Monday, September 7, 2009

Strange Recipes

I'm trying a new recipe tonight. When I came across it I thought "It's got WHAT in it?!" Not to be intimidated, I decided to give it a try. It brought to mind a couple of other recipes that some people may find weird, so I decided to share them with you and see what you think. As soon as I finish typing these, I'm off to try "the recipe." Are you curious yet? I'll share the recipe at the end.

This first recipe isn't all that weird unless you ask my sister-in-law. She thinks it's gross because it combines fruit and meat, but I bet most people don't share her aversion. I think it's wonderful.

Apricot-Stuffed Pork Chops
10 dried apricot halves
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1 garlic clove
1 teaspoon dried thyme
2 tablespoons molasses, divided
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
4 pork chops with a pocket cut in each
3/4 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons flour

Chop and mix first 4 ingredients, 1 tablespoon molasses, salt, and pepper. Spoon into chops. Brush with remaining molasses. Place on rack in greased broiler pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until done. Remove chops. Add 3/4 cup chicken broth to pan; place over medium-high heat. Stir together cream and flour. Stir into broth and cook 3 minutes or until thickened.

This next recipe is, in my opinion, a little strange. I would have never thought of putting tomato soup in cake, but it's pretty tasty. You can't taste the tomatoes. It just tastes spicy.

Tomato Soup Cake
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup shortening
1 10-oz can tomato soup
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda dissolved in 2 tablespoons hot water
1 cup raisins
1 3/4 cup flour

Combine all ingredients in the order they are given, blending well. Bake in a 13x9-inch greased and floured pan at 350 degrees for 35 minutes.

Ok, here's "the recipe." As I said before, I'm about to try this one. I'll let you know how it turns out.

Healthy Flourless Chocolate Cake
Makes a single 9" layer cake, which can be halved and stacked for the taller cake you see in the picture (follow the link).

1 15-oz can of unseasoned black beans OR 1 1/2 cup cooked beans, any color
5 large eggs
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
6 tablespoons unsalted organic butter OR extra virgin coconut oil
3/4 cup erythritol plus 1/2 teaspoon pure stevia extract OR 1/4-1/3 cup honey plus 1 teaspoon stevia
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon water (omit if using honey)

Mint Chocolate variation:
2 teaspoons mint extract (in place of 2 teaspoons vanilla)

Spray a 9" cake pan with extra virgin olive oil cooking spray, or just grease it with a thin layer of butter. Dust cocoa all over the inside of the pan, tapping to evenly distribute. Cut a round of parchment paper and line the bottom of the pan, then spray the parchment lightly. Drain and rinse beans in a strainer or colander. Shake off excess water. Place beans, 3 of the eggs, vanilla, stevia (if using) and salt into blender. Blend on high until beans are completely liquefied. No lumps! Whisk together cocoa powder, baking soda, and baking powder. Beat butter with sweetener (erythritol or honey) until light and fluffy. Add remaining two eggs, beating for a minute after each addition. Pour bean batter into egg mixture and mix. Finally, stir in cocoa powder and water (if using), and beat the batter on high for one minute, until smooth. Scrape batter into pan and smooth the top. Grip pan firmly by the edges and rap it on the counter a few times to pop any air bubbles. Bake at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes. Cake is done when the top is rounded and firm to the touch. After 10 minutes, turn out cake from pan, and flip over again on to a cooling rack. Let cool until cake reaches room temperature, then cover in plastic wrap or with cake dome. For BEST flavor, let cake sit over night. If you are stacking this cake, level the top with a long serrated knife, shaving off layers until it is flat and even. Frost immediately with healthy chocolate buttercream frosting before serving.

Healthy Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
Makes enough to thickly cover one layer, or fill and frost a halved stacked layer.

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted organic butter, softened, OR 7 tablespoons nonhydrogenated shortening
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon erythritol, powdered, OR 1/4 cup xylitol, powdered
5-6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tablespoons half and half OR coconut milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Pinch of sea salt
Good-tasting pure stevia extract, to taste

Optional addition for a glossy finish: 1 fresh organic egg yolk

Cream the butter in a small bowl until fluffy. Powder erythritol or xylitol in a coffee grinder or Magic Bullet for a minute or two, until extremely fine in texture (reminiscent of powdered sugar). Let sweetener settle in grinder before opening the top. Stir powdered sweetener into butter with a spatula, then beat until smooth. Slowly blend in the cocoa powder, vanilla, and sea salt. Beat in the half and half and egg yolk, if using. Add stevia, starting with 1/16 teaspoon. You'll probably use less than 1/4 teaspoon. Just keep tasting and adjust sweetness to your liking.


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  2. I made the black bean cake and my husband and I tried it. It was really good! He had no idea what was in it. He was surprised when I told him.

    I highly recommend using the parchment paper in the pan. I skipped this step because I had a headache and didn't want to mess with it. Consequently, my cake stuck to the pan.