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Monday, August 24, 2009

Nothing good can happen . . .

Death by Chocolate Zucchini Cake Muffins 
Recipe can be found at 

Erik's grandfather, Ches Walker, has a saying, "Nothing good can happen if you're out after midnight!"

I'd like to revise that saying for the bakers out there and make this rule:  "Nothing good tasting can happen if you're baking after 10:00 p.m."

We finished off the last of the 3 dozen chocolate zucchini cake muffins I made last week.  This cake is so delicious.  I have only had the cake two times in my life and it may possibly be my new favorite cake.  The trouble is that it is very rich and my kids can't get enough of it (well, to be honest, neither can I). In fact, the last two muffins went missing courtesy of Willie James.  He saw them on the counter, moved the step stool over to them and devoured them right there in the kitchen.  I came out only to find a boy with a chocolatey grin and empty muffin wrappers. He grinned at me and said, "All don" - his version of "all gone." 
So, hankering some muffins at 10:30 tonight,  I ingeniously decided to make another batch.  I even had to send Erik out to the barn in search of two eggs.  (Eggs are a rarity on these parts right now.  The old chickens are molting and the new chickens haven't started laying yet and those chickens that are still laying are hiding them in feed troughs, hay bales and other non obvious places.)  I began whipping the muffins together and thought to myself:  "Self, why don't you add some whole wheat flour to this recipe to see if you can healthen it up a little bit?"  I realize "healthen" isn't really a word, but I was talking to myself, so what did it matter?

So, I zoomed through adding the ingredients and as I added the flour,  I had that "AHHH!" moment when I realized as I just finished dumping the last scoop in that I had added almost ALL whole wheat stone ground flour instead of 1/4 whole wheat stone ground flour and 3/4 regular all purpose flour.  

I had another strike against me anyway as instead of having a small box of chocolate pudding, I only had a large box of chocolate pudding.  I figured - well, maybe the extra pudding will help even it out.  It was not nearly as liquidy as the first batch I made, but I figure it would all work out.

I got the first batch out and I put the toothpick in, and it came out indicating it needed more time in the oven.  I put the tin back in and licked the toothpick (Don't judge me, you know you all do it!") and it did NOT taste good!  And by that I mean it did not taste chocolatey and gooey - it tasted like whole wheat stone ground flour.

So while those muffins finished cooking, I decided to doctor up the rest of the batch.  I added some more cocoa and sugar and some extra chocolate chips.  Then, I got the first batch of muffins out of the oven, re-lined and filled the muffin tin, and put the second batch in the oven.  I then dusted a first batch muffin with powdered sugar and tasted it.  And it was warm and chocolatey and gooey.  Not quite the same as the original recipe, but almost as good.  You know - the kind of good tasting when you know it is healthy but it also feels a little decadent.  

So, I just got the second batch out of the oven - the batch that I doctored up.  Hopefully I didn't ruin those ones! Ok, the suspense was killing me, so I went in and tried one from the second batch.  You will be happy to know they are very good also.  You can still detect the healthiness of the stone ground whole wheat flour, but the rich chocolate and moistness of the cake makes it feel very decadent.  

The moral of the story - don't bake after 10:00 p.m. because you are likely tired, confused, and not paying attention well enough to follow the directions you make up in your head.  You will make a mistake in your recipe and waste time and ingredients trying to doctor up your mistakes.  Then you will worry about your mistakes and wonder how you can justify throwing out perfectly good muffins just because they don't taste like the original recipe.  Then, you will taste the muffins and they will be fine and you will have wasted an hour of your time baking muffins, blogging about your mistakes and then realizing your mistakes weren't so bad after all and all of this was for nothing.  

Consider it a lesson learned!  I promise to never try to make something healthy again.

Wait . . .  that didn't come out right.

I guess I should also make a rule that nothing good can come from blogging after 10:00 p.m.!

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