length of foil and gently scrunch together to form a snake about 1 inch thick. Shape into a circle and set on the bottom of a large Dutch oven. Add enough water to reach three-quarters up the coil. Add enough water to reach three-quarters up the coil. Mist the bottom and sides of a 9-inch round cake pan with cooking spray, line the bottom with a round of kitchen parchment, then coat the parchment. Place the prepared pan in the pot on top of the foil coil.
Sift the flour, cocoa powder and baking soda into a medium bowl, then whisk in the salt. In a large bowl, whisk the sugar and eggs until slightly lightened, about 30 seconds. Whisk in ½ cup water, the espresso powder, sour cream, butter and vanilla. Add the flour mixture and whisk gently until just combined.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Cover and heat on high until the water boils. Reduce to low and steam, covered, until the center of the cake is just firm to the touch, about 23 minutes.
Turn off the heat and remove the lid. Let stand until the cake pan is cool enough to handle. Transfer the pan to a wire rack, then run a paring knife around the edge of the cake to loosen. Let cool completely. Invert the cake directly onto the rack, lift off the pan and remove and discard the parchment. Re-invert onto a serving plate.
Serve as is, top with chocolate glaze or dust with confection’s sugar.