For this week’s challenge, I wanted to make a chocolate cake for Valentine’s Day. It was a challenge for me because I don’t make a lot of desserts and sometimes my baking efforts wind up as miserable failures. I definitely need more practice, but on the other hand, I don’t really need to be eating more sweets. So it’s kind of a double-edged sword.
Anyway, here’s how the cake turned out:
Looks pretty good, doesn’t it? It tasted good too, like an ooey-gooey gigantic brownie.
I chose a recipe from Nigella Lawson‘s Feast for a cake that was almost flourless (only ½ cup) because I really like dense, chocolatey cakes and because I wanted to use some instant espresso powder I already had in the pantry. A good cook always tries to make use of what she already has on hand. However, I did have to go shopping for one thing: a springform pan. That’s right, I’ve gone this long without owning one, and there are plenty of times when I could have used it. So now I’ve got one.
One thing I didn’t have to buy was a double boiler to melt the chocolate. Instead, I placed a small pot on top of a larger one of simmering water. The chocolate melted perfectly. (I don’t have a microwave anymore, which is handy for melting chocolate, I will admit.)
The cake did not rise up as high as the one pictured in Nigella’s book, probably because I didn’t beat the eggs enough at the beginning. I don’t own a stand mixer, and I tend to get tired of beating and quit before I ought to. It didn’t make much difference to the flavor, though, which was dense, chocolatey and a big hit with everyone. I topped it simply, with a dollop of whipped cream to cut the richness. I didn’t pour coffee liqueur over the top, as Nigella does, since one of my tasters is a toddler, but I don’t think its absence detracted from the cake at all.
I’m not going to post the recipe, since I didn’t change it very much and I don’t want to violate copyright. But the wonders of the Internet always provide, so here is the exact recipe from Food Network’s website. Enjoy.
For this week’s challenge, I am doing a brunch dish: an old-fashioned country scramble. I’ll probably also make biscuits, because what’s a country breakfast without biscuits?