Thursday, March 30, 2006

I feel like Paul Simon

when he sang, "Yesterday it was my birthday, I hung one more year on the line. I should be depressed, my life's a mess, but I'm having a good time.

Things are good though and I'm not depressed. Had a great night out with the gang and today Ms. Knox took me out for girl spa day and I feel all new and fresh.

By the way my sister-in-law Emily Davis Limon put the recipe to the most bestest chocolate cake that she made for my bithday in the comments on the Santa Cruz entry, but I thought I should include it here as well (because everyone should make/eat/have this cake:

Emily said...
"Come for the Poetry, Stay for the Cake

For her birthday, I gave Ada 5 choices for a chocolate cake, and she chose:

Sour Cream Fudge Layer Cake with Chocolate Butter Icing

Could there BE a better choice? I think not. She saved the day by adding a half cup of sugar I had forgotten. Damn glasses.

Here is the recipie. Fun. Fudgey:

1 Cup nonalkalized (natural) cocoa powder

2 t. instant espresso or instant coffee

1 Cup boiling water

1/2 Cup sour cream

2 t. vanilla extract

1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

1 3/4 Cups sugar

2 large eggs, room temperature

1 1/4 Cups flour

3/4 t. baking soda

1/2 t. salt

1. FOR THE CAKE: Adjust oven rack to center postion and heat oven to 350 degrees. Make sure both cake pans fit in your oven, or you're going to have to cook them separately, which is just a pain. Generously grease two 9 by 1 1/2 inch round cake pans with vegetable shortening and (ask Ada how to) cover pan bottoms with rounds of parchment paper or waxed paper. Grease parchment rounds, dust cake pans with flour, and tap out excess.

2. Mix cocoa and instant coffee in small bowl; add boiling water and mix until smooth. Mush the lumps on the side of the bowl so as to be sure that the chocolate is smooth. Cool to room temp. then stir in sour cream and vanilla. (The best part.)

3. Beat butter in a bowl of electric mixer(or with your immersion blender which you jimmy-rigged with a whisk. Be careful not to break the whisk. Get butter all over the underside of the cupboards, and have dear husband clean them later) set at medium high speed until smooth and shiny, about 30 seconds. Gradually sprinkle in sugar; beat until mixture is fluffy and almost white, 3-5 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, beating 1 full minute after each addition. Have sister-in-law hold bowl while you steer the immersion blender with two hands.

4. Whisk in flour, baking soda, and salt in medium bowl. With mixer on lowest speed, add about one-third of dry ingredients to batter, followed immediately by one-third of cocoa mixture. After a couple of flour blizzards, cover bowl with towel while you do this with your immersion blender so you don't get flour all over the kitchen and yourself. Mix until ingredients are almost incorporated into batter. Repeat process twice more. When batter appears blended, stop mixer and scrape bowl sides with rubber spatula. Return mixer to low speed; beat until batter looks satiny, about 15 seconds longer.

5. Divide batter evenly between pans. With rubber spatula, spread batter to pan sides and smooth top. Bake cakes until they feel firm in center when lightly pressed and skewer comes out clean or with just a crumb or two adhering , 23-30 minutes. 23 minutes is KEY. Transfer pans to wire rack; cool for 10 minutes. Run knife around perimeter of each pan, invert cakes onto racks, have mother-in-law help as the cake sticks to your hands and almost breaks (but not quite!), peel off paper liners. You COULD "Reinvert cakes onto additional racks" but why?? Cool completely before frosting.


9 ounce bittersweet or semisweet chocolate

8 T. (1 stick) unsalted butter

1/3 cup light corn syrup

Melt chocolate and butter in a medium bowl set over pan of almost-simmering water. Stir in corn syrup. Set bowl of chocolate mixture over a larger bowl of ice water, stirring occasionally, until the icing is just thick enough to spread.

7. Assemble cake: Put GOBS of icing on the first layer. Almost run out of icing. Decide, with the help of the birthday girl and her mom, that the cake looks better with icing just smooshing out the sides of the cake, rather than icing the whole thing. Use the last bit of icing on the top.

8. Have poetry reading. Get friends high on poetry and wine and cheese and smoked salmon, and then bribe them to stay for more with chocolate cake. If it's Sunday, kick them out about 10, when their sugar headaches start to kick in.

Bon Appetit!"


shanna said...

welcome home! and happy birthday! and how dare you keep your blog a secret from me! ;)

(turn your word verification setting on to keep comment spam at bay. they will find you.)

CLAY BANES said...

ditto happy belated birthday.

ditto comment spam.

ditto ditto.

Limonada said...

Wow, you found me! That's funny. I'm still getting used to this.

I use too many exclaimation points. I know.

Any advice is welcome.

(I did what you said, whatever that means).

shanna said...

be ye not abashed of exclaiming, my lovely! spring tis the season for such punctuations!

shanna said...

(oh, you turned on comment moderation as well as word verification. moderation might be annoying for you because you'll have to approve each comment before it appears.)