January has been hard. A dear friend lost her mother-in-law. Another lost his brother-in-law. Another lost an 'aunt/mother/sister/friend.'
Why is it that so often when life gets messy, friends and good food are the things we turn to? This Christmas, I was given a lovely book called The Physiology of Taste. A delightfully philosophical Frenchman belabored over the development of taste, digestion, restaurants and all the social interactions which surround food. Imagine if you will, my delight on Christmas: food?! french?! and philsophy?! This is going to be my main book of choice on my next jaunt cross-country, I wanted to share with you a bit what he says about chocolate:
And I think he could have gone further. I think chocolate does mighty good for those in grief. Please, make this for those you love. It's comforting and thick and good and can be a rest and remedy for those who are belabored and need it.
Comforty Chocolate cake with coffee ganache
adapted from Moosewood Restaurant Low-Fat Favorites
1/2 circle of Abuelita Mexican Chocolate disc
1/4 c canola oil
1 1/2 c flour
1/4 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 t salt
1/2 t baking soda
1 t baking powder
1 c packed brown sugar
1 large egg
2 large egg whites
1 t Mexican vanilla extract
3/4 c buttermilk
Preheat oven 350. Grease a 10 inch pie pan.
In a small saucepan, heat oil and melt chocolate-- watch carefully!! (I burned my first batch) Pour into a medium sized bowl and set aside to cool.
In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, salt, soda and powder. Set aside.
Add sugar to melted chocolate and beat until well blended. Add egg and whites, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla. Add 1/4 c of buttermilk alternating with adding 1/3 c of flour mixture, beating well after each addition.
Pour batter into pie pan and bake for 40-45 minutes or until your toothpicked center comes out clean.
6 t of this morning's coffee
1/4c powdered sugar
Beat well to combine. Add more coffee if too thick, conversely more sugar if too thin.
Drizzle atop each piece of Comforty Chocolate cake.