It’s been awhile since Matt’s mom visited the fourth floor, but she just popped by and brought us a delicious chocolate cake to snack on. We immediately asked for the recipe, and were surprised to hear that it was so simple. It only takes a few minutes (six, to be precise) to prepare. Bonus: there’s no dairy, so it’s lactose free and vegan-friendly.
Six–Minute Chocolate Cake
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup cocoa
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup chocolate chips
1 cup cold water
½ cup vegetable oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp white vinegar
– Preheat over to 375 degrees Celsius.
– In an ungreased, 8-inch square baking pan, mix flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt, sugar and chocolate chips. – Add water, oil and vanilla. Stir with fork until smooth.
– Working quickly, add vinegar and mix until pale streaks are incorporated into batter.
– Bake until centre has puffed up and the surface shows a slight crack, which should be about 30 minutes.
If you are anything like us, your morning does not begin until you’ve had a cup of coffee. We are cranky without it. While you can never start your day off wrong with a latte, coffee goes best with baked goods. Really, what doesn’t go best paired with something sugary, flaky and full of fat? Mmmm…
Back to coffee. There are a ton of great cafés in Toronto, so choosing a favourite is tough. We are known to indulge in the occasional cup from Canada’s favourite hockey-player-turned-coffee-guru chain for the quick hit of caffeine needed for work. But when we really want to sit down and wrap our hands around a steaming hot mug of java, these are our first picks.
It may be famous amongst the Queen Street crowd for its chocolate chip walnut cookies, but trust us: its scones are just as good. Arrive early in the a.m. before they are all sold out, and choose from butterscotch, cranberry and blueberry flavours. For a quick caffeine fix, try one of their cappuccinos, a perfect blend of espresso and milk. Le Gourmand has delicious scones and super cappuccinos; need we say more?
Donuts are back in a big way. Let’s just say that this season they are to baked goods what Proenza Schouler is to fashion. Since you would never say no to a bag by Proenza Schouler, you really could never turn down a donut from Little Nicky’s Coffee. Hit up this recently opened coffee hot spot, and watch as mini donuts come fresh off the conveyor belt.
The donuts are then tossed in cinnamon and sugar, and into a paper bag for easy eating. Wash them down with Little Nicky’s special blend of espresso, which is a house blend made especially for them.
When you think about it, muffins are really morning cupcakes. And who doesn’t love cupcakes? But if you need a healthier take on the icing-topped mini cakes, muffins are the answer to sweet tooth cravings before noon. Check out Cherry Bomb for a daily selection of mixed-berry and almond muffins.
On weekends, try their special banana espresso chocolate chip variety. A great joint for take-away coffee, choose between the ultimate in lattes or some of city’s best hot chocolate.
Lit just opened their third location on the first floor of the Burroughes building (danger alert!). Yes, delicious espresso, French-press coffee and lattes are now just downstairs from the fourth floor. Like we said, danger.
Lit Espresso Bar carries Stumptown Coffee Roasters, based out of Oregon, who pioneered direct trade coffee. This tastes great and makes you feel good.
To make things even more dangerous, Lit carries baked goods from Circles & Squares bakery. Their banana bread is amazing. We now have access to coffee practically 24/7. Yikes.
Tip: When buying baked goods, it’s best to buy in bulk. Pick up enough for your office, and you’ll instantly become the most popular coworker. Ever.