Thursday, 16 January 2014

Cigar and Cake

Hello again,

A quick recap on life.

Since early August 2013, I haven't worked a day.  Not for money that is, as in paid work, like in a job.

What have I been doing? (apart from not blogging)

Well, those of you fortunate enough to know me, probably know this already, but for those of you that don't see or hear from me as much as you'd obviously like to, will no doubt be happy to hear that I've given two fingers to the man, and struck a blow for mankind by resigning from my job of 11 years in order to look after my two children full time.

This means that the wife is the sole bread winner, but so far, she hasn't won any bread.  Not so much as a sliced pan or a batch loaf.  To be fair to her though, I'm not aware of that many competitions where bread is top prize.

So instead of bread, she's been bringing home the bacon.

At this stage, I'd like to take the opportunity to say thanks to the wife, well done, and keep up the good work.  You're doing a great job.

Obviously looking after kids and running house isn't easy, and while the wife is out enjoying herself all day, I'm stuck watching homes under the hammer and bargain hunt, so you know, it's not easy with that choice of telly.

However, I do think it's only fair that I have my dinner ready on the table for when she gets home.  I feel it's my duty now that I'm a kept man and all.

Apart from the obligatory dinner, I have tried to surprise her from time to time with my culinary delightenings.  On Tuesday for example, she had freshly baked blueberry muffins waiting for her, because I didn't have enough time to eat them all.

So for this blog, I'm going to do a cake and cigar pairing.  Not that I smoke cigars while eating cake, nor would I recommend it, although they do say you should try everything once, so why not, but this is really just to give something to those of you out there that like cake and/or cigars, and who doesn't like cake and/or cigars.

First up is a cigar that I smoked at the start of August, and one that had been resting in the humidor for over two years. 

While I'm no cigar snob, it's my opinion is that overall, Cuban cigars are better than those produced outside of Cuba, or at least that's what I thought until I smoked the Arturo Fuente Anejo.

A good sized torpedo shaped cigar with a slight box press, and a red ribbon on the foot, which was so pretty that it seemed almost a shame to smoke it.  Deep, dark and delicious. (just like me)

This particular cigar is supposed to be a rare find, apparently only released twice a year, at Christmas and Fathers day, and from the online blurb, you find that it's five year old Connecticut maduro wrapper is aged in a cognac barrel, and only the very best tobacco to be found in the Dominic Republic is used in it's construction.

All that I know is that this one of the finest cigar I have ever smoked, Cuban or otherwise.

I strongly recommend it and I'm looking forward very much to the next one, hint hint.

The cake to go with this fine cigar, according to the wife, is the best cheesecake she every tasted, and it's easy to make.  I've only every gotten it wrong once, when I used olive oil based butter instead of unsalted butter.  I know, duh!

Here we go...get 100g of good quality dark chocolate, break it up and melt with 50g of UNSALTED butter in a bowl over water.  If you want to grate some chocolate over the finished cake, keep a small bit for later.

While that's melting, crush about 200g of digestive and ginger biscuits in freezer bag with a rolling pin, and when the choc has melted, add together and mix well.  This is your base.

The topping is simply 400 to 500g of mascarpone mixed with three to four tablespoons of icing sugar, and the zest and juice of one lemon.  Mix that around well and plop on top of your biscuit base, which by now you'll have cooled a bit and smoothed firmly into your cake tin.  Carefully smooth the topping and finish by grating the reserved chocolate over the top.

Cover it in cling film and bung it in the fridge for at least four hours.  Eat within a couple of days, if it lasts that long.

Jaime Oliver who?

Remember, don't use olive oil based butter, which oozed out of the bottom of the cake, but as luck would have it though, I gave that one away to the Larkins.

That cake may not be the healthiest of options, so here's a great healthy alternative that I made last year...

Coconut flour chocolate mousse cake

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