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Monday, August 25, 2014

What's Cookin' in the Country?

For a lunch with friends last week, I was asked to bring dessert ~ something chocolate.  Yay!  A chance to bake something new!  I had seen Ina Garten make some little individual cakes on her show recently, and my mind went to those little gems ~ Orange Cakes covered with Chocolate Ganache.  Yes, please!


These are made in forms, but if you don't have little cake pans, use a cupcake tin.  It's going to get covered with the chocolate ganache, so it will transform a plain cupcake into something divine!

The recipe is from Ina Garten:

Orange Cakes with Chocolate Ganache
Ingredients
1/4 pound unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 extra-large eggs at room temperature
1/8 cup grated orange zest (2 large oranges)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour plus 1 tablespoon
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
3 ounces buttermilk at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup good semisweet chocolate chunks
For the syrup:
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
For the ganache:
4 ounces good semisweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon instant coffee granules


Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 6 individual serving baking molds, such as the flexible non stick 100 percent silicone molds.

Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment for about 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, then the orange zest.

Sift together 1 1/2 cups flour, the baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. In another bowl, combine the orange juice, buttermilk, and vanilla. Add the flour and buttermilk mixtures alternately in thirds to the creamed butter, beginning and ending with the flour. Toss the chocolate chunks with 1 tablespoon flour and add to the batter. Pour into the pans, smooth the tops, and bake for 30 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean. Let the cakes cool in the molds on a wire rack for 10 minutes.

This is what mine looked like before the covering of chocolate.  So don't despair!
If your cakes aren't pretty at this point, they will be once the ganache is spooned  over them!

Meanwhile, make the syrup. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, cook the sugar with the orange juice until the sugar dissolves. Remove the cake from the pans, put them on a rack over a tray, and spoon the orange syrup over the cakes. Allow the cakes to cool completely.

For the ganache, melt the chocolate, heavy cream, and coffee in the top of a double boiler over simmering water until smooth and warm, stirring occasionally. Drizzle over the top of the cakes.


If you need a "fancy little cake" for a meal, these are fantastic!  They're easy and fast to make and are an eye and palate pleaser!

What do you bake up for lunch dessert?

With love from my country kitchen,