August 30, 2009

"In which Sarah and Eric find themselves woefully underprepared for making a cake" or "More adventures with Eric and eggs"

Looking at this recipe, we quickly realized that we are not adequately equipped for making something so fancy-pants as a chocolate mousse cake. We are bread and cookie people. Perhaps strange considering chocolate cake would definitely be on my death-row-last-meal-menu. We've gotten very used to it being just the two of us, so we don't tend to have extra kitchen/food items on the chance that we'll one day have to make something or that we'll have loads of guests. We don't have condiments in our fridge (neither of us like them) and we only keep around kitchen utensils that we use regularly. So when looking over this recipe, we realized that 1. Neither of us had ever made a cake from scratch and 2. We were lacking many of the necessary tools for making said cake. So we now own cake pans and the rest we were able to compensate for with a little creativity. You can live without a double boiler and a sifter. Even all our wax paper was at my work where it had been used for a carpet-ice skating activity with preschoolers. A greased and floured pan though, works every time.

I called Lovely Lady Baker before starting this recipe for a bit of a pep talk and her main advice was to not let the flour-less cake overcook. I'm glad she told me as much. The cake itself was fairly straightforward but cooked in less time then indicated in the recipe. The rest of the components were also fairly straightforward, there were just so many steps! With chilling required between each major component, it took two days for us to finish this cake. Yikes! I was so tired of chocolate, butter, and eggs that we ended up skipping the dark chocolate glaze at the end. Due to Eric's aversion to raspberries, we substituted strawberry preserves with fresh strawberries in between the layers and around the edges. Other than that, though, we followed the recipe pretty exactly.

The cake itself turned out to be a crowd pleaser. We took it to a party, and I feel a little bad when all of the other desserts were ignored. It was super rich, but served cold and in small servings was delicious. The tartness of the late-season strawberries cut some of the sweetness of the chocolate and the texture of the flour-less cake went perfectly with the silky mousse. I'm not sure if we will make this again anytime soon based on how long it took, but if you're looking for a special cake for a chocolate-lover, I'd definitely recommend this one.

After Lovely Lady Baker's picture of her perfectly glazed and decorated cake, I wanted to show our messy version. I love a little mess though. That bit of wayward chocolate is just begging to be scooped up with your finger.

1 comment:

  1. It looks great! Perfection is easily masked... I wasn't really thinking and forgot that I should glaze it on a wire rack so the glaze could drip down the sides. Instead I did it all on the cake stand which made it really difficult to "perfect". There was a lot of icing spatula handy work. :) I'm glad that you now also have 2 cake pans and have definitely made one of the hardest recipes as your first scratch cake! congrats! Glad your friends enjoyed it as well.

    great job you two
    The Lovely Lady Baker