Monday, February 28, 2011

Blackforest cake


Black-forest cake!
2 layered cake. Serves 8.
Ingredients:
Dry ingredients-
1 3/4 cups - All purpose flour
3/4 cup - Hershey's Special Dark cocoa
2 tsp - Baking soda
1 tsp - Baking powder
1 tsp - salt
Wet ingredients-
2 cups - Sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup - Milk
1/2 cup - Canola/Vegetable oil
2 tsp - Vanilla extract
1 cup - boiling water
1 tbsp - instant coffee powder
Filling & Icing:
Cool whip (original or lite) - one big tub (Or you can whip up some cream, if you want. I prefer cool-whip, for the lighter option!)
Maraschino cherries in syrup - 1 bottle
1/2 cup black coffee - cooled

Method -
Heat the oven to 350F
Spray oil on two 9'' round cake pans and place a cut round parchment paper.
Sift together all the dry ingredients and keep aside.
Beat the sugar, eggs, milk, oil and vanilla, until well mixed.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet in batches and beat until just mixed.
Add the coffee powder to the boiling water and add this to the batter. Mix well.
The batter will be very thin at this stage.
Divide equally and pour in the pans.
Bake at 350F for 30-35 minutes, until a tooth-pick comes out clear.
Transfer the cakes to wire racks and let them cool


Assembling the cake:
Cut each cake horizontally, into two. *
Place a decorative cake base on a flat surface or a cake decorating board.**

Level the cakes. (If the cakes don't have a flat upper surface, slice the curved upper surface and make a flat top. Reserve the cut curved top layer, for decoration)
Apply 2-3 tbsp of cool-whip on the center of the base and place one cake, bottom side down. The cream will prevent the cake from sliding from the base.
Now place 3''x6'' strips of parchment paper all around the base of the cake, inserting 1'' of the 3'' underneath the cake, so that the cake is surrounded by at least 2'' of parchment paper. This will prevent the decorative base of the cake from getting messy from all the assembling and decorating
Sprinkle 2 tbsp of the cherry syrup and 2 tbsp of the coffee on the cake. This will keep the cake nice and moist.
Spread a layer of the cool-whip on the cake and top it with a few quarters of the cherry, here and there.
Now for the top layer of the cake, place it in such a way that the upper surface of the cake is smooth(ie., bottom side up) and not the cut-side of the cake. Before you place this, sprinkle the cut-side with the cherry syrup and coffee.
Spread the cool whip on the top of the cake and the sides.
Now break the remaining slices (the cut, curved top slice) of the cake into crumbs and microwave it for a minute. Take it out and check if it has dried out, if not repeat, until the crumbs become dry and powdery. Take care when checking as it is really really hot.....Trust me!
Take some of these crumbs in your hand and try to make it stick to the sides of the cake.
This step will be really messy. You can re-use the crumbs that are falling down.
Remove the parchment papers and you will have a clean base!
Attach a star tip a pastry bag and fill it with cool-whip. Decorate the area around the cake and the top of it. Top it with cherries. Do it the way you want it or like it!
Shave some dark chocolate on top of the cake.
And, you have got yourself a beautiful and delicious black-forest cake.......So, time to treat yourself!




Notes:
*To cut them equally, insert tooth-picks in the middle of the thickness of the cake at 12,3,6 and 9 '0 clock positions. Take a nylon thread or a flavor-less dental floss around the cake and with the tooth-pick as the guide, gently cut through the cake....Viola(!!!), you are now left with two equal halves! Another slightly easier and slightly expensive way would be to buy a cake-leveling/ cutting equipment from Wilton or a similar brand.
**
The decorative base for the cake to rest on can be bought from Wilton or any other store, like Walmart. But, I make mine! Take a Pizza box and cut one on the card-boards into a 11'' circle(for a 9'' cake). Wrap this circle with aluminum foil and you got yourself a nice, shiny, totally inexpensive base!

Zucchini pineapple quick bread

Dry ingredients:
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp b soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Wet ingredients:2 large eggs
2 c sugar
2 cups grated zucchini (about 1 1/2 medium)
2/3 c oil
1/2 c egg substitute
2 tsp vanilla
2 (8 oz) cans crushed pineapple in juice, drained

Method:Pre-heat the oven to 325F.
Combine the dry ingredients.
Beat the eggs until foamy. Add sugar, zucchini, oil, egg substitute and vanilla.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet, in batches.
Add in the pineapple.
Spoon batter into two 9x5 inch loaf pans. Bake at 325F for 1 hour.
Cool and cut into slices

Makes two loaves and 14 servings per loaf
167 cals, 5.9 g fat, 2.4g prot, 26.5g carb, 0.7g fiber, 15 mg chol