Substitution Success

I have a few friends who hate baking, simply because they don’t like to follow directions. They prefer the freedom and flexibility that comes with cooking, over the precision required in most baking. But every now and again, baking allows for small substitutions. These tweaks can potentially alter the final product, but hopefully not to the extreme of a flat cake or botched bread.

A few days ago I was set to make a Chocolate Chip Cake from, when I realized that I didn’t have the whole-wheat pastry flour required for the recipe. After several Google searches, I found that an equal parts mixture of cake flour and whole-wheat flour provides a suitable substitution for my missing ingredient. I also made another alteration by doubling the amount of chocolate chips in the cake. Although I don’t have the alternative to compare it to, I thought the cake was light and moist, and it gave me the opportunity to show my friends that baking can have more versatility than they originally thought!

Chocolate Chip Cake


What You Need

  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar, divided
  • 1 1/4 cups whole-wheat pastry flour, (see Ingredient Note)
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups nonfat buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
  • For Chocolate Drizzle
  • 1/3 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 2 tablespoons low-fat milk

What To Do

  1. To prepare cake: Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 12-cup Bundt pan with cooking spray.
  2. Beat egg whites in a large bowl with an electric mixer on low speed until foamy. Add cream of tartar, increase speed to medium-high and beat until soft peaks form. Gradually add 1/2 cup sugar, beating until stiff but not dry (this can take up to 5 minutes).
  3. Combine the remaining 1 cup sugar, whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in another large bowl. With the mixer on medium speed, beat in buttermilk, oil, vanilla and a heaping spoonful of whites. Fold in the remaining whites and 1/2 cup chocolate chips with a whisk. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top.
  4. Bake the cake until a skewer inserted into it comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Invert onto the rack and let cool completely.
  5. To prepare chocolate drizzle: Combine 1/3 cup chocolate chips and milk in a small saucepan. Heat over low heat, stirring, until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth. Drizzle over the cooled cake. Serve immediately or let stand until the chocolate is set, about 45 minutes.

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