Saturday, February 28, 2009

Rudolph's Brother

What am I talking about, Willis??? Yes, that's right... Chocolate Valentino... The February Daring Baker's Challenge... It was all about the chocolate and probably one if the easiest cakes to make, in terms of ingredients... three, to be exact... So simple, in fact, that I'm going to tell you all how to make it... But first, the "legalities"...

The February 2009 challenge is hosted by Wendy of WMPE's blog and Dharm of Dad ~ Baker & Chef. We have chosen a Chocolate Valentino cake by Chef Wan; a Vanilla Ice Cream recipe from Dharm and a Vanilla Ice Cream recipe from Wendy as the challenge...

While the guidelines stated that we were to pair the cake with the vanilla ice cream, we don't have an ice cream maker... There is a technique from David Lebovitz here that explains how to make ice cream without a machine, but, since we were allowed leeway to pair the cake with something else, we opted for a Grand Marnier whipped cream instead...

This is the cake recipe... It's just chocolate and eggs and butter...

Chocolate Valentino
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
16 ounces of semisweet chocolate, roughly chopped
1 stick plus 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
5 large eggs separated

1. Put chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl and set over a pan of simmering water (the bottom of the bowl should not touch the water) and melt, stirring often.
2. While your chocolate butter mixture is cooling. Butter your pan and line with a parchment circle then butter the parchment.
3. Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites and put into two medium/large bowls.
4. Whip the egg whites in a medium/large grease free bowl until stiff peaks are formed (do not over-whip or the cake will be dry).
5. With the same beater beat the egg yolks together.
6. Add the egg yolks to the cooled chocolate.
7. Fold in 1/3 of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture and follow with remaining 2/3rds. Fold until no white remains without deflating the batter.
8. Pour batter into prepared pan, the batter should fill the pan 3/4 of the way full, and bake at 375F/190C
9. Bake for 25 minutes until an instant read thermometer reads 140F/60C.
Note – If you do not have an instant read thermometer, the top of the cake will look similar to a brownie and a cake tester will appear wet.
10. Cool cake on a rack for 10 minutes then unmold.

The only mistake I made was i missed the two extra tablespoons of butter... It didn't seem to matter to us in the end, because the cake still had a PHENOMENAL taste!!!

Chocolate Valentino 1

Chocolate Valentino 3

Chocolate Valentino 6

Chocolate Valentino 7

Saturday, February 21, 2009

What goes well with Chocolate?

Hello folks. It's been a while since I had a chance to blog about our baking experiences, and I thought, well, as long as it's a winter Saturday, with no heat or hot water, and I'm forced to sit in front of this space heater and BAKE to keep warm - I might as well compose an up-date!

Last week Joe made the most fabulous cake - so freakin tall we couldn't fit it in any of our various boxes and had to construct one just for the occasion. Devil's Food with white chocolate/mint filling, layers of dark chocolate ganache and a mildly minty pale yellow buttercream frosting. OY was this one delicious. Four layers of heaven. Cake, ganache, mint filling, cake, ganache, mint filling - rinse and repeat...twice...only a very thin slice should be eaten at a sitting, because this one is so darned rich. We haven't thought of a name for it yet - but rest assured that its another keeper for our business.

Speaking of keepers, I have a Chocolate Caramel cheesecake in the oven as I type this - deep chocolate biscotti crust, layer of creamy caramel, and dark chocolate cheesecake filling...yum (I hope). This is one of those time when I have to keep reminding myself to have patience (something baking has truly helped me to achieve)...this one will have to cool on the rack for an hour or so, then refrigerated for three hours before we can TASTE it. Give me strength! I'm thinking of drizzling more caramel over the top and sprinkling with sea salt. Oops - my mouth just started to water. Did yours?

We are giving thoughts to what we want to serve up for the two up-coming holidays: St. Patrick's Day and Easter. I have a few thoughts, but will let those brew a bit longer until I'm (we're) ready to reveal the newest scrumptious delights from Joey Biscotti!

Satisfy your sweet tooth now - while we're still a small, personalized-service-oriented company. My intention is for us to always offer the service you've come to expect. Keep helping us to remember, as we grow, to always make YOU our number one priorty.

More later!

'Da boys...