Wednesday, July 7, 2010

A Slice of Homemade Life

A Homemade Life by Molly Wizenberg- the creator of the food blog Orangette- is like a culinary autobiography. Each chapter starts with a story about some aspect of the author's life in which food played a part and ends with the recipe for the food item in the story. Each story is only a few pages long, so it's a quick breezy read, and the author writes with a warm, familiar tone that feels like she's personally writing you a letter to tell you about herself.

My one initial disappointment with this book was the fact that only a few recipes grabbed me as something that I wanted to try. I had imagined that every recipe was going to spark a desire to run into the kitchen, but that wasn't quite the case. However, this minor complaint flew out the window once I actually tried baking one of the three recipes that caught my eye- the "Winning Hearts and Minds Chocolate Cake".

The long-winded name for this cake has to do with the fact that the author always made it for people she wanted to impress and eventually ended up making twenty-five of these to use as her wedding cakes. It comes out looking like a flat, round brownie but, Oh. My. The plain appearance hides the most delicious chocolate cake I've ever had. It's rich like a brownie, but lighter in texture, and very chocolaty but not cloyingly sweet at all. Best of all, it's quite simple to make. It does call for real baking chocolate to be chopped up, which I usually shy away from in favor of easily pourable chocolate chips. I went by the book this time, though, and was pleasantly surprised. The chocolate was soft and easier to chop than I expected. I think it really made a difference in the cake. Best of all, the bars are stamped with a cute picture of an old-fashioned lady:

I followed the author's suggestion of serving the cake with homemade whipped creamed. I even took it up a notch by adding some almond extract to the cream.


1 comment:

  1. Oh, I love Orangette and have been dying to read her book. This cake might be just the kick in the pants I need to get to it!



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