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Cat-shaped "minciunele"

Publié le par Charly C.

Hello, world! 

Today I'll share with you my results trying to make a common Romanian dessert, called "minciunele." This word means little lies and they're a type of donuts. 

As you can see from the pictures, this recipe was supposed to appear quite some time ago. In fact, i had already posted this recipe on my first blog, before i rebranded for the first time. 

When I first started blogging, I thought i'd have a cooking blog and another blog for other stuff. As we all know, things changed, and now i have this "general" blog and my site/blog dedicated to reviews, called Being Obscure, hosted by WordPress. 

The recipe goes something like this, and you can see the original recipe and results here. This is the blog dedicated to recipes for Romanian foods. The post shows you how these are supposed to look like, and you can clearly see my cats don't look as nice as the original. 

If you want to know why i chose to shape my donuts as cats, I'll add the story AFTER the recipe. I recently realized people don't appreciate too much talking BEFORE the recipe. So, without further ado, here we go!

Ingredients:
  • 500 g flour (1lb?)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 yolks
  • 2 tablespoons of sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
Additional ingredients:
  • some powdered sugar for coating
  • some sunflower oil for frying; whatever other type of oil you use for frying food should also work. 
Method:
  • Beat the egg whites until they're fluffy.
  • Mix the egg yolks with the sour cream and gently fold this mix into the egg whites. 
  • Sieve the flour and the baking powder on top of the mix.
  • Gently fold these also into the mixture above, until you have a smooth dough. 

The original recipe doesn't say to let the dough rest and raise a bit, so I didn't do that. However, I think it should be done, and i think it should be at least 30 minutes. 

Roll the dough onto a sheet on the work table (about 5 mm or 2/8in thick) and cut your shapes. Of course, you can cut whatever shapes you want - i also did that. 

To cut shapes you can use cookie cutters, a glass, or directly a knife. The difference is that with the knife things will be easier and much faster, while with the cookie cutters/glass you'll need to reroll the dough. You don't want to waste all that yumminess. ;)

Fry your shapes in hot oil, over medium heat, and on both sides. If you have too many donuts and you run low on oil, add some more oil, and make sure it gets hot before you fry more donuts. 

When they're brown on both sides, remove them and place them on a plate or a bowl covered with some paper towel or (unscented, dry) paper handkerhiefs. The paper will absorb the excess oil. 

In the picture above, you can see I'm frying donuts in other shapes than cats. 

Once you're done frying all the dough, sprinkle some confectioner's sugar on top. These are always better with some of that on top. 

I never tried, but these could also be good with some chocolate or cream on top. 

Bon Appétit! Enjoy!

Why cat-shaped?

I believe that at some point in 2017, the butter we usually buy came with a little cutter. There were 3 shapes: cat, car, and i forgot what else. They were meant to help mothers make cute sandwiches for their kids, to entice them to eat and enjoy the food more. 

I got the butter that had the cat-shaped cutter. I never really used it since, but one day, when i made these donuts, Anna jokingly challenged me to make them look like cats, thinking it would be impossible for me to do so. 

The expression on her face when i pulled out the cat-shaped cookie cutter? PRICELESS! 

So, this is how you make another type of easy doughnuts. i hope you liked the story about the cookie-cutter shaped like a cat as well. 

As a reference, i have 2 more cutters for cookies: one shaped like spectacles and another shaped like lips. These are from H&M Home. I got them on sale, i think right before the SHTF last year. 

The yellow disk is a cookie or cake decorator i found in the lid of a jar of Nutella. I forgot the year. maybe 2019. 

See you next time! 

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

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Fool proof doughnuts

Publié le par Charly C.

Hello world~~

DISCLAIMER: This article was originally published back in 2013. I edited it once, to add another picture, because i though the presentation lacked a little. Now, in 2020, i remade these doughnuts, and i took more pictures. I want to add them here, so this means this article will be republished. 

My friend showed me the recipe for these doughnuts on a local website and since I had all the ingredients, I figured I should try it out.  

The best part is that they’re done so fast, you don’t need to wait for the dough to raise,  and they’re very yummy and light! You’ll want to double the quantities the 2nd time around, hehe ;) 

You probably won’t believe me, but even a 14 year old boy made these, or it was him sharing the recipe.

The pictures in this article/recipe are mine.

 

The original, sad picture i used. oh, gosh.

The original, sad picture i used. oh, gosh.

INGREDIENTS

  • 200 grams yogurt
  • 1 egg
  • 3 spoons sugar
  • some baking powder
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 150 grams flour
  • 1 Tbsp lemon peel – lemon essence works fine too.

I have to mention that this year we learned my friend can't eat a lot of things, including gluten, or at least not a lot of it.

So you can replace regular flour with gluten free flour or whole grain flour.

This year i also skipped the lemon peel (zest) or essence as well. Instead, i used vanilla extract. My friend was diagnosed with asthma, and lemon essence is bad for them, as some of you may know. 

I wish mine turned out this pretty :(I wish mine turned out this pretty :(

I wish mine turned out this pretty :(

METHOD

Mix all the ingredients together. Originally, I was supposed to add them one by one, but we want to be as quick as possible, even if we stay the whole day at home. 

Make sure everything is well incorporated though. The dough should be a bit thicker than the mayonnaise.  Thicker dough will make rounder doughnuts, while a thinner one will turn into funny looking doughnuts.  

I forgot to take a picture of the dough after i mixed it. Therefore, here you can admire my dough almost at the end. 

My dough was thicker, thus the doughnuts have a more regular, ball-like shape.

This is the time to adjust the sweetness, by adding more sugar if you so wish. Of course, this means you'd have to taste the dough. Make sure not to eat it all. Whatever you may add, incorporate well once again. It should be smooth. 

You can even add more flour, to make the dough thicker. IT should still be a bit runny though. My spoon is a hint to why.

At this point I added some grounded nuts back in 2013. - Side note: Reading this in 2020, i recall no such thing, but it must have happened. 

What mine turned out like :(

What mine turned out like :(

You'll now need a small pot or a frying pan. 

You need to have a thick layer of oil for frying in there. As you may know, doughnuts need to be fried. 

Heat the oil up. Don't use too much heat. I used low to medium heat. I kept it constant. 

Take a spoon, scoop dough out and drop it in the pan. You can fry more at once, depending on how big your pot or pan is. 

I could fit about 6 in my pan. It's normal for the doughnuts to have "legs" or whatever you want to call the little drops that fell from the spoon, next to the actual doughnuts.

The softer/thinner the dough, the more such "legs" will form. These "legs"are also a bit wasteful, because they get burned and nobody will eat them. I think i added more flour to make the dough thicker to have less waste.

You'll fry them on both sides, until they become golden/brown. They'll start floating at some point. That's when you'll turn them on the other side.

If you feel they become brown too fast, lower the heat a little. I cook with gas, so i can't really tell you how high my flame was. It was one of the largest burners, which was a bit too much for this smallish pan. 

You'll have to turn then around to check their color, to be even on both sides. 

When the first ones are done, remove them to a plate, or a large bowl. Make sure to use a paper towel on the bottom, as the doughnuts will still leak some oil. You don't want the ones at the bottom to sit in a puddle of oil, ewww. 

When you’re done frying all of them, just sprinkle them with confectioner’s sugar, chocolate syrup, or anything else you prefer for more yummyness.

Bon appetit!

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

entry edited in May 2018 first, then in 2020. all pictures are mine.

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Making French toast

Publié le par Charly C.

Hello World!

French toast is (or at least used to be) quite the popular dessert over here. I remember I watched a video last year in which the creator made them, so I suddenly started craving some. 

As you can see, I made this dessert last year in September, but I never got around to post the recipe. I think it's time to share this with the world. (and then go out to buy some milk to make another batch, haha)

Follow the pictures for ingredients and instructions ;)

In a larger bowl mix 2 eggs and half cup milk. Add 1-2 spoons of sugar if you want it more sweet.

In a larger bowl mix 2 eggs and half cup milk. Add 1-2 spoons of sugar if you want it more sweet.

On a plate mix together some sugar, cinnamon, and other spices you like.

On a plate mix together some sugar, cinnamon, and other spices you like.

Soak slices of bread in the milk mixture.

Soak slices of bread in the milk mixture.

Fry the soaked bread on a skillet that was just a bit greased. I used cooking oil, but they recommend melting some butter.

Fry the soaked bread on a skillet that was just a bit greased. I used cooking oil, but they recommend melting some butter.

Cook the bread on each side until they reach a light brown color. Then run through the sugar mixture.

Cook the bread on each side until they reach a light brown color. Then run through the sugar mixture.

You can now serve, hot or cold. You can serve with jam, syrup, honey depending on how sweet you want your dessert.

As you can see from my pictures, you can use any shape of bread, but it's best if it's white. 

I used real milk with a low fat content. While I think it's ok to replace it with soy or other type of milk, I haven't tried it. 

I recommend this as breakfast or as a quick afternoon snack, if you're at home. 1 serving shouldn't exceed 2 slices, and here I had maybe 8 slices of bread (but not all were shown). 

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End of the year updates and a recipe

Publié le par Charly C.

Wow, hello to whoever checks this out!

What are my updates? Firstly I hope my "cooking block" will stop and that I'll be able to share more stuff here. Well I do have a few recipes to share, and I can't wait to do so because I feel some of you did wonder if I'll ever post anything here or not.

Another update is that now I have an online identity, as you can see - points to the "author's name" and I hope that one day [in the next 5 years?] I will have a book published under this name.

It's a pen-name but I feel it represents me well [I feel no connection to my ID name, sorry parents]. The book I want to publish will be a collection of short stories - horror and fictional? is that what they're called? - that I'm yet to write. :P

not my picture :(

not my picture :(

I think you want the recipe more than anything, right? I wish there was a spoiler function for the other part.

marble poundcake with poppy seeds

End of the year updates and a recipe

This recipe is rather good for Christmas [or New Years] dinner [or lunch], so it came just in time. I have to warn you that I didn't follow any recipe this time, so you can refer to this one for specific instructions and more pictures.

I will however tell you the [approximate] quantities:

  • 2 eggs
  • 2 full table spoons of yoghurt [I used one with 1.5% fat content. Can be replaced with any fat percentage yoghurt, and even better, sour milk. ;) ]
  • 300 grams sugar [measured]
  • regular cooking oil [1 table spoon? I didn't measure it]
  • 10 grams of baking powder [most of baking powder in Romania comes in packets of 10 grams]
  • some orange essence [just because I didn't have vanilla essence. I didn't measure how much I used]
  • all purpose flour [not measured; enough to give the right consistency to the dough]
  • poppy seeds [I didn't measure, maybe 10 grams? a teaspoon? It's a very popular ingredient in Romania.]
  • cocoa powder, unsweetened [maybe 2 teaspoons?]
METHOD:

Preheat the oven. This is a step you can't skip, especially when cooking with gas.

This time, unlike other times, I just poured everything together in the bowl - except the flour, cocoa, and the poppy seeds. I mixed for some 20 seconds. I looked at the hour on my wrist watch for this one. ;)

Then I added in the poppy and the flour and mixed well. I prepared my round tray - maybe some 25 cm in diameter? and poured most of the dough in it. I saved maybe some 4 or 5 spoons in the bowl and added the cocoa powder.

End of the year updates and a recipe

I added the cocoa dough on top, trying to make some design - but you can't really see it since I didn't take pictures this time. I baked the cake for 45 minutes - 35 to 40 minutes would have been enough, but last times it was still underbaked [undocumented times] and I didn't want that to happen again.

When it finished baking, I just covered it in vanilla sugar and sliced it as you can see.When it finished baking, I just covered it in vanilla sugar and sliced it as you can see.When it finished baking, I just covered it in vanilla sugar and sliced it as you can see.

When it finished baking, I just covered it in vanilla sugar and sliced it as you can see.

I had my first try this morning, and I was pleasantly surprised and inspired to write this entry. YAY!

The coffee is from Japan, from the brand AGF Blendy. I have a Japanese friend and he kindly send me some Japanese coffee. I can barely read some hiragana and katakana... And although I started to learn some Chinese, it's definitely NOT enough to read the instructions. LOL

End of the year updates and a recipe

What can I say? This coffee was more bitter than life but really good :) The sachet in the cup was packed in the envelope I'm holding, and it smelled really good when I opened it. I added milk [off camera] to be able to drink it and also be sure I won't get shaky.

End of the year updates and a recipe

I hope you'll be able to try this recipe out.

I wish you Happy Holidays and lots of health in the upcoming year!

© Charly Cross 2013 – present. all rights reserved.

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Poundcake with oranges

Publié le par Charly C.

My friend had this recipe for a cake made with natural orange juice and orange slices on top. The recipe is in Romanian, and I will try my best to translate it for you. Because you should try it the next time you want something different.

The recipe was recently found at the bottom of a drawer - it was being kept VERY safe as you can tell [aka we had no idea where it was]. I was cleaning that closet and the recipe resurfaced. yay! I don't have much to say at this point, so let's see what this cake is all about!

Poundcake with oranges

INGREDIENTS

 For the batter:

  • 175 grams [real] butter
  • 175 grams [caster] sugar
  • 2 eggs [beaten]
  • 225 grams all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 oranges [peel and juice] - see below
Poundcake with orangesPoundcake with oranges
  • 175 grams almonds [grounded] - I substituted with some almond essence
  • a pinch of salt

For the syrup:

  • 9 oranges
  • 100 grams [caster] sugar
  • 150 ml water

METHOD

Making the batter:

[disclaimer] the recipe said to mix all the ingredients at once. i didn't do that, because i know the consistency differs depending on how you mix them. so i will tell you how i mixed my ingredients. please use a mixer, and not a hand beater like i did [the cake turned out fine, just look at the pictures, but i don't think the ingredients ere mixed as they should have been.

1. Preheat the oven, prepare your baking tray, and make sure to have your butter at room temperature - it ill work faster this way.

2. Beat your butter and sugar together until you have a creamy looking mixture. My hand beater didn't manage to get the right consistency, luckily this didn't matter much in the end.

3. Add your beaten eggs, salt, baking powder, and orange juice and mix. Mine looked like this:

Poundcake with oranges

4. Add your flour, orange peel, and almonds and mix. This is what I had in my bowl at the end:

Poundcake with orangesPoundcake with oranges

5. Throw in the oven on medium heat till it's well done. Mine took about 40 minutes. I use a gas stove and oven, and this means I cook and bake with fire. I have 8 heat settings, from 1 [lowest] to 8 [highest] - I can make pizza on settings 6 to 7. I usually cook [in the oven] using the setting 3 or 2, even 1 - I feel the heat is too strong at 3. I baked this cake at setting 2.

Making the syrup!

1. Use a small pot. Place the sugar, water and the juice from 6 oranges in it, and on a small fire [low heat].

2. Mix until the sugar dissolves.

Poundcake with oranges

3. Leave it on the fire for 10-15 min, WITHOUT stirring. When it's done, you'll have less juice [syrup] left in the pot.

Assembling!
  • Peel your remaining 3 oranges and slice them.
  • Place your cake on something to cool down, for some 10 min. [I left mine in the tray, you'll see why]
  • Take a fork and pierce the surface of the cake a few times, in different places.
  • Pour your syrup over the cake [if the cake is in the tray, this step is less messy]
  • Place your orange slices on top of the cake.
Now, you can devour it! :DNow, you can devour it! :DNow, you can devour it! :D

Now, you can devour it! :D

Check out this close up!

Check out this close up!

My friend can testify this was moist, flavored, and out of ordinary delicious! Much better than any other cake I baked before. I must admit, this time I too liked the texture - I'm picky in this regard.

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

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Creme brulee or creme caramel..?

Publié le par Charly C.

Hello World~~

I realize I havent posted anything in a very long time, but this is due to more reasons. The main one is that I haven't cooked something worth sharing, nor something new.  If I did cook something different, I didn't take pictures, and recipes without pictures are boring and don't inspire anyone to try out the dish.

Yes, I remember baking a brownie with walnuts some 2 weeks ago. I found the recipe in a local newspaper, but brownie recipes are all the same. I hope to make it again soon enough and also take some pictures for you to enjoy. But, now let's return to today's recipe.

Creme brulee or creme caramel..?

What I wanted to cook was creme brulee, but I had ingredients for creme caramel...? Well, these 2 sweets are very similar, and to know which one is which, you better read this article because it explains things better than me. In the end, I think the result was a cross between these 2 desserts. In any case it was sweet, light, and with a consistency I liked.

I have used this pan a lot. The whole creme caramel was about a finger thick, though the pan is taller than that.

I have used this pan a lot. The whole creme caramel was about a finger thick, though the pan is taller than that.

Preparation time: some 15 minutes

Baking time: some 30 minutes

Cooling time: as long as possible, preferably in the fridge. I cooled mine overnight.

INGREDIENTS

For the custard:

  • 1 liter milk
  • 8 eggs
  • some vanilla essence

For the caramel

  • 250 or 300 grams sugar
Creme brulee or creme caramel..?

METHOD

First of all, you want to make the caramel. Pour all the sugar in a pot that can contain at least 2 liters of liquid. I used an oven pan of 20 x 30 cm, and some 3 cm deep? [I didn't measure it's depth, but it's pretty deep.] Make sure this is a metal oven pan because you'll place it on direct fire or heat before putting it in the oven.  Then you preheat the oven to medium heat. Place the pan on medium or fast fire, on the stove to melt and burn the sugar. Be careful how you handle the pan to avoid burning your hands or fingers. The sugar has to turn to a medium golden brown color. It doesn't matter if it turns dark brown because "brulee" means "burnt," so the color would match this description.

While you wait for the sugar to become caramel, beat the eggs in a large container, like for an omelet. Pour the milk and vanilla essence on top and mix. In fact, you can use any type of vanilla flavoring you like or have on hand. You can also use some lemon peel if you have, but not more than 2 teaspoons.

This slice is upside-down.

This slice is upside-down.

When all the sugar turned into caramel and covers all the bottom of your pan, pour the egg and milk mixture on top, and place in the oven. Bake on medium heat for some 25 or 30 minutes, but not longer. As the pictures show, mine got a bit too burned with these time and heat settings. Because you're using so many eggs and a lot of milk, it is best to overcook this dessert than to under-cook it.

Creme brulee or creme caramel..?

TIPS:

  • Let it cool completely before chilling it in the fridge. It tastes so much better the next day when it is really cold, like an yogurt.
  • When serving it, make sure to pour some of the brown syrup on top of the custard, because otherwise it will have no taste.

I hope you like this dessert.

Bon Appetit~~~

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

PS: post copied from the original CookingMyExperience blog I own, and edited in may 2018

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Midnight crepes - a blog entry

Publié le par Charly C.

Hello everyone.

Right now it's 1am over here. I just came from the kitchen where i prepared some crepes. I started them at something past midnight. This is the 3rd night I do this, granted, not in a row. I think I'm in the process of developing a new habit.

Midnight crepes - a blog entry

The midnight crepes are not all that special, they're regular, sweet crepes that you fill with anything you want that is sweet. In my case, these crepes seem to be better than the ones I make in the day-time. hmmm maybe my cravings determine me to cook better, or maybe i just like the food more.

In any case, the batter turned out exceptionally well, but of course i measured nothing. Water - 500 ml, 1 egg, 5 spoons sugar, pinch of salt, and several spoons of all purpose flour - 5 or maybe 6?

OOps, I should have cleaned the stove's top. Tonight the crepes are less burned, but I took no photos.

Well, this is all for now, bye~~

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

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My Linzer torte recipe

Publié le par Charly C.

Hello world~~~

I haven't updated in ages. Well, it is time for a brand new recipe, but first a little bit of a back-story. I received this round, flower shaped baking tray, so I had to try it out right away. And, in case you were wondering, yes, it has been used.

The recipe I used is one I posted already, but I twisted it up a little. The recipe is the one for vanilla biscuits. OK, truth be told, I haven't even measured the ingredients, I just freely poured. If you're a beginner, I highly recommend you measure them. The recipe for the vanilla biscuits uses almonds. I had no nuts around the house.

My gifted baking round/flower tray (on my bed) and compared to my hand.My gifted baking round/flower tray (on my bed) and compared to my hand.

My gifted baking round/flower tray (on my bed) and compared to my hand.

Remember what I called this recipe? Linzer torte? This cake has a crust with some jam on top. If you research the recipe, you'll that the one I used comes really close to it.  I used a cherry jam. I also gave up the lattice design the Linzer torte because of not having enough dough.

INGREDIENTS

  • 200 grams butter
  • 250 grams flour
  • 70 grams sugar
  • some salt
  • some baking powder
  • 30 ml vanilla essence
  • jam of choice

OPTIONAL

  • 100 grams almonds or other nuts
  • some cinnamon
  • vanilla sugar
  • confectioner's sugar

METHOD

Leave the jam to a side. Preheat the oven and prepare a baking tray of choice, using your favorite method

My Linzer torte recipe

Mix all the ingredients in a large enough bowl. You will need to use your hands for this. Get your hands wet so the dough won't stick to them. Mix really well.

Take all the dough and place in the baking tray. Take a lass with a regular shape to help you spread the dough evenly in the tray. It is best to make a little edge to prevent the jam from leaking over. Pour the jam on top, and spread it evenly. Feel free to add more nuts on top.

Place the tray in the oven, in the middle, with a medium-low heat. Baking last about half an hour. Using a toothpick to check if it's done is not very effective due to the jam on top. It is easy to burn this cake, so be careful.

Once it's done, remove it from the oven and let it cool. Once cooled, you can sprinkle confectioner's sugar on top.

Please leave your questions in the comments.

Bon Apetit

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

Originally posted on Feb 24, 2014 Edited in November 2018.
 

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"generic" pound cake recipe

Publié le par Charly C.

Hello world~~~

You might have many great pound cake recipes, and I cannot wait to find more. There are a few ingredients needed, just a few steps, and then, BAM! baking and voila!

I'll give you guys the quantities for a single loaf and the ones for 2 loafs in parenthesis, if you like it and want to try it again ;) This recipe doesn't need baking powder because the eggs and oil make it really fluffy.

not my picture :( it belongs to its maker

not my picture :( it belongs to its maker

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 large eggs (7 medium eggs)
  • 1 cup sugar (2 cups)
  • 5 tablespoons water (7 tablespoons)
  • 5 tablespoons oil (7 tablespoons)
  • some salt
  • 1 cup flour (1 1/2 cups)
  • vanilla, lemon, or other flavoring you like
  • cocoa (if you want it marbled)

METHOD

  1. Pre-heat the oven and prepare your baking tray.
  2. Mousse the eggs whites.
  3. Place the sugar in a pot, pour the water over, and melt the sugar over some heat (like on the stove). Make sure you get a syrup like looking ingredient and that you don't burn it.
  4. Pour the above syrup on the mousse and mix well.
  5. Pour the salt over the egg yolks, mix with a fork, and pour over the meringue above. Mix well.
  6. Add the oil and mix well.
  7. Add the flour and mix well.
  8. Add the flavoring and mix well.
  9. Pour the mix in the tray and bake for some 30 minutes. A toothpick should come out clean if you prick the pound cake in the middle.
"generic" pound cake recipe

MARBLED CAKE

  • Follow the steps 1 to 8.
  • Pour the mix in the tray saving some 2 or 3 tablespoons of batter over which you pour the cocoa.  Mix well and then pour on top of the rest of the batter with a left/right motion.
  • Bake it like above.
the cocoa mixture on the left. use a teaspoon to 'cut' the batter, to have some cocoa IN the pound-cakethe cocoa mixture on the left. use a teaspoon to 'cut' the batter, to have some cocoa IN the pound-cake

the cocoa mixture on the left. use a teaspoon to 'cut' the batter, to have some cocoa IN the pound-cake

You can further decorate your pound cake with any topping you like. You can also add raisins, nuts, or other dried fruits.

Bon Appetit!

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

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