Sunday, April 24, 2005

Chocolate Meringue Truffle Cake/The Third Passover Post

For some strange reason, the Passover chapter of Feast lacks a flourless chocolate cake. Luckily, there's always the Chocolate Cake Hall of Fame to fall back on. Though Nigella suggests Chocolate Orange Cake, I went for Chocolate Meringue Truffle Cake. How can you argue with 14 ounces of chocolate, 2 cups of cream, and not much else?

First you make the meringue crust: whip an egg white, beat in sugar, sift in cocoa, add a drop of vinegar, and beat a bit more. Spread over the bottom of the pan and bake. No problem. The chocolate truffle filling was also no problem: melt those 14 ounces of chocolate with some rum and light corn syrup, then mix with the cream which you've already beaten till it's thick. Pour over the crust and refrigerate. That's it.

After all that sedering, we had to remind ourselves about dessert. There had been some blessings, a lot of children explaining what things mean with varying degrees of accuracy, much harassing of J the putative seder leader, a big bowl of baby carrots consumed by E, and a Passover play with a strikingly knowledgeable M as narrator, E as Miriam carefully snuggling the baby Moses, N as both Pharoah and the burning bush, C as Pharoah's daughter, the other E as a very hardworking Jewish slave, and A as a rambunctious grownup Moses.

There had been parsley, horseradish, and charoset, then gefilte fish, matzoh ball soup, brisket, salmon, potatoes, and asparagus. The children had found the afikoman, negotiated (poor E settled for 12 cents early on, but luckily was included in the final group settlement of one Susan B. Anthony dollar and two Sacajaweas), and disappeared.

The adults were sitting around arguing about politics and admiring the impeccably-behaved baby on his first social engagement, when we realized that we should be having dessert. S plated the cake, dusting it with cocoa and powdered sugar, and it inspired oohs and ahs before it was even cut. We served it with fruit, and it was simply delicious: a dense but not overwhelming slab of softened chocolate that just made you want to eat more. The only problem was that the meringue crust had disappeared, which didn't surprise me as I'd used a 9 1/2" pan instead of the suggested 8", and it had been spread pretty thin. If (when) I make it again, I'll either double the meringue, or leave it out altogether.

Everyone thought it was great. J says it's #1, putting Chocolate Guinness Cake into second place. I think they are both delicious but fulfill different chocolate cake needs, though please don't ask me to pinpoint those needs--I'll know them when I have them.

[And in weather news, after intermittent rain, wind, and wet semi-snow all day yesterday, we now have an inch of snow and more coming down. I guess pink-blossomed trees frosted with snow are pretty. I guess.]


nikki said...

I made the chocolate guinness cake this weekend (I was inspired by your enthusiasm for its merits!). I haven't made a cake from scratch in, oh, fifteen years or so, and I had to make a special trip to the liquor store to get the guinness, but was it ever worth it! Sooooooo yummy! Thanks!

bidarlah said...

i made the chocolate meringue truffle cake last nite and let me say: fingercross...

why? it's still in my fridge.

this is my first time making this cake and it look easy but but but... while melting the chocolate and golden syrup...the outcome look hmm...not silky or smmoth...they look rather lumpy? so i m doubting if they will taste right & also the texture.. i omitted the rum cos a few of my friends cant take alcohol so i added a few drops of water.

now just hoping!!!! and worse...its a birthday cake for one of my friend argh!!!! i think i need back up!!!!