Devil’s Food Cake with Praline Buttercream and Fudge Frosting

I don’t make cakes terribly often. My wife and I love eating them, but it can take a bit of work, and given how infrequently I make them, the two of us never tire of a good chocolate cake (not that you’ve ever noticed, right?) And since its been a while, here we are again…another chocolate cake, as if anyone could possibly ever get too much chocolate cake.

Now after you get past how evenly I layered my cake (fine, no slice for you, then!), the richness of it can begin to sink in. I went with an old favorite for the cake part: devil’s food. Aside from being chocolatey, it has a really dark, complex taste about it that I always enjoy. Of course, since I’ve made devil’s foodclick to read more…


Pumpkin Pizza

I love pizza and one of the best parts of making your own at home is that you can experiment with some different flavors. A while back when my pumpkin obsession was in full swing, I thought I’d toy around with making a pumpkin pizza.

Much to my delight, the end result was great. The sauce was simple and lightly spiced, aiming to highlight the star: pumpkin. The toppings were a bit of a hodgepodge, but they all worked really well and made for a pizza that really hit the spot: ground beef, cubes of roasted squash, pine nuts, shredded leeks, sundried tomatoes, olives, and crumbles of sharply flavored feta cheese. I know–try saying that three times fast.

I was initially worried that the feta would be too strong, but it actually paired quite nicely. The sauce wasn’t as strongly pumpkinny as I’d wanted it to… click to read more…


Lamb Goulash

In researching goulash, I came to appreciate that this dish is like chili–not in terms of flavors, but in terms of the heated arguments about how no matter what you’re approach, whatever you’re doing is not authentic and is simply wrong. So since I was clearly doomed to fail from the get go, I figured I might as well take some liberties with it anyways, right? However it’s made though, this stew is just the thing to warm your bones this winter.

Purists would argue that goulash is not a place for tomatoes or peppers and that all such flavor should come from the paprika (since if you didn’t know, unlike most others, this dish is very much about the paprika). I avoided the former but not so much the latter–I enjoy eating peppers more than I enjoy the approval of purists. I also furthered… click to read more…


Chocolate Hazelnut Ice Cream

My love for ice cream is no secret to regular readers of this site. I could churn a new ice cream flavor everyday and be happy, if it weren’t for the fact that I couldn’t keep up with eating them all. However, as much as I like trying to make some oddball flavors, sometimes you need to return to some simpler classics. And when a pregnant wife asks for chcoclate, you give her chocolate! So today: chocolate hazelnut ice cream.

This ice cream was any chocolate lover’s dream. I debated calling it a gelato on account of the thick texture and richness of flavor. Speaking of flavor, this was so intensely chocolate and very distinctly hazelnut (I’m a sucker for hazelnut anything). This isn’t an ice cream to load your bowl up with–one small, perfect scoop will do you just right. Save the overindulging for the boring storebought chcolate ice creams.

  • 1 cup cream
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1.5

click to read more…


Channa Masala

I can be very much a “where’s the beef?” kind of guy, but every now and then, a truly vegetarian dish somehow slips under my nose and wins me over without me realizing it. This chickpea-centric dish, called channa masala, is one of the first Indian dishes I’d ever had and it’s kept me coming back for seconds ever since.

Channa masala is essentially a strongly spiced curry (the “masala” part) with chickpeas for the protein (the “channa” part) rather than meat. Calling any curry “strongly spiced” is a big generalization, but this is strong even among other curries. This isn’t too say that it’s overwhelmingly hot–just really flavorful (there’s some heat, of course, but it is a bit milder). A big distinction in my mind is that this curry has both a distinct tang and a certain sourness that makes for an incredibly delicious result. Plus channa masala is fun to eat and quick to make (especially compared… click to read more…


A Stop in Seattle and Other Travels

First off, Happy New Year!

2009 promises to be a crazy year for me, and a part of it is possible (as in highly likely) relocation. Moving always stresses me out, but with things like a baby on the way, I haven’t gotten too stressed about moving…yet (I’ll wait until I have to start house-hunting). 😮 My wife and I have been surveying cities all over the country for the bulk of this past month (so in case I’ve seemed absent, well, I have been), and its been fun and exhausting. Now I haven’t been great about photographing the whole experience (e.g. a few great restaurants and plenty of awful ones), but there were a few photos from one stop on our tour I thought I’d share with you: Seattle.

Public Market

If you like food (and if you don’t, what are you doing here? lol), you’d love click to read more…

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