CAKE and BEER… (and cabbage)

On Sunday, for no reason at all, I made Guinness cake. It can be done in a single pot and a single pan, and although Nigella suggests frosting it, it’s not necessary. At all. As a matter of fact, don’t. If you want a frosted chocolate cake, make something else.

Guinness Cake
Adapted from Nigella.com

1 cup Guinness (or other stout, but really, why wouldn’t you use Guinness?)
9 oz (18 tablespoons, 2 1/4 sticks) butter
2 cups sugar (you can cut back here, if you want – I didn’t and I wish I’d gone down to 1.5 cups)
1/2 cup yogurt (I used lowfat with no ill effects)
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
2 tsp baking soda

Heat the oven to 350 and butter either a 9 inch springform pan, two 8×8 inch square pans, or two 8 inch cake rounds.

Using a saucepan big enough to hold all of the ingredients, heat the Guinness, butter, and sugar together. You want it to get warm enough to melt the butter and dissolve the sugar, and no warmer – low/medium to medium heat. Once the butter is melted, remove from the heat and whisk in the yogurt, eggs, and vanilla.

Sift the three remaining ingredients over the Guinness mixture and whisk. There will be little lumps, but that’s ok. If you’re using the springform pan, dump all of the batter in. If you’re using two pans, fill each with half the batter (I like to use a kitchen scale to do this because I am notoriously bad at eyeballing that stuff, but you can eyeball it if you have faith in yourself OR you could use a measuring cup).

If you’re using a single pan, bake for about 45 minutes (until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out with only crumbs, no wet batter, or until you press it gently and it bounces back). The smaller pans will only take 25-30 minutes, but test them the same way.

If you made two, I suggest wrapping one well and sticking it in the freezer. Leave the other one on the counter. It will just keeping getting more delicious. If it takes you more than three days to eat it, there’s something wrong with you, but you can put it in the refrigerator (well wrapped) and keep it for up to a week.

See? Guinness cake. Cake and beer. Together.

At last.

After the cake, dinner was anti-climactic.

Asian Cabbage Bake
Adapted from Not Your Mother’s Casseroles via the Kitchn

1 large head napa cabbage
1 teaspoon salt
1 package firm tofu, drained (good directions for draining here – as a weight I used a bottle of Bourbon, and it fell down, but the Bourbon and tofu were both fine)
1/2 cup cooked wild rice (I had wild, use brown or white if that’s what’s in your fridge)
1 1/2 cups chopped crimini (or white) mushrooms
1 large egg
1 1/2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil (this is the whole reason I made this – I have a bottle of this that I never use)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
One 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
3 cloves garlic, grated or 2 teaspoons garlic paste
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 large shallot, finely chopped
1 cup flat leaf parsley, chopped

2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1/3 cup chicken broth, water, or water with bouillon
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon sugar

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Remove the outer leaves from the cabbage and set them aside(enough to completely cover the bottom of a 9×13 casserole dish at least twice) and finely chop the rest of the cabbage. (If you want to make rolls, go check out the Kitchn’s instructions.) Mix the chopped cabbage with the salt and crumble in the drained tofu – stir and set aside.

In a large bowl, rice, mushrooms, beaten egg, sesame oil, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, shallot, and a generous amount of black pepper (20 cranks on a hand grinder). Stir in the tofu mixture and then the parsley.

Cover the bottom of the casserole dish with a single layer of cabbage leaves. Spread the tofu mixture over them.

To make the sauce, whisk together all the ingredients in a bowl big enough to take a cabbage leaf. Dip each of the remaining leaves in the sauce and put it over the tofu mixture, covering completely. Pour any remaining sauce evenly over the casserole.

Bake for 35 minutes, or until the edges of the top cabbage start to get extra crispy. Serve drizzled with the pan juices.

Not the best thing that ever happened to me, but not bad. It suffers in comparison to Guinness cake, but… what doesn’t?

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One Response to CAKE and BEER… (and cabbage)

  1. [...] still working our way through the Asian Cabbage Casserole from Sunday. I swear to god it’s actually multiplying in the fridge, and now that he’s [...]