Tuesday, June 11, 2013

soviet safeway

Many of the Safeway grocery stores in DC have nicknames. The Senior Safeway is frequented by, you guessed it, the elderly set. The Social Safeway is full of young, attractive, chatty patrons. And the Safeway near my apartment is constantly packed with people, has minimal options, and is often out of many items, hence its nickname: the Soviet Safeway. 

The other night, SS and I trekked past police tape to the Soviet Safeway to get a few simple supplies for this flourless chocolate hazelnut truffle cake. Turns out the Soviet Safeway doesn't deem hazelnuts "simple," as they had NONE on their shelves. So, I had to adapt the recipe to include ground toasted almonds and almond liqueur instead of the hazelnut variety of each. 

I made a full and a half batch of the recipe so that I could make one 9" springform pan worth for a dinner party, and 3 baby-size pans for sampling purposes. I baked the larger pan for probably 20 minutes longer than the recommended time, but that is likely because I overfilled it. The baby pans took about 25 or 30 minutes. 

The almonds proved to be a bit of a pain, as I nearly burnt them while toasting them, and had some trouble grinding them up in to a fine powder. Turns out there's a really crucial moment at which finely ground nuts turn from powder to butter. I got the timing wrong on the first little batch, but managed to do better on the second two. By the way, the toasting step, I imagine, isn't necessary, but takes the whole confection to what I daresay is a transcendent level. The end result is a little gooey, and has a perfect hint of the Amaretto and toasted almonds. SS and I devoured one of the baby pans in record time, with nothing left behind to show for our baking efforts except some crumbs.   

photo from recipe!
ps-I imagine there are many ways to turn nuts in to powder. I used a coffee/spice grinder (and worked in batches), but also thought about using my mini-food processor. The original recipe's author used pre-milled hazelnuts from Bob's Red Mill. Options abounds.

No comments:

Post a Comment