Recipe adapted from Gourmet. Cake (with glaze) can be made 2 days ahead and kept at room temperature in a cake keeper or covered with an inverted bowl
2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 cup coffee, cooled
2 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup well-shaken buttermilk
2 tablespoons vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 stick ( 1/4 cup) unsalted butter
1/2 cup half-and-half
1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar
5 ounces fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), finely chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons Kahlua or coffee liqueur (optional)
1/4 teaspoon salt
Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-inch tube pan or 12-cup bundt cake pan well and dust with flour, knocking out excess.
Melt butter in a 3-quart heavy saucepan over low heat, then whisk in cocoa. Add coffee and whisk until smooth, then remove from heat. Whisk in separately sugar, eggs, buttermilk and vanilla.
Sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt into a bowl, then sift again into cocoa mixture and whisk until just combined (don’t worry if there are lumps).
Pour batter into cake pan and bake until a wooden pick or skewer comes out with a few crumbs adhering, 45 to 50 minutes. (Leave oven on.)
Cool cake in pan on a rack 20 minutes, then loosen edges with a thin knife and invert onto a plate.
Make glaze: Spread pecans in a shallow baking pan and bake until fragrant and a shade darker, 6 to 8 minutes. Cool pecans slightly in pan on a rack, about 5 minutes.
Melt butter in a 2-quart heavy saucepan over low heat, then stir in half-and-half and confectioners sugar. Add chocolate and liqueur and cook, stirring, until smooth. Remove from heat and stir in pecans and salt. Cool glaze until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.
Spoon glaze over top and sides of cake (cake will still be warm) and spread with a small offset spatula or knife to cover completely.
Per serving: 608 calories; 37 g fat (19 g saturated fat; 55 percent calories from fat); 65 g carbohydrates; 105 mg cholesterol; 234 mg sodium; 6 g protein; 3 g fiber.