After driving 3,000 miles a week during the trucking years, driving 3 miles to the grocery store is a delight. Plus, the merits of shopping local cannot be overstated.
The idea of pomegranate sauce began teasing my foodie imagination when I saw a lovely display of crown-topped orbs in the produce section. I’d never eaten one before (better late than never), so I brought one home and munched on a few arils while I sieved, pressed, and extracted. I soon discovered that one pomegranate doesn’t yield much juice. Back to the store for another one.
But, those intriguing ruby-like gems had worked their magic on me and I found myself eating more than I was extracting. After a third trip to the store, I came home with a bottle of Pom Wonderful. (Those folks do a marvelous job of getting juice out of those lil’ buggers!) Homemade is my preference, but I come from the “whatever works” camp, too.
Then I simmered and savored until success (and sauce) was achieved. The cake is a good ol’ standby from 30+ years ago — source unknown and recipe considerably tweaked since then. And, trips down memory lane don’t require any driving either.
Flourless Chocolate Cake
1 c. baking cocoa (I used Nestle’s Toll House Cocoa)
6 Tbsp. butter, softened
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 Tbsp. vanilla extract
1/2 Tbsp. whiskey (*see note below)
2 Tbsp. strong coffee, cooled
3/4 c. heavy cream
2 extra large eggs
Pomegranate arils for garnish (if there are any left)
(*May omit whiskey and increase vanilla to 1 tablespoon.)
Preheat oven to 325° F. Butter the bottom of a 9″ cake pan. Have a baking sheet with 1″ sides and a kettle of boiling water at the ready.
In a heavy saucepan, combine cocoa, butter, sugar, vanilla, whiskey (if using), and coffee. Whisk over medium heat until sugar dissolves; remove from heat. Gradually whisk in cream until blended; set aside to cool.
In a medium-sized bowl, beat eggs with an electric mixer for 4 to 5 minutes or until color is pale yellow and volume is tripled. Gradually whisk eggs into cooled chocolate mixture.
With a spatula, scrape batter into prepared cake pan. Set cake pan on the baking sheet, place in the oven, and pour boiling water onto the baking sheet to a depth of one-half inch. Bake 25 to 30 minutes until cake is set.
Remove cake pan to a cooling rack (I leave the baking pan/water in the oven); cool completely. Refrigerate cake (covered) for 4 hours or overnight. Slice into wedges and drizzle with Pomegranate Sauce.
Garnish with pomegranate seeds, if desired.
(adapted from this recipe)
1/2 c. pomegranate juice
1/2 c. red wine (I used Briar Patch Black Cherry Wine; see below)
1 Tbsp. freshly squeezed orange juice
1 Tbsp. honey
3″ stick cinnamon
Combine ingredients in a small saucepan. Stir over medium heat until mixture boils; reduce heat to low. Simmer 25 to 30 minutes or until sauce is reduced by half and is thickened and syrupy. Cool to room temperature before serving.
About the Black Cherry wine…
We’re fortunate to have a small local winery with a huge sense of humor nearby. (Click on the photo below or like their FB page here.) Stop by the Briar Patch and say hi to Jim and Linda. Good folks, good fun, good wine!
Well it’s time to enjoy a slice of cake, so I’ll leave you with two words:
Enjoying pomegranate success (at last),