The pick of the week for Sweet Melissa Sundays is a Speakeasy Cake picked for us to try by Jeannette of The Whimsical Cupcake, thank you Jeanette! You can find the recipe here at Jeannette's site if you do not have The Sweet Melissa Baking Book.
As the name implies this cake does contain some drinky drinky, Brandy to be exact. As I read through the recipe I took a quick peek in the liquor cabinet and didn't see any brandy. I started googling Brandy substitutes and figured I could use some Southern Comfort or Bourbon or Scotch Whiskey, all of which we had on hand, but learned that Brandy was quite different from those since Brandy is made from grapes, like wine -- instead of corn like the others. Hmmm. I really don't know much about alcohol since I rarely drink (save for a fruity frozen something once or twice a year and maybe a glass of wine) so this was an interesting thing to learn about. I headed back to the liquor cabinet and after digging around a while, I found some actual Brandy -- Christian Brothers VS! Yay! I tried a sip and, not surprisingly, didn't like the taste -- but used it the cake anyway, since I really wanted to follow the recipe.
Next comes whipping the egg whites and sugar, making a marshmallow-y meringue to be folded into the brandy and chocolate mixture.
And there you have it, a Speakeasy Cake! It was moist and delicious and if I had not made it myself I wouldn't have guessed it had alcohol in it. It just seemed to intensify the chocolate, which is a good thing :) My only little quibble with this cake is that for me it turned out awfully crumbly...not sure why. Thinking of making cake pops or a trifle or something with the rest of it. For the next edition of Sweet Melissa Sundays we are making the same cake with a Sacher Torte twist, I'm thinking that I might swap out the Brandy and use apricot nectar instead...