eat in my kitchen

To cook, to bake, to eat and to treat.

Tag: chocolate cake

Molly Yeh’s Chocolate Tahini Cake with Tahini Frosting

Chocolate Tahini Cake

Time can feel like a race, it drags you back, you try to keep up, but there’s no way to stop. My summer flew by and then there was autumn, as quick as a storm that sweeps all the leaves off the trees, within one night they are all gone.

My last post was on August 27th. Since I started these pages, my Eat In My Kitchen blog, I have never ‘abandoned’ it for such a long time. It used to feel weird if I didn’t come back here every day, like in the first year, or at least every few days like I did in the past 3 years. It was my routine that I loved and hated. Sometimes I did feel pressured, just by myself, and the best thing to escape pressure, at least for me, is another project that sucks me in with such intensity that all my brain cells are too busy to think about anything else. I’m involved in a new project at the moment that I’ll only be able to share with you at the beginning of 2018, and this project took me around the world within just a few weeks. I met the most amazing people, I felt hungry and inspired every day, I pushed my borders, which I need to keep my creativity flowing and which I could only do because I had an amazing team around me (thank you my travel buddies, Jamie and Phillip Mall). So far we went to California, Italy, France, and Japan, and there will be more countries to come. It’s quite a journey.

These trips in the past 2 months were one of the reasons why I stayed away from my kitchen, why I didn’t go to the farmers market as often, why I didn’t experiment, fail and succeed at my cooker, but I discovered new worlds and culinary universes that I can’t wait to include in my own cooking – once I’m fully back home and ready to cook.

The second reason I stopped writing, is one that hit me deeper, right into my head, my heart, and my bones. On October 16th, Daphne Caruana Galizia was brutally killed in Malta. She was the most wonderful woman, the bravest I know, she was a mother of three young men, and she was a friend. Daphne fought for freedom and justice, for all of us, she was a well known investigative journalist and blogger. It was late in the evening and I was in Tokyo when I found out, I could only scream and run outside into the dark. Since then, I’ve been angry, too angry, which never helps anybody. I tried to find words for what happened, but I didn’t manage. A few days after I found out, I started writing a post to share here, but it was just anger screamed out into the world. You can say that this is a food blog, and you’re right, but this is a food blog written out of my perspective, so whatever influences me as a person will find its way into my kitchen, onto my table, and onto this blog. I can’t really say more, my words aren’t really back yet, I still feel numbed, but I wanted to put what happened in words, that Daphne Caruana Galizia was killed for saying the honest, painful truth, for being critical, for fighting for our freedom. I will never forget her and my thoughts are with her and her family every day. One of her sons, Matthew Caruana Galizia, continues her work, he just won the Pulitzer prize as a part of a group of investigative journalists who disclosed the Panama Papers first and then the Paradise Papers just recently. We have to support the ones who are brave enough to open their mouth and talk, maybe louder than we’d dare to do, and we have to show that they are not alone and that we are with them.

My mother taught me that life can be beautiful and brutal and that we have to deal with both sides. Sometimes they lay so close to each other that we don’t even know how to deal with it. We enjoy the heights to the fullest and then, in the next second, we seem to drown. The place where I often go to when I feel battered by life, is my kitchen, I cook and I bake. And although I’ve neglected this space so much recently, I have long lists of kitchen projects that I want to dive into during Berlin’s long lasting winter.

To cook – and bake – from my friend Molly‘s Molly On The Range cookbook was on the top of my list, her book came out at the same time as mine, a year ago. Molly and I just met again while I was in California, her compelling, charming way to talk about food and life in general never ceases to amaze me. Molly also knows how to make cakes look so pretty that you wouldn’t dare to cut them, like her famous Funfetti Cake or her Gingerbread Farm, a replica of the actual farm where she lives with her husband (you can read her interview for our Meet In Your Kitchen feature in 2015 here). Molly is the kind of person who somehow manages to combine the talents of a perfectionist with the casual laid back attitude of a person who doesn’t care about perfectionism at all. Molly’s German book was only recently published and when I got the book and spotted the recipe for today’s chocolate tahini cake, I was hooked as soon as I read the title.

This was the first cake that I baked in months, and I didn’t even notice how much I missed baking until I turned on the oven and thumbed through the pages of Molly’s beautiful book. Sometimes, the best thing I can do is to take some time for myself in my kitchen, with eggs, butter, and sugar (and some tahini), and listen to Molly and bake this cake that tastes so unbelievably perfect. It’s chocolate, it’s tahini, it’s sweet, and it’s all I needed at the moment to feel ready to face the world again, with all its beauty and its brutality. Thank you, Molly!

Chocolate Tahini Cake

 

Chocolate Tahini Cake

Chocolate Tahini Cake with Tahini Frosting

from Molly Yeh’s ‘Molly On The Range – Recipes and Stories from an Unlikely Life on a Farm’

I only made half of this recipe and decorated the cake with dates and sesame seeds.

Makes one 2-layer 8-inch (20cm) cake or 24 cupcakes

For the cake

1 3/4 cups / 350g sugar
1 3/4 cups / 220g flour
1 cup / 100g unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
2 eggs
1 cup / 240ml whole milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup / 4 tablespoons flavorless oil
1/2 cup / 120g tahini
3/4 cup / 180ml boiling water

For the frosting

1 cup / 240g  unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup / 120g tahini
2 cups / 200g confectioners’ sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

To make the cake, preheat oven to 350ºF (175°C). Grease and line the bottoms of two 8-inch (20cm) cake pans or line 24 cupcake tins and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. In a separate, medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, vanilla, oil, and tahini. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir to combine. Whisk in the boiling water.

Pour the batter into the cake or cupcake pans and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Begin checking for doneness at 28 minutes for cakes and 18 minutes for cupcakes.Let cool in the pans on a rack for 10 minutes and then remove to the rack and cool completely.

To make the frosting, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix together the butter and tahini until creamy. Gradually add the powdered sugar and mix to combine. Mix in the salt, cinnamon, and vanilla.

To assemble, you can either go the traditional route, or crumble up the cake layers with your hands, layer about a 1/3 of them in the bottom of a larger bowl, top it with 1/2 the frosting, another 1/3 of the cake, the remainder of the frosting, and then the remainder of the cake.

Chocolate Tahini Cake

 

Chocolate Tahini Cake

 

Chocolate Tahini Cake

 

Chocolate Tahini Cake

 

Chocolate Tahini Cake

 

Chocolate Tahini Cake

 

Chocolate Tahini Cake

The juiciest Rhubarb Chocolate Cake

Rhubarb Chocolate Cake

The amount of recipes I’ve been creating by request in the past few months could almost fill another book. My mind had to come up with all sorts of sandwiches, roasts, seafood dishes, salads, and cakes, which to be honest, is one of the most satisfying things I do amongst all the fields that I’ve worked in since I started my blog. I love to write and take food photos, but there’s something very calming and, at the same time, very exciting about creating recipes. Re-thinking culinary traditions, playing with old and new combinations and various ingredients in my head until a whole dish finally comes to the table is my true passion. It’s one of the few things that never pressures me, it comes out so easily that I wouldn’t dare to call it work.

Working on so many new creations at the same time has one side effect: I have to remind myself to keep it simple – my personal kitchen mantra. I tend to go further and further, adding more and more ingredients, and forgetting that kitchen magic often lies in the little details. A small change can add a completely new quality to a dish, like to my chocolate cake – or the darkest Gâteau au Chocolat. It’s a good cake, with chocolaty depth and a moist texture. As in all of my baked treats, I prefer chocolate over cocoa powder, taste and texture is what I’m after when I want to satisfy my chocolate cravings. Back to my cake, there was no need to improve on this formula, it’s just right, but I’ve been wanting to bake a rhubarb cake for days so I just combined the two. I added so much rhubarb to my dark loaf cake that it ended up being the juiciest and fruitiest chocolate cake I ever baked – with a slightly sweet-sour note.

A short note: I let the loaf cool for just a few minutes before I cut it – I was too impatient – but I recommend letting it cool completely, otherwise it’s a little too fudgy. So be patient, let it cool, and enjoy! For my Gâteau au Chocolat, I used very dark chocolate (99%), however, for this rhubarb chocolate cake I would go for a lighter one, 55% was my chocolate of choice.

Rhubarb Chocolate Cake

 

Rhubarb Chocolate Cake

Rhubarb Chocolate Cake

Serves 6

trimmed rhubarb 450g / 1 pound
dark chocolate (about 55%) 150g / 5 ounces
butter 150g / 2/3 cup
organic eggs 4
a pinch of salt
plain flour 130g / 1 cup
ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon
ground cardamom 1/2 teaspoon
granulated sugar 180g / 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons

For the top of the cake, cut 5 thin long pieces of rhubarb, about 25cm / 10″ long. Cut the remaining rhubarb into 2cm / 3/4″ long pieces.

Set the oven to 180°C / 360°F (preferably convection setting) and butter a 11 x 25cm / 4 1/2 x 10″ loaf pan.

In a medium saucepan, melt the chocolate and butter over low heat, whisk well, and let cool for a few minutes.

Whisk the egg whites and salt until stiff.

Combine the flour, cinnamon, and cardamom.

Mix the egg yolks and sugar until light yellow and thick, then whisk in the chocolate-butter mixture. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the flour mixture and mix until well combined, then gently fold in the beaten egg whites. Fold in the shorter rhubarb pieces and scrape the batter into the buttered pan. Arrange the long rhubarb pieces on top of the cake and bake for about 75 minutes (slightly longer if using a conventional oven) or until the cake is golden brown and firm on top. If the top of the cake gets too dark, cover it loosely with aluminium foil. Check with a skewer, it should come out almost clean. Let the cake cool completely for a couple hours before you take it out of the pan.

Rhubarb Chocolate Cake

 

Rhubarb Chocolate Cake

 

Rhubarb Chocolate Cake

 

Rhubarb Chocolate Cake

 

rhubarbchocolatecake13

 

rhubarbchocolatecake11

 

rhubarbchocolatecake12

The darkest Gâteau au Chocolat

Chocolate Gateau

99% dark chocolate – I went for the darkest Swiss chocolate I could find for my petit gâteau! For months I’ve had this cake on my mind, dark, moist and rich, an adult cake that combines the best of a luscious mousse au chocolat and a tender cake. So often I’ve enjoyed this bitter sweet at French patisseries or as a dessert with whipped cream melting on top in one of Paris’ pretty bistros in the hidden side roads.

This treat doesn’t need many ingredients but the few should be of exquisite quality, especially the chocolate. Sometimes this gâteau is dusted with icing sugar but I don’t like to hide its honest dark beauty under a layer of blank white. I also don’t see the sense of using one of the best chocolates to blur down its complex taste by using cheap sugar. So my gâteau stays naked! Spiced with a little cinnamon and cardamom, its a rich composition perfect for desserts or for Sunday afternoon tea time, my favourite! I had a few slices with a cup of Darjeeling and it was heavenly!

Chocolate Gateau

 

Chocolate Gateau

 Gâteau au Chocolat

For a 20cm / 8″ springform pan you need

dark chocolate (at least 70% cocoa, preferably 99%) 150g / 5.5 ounces
butter 150g / 5.5 ounces
organic eggs 4
sugar 180g / 6.5 ounces plus 1-2 tablespoons for the whipped cream
plain flour 120g / 4.5 ounces
cinnamon 1/8 teaspoon plus a pinch for the whipped cream
cardamom 1/8 teaspoon plus a pinch for the whipped cream
a pinch of salt
heavy cream 200g / 7 ounces, for the topping

Set the oven to 180°C / 360°F (fan assisted oven) and line the springform pan with parchment paper.

In a sauce pan (or a bain-marie), melt the chocolate and butter and let it cool off for a few minutes.

Whisk the egg whites with the salt until stiff.

Combine the flour with the cinnamon and cardamom.

Mix the egg yolks and sugar until light and fluffy and stir in the chocolate/ butter mixture. Stir in the flour/ spice mixture with a spoon before you gently fold in the stiff egg whites. Put the dough into the lined springform pan and bake for about 30 minutes or until the cake is done. Check with a skewer, it should come out clean. Let the cake cool for a few minutes before you take it out of the springform pan and serve with with the spiced whipped cream.

Whip the cream with sugar, cinnamon and cardamom and season to taste.

Chocolate Gateau

 

Chocolate Gateau

 

Chocolate Gateau

 

Chocolate Gateau

My favourite Chocolate Marble Cake

Marble Cake

My favourite marble cake needs 6 eggs to turn into a bundt cake so fluffy and juicy, light and enjoyable that I just can’t stop eating it. Most of the time I just sprinkle it with icing sugar but some days ask for more. When I’m in a chocolaty mood I cover it in a crunchy layer of bittersweet chocolate.

This cake is so simple but whenever I hold a slice of it in my hand and take the first bite I ask myself why I don’t bake it more often. It’s a typical childhood cake, a birthday party classic which had to be on every coffee table. It’s also the cake my mother used to bake for my own special day. In the morning, I used to find it on my birthday table together with all my presents and it always had my name and age written on it, with colourful smarties pushed into the glossy chocolate. Two year’s ago I baked it for the first time for our godchild’s first birthday, with smarties of course to continue the tradition.

Marble Cake

 Chocolate Marble Cake

For a 23cm /  9″ bundt pan you need

butter 200g / 7 ounces + 1 tablespoon for the chocolate glaze
sugar 250g / 9 ounces
a pinch of fresh vanilla
organic eggs, seperated, 6
a pinch of salt
milk 100ml
plain flour, sieved, 300g / 10.5 ounces
baking powder 3 teaspoons
cocoa powder 30g /1 ounce
bittersweet chocolate 200g / 7 ounces, for topping
bread crumbs to sprinkle the pan

Set the oven to 180°C / 355°F (fan-assisted oven). Butter a bundt pan and sprinkle with bread crumbs.

Whisk the egg whites with the salt and 1 tablespoon of the sugar till stiff.

Combine the flour and baking powder in another bowl.

In a big bowl, mix the butter, sugar and vanilla till fluffy. Add the egg yolks and continue mixing till thick, creamy and light yellow. Add the milk and mix until well. Fold the egg whites and the flour with a wooden spoon gently into the butter and egg mixture, alternating, 1/3 at a time, combining well in between.

Scrape half of the dough into the bundt pan and stir the cocoa powder into the remaining batter. Dollop the dark batter on top of the light one and swirl with a small fork through the 2 batters, carefully, from top to bottom pulling slowly all the way around the pan. Don’t over mix the different batters to keep the marble pattern.

Bake for 40 minutes or until golden and spongy. Check with a skewer, it should come out clean. Let the cake cool for 2-3 minutes before you turn it around onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Melt the chocolate and mix in 1 tablespoon of butter, let it cool for 2 minutes before you drizzle it over the cake. Spread it or leave it sprinkly, as you like.

Marble Cake

 

Marble Cake

 

Marble Cake

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