Chocoholics Anonymous, anyone?

 

I’m not a stickler for recipes. In fact, I’m almost allergic to them. And I’ve lost count of the number of times my experiments in the kitchen have ended with disastrous results. And yet, I don’t learn.

I keep twisting a recipe. I keep playing and there are times when I go into creating a dish without any knowledge or planning whatsoever. Are there alarms going off in your head? Don’t worry, all the recipes I’ve put up on the blog are tried and tested. And have been very successful.

Now you know, how I excel at cold desserts and how I steer clear of baking. But recently I’ve been inspired to bake. Blame it on Hana. Damn, that girl can bake!

While I still haven’t had the pleasure of pulling French-Macarons-With-Feet out of the oven, I did successfully produce a sour-cream moistened, dense double-chocolate gastrocity yesterday. Its complete with a layer of ganache and sprinkles of fleur de sel. I’m still in disbelief.

The lower layer, as you can probably guess is plain dark-chocolate brownie. It was meant to be a fluffy crumbful cake initially, but I changed courses…and clothes, considering how I tipped batter all over myself during the first attempt. Creaming unsalted butter (a stick and a half of it, softened) together with two egg yolks and a cup of sugar, was easy enough. Though quite a work-out for my arms – I abstained from using the electric whisk. Aren’t I a saint?

The second step including sifting the flour (a cup and a half), a pinch of cream of tartare, half a teaspoon of baking powder and a half a cup of sinful Dutch process cocoa together, before combining it with the butter mixture. And then in went my cup of lush sour cream. Soury, gorgeous, silky. My pièce de résistance, totally the star of the recipe and blatantly inspired by Nigella Lawson’s chocolate cake.

The batter was left to sit in its bowl, a little clumpy and impatient, while I proceeded to beat the two egg whites into fluffy clouds (soft peaks, please). I plopped the clouds on top of the batter and followed up with fast and determined turns with the balloon whisk, till it was smooth and fell into ribbons. I also added one-third of a cup of boiling water, which keeps the batter workable and the brownie moist. Onto a greased square pan which was about 20 x 20 (I’m using centimeters) and baked for about 20 minutes at 180 °C and another 20 minutes at 150 °C (or till a skewer run through the centre comes out clean…but greasy). Let the cake cool, before icing it with sour-cream chocolate. For the icing, I broke up an entire dark chocolate bar and let it melt in a bain-marie along with a tablespoon of unsalted butter and two tablespoons of muscovado sugar. As soon as everything combines, let the mixture cool before adding (slowly, please) 2 tablespoons of sour-cream that’s all at room-temperature. Spreading evenly on the cake wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be, especially as I was using a butter knife! But I’m sure you’ll have better luck if you own an icing spatula…lucky you.

The cake was finally cut into rectangular pieces after the ganache was cool and rested, decorated with rough curls and fleur de sel, photographed properly and promptly gobbled up by five hungry adults.

Its apparent how chocolate has finally taken over my life. Is there a Chocoholics Anonymous somewhere I can join and does this qualify as substance abuse, I’m not sure?

But yes, I’m officially baking now.

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13 Comments

  1. How to grab those chocolates I am watching And thinking :-(

    Reply
  2. I love those chocolates, and yes I would be down for a chocoholics anonymous, LOL.

    Reply
  3. These brownies look absolutely lovely. I love the chocolate shavings on top.

    Reply
  4. Oh my gosh, I can so relate with the inability to follow a recipe! I didn’t used to have this problem, this is a new thing for me, in some ways its good and some bad. The brownies look awesome!

    Reply
    • Thanks! Not following recipes can be disastrous sometimes, I admit…but then making up your own is even more satisfying!

      Reply
  5. These brownies are gorgeous! Are they really brownies? They look like more than a brownie to me. I love the rectangular slices and the fleur de sel on top. Very elegant! I’m glad that you are officially baking now.=) Yes to chocoholics!!!

    Reply
  6. Yuh-hum!
    These sound divine.
    Such a cute blog..I’m totally going to keep checking in..and enjoying the stories!
    I followed you over from Brian’s The Blue Hour.

    Reply
  7. This looks sinfully delish! It should be deemed illegal! Beautiful picture!

    Reply
  8. salt and chocolate seem to be following me these days!

    i think its a sign that i need to eat that.
    :)

    Reply
  9. thecatskillkiwi

     /  May 11, 2010

    yum… eyes glazing over. off to the kitchen toot suite, these look delicious!

    Reply
  10. Hey Amrita – beautiful cake! I’m a bit of a freestyle baker and chocolate freak myself. :)

    Reply
  11. They look great! I enjoy whisking things myself though I do envy my fathers kitchenaid mixer! Thanks for stopping by passthesushi.com!

    Reply

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