Thursday, May 28, 2009

Brian's B'day cake

I had a good response to the very simple chocolate cake I made last night - so here it is.  It's from, with some alterations.  See this for the original recipe:
  • 8 ounces bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, cut into pieces

  • 4 large eggs, separated
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons all purpose flour

  • 4 ounces bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon sour cream


Preheat oven to 325°F. Line bottom of 9-inch-diameter cake pan with 2-inch-high sides with waxed paper. Butter sides of pan and paper. Dust pan with flour. Melt 8oz. chocolate and butter in top of double boiler over simmering water, stirring until smooth. Cool slightly.

Whisk yolks and sugar in large bowl until pale yellow. Mix in flour, then chocolate mixture. Using electric mixer, beat whites in another bowl until stiff but not dry. Fold into chocolate mixture. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake until toothpick inserted into center comes out with only a few moist crumbs attached, about 40 minutes. Cool completely in pan on rack. Run small sharp knife around sides of pan to loosen cake. Turn cake out onto platter and cool. (Can be prepared 8 hours ahead. Cover with cake dome and let stand at room temperature.)

Melt remaining chocolate in the double boiler.  Stir in sour cream.  Chocolate will seize up somewhat (more if you use lower fat sour cream).  Spread over cake.  

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Passionfruit Jam

The passionfruit vines in my backyard have dropped a huge amount of fruit, and I need to do something with it. When it comes to preserving acidic fruits like passionfruit, marmalade-style preserves are far and away my favorite. Most of the recipes I located online were for passionfruit curd or some passionfruit gelatin concoction, but after a little digging, I finally discovered this perfect recipe from The Cook's Cottage. I'll make it this weekend and report back.

Update: I strongly recommend the recipe. It gels beautifully, it's very tasty, and it will make your house smell wonderful.