Something amazing happened last week–Dinner is Served turned TWO!
I can’t believe it. My mind is completely blown. I am gobsmacked that I’m still doing this, let alone that there are people other than my parents reading it.
Well, to celebrate–and because I’d have to bake the damn thing eventually–I tried my hand at #117 Othello Cake.
It really is one involved recipe. I admit that I seriously considered busting out a box of cake mix and just making the filling and glaze. I am by no means a baker (I say that again and again). But since I was doing this as a celebratory dessert, I wasn’t gonna half-ass it. I unleashed the KitchenAid and brought the patisserie pain.
The first thing I noticed about the recipe was “10 eggs.” Shit. That’s a lot of eggs. I subsequently learned that it is very messy to separate more than one egg. Eggs everywhere! But thanks to the magic of my stand mixer, creating soft peaks and then sugar-coated stiff peaks was a cinch. I folded in the flour and it all went into the oven.
And then to the pastry cream. Any sort of cream sauce is always dicey for me. See here and here. And this recipe, too, with all the eggs. So many eggs!–but this time 8 yolks. Just the yolks. What to do with the other half of the egg? I separated them into ice cube trays and popped it into the freezer so I have egg whites at the ready. I see some meringue in my future.
The resulting pastry cream? “Pastry Cream” seems like a misnomer. That makes me think fluffy. Once cooled, this mix was so eggy and rich and thick–this was a custard. Like Boston Creme Pie filling on steroids. Yeah, that’s a good thing.
And yay for me; a dairy-egg-roux thingie without separation!
As for the macaroon/sherry/raspberry jam layer–you’d think that since it’s Passover-time there would be macaroons at the Safeway. I mean, that would make sense. But since nothing makes sense at my Safeway, it was no-go on the macaroons. But they did have this:
I just crumbled the crust, added some sweetened coconut and tossed it all with sherry. And then put that on top of the jam layer.
Topped with the pastry cream–layered, layered, layered:
And then I made the chocolate sauce by using the I-don’t-have-a-double-boiler-so-I-am-going-to-stick-a-bowl-in-a-saucepan technique.
This method works. I don’t know why one would actually need a double boiler. Seriously. Does anyone here have a double boiler that they use with great frequency? Do you know something that I don’t know?
But I digress. The chocolate sauce was a success. Look!
Well, it looks pretty damn good, right?
In my opinion, this cake was a mixed bag. I loved the chocolate glaze. The pastry cream/custard was delicious. I think it would’ve been great to have jam and macaroon on all of the layers. But the cake itself, the 10-egg-stiff-peak-clarified-butter-extravaganza fell flat for me. I think that a yellow box of Betty Crocker would’ve done the trick. The cake wasn’t particularly light or fluffy or moist. But I am proud of myself for making a cake from scratch. All of it from scratch!
My blogiversary (?) coincides with another very important event in my life–Brian’s adoption day!
Happy 2 years together, Brian!
As always, Brian is thrilled:
And so we blew out the candle and made a wish!
I wished that I will finally finish making all of the dinners in the next year (only 26 left!).
I am 99% sure that Brian wished for food. 1% chance he wished for world peace.
OK, who am I kidding? I can say with 100% certainty that Brian wished for food. Yesterday morning I caught him eating the dregs of a bowl of Special K Red Berries with milk. That kitty will eat anything.
He would’ve taken down that whole cake if it were left unattended.