16 March 2010

Watery Winter Weekend

What a weekend! We have had the craziest weather: winds and wetness and flooding! Since Lawrence has no trees to speak of, we did not fear any branches or downed wires, but rather rolling trash cans and flying roof materials. And of course we are surrounded by rivers, so lots of folks are suffering the rising waters. All this weather has been a good excuse to stay indoors and bake, knit, and watch movies. The baking began with a deluge of chocolate truffles from Cafe Verde. The Cafe Verde ladies were commissioned to make 500 truffles for a Chocolate and Champagne event at Lawrence General Hospital this Thursday. There were truffles everywhere! And 13 varieties!
And after a day of lusting after those unattainable, dairy-filled delights, I just had to make my own. I found the recipe at Bluebirdbaby's partner's blog Too Good To Be True. I omitted the cocoa nibs (because I didn't have any) and the heavy cream (to make it dairy-free), and I rolled them in unsweetened coconut after dipping them in the melted chocolate. They are amazing, and loved by the omnivores and allergy-inflicted alike. Next time, I would like to try them with peanut butter, a little less honey and a dash of sea salt.
The next culinary feat was neither gluten-free nor dairy-free, but filled to the brim with both wheat flour and butter. My roommate Thomas celebrated his birthday this Sunday and requested an orange cake. Out of a love for a good baking challenge and a desire to make a wonderful birthday cake for my roommate, I hit up Smitten Kitchen for her Orange Chocolate Chunk Cake. For this recipe, I omitted the "chocolate chunk" portion and went with the plain orange cake. I dusted the top with powdered sugar and made an orange-raspberry drizzle. The candied orange slices made for a lovely presentation. It's always a risk baking something you can't test yourself, but all reports were positive and Thomas loved his cake. Happy Birthday, roomie!

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