1 1/2 cups full-fat buttermilk (or mix plain yogurt with milk if you do not have buttermilk)
1-4 tablespoons water (optional
1 generous tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper
1 teaspoon thyme
1/2 cup shredded Gruyere Cheese (could use Swiss or White Cheddar in a pinch)
Saute garlic and onion in olive oil in a pot over medium high heat until slightly translucent. Add in ground beef and brown, breaking up with a spoon as it cooks.
Sprinkle chile powder, cocoa powder and cumin over browned meat and stir to blend well. Cook another few minutes while stirring.
Add coffee, black beans and tomatoes to the pot along with 4 cups water. Bring chili to a boil, turn heat to simmer and cook for about 45 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings. Add salt and black pepper to taste.
While chili is simmering make the cornbread. Put bacon grease or veg oil in a 12 inch cast iron skillet (I used a 10 inch which works fine) and place in cold oven. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Whisk together the cornmeal and flour in a bowl. Stir in the oil and buttermilk. Add a bit of water if it seems too thick.
Add the black pepper, thyme and shredded Gruyere, stirring to blend well.
When oven is preheated, remove the skillet and pour in the cornbread batter. The batter should sizzle. Return skillet to the oven and bake until the cornbread is dark brown, 12 to 17 minutes. At this point I pull the skillet from the oven and turn cornbread out onto a plate, flipping the bottom side to the top and put it back into the hot skillet, returning to the oven for another 5 minutes so the cornbread is crispy on both sides.
After I pull the cornbread from oven I leave the skillet on top of the stove to keep warm until ready to eat. Turn cornbread out onto a cutting board, bottom-side up and cut into wedges or squares.
Serve chili in bowl with pieces of cornbread, and if you like it hotter than hell have some bottles of hot sauce at the ready. Bon Apetit and stay cozy.
I often escape from my “outside life” into my “inside life” both methaphorically and physically. These days more so than ever. My outside life is partially on hold as I am sure yours is. My inside life is rich and full and can really be whatever I make it to be.There are various “inside rooms” that I go to. There is the “reading room” which is often my bed or sofa. I have my “South office room” that is not actually in my real office, which is upstairs or North, but is wherever I land downstairs with my laptop. There is “la petite cafe” which is our deck for enjoying drinks and meals al fresco, rather than sitting at our kitchen counter.
Some days the room previously known as the kitchen might be the “the room of earthly delights”. Those are the days when I make craveable delicious desserts such as this cake.
Densely chocolate and easy to make this is a cake to soothe both your “outside and inside life”. It is a cake that will make staying inside more tolerable and nice. Has the way you use the rooms in your home changed recently? Do you think of your home differently and see new uses for old spaces? Do you, like I do, give them names to specify their use? What are you baking in your “room of earthly delights”?
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease a tube pan or Bundt pan well.
Place the butter and chopped chocolate in a medium saucepan over low heat and stir until melted and smooth.
Whisk together in a large bowl the milk, both sugars and the vanilla. Add the melted chocolate-butter mixture and whisk to combine. Add the eggs and whisk until well blended.
Add the flour and cocoa and whisk until combined. Pour into the prepared pan. Bake for 1 hour or until the caked is baked inside when tested with a skewer. Invert the pan onto a wire rack and let stand for 15 minutes before removing the pan. Let cake cool completely.
For the glaze place the chocolate, butter and corn syrup in a medium saucepan over low heat and stir until melted and smooth. Add the oil and stir to mix.
Place the cooled cake on a wire rack over a tray and spoon on the glaze. Allow glaze to set before moving the cake to a serving plate. (I had glaze left over which I stored in the refrigerator in a glass jar and used a a topping for scoops of ice cream. Delicious.)
Recipe from: “Modern Baking – cakes, cookies and everything in between” by Donna Hay published in 2018 by Fourth Estate
I just love this Southern city that shuts down neatly and absolutely at the first sign of a snowflake! I really do…totally…seriously. This morning I awoke to a hushed quiet…no clamor of jack-hammers, no hubbub of beeping trucks backing up, no babel of traffic…shhhhhh…it’s quiet here…can you hear it? I am right downtown and it is tranquil!
A day such as this calls for staying indoors & hot steaming bowls of chili. Any kind of chili you like. But how about my “Black Bean Mole Chili”? Thick with beans, tomatoes…spiced with chipotle chile powder, cocoa and freshly squeezed orange juice all cooked down to make a snow day anywhere more cozy!
Out my front window early morning.
Not a true “mole negro”, but with much of the same flavor as one I remember eating in Oaxaca a few years ago. That mole was so thick and dark red-black in color smothering the roasted chicken I was eating that the incredible flavor is forever part of my best-loved food memories. My version is in no way authentic, but is a tribute to the real thing.
Dark cocoa and chili pepper combined to enrich the other ingredients…all cooked down to a thick dark red-black color.
Heat the oil in a large, heavy pan over medium high heat. Add onions to pan and cook until translucent. Add garlic and cook, stirring for 2 minutes.
Sprinkle in, while stirring, the cocoa powder, chipotle chili powder, cumin powder, cinnamon and allspice. Turn heat to medium and cook for 3 minutes while stirring.
Add orange juice to pan. Stir to blend and cook for 10 minutes over medium heat.
Add black beans and tomatoes to the pan and bring to a low boil. Stirring often. Turn heat to simmer and cook for 20 minutes. Season with salt and black pepper. Taste and adjust seasonings if desired. Serve with coconut cornbread cakes.
Ingredients for Coconut Cornbread:
1 cup sweetened shredded coconut, divided
2 Tbsp coconut oil
1 1/2 cup self-rising yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
1 cup buttermilk
1 large egg
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Place cast iron pan (skillet or muffin tin) with coconut oil in the oven to heat while you make the batter.
Mix together 1/2 cup of the coconut, cornmeal, flour, coconut milk, buttermilk and egg just until blended. Add more liquid if you need to.
When pan is really hot, remove from oven and quickly pour in batter.
Sprinkle top of batter with remaining 1/2 cup coconut and bake until cornbread is puffy and golden brown and the coconut is browned. Delicious served hot with chili.