Thursday, March 10, 2011

Chocolate Cake

This is the face of a just-turned-two-year-old that wants chocolate cake for breakfast. This is the face of a very unhappy little someone that screamed and whined with big tears and tantrums for chocolate cake for breakfast this morning. And then ended up happy with a bowl of Frosted Mini Wheats. I use the word "happy" loosely today, because after whining and crying about chocolate cake she continued to whine and cry about everything else in her life and drove this mama crazy. So, when I say 'happy' I mean at least she stopped crying for long enough to eat the cereal.
 For the record, and before you start wondering what in the world I feed this kid normally that makes her think chocolate cake is an appropriate breakfast, let me say that she has had chocolate cake twice in her life. I don't go around feeding her chocolate cake for breakfast or any other time on a regular basis or anything! Really! I swear.

Kids really are amazing, though, because just when I was about to loose it, when I was counting the minutes until naptime, and after 6 (yes, SIX) hours of whining and crying about her terrible 2-year-old life, she finished up a healthy lunch of chicken, broccoli, tomatoes, and whole-grain bread with butter (see- I told you she ate more than just chocolate cake!) and as I was helping her wash her hands, she started singing the Happy Birthday song at the top of her lungs, belting out "Happy Birthday dear Isabelle, mommy, daddy, Grandma, Grandpa...." and then followed that up with the Itsy Bitsy Spider. Then, as I was doing some quick clean-up before naptime, I turned around after hearing her say, "Mama, undies! Pantalones!" (we're billingual in this house-pantalones means pants in Spanish) and she had taken the undies and pants she had on earlier off, and then put new undies and a pair of jeans on (buttoned, too!) all by herself. At which point I became a bowlful of mush and burst into tears and told her she was getting so big and was so smart and capable. And we were both happy and smiley and everything was all of a sudden just fine! And then it was naptime. Finally.
There is no other job in the world that turns your emotions upside down and makes you want to rip your hair out, then make your cry, laugh, or sigh with joy the next minute like being a momma does! What a day so far!


Here's a recipe, not for chocolate cake, but for Chocolate & Raspberry Financiers that is from one of my favorite food blogs, Cannelle et Vanille. I made these cupcakes for Isa's 2nd birthday last month along with some mini cheesecakes, and both were a hit! These are great for those with gluten allergies- they're gluten-free!
And here is the link to the Cannelle et Vanille blog. Check it out! It's really great. She's Basque, a former pastry chef and now is a stay-at-home mom that makes wonderful treats and meals, and is an amazing food photographer.

Chocolate & Raspberry Financiers

adapted from Aran at Cannelle et Vanille
Makes 12

1/2 C (110 grams) unsalted butter
4 eggs whites
1/2 C (105 grams) coconut palm sugar (I substituted regular white sugar and it turned out great!)
1 C (100 grams) almond meal
2 T (15 grams) cocoa powder
4oz (110 grams) raspberries (fresh or frozen)

In a small saucepan heat the butter until foamy & milk solids start to brown on bottom of the pan. It will smell like roasting nuts; about 5 minutes. Strain the brown butter into a clean bowl and cool.

In medium bowl whisk egg whites, sugar, almond meal & cocoa powder. Add the cooled brown butter & whisk until all is incorporated. Cover with plastic wrap & refridgerate for a couple of hours.

Line a muffin pan with baking papers, place the batter in a piping bag with a round tip and pipe it into the baking cups. Fill a little bit less than halfway. Press the raspberries into the batter and bake at 350F for 18-20 minutes.

When I made this I whisked up the batter in the evening and then left it in the fridge overnight and baked them the next morning. I also used just a plain old gallon-sized plastic Ziploc bag to pipe the batter into the muffin cups. The batter is rather stiff when it comes out of the fridge but warms quickly when in the piping bag.

These cupcakes are so yummy, filling, and not too sweet. Super easy to make, too!

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