This is a staple for one of my friends. She’s a domestic goddess and excellent at baking. I’ve had this cake before and I did mess up on my own versions only because I realised my dish is too small. This is a cake that requires no solid chocolate which is good if you all you have on hand is cocoa powder and you don’t want to chop up chocolate or can find mass quantities of chocolate chips (why is it that I can only buy it in 100 grams bags here?). I think this is a pretty inventive cake probably from an old vintage cookbook of my friend’s mum. It was a hit at the birthday I baked this for. As usual, I cut out a lot of sugar, and while I usually use brown sugar in my recipes, I followed the recipe and used white for this one.
A basic ganache really only needs two ingredients: dark chocolate and heavy whipping/double cream. Something to roll the chocolate truffle in would be good too. To test the Cooking for Engineers chcocolate truffles recipe out, I used a 200g bar of Cadbury Bourneville Classic ‘Dark’. Actually, it wasn’t that dark as the first ingridient was sugar, but I did not notice that until later. In any case, this was to test a recipe and I needed an inexpensive bar of chocolate. I used a little over 100 mL of cream.
The most annoying aspect about the experience was cutting the chocolate. You need a sharp knife, but cutting took a good portion of my time because of the melting chocolate and lack of good knfie. Afterwards, I scalded the cream in a saucepan and poured it over the chopped chocolate, let it stood for 5 minutes, and then started mixing them together. I put it in the fridge, but I was unsure if this would actually work. Two hours later, I found it did harden somewhat to a thick cream, but not too hard. Still, I haphazardly scooped, chilled, and rolled the chocolate in my Whittard’s 70% dark hot chocolate (ingredients: cocoa 70%, sugar, flavouring). While they are deformed, they did not taste half bad, melted in my mouth, and proved that the recipe did work.
The Cadbury chocolate was too sweet for my liking, and next time, I will definitely use Valhrona (one of my favourite chocolates in the world and excellent for truffles and baking). Very easy to adapt and add liquer, nuts when dusting and so on. The problem is that now I have all these truffles which are too sweet for me and not enough people willing to finish them. I am glad I only used 200grams. Too rich for me! I can barely resist eating them just to experience that melting effect. These should last a month in an airtight container for up to a month, but I am currently putting them in the fridge.
In December 2006, I started participating in 365 Days, a self-portrait a day for a year. I had just bought my first digital camera after years of coveting and a flickr account to boot. I only managed to do 129 days of photos; it become too difficult to do after awhile and I became lazy in the summer. The photos that came out it or the creative process that forced me to take so many self-portraits resulted in some of my best photos. It was a large exercise in creativity.
A month go, I decided to take up Project 365 which is just a photo a day for a year. Aside from taking photos of my knitting, I was not picking up the camera as much as I had previously or wanted to. The project will allow me flexibility in photography because part of the difficulty of 365 Days was the self-portraiture. Though, I will take a lot of self-portraits I think because I sort of got use to being my own model and experimenting with versions of myself. If anything, I need to document my aging process since I dislike it when others photograph me. The reason I wanted to start this on my birthday was symbolic and would mark the beginning of an interesting twelve months. There may be some drastic changes in the next year, and if not, there will be some travelling.
The project will hopefully allow me to blog more photos here on the blog because for the longest time, I wanted to make a photolog. Wordless Wednesday will resume, and I’ll post more photos for the sake of posting photos.
About this photo: Sadly, I did not bake these brownies. They were a gift from a friend. It just goes to show you how easy I am to please. Some good comfort food and appreciative effort and care from loved ones is all one asks for. I am curious about what kind of birthday I’ll be having in one year.
Enjoy the ride 365 ride with me.
This cake is gooey, cinnamony, and chocolately. It could be eaten as a coffee cake for tea or snacks, but it could be a small birthday party cake as well. For people like my Dad who do not like chocolate, raisins could probably be used instead. It’s a little bit of work to separate the eggs and layer the cake, but I think it’s well worth it.
Anything with chocolate makes me happy. I like my chocolate bittersweet and of good quality even in baking. This simple recipe can be whipped up relatively fast and with few ingredients.
For my birthday, I decided to treat myself to my favourite new hobby: baking. I wanted something simple and easy: chocolate chip cookies. I did research and had heard about the Nestle Toll House cookie, but I’ve never seen those chips in my supermarket. Taking advice from a couple sites, I modified the cookies just a bit. This is not a definitive recipe, rather an attempt to find my own perfect chocolate chip recipe with trial and error. This is Level One in the Baker’s Adventure for Chocolate Chip Cookies or version 1.0.