Love those clouds…

A large javelina munched on mesquite seeds this morning, but all by himself!  Had he lost a battle for dominance?  A beautiful cardinal enjoyed the berries on the bush/tree (which name I don’t know).  Almost missed seeing the young coyote this afternoon.  My cat quickly ran from the door, her tail furred out, but I had to search for a few minutes.  The coyote, outside the fence, was so stealthy that the numerous quail pecking at seeds on the ground in his vicinity weren’t even flushed.

I need new glasses.  Bent to pick up a small twig and a brown leaf on the carpet, and they both danced away from me.  One was a small praying mantis, the other a tiny cricket.

What a lovely, cloudy day with just a touch of sprinkles.  People living in places other than our blistering hot desert might not say that about a cloudy day, but it’s pleasant outside; at 11am it was 73° and I still had all of the doors open to the gentle breezes. 

I thought that I had cut back on my summer watering schedule too soon.  My yard was starting to look a bit dry before Saturday’s spectacular rainstorm in the late afternoon.  Had two power outs.   Lightening?

Was having a large dinner party (for the Florence Nightingales who tended me after my surgery, and their spouses) on the deck and had to wait to put out the second table.  But the rain made for a cool evening, lovely for BBQ.  (Cool in Tucson = 80°.)

My daughter and family drove down from Phoenix; had just been at an outdoor kid’s birthday party, 102° there.  (BTW – she is expecting my third grandchild in two weeks.)

Most of the meal was very healthful – Caesar salad, homemade bread, wine, BBQ chicken and veggies (artichokes, eggplants, potatoes, tomatoes, Italian peppers, shallots, marinated in olive oil/ white wine/ garlic/ basil – from my garden), but the pièce de résistance was the chocolate-espresso torte, served with whipped cream, totally bad for you, and marvelously delicious.  The recipe, from a local chef, follows.

Chocolate-espresso torte  from Adam Zeman of Fuego

Makes 1 (9-inch) cake to serve 12-14 people

  • 1 pound bittersweet, good-quality chocolate
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 1 pound butter
  • 9 ounces hot espresso or strong coffee
  • 8 ounces (generous 1 cup) sugar
  • 6 large eggs
  • 6 large egg yolks
  • Chop chocolate into fine pieces. Reserve in a bowl with orange zest.
  • Bring to a boil the butter, sugar and espresso. Pour over chocolate and stir until all chocolate is melted. Cool to room temperature.
  • Whisk eggs and yolks in a bowl until combined and whisk in the chocolate mixture. Pour into a greased 9-inch cake pan that has been lined with parchment paper. Do not use a springform pan.
  • Place in a water bath; bake at 325 degrees for 45 minutes – 1 hour until cake rises above pan and cracks slightly. Cake will still jiggle and be loose in the center.
  • Cool to room temperature. Cake will fall slightly. Turn out of pan and serve with whipped cream.  

These are my notations for making a 3 ½ inch cake to serve two:

  • 2 ounces bittersweet, good-quality chocolate
  • Zest of 1/8 orange
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 ounce hot espresso or strong coffee
  • 2 tablespoons ounces sugar
  • 1 large eggs
  • 1 large egg yolk

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One Response to “Love those clouds…”

  1. Rhonda R. Fleming Says:

    It really is one killer chocolate dessert!

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