Borscht, Cabbage bread, Beer & Sauerkraut cake
Basically I was in a cooking mood. It was humid but it's getting cooler so that always gets me moving in the kitchen. AND I have stacks and stacks of new recipes sitting there starring at me to experiment with. I was moved into action. I had cleaned stalls in the barn, done my morning chores, and it was either start cooking or fold laundry. I decided to cook and hope my wildest dreams would come true, meaning somehow my laundry would fold itself.
I've been craving a good bowl of borscht for a while now (and I could not wait for a lovely color filled cold crisp fall day) so today was the day. I had everything I needed. I stained myself red chopping beets and the rabbits lined up for the leavings of all the veg.
If my Grandmother was alive I would make the recipe exactly as she told me to. But since I wasn't able to learn her recipes from her, I have to make due with my own. For mine, I peel and shred 4 beets, I shred 1/2 head green cabbage, chop 2 carrots, 3 pieces of celery, and 1 onion. I then add 6-7 cups of broth and let it cook for about 4-5 hours on low on the stove. Season to taste, then I blend it all up with a hand blender so it's not so chunky but not completely smooth either. A dollop of sour cream, and then devour it. I know that's traditional however.
October Farm shared a recipe on her blog I had to try, and could not wait on... cabbage bread! Bread baked in cabbage leaves. It's one of the greatest idea's I've seen in a long time.
You can find the recipe here on her blog :)
The bread doesn't taste like cabbage, it looks so pretty afterwards, and it's really yummy. I'm sure I'll be adding this to my list of favorite breads to make.
On a last note, before evening chores, I tossed together a cake I had found last night on another blog... A beer, sauerkraut chocolate cake. I have no idea why there is a recipe for these things to go together but I had to try it. The recipe calls for a boxed cake mix which I never, ever, have... so I tossed together a quick chocolate cake that never fails me:
3 cups all purpose flour
2 cups granulated sugar
2/3 cups cocoa powder
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups cold coffee
1 cup vegetable oil
2 tsp vanilla
Then looking back at the recipe I see it says to not add any liquid to the cake mix - which I had already done. So... too late. It says the sauerkraut and the beer are all the liquid you need, so I used a little less of both and I skipped the 3 eggs the recipe called for... so it's a little different, but the cake still turned out. I baked it at 350 degrees Fahrenheit until a toothpick inserted in the center came out clean. I have no idea how long that was.. I watched it in between doing three other things.
I let it cool while I was in the barn and came home to frost it.
I found this recipe many moons ago and it's my favorite chocolate frosting recipe:
2 3/4 cups confectioners' sugar 6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder 6 tablespoons butter 5 tablespoons evaporated milk 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
In a medium bowl, sift together the confectioners' sugar and cocoa, and set aside.
In a large bowl, cream butter until smooth, then gradually beat in sugar mixture alternately with evaporated milk. Blend in vanilla. Beat until light and fluffy. If necessary, adjust consistency with more milk or sugar.
This is what it looks like:
A normal chocolate cake. It would be fun to feed to someone who didn't know what was in it to see what they thought.
I thought it tasted like chocolate cake... you could sorta tell the sauerkraut was in there, but certainly not the beer, and it didn't taste like sauerkraut... just chocolate. It was really moist. It tasted like a pretty good chocolate cake although I still can't figure out why you'd use the sauerkraut and beer... Here is the link to the blog I found the recipe on...
I googled it and found other recipes... I'd love to find out where it originates from. I'll have to keep researching.