Monday, December 25, 2006

holiday chocolate edition

naturally i spent today baking a devil's food cake with whipped ganache (or as my husband says "chocolate ganesh"!) frosting, both right outta rose's cake bible. on the rare chance that anyone reading this doesn't own this essential tome, let me tell you, well, all these years later, it remains essential.

i know many people find her recipes difficult, which has always puzzled me. in my experience most (i've never even thought about trying the wedding cakes) of her recipes are foolproof. but this doesn't make 'em braindead.

they aren't difficult recipes if you have a decent stand mixer and even a cheap baking scale, not at all. however, they do require you to be alert, to follow them not only to the letter, but even to the punctuation marks.

you just can't deviate an hair. don't even think about it. carefully follow her instructions, however, and you'll be very pleased with the chocolate-y results.

since you can't make any mistakes, they really benefit from a mise en place -- that is, measure, lay out, and arrange all your ingredients in order before you make the cake.

this really helps prevent error and will ensure success. this isn't to say that rose doesn't sometimes make some assumptions on the part of the reader.

for example in the ganache recipe she presents a "quick" version, that she says eliminates the normal 2+ hours chilling time. but what she should say is that it merely reduces it: even the quick ganache is much better if you let it chill an hour -- or use it to frost the cake, then chill the whole cake for at least an hour, if you wanna do it that way.

the only problem with the whipped ganache is that it really doesn't bond the layers of the cake together the way a buttercream does. but i do prefer it to a regular buttercream myself. . .altho' i think my husband begs to differ.

he'll be a big fan of rose's chocolate "neoclassic" buttercream. . .anyway, happy holidays to you all!

i spent mine eating chocolate cake and watching persuasion!

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posted by fortune | 2:39 PM | top | link to this | email this: | links to this post | | 0 comments

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