Chiffon cake soaked with rum and coffee simple syrup, quick fudge frosting. Adapted from Smitten Kitchen, Aug. 2009.

Sour cream chocolate cake with peanut butter cream cheese frosting & chocolate peanut butter ganache. Adapted from Smitten Kitchen, August 2008.

Clementine almond cake. Adapted from Nigella c/o Smitten Kitchen, Jan. 2009.

Nothing keeps an old house warm like constantly preheating the oven.

Notes: Brought the chiffon as a social lubricant to my poetry workshop's weekend retreat in Bedford, PA. The rum/coffee syrup smelled delicious and kept the (very thin, by the way) layers moist, but the "quick" fudge frosting - it comes together in ten seconds in the food processor - is forgettable. Probably wouldn't make this again.

The chocolate peanut butter cake, however, is already a second-run. I haven't tasted this incarnation yet, but know from the last that the cake is box-mix-moist, the frosting tangy and heavy on peanut flavor, and the ganache is more chocolate (semisweet) than saccharine. A must-try if you know someone who appreciates this combination.

Clementines and almonds: it's a winter cake. Gluten-free, it's just whole clems (processed or chopped very fine, after two hours boiling), ground almonds (or almond meal/flour), eggs, sugar, a hit of baking powder, poof! Cake. I added vanilla and almond extracts and a very thin glaze (confectioners sugar and clem juice). Result: wet-moist, deep citrus flavor. Suited to breakfast. Definitely butter and line and re-butter a pan, as reviews caution that this is hard to extract. I'm not usually one for restriction-recipes (or baking by Nigella, following the Guinness cake disaster of 2008), but this is unusual and adaptable to whatever citrus you like (e.g. Meyer lemons, satsuma mandarins).

1 comment:

bitchesgetstitches said...

re: clementine-almond
i agree, it IS a winter cake