I am one of those people who grumbles and mumbles about Valentine's Day (my friend Joelf likes to call it VD). Even when I am not single, there is grumbling and mumbling. So naturally, I refused to bake this cake in a heart shaped pan and serve it on VD, and I even protested so far as to refuse to buy out of season raspberries. (Harumph!) I did bring this cake to February's doula meeting, so I did share this ode to chocolate with a bunch of people I love.
February 8, 2010
Name of Cake: The Final Word in Chocolate Cake
Occasion: Doula meeting, and HCB
Constituents: one 9 in layer chocolate cake soaked in chocolate ganache, topped with whipped cream
In the book, Rose introduces this cake by saying "this may possibly be the final word in chocolate cake," and I have been thinking about that ever since I baked this cake. In many ways, I have to agree. This cake is at once amazingly delicious, serious chocolate, and almost too moist and dense for my liking. And yet, I really loved it. Go figure.
I was pretty happy to get back to butter cakes after the last two cake fails. It was like coming back to my bed after staying in weird foreign hotel rooms. Ahhh, the familiar comforts of baking a butter cake.
This butter cake is fancied up by getting a deep soak in ganache syrup once it comes out of the oven. I couldn't believe this little butter cake was going to be able to absorb all that ganache; Rose warns it will take about ten minutes for the cake to absorb half of the sauce and she's not kidding.
I decided, after much fiddling, to cover the top with whipped cream instead of serving it on the side or piping it around the bottom. And, to make it look semi-fancy, I decided to try piping stars. Which I've never done before, which explains why they came out looking more like blobs than stars.
One of the doulas kindly called them "flowers." Such a nice girl.
The doulas crack me up. They insist on nice, prim, tiny slices of cake, and then for the rest of the meting they pick at and munch at and clean up the rest of the platter. I was lucky to go home with two slices! I guess they liked it. One of them asked me if it was flourless, and I can understand why. There is a melt-in-your-mouth, dense and fudgy quality to this cake that is similar to a flourless cake. I looked back at my notes and called it hot fudge, in cake form. It would be delicious with a scoop of cold, creamy, vanilla ice cream. In fact, I think that is precisely what this cake is missing.