and I’m avoiding all the work…
I’ll just post a favorite amazing recipe. I got it here from Epicurious here, but I of course have adapted it. I’ll put in my version, just for you:). I leave out the margarine. Bad stuff. Not necessary. If you use oil and you’re making cookies, let’s say, just put the dough in the fridge for a bit to set and then they’ll bake up fine. Okay I’m not a foodie. But believe me, health-wise, much better.
MOCK CHESTNUT TORTE
1/2 cup oil
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
6 large eggs, separated
1 ½ cups cooked and mashed sweet potatoes (put them in the microwave–soooo easy!)
1 teaspoon Passover rum extract (optional)
10 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, melted and cooled (I use chocolate chips)
1/4 teaspoon salt
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 9-inch springform pan with baking parchment.
In a mixing bowl, cream the oil with the 1/3 cup sugar. Blend in the egg yolks, then the mashed sweet potatoes, rum extract (if using), and cooled chocolate.
In another bowl, with clean beaters, whip the egg whites gently until they are a bit foamy. Then add in the salt and whip on a higher speed, slowly dusting in the two tablespoons of sugar to form stiff, glossy (but not dry) peaks. Fold one third of the egg whites into the sweet potato/chocolate mixture and work them in well to loosen the batter. Then, gently fold in the remaining egg whites, blending well but taking care not to deflate the mixture. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 40 minutes. The cake rises and looks dry, and slightly cracked on top when done. The middle should be soft but firm. Cool in the pan for 20 minutes, then remove to a wire rack. At this point, the cake can be frozen for up to a month. Even if serving it the same day, chill the cake for an hour or two before finishing it with the ganache glaze.
Chocolate Ganache Glaze
1/2 cup water
6 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
In a double boiler, bring the water to a gentle boil and add the chopped chocolate all at once. Remove from the heat and stir briskly with a wire whisk until all the chocolate melts and you have a thick glaze or sauce-like topping. Refrigerate for an hour or so. (You can also make this ahead and refrigerate it for up to a week or two. Simply warm it to the right temperature for glazing the cake.)
Invert the cake onto a cardboard circle or cake board so that the smooth, flat bottom faces up. Do not be dismayed if this is not a high cake — it is a torte and is meant to be a little less than statuesque. Pour the glaze over the cake and, using a metal spatula, even out the glaze and spread it along the sides.
Instead of the glaze, you can also simply sift some cocoa over the top of the cake or decorate it with curls of chocolate (using a vegetable peeler and a warmish chocolate bar). The cake can also be offered with a pureed raspberry or strawberry sauce, garnished with chocolate shavings, or left as is, with a citrus leaf, a sweetheart rose, or several berries in the center. (I have NEVER managed to make the glaze. It’s really good enough without. And who needs one more thing to potchky with?)
Makes 14 to 18 servings.