Okay, as someone who writes for a “living,” I feel like a total dork, but did you know that bimonthy can mean twice monthly OR every other month? What?! I’ve only used it to express twice monthly, but now, I will be extra careful to avoid any sort of confusion because there is a mighty big difference between twenty-four and six. Oy. I am just reeling. As someone with a deep appreciation for language and words, to say that I am disappointed to learn this is an understatement. What kind of nutter butter decided this?
Anyway, You’re probably wondering why this even matters. Well, I was starting to write a post about how I gather my friends up every other month for Bunco, but thought, surely there’s a word for that and did a little internet search. There you go. I’ve done the disappointing leg work for all of us.
As I was saying, I gather the lovely ladies to my house bimonthly, and we chat, roll the dice (most of the time), drink, eat, and are generally quite merry, often whooping and hollering with delight at our luck or lack of it. We are a wonderful group of beautiful, smart, funny, caring, and talented ladies. We love life, children (though I am the only one without any – they don’t hold it against me :), a good time, and a slice of cake.
About the cake, my dear friend Carolyn requested that I share the recipe from last Friday’s gathering. It is quite rich, a little slice going a long way, and delicious, too. I’m sorry I don’t have a picture of it, but we gobbled it up before I had the chance. Also, I have no photos of the lovely ladies themselves, well, save one, but I didn’t think Mara and Amber would want to be singled out like that, so, instead, I’ve got one of the table I set for the festivities. The tablecloth is the one I got from my adventure at The Bins, and the miniature daffodils are from our yard. I’ll get a picture of all of the ladies next time. I’m sure Greg won’t mind coming down in between whoops and hollers to capture our collective beauty for the ages and the blogosphere.
Anyway, the recipe is adapted from my very favorite dessert cookbook by the late Richard Sax, Classic Home Desserts:
Fabulous Flourless Chocolate Cake
8 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 stick butter, cut into pieces, softened
6 large eggs: 2 whole, 4 divided
3/4 cup sugar
For flavor, pick one or two of the following:
2 tablespoons brandy or Grand Marnier
1 t cinnamon
Grated zest of one orange
Whipped Cream Topping:
1 1/2 cups heavy cream, well chilled
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350. Line the bottom of an 8″ or 9″ spring form pan with a round of wax paper. Do not butter the pan. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler or bowl set over hot water. Remove from heat and whisk in the butter until melted; set aside.
Whisk the two whole eggs and the four egg yolks with 1/2 cup of the the sugar, just until blended. Whisk in the warm chocolate mixture. Whisk in your optional flavoring – cinnamon, brandy, Grand Marnier, or orange zest. Carolyn, for Bunco, I used the cinnamon.
In another bowl, beat the four egg whites until foamy. Slowly add the remaining 1/4 cup sugar and beat until the whites form soft mounds that hold their shape but are not stiff. Stir about 1/4 of the beaten whites into the chocolate mixture to lighten it; gently fold in the remaining whites, being careful not to deflate them. Pour the batter into the pan; smooth the top.
Bake until the top of the cake is puffed and cracked and the center is no longer wobbly; 35-45 minutes. It will still look pretty moist, so do not overbake.
Cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack; the cake will look like a crater, complete with a sunken center and high sides. It ain’t pretty!
Whipped Cream Topping:
At serving time, whip the cream with powdered sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon. Fill the crater of the cake and serve. Also, be careful not to eat the wax paper you used to line the pan. It disguises itself rather well, but if you pay attention, it can be peeled away as you slice the cake. Enjoy!
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