Time alone is a luxury. I’m usually resigned to Saturday mornings from about 6 to 10 am which I spend in my living room drinking coffee and clearing out the TiVo, reading books or whatever I want. I’ve found I need this time just to reset myself after a long week of nothing but obligations and routines. It’s rare for me to actually get a night to myself alone in the house. Last night it happened for what seemed like the first time in ages since the boyfriend was called out to work after hours. I came home to silence (minus a few whining cats) and a night of possibilities laid out before me. I immediately got to wasting to my night away instead.
I parked the tv channel on TLC and watched hours of programming like What Not To Wear, Little People Big World and Jon & Kate Plus 8. I ate Peanut Butter Cap’n Crunch for dinner then followed it up with potato chips for dessert. I practiced Pretty Good Year by Tori Amos on the piano and the rest of the time had my iPod Touch glued to my hand playing games and surfing the internet.
I’m telling you, it was great.
I wouldn’t want to do it every night but once in a while… ahhh, pure bliss.
French Yogurt Marmalade Cake was selected by Liliana of My Cookbook Addiction for this week’s Tuesday with Dorie selection. I was so happy with this choice, it was simple, easy and not chocolate loaded (which I gladly am taking a break from for right now).
I made this cake twice. First on Saturday and I overbaked it quite a bit. It was still good but I wanted to give it another go anyway. I cut the recipe in half and baked in a small loaf pan for about 25 minutes. I then added an aluminum foil tent and baked five minutes longer so the top didn’t get too brown. I also added some milk to the batter, the cake baked up really nice and moist that way. Dorie’s recipe calls for lemon marmalade and I looked EVERYWHERE for lemon marmalade and couldn’t find it. Even the fancy stores down where I worked that seem to carry everything didn’t have it and I was really surprised by this. I found Key Lime marmalade which I’m sure would have been awesome but I decided to just go with Orange due to it being much cheaper. I also used orange zest in the batter instead of lemon.
I really love cakes like this. The taste is light, not too overpowering or sickeningly sweet. The flavors could be played around with easily so you’re really only limited to what kind of marmalade/preserves you decide to use. MMMMM, thanks Liliana for a great choice. Stop by My Cookbook Addiction here for the recipe or see pages 224-225 in Dorie Greenspan’s Baking: From my home to yours.
Next week Sihan of Befuddlement has selected Blueberry Crumb Cake!
Orange and Chocolate for me is kind of like how I feel about not-famous comedians and their stand up routines. I’m always prepared not to like it, but then once I’m in the middle of it, I find I enjoy it and let out a little smile. This may make no sense but I was watching Comedy Central just now and deemed it a fitting orange-chocolate analogy.
This is an orange flavored cake with chunks of chocolate inside, a orange sugar soak and a chocolate ganache on top. Sounds pretty good, right? It is. It’s really moist thanks in part to the orange sugar soak on top. The orange and chocolate flavors really stand out on their own but neither one overwhelms the other. I found that taste wise I liked the cake plain without the ganache better. But the ganache does make it look beautiful (unless you have lumpy ganache like me… ahem, make sure you melt those chocolate chips all the way.)
My camera battery ran out before I got a chance to take an in-focus picture of the inside. But what’s inside is a light colored cake with tons of chocolate chips. Mmmm!
Random Thoughts and Specifics:
*Microplane zesters are one of the best culinary inventions. Ever.
*Squeezing out a half cup of juice from oranges by hand is a chore. Need a juicer on my Xmas list.
*I baked in two miniature loaf pans instead of using mini bundt pans.
*They took about 47 minutes to be done all the way.
Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving! Mine was good. I went to my Aunt Donna’s house and ate way too much. My boyfriend came back from St. Louis late last night just in time for my 31st Birthday tomorrow. I just got done crying over 30 and now 31 is here. No fair!
Ina Garten’s Mini Orange Chocolate Chunk Cake
1/4 pound unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 extra-large eggs at room temperature
1/8 cup grated orange zest (2 large oranges)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour plus 1 tablespoon
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
3 ounces buttermilk at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup good semisweet chocolate chunks
For the syrup:
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
For the ganache:
4 ounces good semisweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon instant coffee granules
Thanks to Lisa of Lime In The Coconut for choosing this as the second November Bonus Recipe for the Barefoot Bloggers. Lisa got to choose a Bonus Recipe for designing the winning logo for the BB group:
Great job, Lisa!