Tag Archives: raspberry

Recipe: Chocolate Truffle Cake Pops That Really Should Be Vegan

Why yes, this is indeed another Wedding Cake Leftovers post.  Is anyone really surprised by this?  This time, the cake bits in question were the vegan sachertorte cakes.  I also had leftover dark chocolate, leftover milk and leftover cream – which is why these cake pops didn’t turn out vegan.  But there is no reason why yours shouldn’t be!  I was really just trying to avoid wasting ingredients, and decided that on this occasion, that was more important than feeding my vegan scientists.  I’ll make something for them next time, don’t worry.

This is another super easy recipe, but I’m really pleased with how it turned out – the cake pops really taste like chocolate truffles, but they are much easier to make, because the cake crumbs make them a bit less sticky than pure ganache, and a lot more inclined to roll into nice, neat balls.

Because I had what seemed like acres of chocolate cake crumbs, I wound up dividing my mixture in two and flavouring half of it with freeze dried raspberry powder that I had discovered in my freezer, and the other half with six little peppermint candy sticks leftover from Christmas, which I found in my pantry.  So despite being an extremely decadent, rich, fudgy chocolate truffle recipe, this also counts as an extremely frugal recipe!!!

Yeah, that’s not so convincing, is it?

But it is quite a good pantry-and-fridge-clearing recipe, which counts for something, I think.

 

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Recipe: Herman the German Chocolate and Raspberry Cake

I promise I’ll figure out an egg-free Herman next, but this Herman was made quite literally in self-defense.  You see, on Saturday while I was at choir, Herman got out of his container and went on a rampage across the benchtop, spreading chaos in his wake.  I like to think of this as Aggravated Battery – the bench was batter-y, I was aggravated.

(He is a very, very enthusiastic Herman.  I’ve fed him with barley flour, which seems to have curbed his unseemly verve a little bit, but I suspect the hot weather is only going to bring him back, bigger and batter than before.)

And, of course, my Herman is still producing far more batter than I can give away, so on Cup Eve, I decided to make another Herman cake for my colleagues and the colleagues of my husband, since both of us are working on the day itself.  We clearly deserve cake.

Also, this meant I could use up some more batter.

This Herman was, I think, far more successful.  The cocoa calms down the fermented flavour, so it tastes a bit less like eating a brewery, and I think we all know how I feel about the combination of chocolate and raspberries.  You really can’t lose. 

Actually, I’m underselling it.  This is a gorgeous, gorgeous cake.  I’m actually regretting giving so much of it away, because it was so perfectly to my taste – not too sweet, nicely chocolatey, and with plenty of raspberry goodness.

Fortunately, I have plenty of Herman left.  I can make more.

(No cake photos, because I was in a mad rush and forgot.  But here’s a portrait of Herman shortly after his eruption from the jug.  As you can see, I have removed a quarter of him, but he is already bubbling back up in a slightly alarming fashion.)

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250 – 300ml Herman starter (i.e., about a quarter of your Herman on day 10 after his second feed on day 9)
2/3 cups sugar – any kind, but I used half castor and half coconut sugar
2/3cup self-raising flour
1/3 cup cocoa
1 cup almond meal
3 eggs
160 ml canola oil
200 g dark chocolate, chopped
300 g frozen raspberries

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Recipe: Weirdly Addictive Mostly Raw Peppermint Raspberry Truffles

I can already hear what you are thinking.  You are thinking, wow, that’s a really bizarre combination for truffles.  And you are quite right, of course.  These truffles are not love at first bite.  Your brain and palate are far too busy trying to work out whether they are peppermint truffles or raspberry truffles to really delight in them.  But when you sneakily go back for more – just to try to work out what they actually do taste like – you discover that, actually, they really are rather good.  And you want another one.  And another after that.

The fact that they are shaped like teeny tiny teddy bears doesn’t hurt, either.

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Of course, this still doesn’t explain what possessed me to come up with such a bizarre flavour idea.  In fact, it was a unique conjunction of events.

First, today is Andrew’s birthday (happy birthday, Andrew!), and Andrew really likes chocolatey peppermint things.  Over the fifteen or so years we have known each other, I have been steadily escalating the chocolate-mint birthday cakes to ever more ridiculous levels of elaboration and richness.

But the last few weeks have been absolutely hellish at work, and not a lot of fun outside it.  Which I haven’t been, very much, because I have been working very long hours just to keep up.  So by the time I got home yesterday evening, I was in no mood for serious baking.  Raw truffles seemed like just the thing.

Which brings me to the third factor (which may be the one you don’t want to know about, but if I have to suffer, I don’t see why others should escape scot-free), and that is the fact that I currently have my period.  And, in addition to causing quite a bit of pain and other un-fun side effects, my period has a truly bizarre effect on my sense of smell.  Since I cook largely by smell, this means that my culinary judgment at this time of the month becomes seriously iffy, and in really good months, I get to have a nervous breakdown about the fact that I can’t cook, that everything I cook tastes terrible, that everything I cook will always taste terrible, and if I can’t cook, then what is the point of even being a Catherine?

Add all this together with the fact that I’m seriously tired, and what you get is a Catherine who is trying to adapt a recipe while simultaneously not being capable of reading it correctly, and who then finds herself with something that tastes like Dreadfully Wrong Peppermint Truffle, casts wildly about the pantry and the freezer for something with which to fix it, and randomly throws in an entire packet of freeze-dried raspberries.

Of such conjunctions, brilliant recipes are not made… but, in spite of everything, this is still actually quite a good one.  The coconut oil is optional, because I put it in by accident and strongly suspect that this was the reason my truffle mixture separated in such an unsightly fashion.

After all this, you might well ask why I am posting such a manifestly imperfect recipe.  It’s quite simple, really.  I can’t stop eating these things.  They are seriously more-ish.  I have no idea what it is that makes them work – they shouldn’t work, I’m quite positive, and yet, I keep going back to the fridge for more.  And my sister-in-law felt the same way about them, so it’s not just weird Catherinishness.  There’s something in this flavour combination that actually does work.  I just don’t know what.

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This teddy bear is here to help you.

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1/4 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup cacao powder or good dark cocoa powder
1/2 cup melted cocoa butter
1/2 cup almond butter
1/2 cup pistachio butter
1/2 cup maple syrup
5 tbsp water
1/2 tsp, or thereabouts, peppermint oil
40 g freeze-dried raspberries

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