Monday, March 25, 2013

A Not Too Sweet Chocolate Treat

Starbucks.  I have to admit, I don't get it.  Not being a coffee drinker, I have no real way to understand the whole phenomenon.  Not that I begrudge people their addictions.  I have a well established problem with Diet Coke.  It started in the early 1980s with Tab and progressed from there.  The difference is: on a car trip, I am perfectly happy with a $1.00 medium Diet Coke from McDonald's.  I don't need to find a Starbucks and invest in a grande dolce latte whatever.  

On a recent trip to Tennessee, I stopped to pick up my daughter from her apartment about three hours south of where I live.  Like many young people, she discovered coffee drinks in high school and college.  "Can we stop for coffee and breakfast?" she asked.  My bowl of Honey Bunches of Oats with almonds was wearing off by then, so I said sure.  She directed me to the Starbucks around the corner.  Since I had no idea what kind of breakfast I would find there, we had to go in.  She knew exactly what she wanted -- a slice of banana bread and some drink name that made no sense to me.  I couldn't decide what to get.  The lemon cake looked good -- except for the icing.  The chocolate bread looked good -- except for the cinnamon.  I finally chose a cookie, which was okay, but not something that would induce me to return.  The look of that chocolate bread, though, stuck with me.

When I got home last week, I must have still had the vision of Starbucks' chocolate bread lingering in my brain because when I looked in the pantry at the cookbooks, my hand went to the Hershey's 1934 Cookbook (which is actually a 1993 updated and expanded version of the cookbook), where I found a recipe for Chocolate Tea Bread.  It's a simple recipe that results in a nice chocolate loaf that is nutty, a little chewy, and not very sweet.  Mmmm.  I'm not sure how well my cake would go with a caramel macchiato, since Starbucks' chocolate cinnamon bread has 40 grams of sugar in a single slice whereas mine has about 134 grams in the whole loaf and no cinnamon, but it goes perfectly with milk or even Diet Coke!

Chocolate Tea Bread
slightly adapted from Hershey's 1934 Cookbook

1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup cocoa
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup sour cream
3/4 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease and lightly flour an 8 x 4 x 2 inch loaf pan.

In large mixing bowl, beat butter until creamy.  Gradually add sugar, beating until well blended.  Add egg; beat well.  Sift together flour, baking soda and salt; add cocoa to dry ingredients and whisk together.  Add flour mixture to butter mixture in three parts, alternately with buttermilk.  Stir in sour cream.  Add nuts and mix just until blended.  Pour batter into prepared pan.
Bake approximately 1 hour and 15-20 minutes or until wooden pick comes out clean.  Cool 10 minutes in pan and then remove to wire rack.


  1. This cake looks delicious. I've made something similar and as I remember, it freezes very well, also.

  2. That looks yummy, I'm sure the cost of your cake was about the same/less than a slice in Starbucks too

  3. I'm not a coffee drinker either and, frankly, cannot see spending so much money on a cup of coffee. But then I'm not in my 20s either.

    That chocolate bread, though...I'll take a slice.

  4. This looks wonderful... I bet it could rival anything at the local 'FOUR'bucks.

    ¸.·´¸.·*´¨) ¸.·*¨)
    (¸.·´ (¸.·`¤... Jennifer

  5. I'm not a coffee fan, and I've never liked the tea Starbucks serve, but their chocolate blended-creme frappucinos are the perfect thing for a hot summers day, they're coffee free so taste like an ice-cold milkshake.

    Also got to agree on the cakes, there's plenty of places that do better cakes and biscuits than Starbucks too.

  6. I like lattes from Starbucks, I think you can get a little addicted to their coffee after awhile. I also love Dunkin Donuts French Vanilla coffee and buy it at the grocery store to make at home. It's much milder than regular coffee and again, addicting. Maybe the appeal of these coffee shops is that we can get it on the go and face it, kids are always on the go! And it beats the stuff at gas stations.

    The chocolate bread is definitely a recipe keeper. I like something with less sugar once in awhile. Thanks!


  7. That does look so good. I had a double chocolate chip muffing from Starbucks once that made me try to duplicate it in my kitchen. Not as much luck as you though.

  8. I like coffee but I don't get excited about Starbucks and the prices they charge. Your choc loaf looks very nice. Thanks for sharing. Xx

  9. I am not in love with coffee or Starbucks, I'd rather have tea at home, save my money and buy yarn. That bread looks awfully yummy.
    Hugs to you,

  10. I'm afraid I am a coffee addict, but just the flavored stuff I make at home. Starbuck's coffee is way to strong for me, and when I stop there with friends, I do the same thing as you. Stand there and ask what they have that's mild with no milk products. It's just so confusing! hehe

    Your bread looks delish. I'd love a piece with the coffee I'm drinking right now.

  11. I am a coffee addict and love the strong Starbuck's guilty pleasure. That bread looks absolutely delicious. I am saving the recipe to my file to try- xo Diana

  12. I must admit, I occasionally treat myself to a latte, just not at a Starbucks (none to be found in a small town). But,there is a wonderful little coffee shop, in a very small town near me. Your chocolate bread is on my list to bake this week. Thanks for the recipe...

  13. Afraid I don't get the Starbucks thing either, whereas your chocolate cake looks lush... and yummm... walnuts (I only like them chopped in cakes, couldn't eat one by itself) too :) xx

  14. Not a coffee drinker either, but I do enjoy adding coffee in the baking goods.
    Your tea cake looks really yum!

  15. I'm not a coffee drinker, but I do like their Chai.
    The Chocolate Tea Bread sounds interesting. I have tried chocolate muffins so I will give this one a try too. Thanks for sharing!

  16. Yum---your Chocolate Bread looks AWESOME.... Makes me hungry --and it looks much better than that Plain Greek Yogurt I ate for breakfast... ha ha

    I guess I'm just not in the generation who likes and is willing to PAY the difference to go to a place like Starbucks.... I love coffee --but am happy with mine.... Guess I'm an Old Foggy... ha

  17. No Starbucks anywhere near us! We've discovered grinding our coffee from whole beans and I must say it makes a huge difference. The chocolate bread looks great!

  18. I don't get Starbucks either and I love coffee. I much prefer Speedway. :o) I can only imagine how moist this bread is with both buttermilk and sour cream. Yum. Definitely pinning to make later. Wishing you a happy and blessed Easter!

  19. I'm a Tim Horton's person myself - I had Starbucks 3 times & was not impressed - so that's 3 strikes - they're out of my coffee choices. But I'm so glad that you went to Starbucks otherwise we might not have been treated to this wonderful recipe!!! Thanks so much for sharing!!

  20. PS - I'm having a Networking blog hop on my blog right now - if you wanted to link up:
    Thanks again

  21. Ooh yummy, this I must try :D

    Personally I can't abide Coca Cola and similar fizzy drinks, give me a coffee every time, but a perfectly ordinary coffee will do, I don't really get Starbucks either!

  22. Yours sounds delicious. I am not a coffee or soda drinker, but I bet this would be good with a glass of milk.

  23. Thanks for the recipe! It looks wonderful and I never eat out but when I worked and lived in Iowa I would stop by Starbucks. I was never impressed with their food but I did love their coffee drinks! I am a coffee and/or tea person. I love my coffee in the morning but evenings I usually like a cup of herbal tea with something sweet and your bread looks like just the ticket! I have a sweet tooth but not for really sweet things. I just finished off a pineapple upside down cake I made last week so now I'm ready for something a little milder and your bread would go great with a cup of tea in the evening. Thank youfor the recipe and also for visiting! Happy Easter! It was beautiful today, high 60's and sunny but it looks like rain for tonight and all the way through Easter and even Monday but we need it and it is Spring after all! LOL! Take care!

  24. That looks really good and I can tell it would be wonderful with a cold diet coke xx

  25. Guilty coffee lover checking in!

    That loaf looks divine...awesome of you to share the recipe! Anything with sourcream in it and I'm sold!

  26. Your chocolate bread looks delicious. Thanks for the recipe. Yummmm!!!


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