Saturday, August 25, 2012

November party post 9: Liquor-soaked pound cake (p. 716) and Gingerbread (p. 724)

Final party post!  My final thoughts on this party--I cooked sooooo much!  It was really fun, I had a great time, and it was a great last (and only) party in Fort Collins.  The best part is that I knocked out probably a solid 25 recipes!  I'll try to get the opinions of the people who were at the party--if they remember what the food tasted like, considering it was 9 months ago!  

Go through all the past posts and comment!  

Even though the guests were warned that the whole point of this particular party was to make a bunch of the strange TJOC recipes and get them knocked out, I wanted to make a couple desserts that I was confident would turn out well and reward them for showing up.  I know I make a great pound cake, so I decided to make Liquor-soaked pound cake (p. 716).

The recipe was simple.  First, I made pound cake and poured the batter into loaf pans and cooked it like that.  I combined sugar, water, and corn syrup over heat until the sugar was dissolved.  Once that had occurred, I added some good quality brandy (although you could use almost any type of liquor):

I used a skewer and poked holes in the pound cakes:

The sugar mixture was poured over the cake:

The liquid slowly soaked in to the pound cake.  Believe it or not, over a few hours, all of it soaked in.  This pound cake was DELICIOUS.  The extra liquid meant that the pound cake was ultra-moist and lasted forever--it essentially didn't stale.  And, remember, the alcohol doesn't cook out in recipes like this, careful!  And use good quality alcohol--the flavor is really important.  

I also decided to make Gingerbread (p. 724).  Everybody thinks they like gingerbread, even though most people have never actually eaten it.  Or am I wrong about that?  

I mixed melted butter, egg, and sugar:

I whisked together flour, baking soda, ginger, and cinnamon:

In a third container I whisked hot water, molasses, and honey together:

Eventually, added the dry and liquid ingredients alternately to the butter mixture and poured it in to a pan:

 Sadly, I have no final picture of this one either but it looked like gingerbread, nice and dark.  It was delicious.  Moist, spicy, delicious.  And the absolute perfect dessert for a holiday party.  If you haven't made gingerbread before, do it.

And with that, I will tell one of my favorite stories about my father.  One year, my dad decided that we would make gingerbread houses together.  I was probably 7 years old or so.  He made a bunch of gingerbread.  We cut it into pieces and tried building a house.  After about an hour of no progress at all no matter how hard we tried, we gave up and just ate the gingerbread.  Turns out, you make gingerbread houses with a totally different type of gingerbread--not this type, a more cardboardy type.  But nobody got mad that it was failing and it was so much fun.  It was one of my first lessons in the concept that sometimes even if your plan turns in to a disaster, it can still be a fun amazing memory.

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