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Posts Tagged ‘recipe reviews’

I forget how I came across this chocolate cake-themed blog post on Velvet Lava, which reviews a Nigella Lawson recipe for Quadruple Chocolate Loaf Cake.  Velvet Lava renames the cake The Hot Mess, which I prefer.  I’m not a huge baker, but I’ve made it three or four times now.  It’s just so easy to make: you just blend up the batter in a food processor and bake it in a loaf pan.  It’s not particularly elegant; as Velvet Lava writes:

I think it’s the ugliest fekkin’ cake I ever made. It’s a heinous slab.

But that’s just so Nigella. It’s a glorious loaf of delicious, messy, chocolateness. It ain’t pretty, it isn’t graceful to eat, it’s not easy to serve right away – it’s just one HOT MESS.  Remind you of anyone?

‘Heinous slab’ is a little extreme.  I think this loaf cake is kind of pretty, in a rustic sort of way.  But whatever you think it looks like, it’s sooo good.

Hot Mess Loaf Cake (Large)

My only modifications to this recipe are a longer baking time (it’s usually still gooey in the middle even after an hour) and the omission of the final chocolate syrup step.  I don’t like things to get too soggy.  Plus, when I pull this cake out of the oven, I just want to cut myself a slice as soon as possible.

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Leek and Swiss Chard Quiche1 (Large)

It was a Smitten Kitchen-inspired bonanza on Sunday when I baked a Leek and Swiss Chard Tart in a slightly modified Foolproof Pie Dough crust.  The recipes, which came from Bon Apetitit and Cooks Illustrated respectively, were both featured on Smitten Kitchen and make a delicious pairing.  I omitted the sugar and added some whole wheat flour to the crust (and next time I’d use way less fat – it’s SO rich).  And I just used 5 whole eggs instead of separating out a couple yolks in the quiche.  But I highly recommend the general concept.  This was a great way to use up a lot of my extra chard and taste the first leeks from my garden.

Leek and Swiss Chard Quiche2 (Large)

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black_bean_browniesWith its bizarre punctuation and nomenclature, I find Twitter rather confusing.  But I did finally join (page here).  So I’ve been adding friends and bloggers to my Twitter feed, and came across a tweet from Modern Domestic asking for wheat-free dessert suggestions. This reminded me of a recipe I made recently that was featured on 101 Cookbooks and is definitely worth re-publicizing: Amazing Black Bean Brownies!

That’s right.  Brownies made from beans.  They’re gluten-free, sweetened with agave nectar instead of sugar, and sound like they should be funny-tasting hippie food.  But they were really good!  The brownies were tender and rich, with more chocolate flavor than I’d expected given the ingredient ratios.  Maybe not quite as dense and fudgy as I prefer my brownies, but nor were they outside of the normal range of typical brownie textures and tastes.

I wouldn’t necessarily classify this as health food, but I like the idea of subbing out some refined carbohydrates in favor of more protein and fiber.

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carrotsYesterday I got up earlier than usual to go to the Dupont Circle Farmer’s Market on a futile search for asparagus, which as it turns out will not arrive for another week or two. Of course, I still managed to score a lot of great produce. After reading this recipe for carrot soup on The Kitchn, I was especially keen to find someone selling carrots. The bunch I found was inexplicably young and bright; it seemed far too early to be this year’s crop of carrots, yet I couldn’t imagine overwintered carrots looking this good. So last night, after a long and tiring afternoon at my garden plot, I set about making this simple and delicious-sounding soup. (more…)

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