Friday, September 9, 2011

50 Women Game Changers in Food - #14 Elizabeth David - Chocolate Cake




Portrait courtesy of Wikipedia

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...Elizabeth David was a child of privilege who grew to become a beautiful, adventurous woman. She was a food writer whom many credit with revitalizing home cooking and expanding the horizons of homemakers in Britain. Behind the scenes, her life was the stuff screen writers dream of. As a young woman she studied art in France, and while she failed as an artist, this period of her life introduced her to the glories of the French kitchen. She abandoned art for the theater, but was unsuccessful there as well. Her stage career ended abruptly when she ran off with a much older man and began the first of many adventures that would mark her singular life. The liaison took her through the Mediterranean where her love of food was fueled. She escaped the Nazi invasion of Greece by fleeing to Egypt where her language skills made her a natural for employment with the British government. When the war ended, she returned to England. Wartime rationing was still in effect and she was dismayed by the restrictions it imposed on the British diet. That led her to write a series of articles celebrating the food of the Mediterranean and the ingredients used in its cooking. Her writing sparked the imaginations of her war weary readers and her career as a food writer began. Within ten years of her return home she was a major influence in British cooking. She would go on to write eight books, some of which were autobiographical. She led a remarkable, unconventional life, and while she was purported to be an unpleasant person, she was an extraordinary food writer who introduced the British to olive oil and garlic and the wonders of the Mediterranean kitchen. She's earned her place on the Gourmet Live list of Women Game Changers in Food. Her food, to this day, remains some of the best around. I've chosen a recipe for her flourless chocolate cake to share with you today. It is delicious.

Elizabeth David's Chocolate Cake ...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Elizabeth David

Ingredients:
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon brewed espresso or any strong coffee
1 tablespoon brandy
6 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup ground almonds
3 large egg yolks
3 large egg whites

Directions:
1) Preheat oven to 300 degrees and butter an 8 inch spring-form pan.
2) In a heavy saucepan over low heat, melt 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate with vanilla, espresso and brandy.
3) Add butter, sugar, and ground almonds and heat mixture until the butter is melted. Remove pan from the heat.
4) Beat 3 large egg yolks until they are lemon colored. Stir them into the chocolate mixture.
5) Whip 3 large egg whites until they are just stiff and fold them into the chocolate mixture.
6) Turn batter into prepared pan and bake cake in the middle of the oven for 45 minutes. Cake will have some cracks on top and a tester will not come out clean. Let cake cool completely on a rack and remove side of the pan.
7) Brush with raspberry jelly or whipped cream or powdered sugar. Yield: 8 servings.

The following bloggers are also featuring the recipes of Elizabeth David. I hope you'll visit all of them. They are all great cooks who have wonderful blogs.

Val - More Than Burnt Toast
Joanne - Eats Well With Others
Taryn - Have Kitchen Will Feed
Susan - The Spice Garden
Claudia - A Seasonal Cook in Turkey
Heather - girlichef
Miranda - Mangoes and Chutney
Jeanette - Healthy Living
April - Abby Sweets
Katie - Making Michael Pollan Proud
Mary - One Perfect Bite
Kathleen -Bake Away with Me
Viola - The Life is Good Kitchen
Sue - The View from Great Island
Barbara - Movable Feasts
Kathleen - Gonna Want Seconds
Amy - Beloved Green
Jeanette - Healthy Living
Linda - Ciao Chow Linda
Linda A - There and Back Again
Martha - Lines from Linderhof


Next week we will highlight the food and recipes of Sheila Lukins and Julee Rosso. It will be really interesting to see what everyone comes up with. If you'd like to join us please email me for additional information. Everyone is welcome.

54 comments:

Gloria said...

Mary, what lovely and interesting post!! and the recipe look delicious, I love heard about these women, love about Elizabeth David! gloria

Athina(Sugar Buzz) said...

Mary thank you so much for passing by my blog!
Your post is so interesting and I'm looking forward for the next!
Athina

Anna A. said...

I want this cake... booze, coffee and chocolate. OH YES!

Dzoli said...

What a fantastic woman:) I would sy ahe still became artist but in another field;))Lucky us;)

Cindy said...

I'm inclined to agree with Dzoli, a true artist was Ms David!

Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

As I said on Val's post, Elizabeth David is one of the ladies I knew the least about. It never occurred to me about her escaping from the Nazi's, but of course it makes sense now that I read what you've shared.

Just think where we would be in terms of healthy and tasty food filled with sunshine of the Mediterranean had it not been for Elizabeth David. Your cake is a perfect example.
Sam

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

I look forward every week to reading about these women. I have learned something interesting everytime! This cake sounds very good. blessings ~ tanna

Pam said...

I keep an Elizabeth David book in my car at all times, it is in there so that I am never without something to read.

Kim said...

This cake is perfect. It as everything to makes it perfect: brandy, chocolate and coffee!

Clint said...

She's giving me that look like she doesn't quite trust me. Hmmmm.

But the chocolate cake is all that matters!

Sue/the view from great island said...

I just can't wait to make this cake...and your black and white photo is brilliant!

StephenC said...

You tell stories in a wonderful way, Mary. I don't bake desserts, but I like reading anything you bring us.

Miranda said...

Mary, I love how you presented the photo, and this cake does sound wonderfully good!

GLENDA CHILDERS said...

This is such a great series, Mary. And the recipe is gluten-free. Nice. Too bad this lovely lady had a reputation for being unpleasant. How could you be around so much delicious food and be unpleasant?

Fondly,
Glenda

What's Baking?? said...

Interesting post you have here. Your black & white pics caught my eyes!

Jenn said...

Love the background you gave us on Elizabeth. I had no idea she had led such an interesting life!
The cake looks and sounds delicious!

lifeisfull said...

Just by looking at the ingredients I can tell it's going to be a good chocolate cake! Thanks for introducing Elizabeth David to me.

bellini said...

This cake symbolizes Elizabeths lofe to me, seemingly conventional and yet not. Without the flour this would be a gluten free dream!!!

Cooking Creation said...

Mmmm brandy, chocolate and coffee together sounds amazing!!

yummychunklet said...

Fantastic black and white photo of a delicious cake!

Indulge said...

Thanks Mary for stoping by my blog; your kind words mean a lott for me.
Love Ash.

Nan said...

That was so very interesting. I've seen her picture, and the covers of her books, but really didn't know anything about her. Is there life without garlic and olive oil? I lived probably twenty years without either one. Imagine.

Stephen said...

Very interesting note. I was not familiar with Elizabeth David or at least had never attributed her name to cooking. My loss, I will have to check out her cookbooks soon. The chocolate cake looks wonderful.

From the Kitchen said...

I really think that chocolate is the best medicine!!

Best,
Bonnie

The Country Cook said...

What an interesting post. The recipe looks wonderful. I look forward to reading the next post!

Galexi Cupcakes said...

Thank you for visiting my blog and introducing me to yours. I enjoyed reading the post on Elizabeth David. I've subscribed to your blog and will definitely be a faithful reader and bookmarking many recipes. Jackie

Swathi said...

Delicious chocolate cake love it.Nice way to honor her.

Erika Beth, the Messy Chef said...

What a great woman to draw inspiration from for a post. Thanks for introducing her to me!

Chiara said...

what an interesting post, I love chocolate and coffee together...Have a good weekend...

Becki Jacobs said...

This sounds like a great recipe! I make a chocolate cake with espresso in it and it has a wonderful chocolate flavor.

Food, Fun and Life in the Charente said...

Mmmm Nigel loves chocolate cake, maybe if I put a bit of extra brandy........ :-) Have a good day. Diane

Lauren said...

Chocolate cake with espresso and brandy and almonds? Count me in!

Mónica said...

What interesting post! Your blog is very nice!!
Mónica- Recetasdemon

Manasi said...

Love the picture and the recipe. I am bookmarking it:)

Karen (Back Road Journal) said...

This chocolate cake sounds great. I like the nuts added to the recipe. Thanks for sharing with us.

Joanne said...

Wow I never knew the back-story to Elizabeth David's life! It really is the stuff that screenplays are made of! This cake looks delicious. Simple yet utterly satisfying.

nádya said...

Dear Mary, surely, it is not a good idea to visit your blog hungry!!! Oh, dear, I just saw soooo many delicious recipes I got wish to try them all...Thank you for stopping by my little corner and your kind words...well, surely I will have to come back here more times, anyway when I want to make something different in the kitchen I always look for help from my old buddy WWW...
Blessings and have a lovely week-end,
Nádya

scrambledhenfruit said...

I love this series, Mary! I'd never heard of Elizabeth David- she sounds fascinating, as does this cake! :)

Janice said...

This is an excellent little biography of Elizabeth David, she was truly inspirational.

Rosemary said...

I, too, have been loving this series and more intimate peeks into the lives of the game-changers. Elizabeth David I find especially intriguing. I must read more about her.

And the cake! Just WOW.

honey82 said...

Delicious cake!!!;-))
Bravissima
Un bacio*

That Girl said...

I feel like my misadventures in career kind of parallel hers. Maybe there's hope for me yet.

Annie Oakley's Kitchen said...

What a great series! I wonder why she was reported to be an unpleasant woman.

Beloved Green said...

Lovely write up on Elizabeth. She is such a fascinating cook and author to me. Love the recipe you chose as well to highlight her.

Alessandra said...

This cake is very Italian, I can really relate to it :-).

Mary, in case you or any of your readers are interested i have a blog candy on to win mine and Arantxa's book Party Food for Girls.

Basically it is like asking blogger friends to promote it, I guess this is what a blog candy is all about :-), and two small writers from the end of the world cannot compete with the marketing machines of the TV chefs, so why not, I'll try with blogging!!!

It is a good book made with love and lots of work, I can personally assure you of that :-).
Of course it I will post worldwide
:-).

Have a good weekend

ciao
Alessandra

girlichef said...

This cake sounds fabulous...I love adding espresso or coffee to my chocolate cakes. I have loved learning more about so many great ladies I'd never heard of before...thanks so much for inspiring us and starting this great cook-along =)

tasteofbeirut said...

I read one of her books and while I was not overly impressed I did envy her lifestyle; this cake is fabulous, reminding me of a classic one my mother used to make, with only one tablespoon of flour and lots of beaten egg whites.

Holly said...

Her cake sounds wonderful! I love how there's coffee and brandy in it! Yum!!

Red Nomad OZ said...

What a life! Can't wait for the movie ... but in the meantime I'll content myself with this FAAAAABULOUS cake!!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Jeanette said...

I did not know who Elizabeth David was until this week, so thank you for leading us on this journey to learn about all the great women in food. Love the black and white photo of this decadent cake in honor of Elizabeth David.

lena said...

interesting background on e.david.I would like to check out the rest of the bloggers and see what they made..

Taryn (Have Kitchen, Will Feed) said...

This is so classic - thanks for posting!

tandysinclair.com said...

thanks Mary for these series of articles :)

Virginia Belle said...

This looks divine! I cannot wait to try this recipe! Thanks for sharing.

AddThis

Related Posts with Thumbnails