Tag Archives: chocolate

Wonderfully Moist Chocolate and (gasp) Zuchinni Cake

– What is the Long and Short Of It? –

Everything is good with chocolate right? Coffee, orange, caramel, almonds, zuchinni… what, what?!

Time to take out your adventurous gloves and fall in love with this fantastically moist cake, fragrant with orange and rich with chocolate. Slightly chewy on the outside and iced to perfection… It’s like carrot cake. That had a love child with a chocolate cake.

– The Short of it –

185 gm butter
1 cup of brown sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups Self Raising Flour
1 1/2 cups of grated zuchinni, skin and all
2 tsp Finely Grated Orange Rind
1/4 cup of good quality cocoa
3/4 cup of Milk

Beat butter and sugar till smooth.
Add one egg. Beat till smooth. Repeat with second egg.
Fold in other ingredients, sifting flour and cocoa if they are lumpy.
Grease and flour a cake tin. Pour in batter.
Bake at 200 for around 50 minutes to an hour. Its ready when the top springs back when pressed lightly with your finger.
The skewer trick wont be right here – the cake is meant to be moist.
Cool on a wire rack.
Prepare yourself…

Ice with Rich Chocolate Icing.

(125 gm of melted dark chocolate mixed with 1/4 cup of sour cream and 1/2 cup of icing sugar and chilled until softly set)

Ice.

Prepare to have your mind blown….

– The Long Of It –

I have been hearing about this cake for years in cookbooks and magazines and on blogs and though it sat high on my list of  ‘to bake’ things, it just never eventuated.
It fascinated me. To use zuchinni with chocolate must be either mad or genius (the two often being confused) and for it to feature everywhere I was guessing the latter.
I was right.
Just before leaving the country I went to spend two weeks with my family in Crystal Waters and my Mum said, ‘Let’s make that chocolate zuchinni cake.”
That’s how long I have been meaning to make this damn cake for. Since before I moved out of home. Madness.
So we did. And it was glorious.
We made two and ate it for morning tea. And then afternoon tea. And then for breakfast.
Also to all the guests that came over.

Note : This Icing is wonderful for any chocolate cake you might make.
Rich and less sickly sweet than your average icing (which I don’t really like)

Please let me know how your adventure goes… Don’t make the mistake I did and wait to have this with your morning (or afternoon) cup of tea!

 

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Magical Chocolate Mousse

What is the long and short of it?

– The Short –

No baking, no gelatin, small effort, gorgeous mousse! Tada!

200 gm chocolate, dark if possible
5 eggs, seperated
150 gm butter
 5 tbls sugar

Take eggs out of fridge. Seperate into bowls with enough room for whisking.
Pop chocolate and butter on a double boiler over a low heat. Leave to melt.
Beat egg yolks and sugar till pale and fluffy.
Stir melting chocolate till liquid. Remove from heat and put aside to cool a little.
Beat egg whites to soft peaks.
Check the chocolate. When it is room temperature stir into the yolk-and-sugar mix. Too hot and it will cook the eggs. Mix till smooth.
Fold in whites. Softly. The gentler you are the lighter your mousse.
Set in fridge or pour into lovely little glasses and then set.
Serve with fresh fruit or in hot chocolates or with icecream or as the filling to a cake or eat with a spoon from the fridge…
Enjoy!

(You could easily make this diary free or sugar free by using honey and a diary free chocolate)


Of Pudding and Quinoa

I am slipping…
Five days after I finished my cleanse, with the intention to maintain mostly healthiness, my mind is reverting back to its old tricks. And unfortunately, my mind knows me really well.
But lets rewind.
After about a week of no sugar the energy took hold. It was wonderful. The sunday after my last post I worked a twelve hour day, with only a small break and when I got home I was so full of beans I helped my housemate clean the house till 3 in the morning. And it wasnt that hyped, edge-of-your-brain awakeness that comes from coffee or lack of sleep, but rather a clean full-bodied awakeness. It was wonderful.
It was my little (not-so little anymore!) brothers seventeenth birthday that week and so I organized to head up to Crystal Waters, the home of my youth, to have dinner with the family.
My brother is an awesome boy. Forget your normal lazy, fairly uninspired, drinking seventeen year old. He has been doing homeschooling for some time now and does it with zest. He takes lessons in everything that inspires him. And he and my good friend Ned walk everywhere.
In fact me and Tombs*, as i affectionatlely call him, discussed next year walking the Camino de Santiago de Compastelo. For those of you who know not, this is a pilgrims walk in the north of Spain, spanning some 780 miles and taking about 30 days. THIRTY DAYS OF WALKING. YE GODS. However it is not an insane hike through the amazon jungle, it is a walk along a road walked by thousands of people for hundreds of years. It passes through towns and cities with albuergues (hotels) for travellers on the walk. They say that once you do the first five days the rest is easy.
So I am keen. I will have to spend the next half a year getting madly fit. Which means walking everywhere in Italy.  SOUNDS LIKE A PLAN.
We enjoyed a large feast and talks round the campfire (hot damn, how much I miss campfires!) and then me and Tombs went for a seven km walk at ten in the evening. Cause, y’know, the healths were filling me with energy.
Some of what we ate that night: Vegetable curry (redolent with spices)
Two large free range whole roast chickens (tender and melt in the mouth with a crispy golden skin and fragrant with lemons)
Baked vegetables
Quinoa, mint and orange salad (amazing! recipe on its way)
Spiced nut rice (dang! I have to make this stuff!)
And locally picked salad followed by a baileys cheesecake.
Which I did not eat, with a massive feat of willpower, due to two things; it contained sugar and I was off that, also I purchased THIS TOTALLY AMAZING STUFF. It is called Cocoapure and if you havent tried it/heard of it, you should really try and hunt some down.
It is made of raw cocoa, raw coconut oil, raw vanilla and sea salt and it is all organic, BUT IT TASTES LIKE GLORY IN A JAR.
No joke. It is as good as nutella and I am not just saying that. It is a soft, spreadable dark and sensual thing and I ate it with some gourmet dried strawberries.. Mmmm…Honestly, who needs sugar anyway?
Fast forward.. I did good on my three week cleanse and only broke it once to taste the Saffron Mouse Cheesecake that I made for my housemates twenty first birthday.. But more on that later. Recipes will be forthcoming.
Two days back onto normal eating and I was rocking the health. And then.. I lost it completely. My friend Katrina came over for late night cooking and we made Quinoa Fridgezotto filled with butter, camembert, white wine,s mustard and chicken.. Also chocolate self-saucing pudding with ice cream with that ate we gorged on until food comas were had by all… Dang, boys and girls, but chocolate self saucing puddings are a thing of wonder.  Magic (aka science) makes fantastic things happen in your oven that result in foodgasms for everyone..
The next day I made Caramelized Onion Baguettes from scratch in my housemates Kitchenaid. Thats rights, my housemate has a Kitchenaid – be jelous.  And wow, it was easy.
We then headed on over to our friends for dinner bringing fresh bread, leftover chocolate pudding (thats right, we made two) and some polenta. Sam made us marinated grilled Kangaroo and oven-baked sweet potato chips which we devoured with great gusto alongside the warm bread slathered in butter.. Its a hard life, let me tell you.
And then more chocolate science pudding. This time with cream. Oh no. So now I am slipping. Iced coffee at work yesterday, singapore chilli stirfry for lunch (oil and sugar for everyone!) and then I came home and made a midnight goats camembert omelette followed by a handful of chocolate coated ginger. And believe me i would of had it with a glass of milk if there was any milk left in the house.
So. Herbal tea this morning. Life is a high road. I can walk it. It doesnt have to be extremes. The Vale of health on one side. The Valley of Indulgence on the other. No need to choose one or the other..Just let me get my balance.
Recipes soon… Miss Nom