My brain is playing games with perspective of late, specifically how one sees oneself, or (getting into the more meta thinking that happens when I lose track of how many hot chocolates I allow myself to knock back of an afternoon) how others see someone seeing someone else, and whether or not the consideration of that perspective warps or otherwise affects one’s own perception.
Was that all one sentence? Sorry. It’s my highschool extended essay all over again.
But enough of that emo thought-meandering. Let’s talk about cake! Specifically, this cake.
There was a time, a couple years back, when I was working from home in a job that was basically a help desk. At that time, we also got the Food Network, which meant that slow days were spent on the couch watching endless episodes of The Barefoot Contessa which, you know, was fantastic because Ina Garten? Knows her stuff. It was also slightly off-putting though because, like Nigella, she tends to make assumptions about the equipment/space that people will have available and also her voice gets on my nerves after awhile.
That’s a little off-topic however. Unless we get back onto the topic of perspective, that is.
So anyway, a couple weeks ago, another coworker’s birthday was approaching and although I’d committed to not making a chocolate cake (as there are Chocolate Haters on the team), I couldn’t deal with making a cake completely devoid of chocolate either. After all, the birthday boy likes chocolate.
As per usual, Smitten Kitchen saved the day. Deb listed Ina’s recipe, and it was exactly what was called for. She is right that it’s a little on the work-intensive side, but the result was well worth the effort: Glorious, toothsome-crunchy golden exterior (helped by the syrup brushing to remain crisp even overnight), thick buttery crumb and of course crowned by a gooey slathering of ganache.
It was an extremely well-received cake, let me tell you.
What’s that? Why did I not take pictures? What can I say? Epic fail. I don’t bring my camera to work (see also: taking pictures of one’s own baking in public, creepiness thereof), and I was in a rush this morning to get the ganache made so I didn’t do it then either. I will say my cake looked pretty much like Deb’s, only with lumpier ganache because, as stated, I was in a hurry, so I didn’t stir it quite long enough to work it out into the silken dream it should have been.
In any case, it was delicious. If you need a slightly heavy, deliciously citrusy, old-style coffee cake, make this.