Before I forget… Happy New Year! Hope it’s better for you than last year! Anyway, onward and upward! More cake!
So I got creative with Chef Mike again, and decided that a tough, somewhat over cooked lump of tasty goodness was not an acceptable destination. Anyway– I’d spent my New Years drinking yummy wine and watching my fellow partiers eating yummy deserts last night, *and* doughnuts in the morning, so I felt the need for some cake lovin’. It’s also a nice filler for me to get my wine post(s) parsed. [Fair warning: it may be a multi-part feature, so prepare to be inundated with musings on the combination of must and mushed grapes.]
It turns out that the recommended 2 minutes, 30 seconds on HIGH for a 12000 watt microwave oven is about perfect. Though I did, for complex reasons, cook the first 30 seconds of time on Power Level 9. But I stopped (briefly!) and put the last two minutes on HIGH. The results were still pretty decent.
My recipe is here, and I used the same recipe with only one change– no xanthan gum added. Sure there was some in the “Whole Foods Almond Milk” that I used (I normally use Silk which, judging purely on texture has more), but it was more than sufficient.
I had no complaints about the texture. Some people would think it was a tiny bit rubbery, but only in the way that really good freshly baked bread has a kind of flaky foam rubber texture– in a good way, honest! I think in some circles it’s called “eggy”, but it wasn’t nearly heavy enough for me to think of it that way. It also rose much more precipitously, and pulled neatly away from the mug– and all I had to do was plop it on a plate. No liming the edges with a knife to make it fall away.
I also forgot the vanilla. I thought it was less chocolatey than before, and the beanyness of the AP (GF) flour was much more pronounced. That may have had to do with the lack of vanilla to do it’s share of the cover-up operation, and it’s possible that I had added 3 tbs of cocoa powder rather than the stated 2 tbs in the original recipe. I still stand behind 1 tbs of chocolate chips rather than 3. However, this time the chips were deliciously melty and made a kind of dotty filling here and there inside the cake.
In our last effort they were tough little lumps of chocolate, that were weirdly seized, and kind of crunchy. It wasn’t bad, but it was hard to see it beyond a nice, but under-achieving feature. Oh, well, at least they weren’t burned, like a disastrous chocolate chip cookie effort from long ago. The cookie itself was under-cooked. But maybe I’ll talk about it in another show.
Oh, and one last thing about chocolate chips… the best way to prevent them from becoming a lump at the top/bottom of your cake (bottom if it’s in the cup, top if you flip it) is to sprinkle them on top at the last minute, and stir them very shallowly into the top of a cake with a butter knife– more to distribute them through the surface layer of batter rather than stirring them thoroughly through the dough. Some still get almost to the bottom/top, but at least you have them all through the cake.
Husband was luke warm on the effort, saying that it reminded him of a somewhat cakey brownie, but not really a cake cake. I wonder if sifting would help– there were lots of lumps when the batter was made– but they didn’t seem to affect the flavor, but aeration might be a factor, since I freeze my flours for long term storage. This tends to increase the moisture in the flour, as well as remove the air available inside the flour– which might have some explanation why it didn’t rise *quite* as much as expected.
One of the things that I did differently (which I think improved the texture) was that I mixed the sugar and the egg together first, and mixed the flours outside of the mug, then dumped in the flour, then the egg/sugar mixture. Fair warning: the coconut sugar is not at all affected by the egg– it looked kind of like a gritty mess. But after things got mixed up, it did not stay separated in the final result– so I must have done something right.
For him the flavor of the bean flour coming through really put a damper on his enthusiasm. So yeah, for the GF crowd, that little splash of vanilla is extremely important. Not to mention… I am going to try some chocolate extract, as well as adding more of the cocoa in the future as a matter of design. I further plan on trying out some rice flour instead, hoping that the beaniness can be banished to the outer darkness, where it cannot be tasted, and can only scream in isolated futility.
But, this is my proof of concept. Now I know that it really does work, and I can make something at a friend’s house without destroying their clean kitchen, or giving people the unintended guilt trip for me being the odd girl out. All that remains is the tweaking– which can take practically forever, but that’s not always a bad thing.