Archive of ‘Chocolate’ category

Tips and Tricks


Aunt Cousin Ceil is a baking queen. She’s the person I email when I have technical questions about why my cake is too dry, or how to ship baked goods and have them arrive at their destination all in one piece.

I also email her about questions of the heart, which I’m entirely sure are related to baking.

Here’s some unsolicited chocolate advice she sent today:

I always keep a box of the fat free brownie mix from Trader Joe’s baking aisle in the house for a quick treat.  It uses only the mix and a cup of low fat or fat free yogurt and I add a teaspoon of vanilla extract.  I sometimes put chopped walnuts on the top before I bake it and it is pretty good in a pinch.  Also no guilt associated with it.  I am a big believer in eating sweets and will gladly sacrifice all of the fat and cream to get my chocolate!!

I haven’t had Trader Joe’s fat free brownie mix yet, but I’m going to make it a point to try it soon.

Do you have any chocolate tips of your own? Please share them in the comments below.

*Disclaimer: The picture posted here is of a homemade full fat brownie. Please don’t ask me to explain why I didn’t have time to go to Trader Joe’s to pick up brownie mix, but did have time to whip up a quick batch of Baker’s Chocolate One Bowl Brownies, so moist and fudgy, and please don’t ask me what I did with this extremely photogenic brownie after taking its picture.

Baker's Chocolate One Bowl Brownie Recipe
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4 sq. Baker's unsweetened chocolate
3/4 c. (1 1/2 sticks) butter
2 c. sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 c. flour
1 c. chopped nuts, optional
Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Microwave chocolate and butter in large microwave bowl at high 2 minutes or until butter is melted. Stir until chocolate is completely melted.
Stir sugar into chocolate. Mix in eggs and vanilla until well blended. Stir in flour and nuts. Spread in greased 13 x 9 inch pan.
Bake 30-35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out with fudgy crumbs. Cool in pan; cut into squares. Makes 24 fudgy brownies.
Note: When using glass baking dish, bake at 325 degrees. For cake-like brownies, stir in 1/2 cup milk with eggs; use 1 1/2 cups flour.
The Anonymous Eater


Fallen Chocolate Souffle Cake


America’s test kitchen recently conducted a survey to determine the best tasting supermarket cocoa powder. It’s no surprise Hershey’s Cocoa won. I love Hershey’s Cocoa powder. (They also make a mean chocolate fudge sauce.)

Every year at Passover Aunt Cousin Ceil makes a Fallen Chocolate Souffle Cake, that’s beyond amazing. It’s from the cookbook Chocolate and the Art of Low-Fat Desserts by Alice Medrich. This cake is so good, it’s the kind of thing I could eat year-round, but because Ceil only makes it during Passover, it’s that much more special. This year she made it with Hershey’s Cocoa, and I thought it was a notch better, but maybe that’s because I haven’t had it in a while.

Now I am going to tell you something about this dessert that might change your opinion before you even attempt to make it. As you might have suspected, it’s low fat. Before you move on to the next post, let me explain that this is the kind of low fat that you eat, and then smirk to yourself that your hostess is not as clever as she thinks, and there’s no way she’s pulling one over on you, because this dessert is full on high fat chocolate lipid love. But really, it’s low fat, and when you tell people, they won’t believe you either.

Today I emailed Aunt Cousin Ceil to tell her I’m posting the recipe.

This is what she wrote back:

That cake from Passover never ceases to amaze me.  I know what I put in it and can never believe that it is low fat.  I meant to tell you that I get almond meal from Trader Joe’s and use it instead of grinding the almonds in that torte.  It saves so much time and trouble and works fine.  I am always one for shortcuts. 

By the time I remembered to take a picture of the cake at our seder, it was gone.

Fallen Chocolate Soufflé Cake
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¼ Cup (1 oz) Blanched Almond
3 Tbsp All-Purpose Flour
3 oz Bittersweet or Semisweet Chocolate, finely chopped
½ Cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder (Natural or Dutch-Process)
1 Cup Sugar
½ Cup Boiling Water
2 Large Eggs, separated, at room temperature
1 Tbsp Brandy
2 Large Egg Whites, at room temperature
Scant ¼ tsp Cream of Tartar
2 to 3 tsp Powdered Sugar
Lightly Sweetened Whipped Cream for topping (optional)
An 8 x 3 Springform Pan or Cheesecake Pan with a removable bottom
Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 375˚F. Place a round of parchment paper in the bottom of the cake pan and spray the sides with vegetable oil spray.
In a food processor or blender, grind the almonds with the flour until very fine.
Combine the chocolate, cocoa, and ¾ cup of the sugar in a large bowl. Pour in the boiling water and whisk until mixture is smooth and the chocolate is completely melted. Whisk in the egg yolks and brandy; set aside.
Combine the egg whites and cream of tartar in a medium bowl. Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually sprinkle in the remaining ¼ cup sugar and beat on high speed until stiff but not dry.
Whisk the flour and almond mixture into the chocolate. Fold about a quarter of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture to lighten it, and then fold in the remaining egg whites. Scrape the batter into the pan and level the top if necessary.
Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until a toothpick or wooden skewer inserted into the center comes out with a few moist crumbs clinging to it. Cool the pan on a wire rack. The torte will sink like a soufflé.
Taking care not to crack the edges of the torte, run a knife between the torte and the sides of the pan to release the cake. Remove the sides of the pan and invert the cake onto a plate. Remove the pan bottom and paper liner. Turn right side up on a platter. Using a fine mesh sieve, sift a little powdered sugar over the top. Serve with a little whipped cream, if you desired.
Adapted from Chocolate and the Art of Low-Fat Desserts by Alice Medrich
Adapted from Chocolate and the Art of Low-Fat Desserts by Alice Medrich
The Anonymous Eater