Sugar High Fridays #28:
the first boy to ever try to seduce me with home-cooked food and sweets had a fondness for cheesecake that i still can’t quite comprehend. perhaps it was the fact that doing a no-bake cheesecake required little effort, and with the use of an oreo crust and a pile of cherry pie filling provided a pretty impressive sweet when one considered that it came out of a dormitory kitchen! but this was a full-court-press type of meal, with multiple courses and wine and even, dare i say it, place settings on the living room coffee table, and he was very proud of his cheesecake.
our second meal was crowned once again by cheesecake, only this time in the form of ice cream, dotted by small bites of blueberry. this was rather more impressive, and required more effort, because all he had was an old-fashioned hand-crank machine. i do confess that we got tired of waiting for the cream to fully freeze, but he--and i--were pleased with the result. (in a manner of speaking. i DETEST cheesecake! i really should have taken that as a sign--but i, i must confess, was dazzled enough by the effort that i ate the cheesecake. both times.)
what i really prefer is chocolate. not a deep, dark chocolate but a more mild, semisweet variety will do me just fine. brownies, cookies, cupcakes, cake, little bits of chocolate chunks stuck in my ice cream, candy bars--if it comes from a cocoa bean, i will most likely devour it. these days, my other favorite flavor is the tart sweetness of the blood orange. i save recipes all year, waiting for blood orange season to arrive. i love the red flesh, and the strange taste, and the way they make duck and sorbet and most especially chocolate taste even better. were a gentleman to find a way to mix these flavors, i’d probably melt right along with the chocolate...
Blood Orange Truffle Cake
(adapted from a recipe found on an old usenet newsgroup posting, because i made it for just myself instead of in a 9-inch pan! it rises a lot, almost souffle-like, and collapses just as quickly, but if you can eat it while it is still warm, you will know what nirvana really is)
1 blood orange
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate
½ cup sugar
6 eggs, slightly beaten
½ cup softened butter
Heat the oven to 350F.
Melt chocolate with butter, then stir in 1/3 cup or blood orange juice, and the finely grated peel of the orange (reserving 1/2 tsp), and the sugar. Stir until all is well combined and sugar is dissolved. Add the eggs, a little at a time, and combine well. Butter a 9" springform pan and dust with cocoa. Add a layer of foil around the outside of the pan and place in a water bath that goes halfway up the side of the pan. Bake for 55 minutes.
i served the cake with a freshly segmented blood orange and a few dollops of blood orange-honey mascarpone icing.