Friday, February 15, 2008

Orange Cappucino Pudding Cake

I was listening to Carly Simon's "Hymn of Wall Street", which is better remembered as "Let the River Run", her Oscar winning song... in the vid you can see the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center... Carly captured the spirit of New York of that time, there was still an innocence despite it all.

If you ever had anyone tell you as a child you could be anything you wanted to be, then "that New York" was the place with a special energy that pushed you to make it happen. I know, it pushed me, it made me, and in the end, it saved me. The Twin Towers were my beacon home. I have been all over the world and every single State in the Union, and no place has "that New York's" energy. Now, neither will "this New York". It's become a craven caricature of its former self, filled with plastic people from the other plastic places of this and other countries who flooded to it after 9/11, who never knew her. They are all trying to be cool citizens of the Silver City Carly wrote and sang about. New York will never be that enchanted Silver City ever again. Listening to that song made me homesick for a lot of things, including this Orange Cappuccino thing.

It is from the old Ebinger's bakery. Ebinger's was a New York institution until the Entenmann's of the same era moved ahead with marketing their bakery items in supermarkets and other places. These days, (in my opinion of course) Entenmann's tastes plastic, filled as it is with High Fructose or other Corn Syrup and other Corporate plastic food ingredients. Ebinger's may have disappeared, but at least they didn't sell out. As a result, it is the Ebinger's recipes that are hunted down, argued over and missed; it is the Ebinger's recipes that garner sighs; it is the people who stored the last of Ebinger's famous Brooklyn Blackout cake as museum items in their freezer for years who are respected in culinary circles.

Here's the recipe for their Orange Cappuccino Pudding Cake.

I found it on the web over by Uncle Phaedrus, Consulting Detective and Finder of Lost Recipes, and made a change or two, or three - you didn't think I was going to leave out Mr. Jack Daniels or Mr. Jim Beam? Naah, this is Valentine WEEK!

I gave some to Vegetable Cutting Boy - he had ordered Cacao Nibs a la Scharffen Berger for Valentine's day. This is what the baked nibs look like, and they taste muy better than the chocolate chip dealies.

I always appreciate a man who brings me the correct chocolate things - things I can use at the start of a chocolate cooking adventure, rather than some end result, that is pretty to look at, and pleasing to taste, but where's the fun!

Here's the fun! Make yourself some Choccolada fun! Vegetable Cutting Boy said this version turned out to be a $15.00 dessert in a five star restaurant and could not believe this was the first time I made it. See it's FOOLPROOF! Well, to good friends anyway!

Orange Cappuccino Pudding Cake

Serves 12
(Note: 12 is a stretch goal, do your best. In my house, half of it was gone in one sitting, two helpings each of dessert, I was careful to make just a hearty salad with cheese, shrimp, avocado, tomato, celery, carrots and mixed herb greens with a sesame coconut dressing for the dinner).


1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup packed (I mean really packed) golden brown sugar
2 rounded tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. orange zest (note, I had two oranges, overly ripe but not gone bad, I used all the zest a bit closer to 3 and I would do the same again).
1/2 cup orange juice (I used the juice of the above oranges plus some pulp).
2 Tblsp. vegetable oil (I used 2 Tblsp. melted and cooled butter)
1 egg (hmm, I looked at the lone egg, it didn't look right, so I added the yolk only of a second egg)
2 tsp vanilla extract (and if some extra runs over that's OK too).
1/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips (I used the Scharffen Berger Semi Sweet Chocolate Covered CACAO NIBS. I used enough to dot it the way it came out in the picture. I didn't measure but it is a least 1/4 - 1/3 - 1/2 cup)
1/3 cup granulated white sugar
1/4 cup instant coffee powder (Note they say "or hot chocolate mix" - NO it must have the coffee or is isn't right!)
1/4 cup cocoa (I used the GHIRADELLI Unsweetened Cocoa - I get fabulous results with their products).


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter an 8 inch square baking dish (they said spray with vegetable spray, I don't, and suspect it was so done by Ebinger's for kosher reasons - note there is no milk in this recipe).

Put up about 2 cups of hot water to boil for this recipe. You'll only use 1 - 1/4 cup of it. Fill the espresso maker for later, it tastes real good with espresso.

Note: This is a recipe where you mix the dry and mix the wet then mix together. Remember I treat brown sugar as "a wet one" 'cuz it is wet, so even though their recipe says "mix the brown sugar with the flour", as a dry, DON'T. Mix the brown sugar in with the WET ingredients. Ask Alton Brown, he finally did a show that backed me up on this, though he has no idea who I am.)

In a bowl stir together flour, and baking powder. In a separate bowl, whisk together orange zest, orange juice, BROWN SUGAR, egg, vanilla, then mix in the butter.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry, blending until JUST mixed. (Do NOT over mix!!!) Batter will be thick. Pour into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the chocolate nibs (chips) over the top.

In a bowl whisk together 1 -1/4 cup HOT water, granulated sugar, instant coffee mix, and the unsweetened cocoa. Pour carefully over cake batter. (Yes, DROWN THE CAKE - it'll pool at the bottom to make the sauce - see picture).

Bake 35 minutes or until cake springs back when touched lightly in the center.

(In my cheap oven that runs cold, I had to do the 385, 375, 365, 350 drill which worked well).

SERVE WARM. Spoon cake and underlying sauce into individual dessert dishes.


1/2 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup whisky (Kentucky bourbon)
1 goodly capful vanilla essence.

Put cold heavy cream in a blender, add sugar and WHIP until hard; add whisky - (now look, you DON'T have to reach for 130 year old Kentucky Bourbon, but then again, if you're going to knock up the cream in proper Southern fashion, then you sort of have no choice), and vanilla and WHIP again.

Spoon onto and around cake and chocolate.

Serve with espresso coffee. Serve again and again and again. (Ummm, If you're a minor reading this, you have no business drinking in the first place.)

After you have made this cake, things like BAB AU RHUM begin to make sense. "Delisheye" things that cost $12.50 per teensy-weensy spoonful in those snotty yet trendy coffee houses, with the $25 cappuccino's suddenly become in your reach. It's real power, man, this is where it's at!


I fought the urge to add Cointreau or Bourbon to the coffee, cocoa mix you drown it in before you put it in the oven. Instead I opted for the whipped cream "knocked up" by Mr. Daniels or Mr. Beam. In reality, you could add your favorite orange liqueur in with the coffee, the taste will be added to the cake, though the alcohol will have evaporated off, AND you can also add it to the whipped cream.

A final word on the Silver City: For each anniversary of 9/11, in honor of my DNA being Touched by the Sun , it has become a planned activity - with a select few of us who were "in danger of burning by fire" that day - to wake up with Carly and Mr. Daniels. I suppose I shouldn't - depleted Uranium alone is a deadly toxic legacy, much less to mix with Kentucky Bourbon, but as Carly sez in her song:

"Let my wings of desire
Soar over the night
I need to let them say
she must have been mad..."

And I am, still, extremely, quite... mad!

Every time I raise a glass, it's a back-handed "slap in the face" salute to the International Dixie Mafia for pulling off the most ghoulish stunt since they lifted those missiles and took them up to that airport in NJ, for the TWA 800 stunt.

When "Dixie belonged to Whiskey", y'all were better gentlemen politician pirates than the ones you've become on this global narco-terrorism jaunt of yours. Phoo-ey in your eyes. A pox on your karma. No pudding for you!


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