October 10, 2010
Name of Cakes: No raw batter!
Constituents: chocolate souffle cakes with ganache centers
Many people who saw the film Julie and Julia fell in love with Meryl Streep's Julia Child and loved her story of learning to cook while living in Paris. Pretty much everybody who saw the movie also then complained about how little they enjoyed the scenes about Julie and her attempts to cook her way through Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Critics complained that the Julie character just wasn't likeable. I have to say that I didn't like the Julie character in the movie so much, but I did love the Julie in the book on which the movie is based. That Julie (the author) seemed a lot like me, especially in her habit of swearing at and about the food, and for throwing major tantrums when she couldn't get something right. It was nice to know that I wasn't the only one to throw a fit when there was (in my case) cake trauma. In my early days of baking there would be cake trauma almost every time, and the f-bombs would be fall like rain. My poor friend Regenia, my first roommate, was present for most of the tantrums, and she learned very quickly to not take them seriously, even when I would slam shit on the counter to punctuate the swearing. I loved reading about Julie's cooking tantrums, and I will always remember when she was trying to cook rice and pitching a fit and her husband walked in, grabbed her by the shoulders, and yelled, "IT'S JUST RICE." I try to remember that when cake trauma rears its ugly head.
In fact, just this morning I was metaphorically grabbing my own shoulders and yelling, "IT'S JUST GANACHE" but I metaphorically punched the self that was saying that and kicked her out of the way.
Those damn ganache balls never got hard--they stayed soft and runny the whole time, even after 20 min in the freezer. Rose warns this could happen if the chocolate is less than 61%. Unless the packaging lied the chocolate I used was 61% so it should have been fine. But it wasn't. And it was a mess. I have never wanted ganache to go [do nasty things to itself] more than I did today at 11 am.
The souffle part of the cakes was really quick to prep and fast to mix together. I thought my silicone cupcake cups were 3 oz capacity, same as the silicone brioche molds, but it must be less because I ended up with 11 cupcakes.
The recipe requires the souffles to cool in their molds for half and hour, then turned out onto a lightly greased non stick pan, covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated for at least eight hours. To serve, each cake should be reheated in the microwave for about half a minute.
When a recipe veers off the beaten path into what seems like crazytown, I would like to know why. Alas, there is no why. There is also no microwave in my apartment, so I brought the entire tray to Cookie's house this evening to reheat and try.
|i know, the photo is poor, but i haven't figured out the best settings for night shots at cookie's house|
As you probably have figured out, I didn't care much for these. The cake is very light and spongy, when I wanted something substantial like a butter cake. The ganache centers weren't very gooey--but that is all my own fault for having subpar ganache balls. Cookie didn't like the parts of the cake where there wasn't ganache--too eggy she said. Cabbage enjoyed them so I told them they were all his and I didn't want to see them again. They offered their chocolate-peanut butter ice cream as a trade and the deal was done.