Monday, June 21, 2010

A Celebration of All Kinds!

I thought that I'd honor Sophia's birthday with a cake. She may not have been here to share it with the rest of us but I knew she would have liked it a lot. I chose the Little Black Dress Chocolate Cake that she proposed for me to make. I chose to make it on a day on which I could celebrate it with all of my relatives and incidentally the closest holiday turned out to be Father's Day. So Sophia, though you may never get the chance to be a father one day, this cake is for you!

This was attempt number one. I had my 2 year old niece as a helper and by doing so I promptly forgot to add in the whipped eggs to the batter until I had tranferred it to the cake pan. That's just one of the many mishaps in the process of making the first cake. Needless to say it collapsed. The cake itself was dense like a brownie and I opted out a full cup of sugar to give it a bittersweet chocolate flavor.

Day 2
I've been swimming in ganache so I decided to try again on the cake.

The second attempt was done in the proper fashion. I opted out only 1/2 a cup of sugar, when I whipped it in with the butter.

This cake was apparently a bit sweeter than the first but much lighter and fluffier. I'd call this cake a torte myself as it is rich, thick and one piece certainly suffices.

Day 3
Still trying to keep my up above all that ganache.Observe the extra ganache in the bowl.

Solution? Chocolate truffles as suggested by the original recipe. She made the suggestion almost as an afterthought as if making truffles were the most obvious and easiest solution to leftover ganache. I began to research. I found a fairly simplified version for making chocolate truffles here and than I began to get creative. I was inspired by a local chocolatier in Portland, Maine, Sweet Marguerites that have created chocolates with innovative ingredients such as bacon and lambic beer. I began to rummage in the beer fridge and found the perfect ingredient, a beautiful bottle of Unibroue's quelchose. I began to dream about a quelchose ganache dipped in dark chocolate and covered in walnut crumbs.

Then I stumbled upon this site that inspired me to continue to try other cooking with beer.

Alas, for the time being I stuck with making the original truffle recipe that I found. I coated the ganache dipped in dark chocolate with cocoa powder and crushed hazelnuts. Result? Decadent.

Perhaps it all started yesterday when I was dropping off leftover cake at my brother's house where I began flipping through my sister in law's cooking with beer book, but I think this could lead to a whole new territory for me to explore while Sophie dabbles with Dutch traditions.

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