meet R14's and my new favourite person. we have made her chocolate cake for countless years but i have lost my Kitchen Muse of recent times and am hoping to regain my enthusiasm since R14 and i went halves in The Destitute Gourmet's latest cooking book at *shine* yesterday.
in the introduction to her first chapter, Sophie Gray says: I came across a fascinating statistic some time ago about household menus. The research revealed that the average household operates on a selection of around 11 recipes. Every year or so, without really being aware of it, we give our particular selection an overhaul, ditching one or two dishes, introducing a couple of new ones but generally sticking to around 11. That seems to be about all the average household can shop for, remember how to make, and coerce the family to try.
hmmm, let's think: roast meat and veggies, tick. vegetable soup, tick. sushi, tick. wedges and chilli beans and sour cream, tick. corn chowder, tick. salad with bacon bits and wedges, tick. pasta and sauce out of a jar, tick. roast chook and veggies, tick. beef or russian stroganoff on rice, tick. toasted sandwiches, tick. make-your-own baked beans or noodles or spaghetti out of a tin, tick.
yeah, that's the first 11 i can think of and that's pretty much our current circuit.
how boring. boring. boring. yep, definitely time for an overhaul.
R14 chose sophie's cooking seminar during the *shine* options yesterday, and came home super-enthused about her Kitchen Muse. and it turns out that sophie's daughter is *not* caught in an eight-year-old-mummy-brings-in-baking-to-my-classroom-timewarp: she is actually the same age as R14 *boggle* and as i flicked through the new book that we got yesterday, i found The Chocolate Cake recipe (my original is handwritten on the inside cover of another of sophie's books, gifted by the dahling rosie who really needs to start a blog about Her Fabulous Life, and it's pretty much unreadable cos is covered in butter and cocoa and various other lickable ingredients) and i read sophie's intoductory words: I believe this recipe is now one of the most frequently made recipes in the country. When people bring their cookbooks to dg (Destitute Gourmet) cooking classes for me to sign, the page with Dana's chocolate cake is always the most splattered and tattered...
which is why i thought i'd post it here, cos it'll stay pristine, even when my mum prints it off for her recipe file cos she keeps her huge recipe stash in clear plastic wipeable folders, which means she can actually read them.
FOR THE CAKE:
sift all into a large bowl
1 2/3 (that's one and two-thirds, not twelve thirds) c flour
1 1/2 c sugar
2/3 c cocoa
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 c (trim) milk
100 g melted butter
1 tsp vanilla essence
give it a good stir or whang it through your trusty food processor. scrape into a lined cake tin and into the oven (preheated of course) for an hour at 18o celsius. works every time a coconut.
FOR THE ICING/FROSTING:
if you want to know sophie's recipe, you'll have to buy her book lol...
i prefer ganache:
200 ml cream and 200 g chocolate heated together, cooled and spread all over the cake.
or if you Can't Wait, just whang the sliced cake onto individual serving plates and swoosh the hot choc sauce over.
i'll guarantee you'll lick your plate.
and we'll be licking ours too, after we introduce those Two New Recipes to our repertoire.