Monday, January 27, 2014

Monday Munchies: French Onion Steaks and An Old-fashioned Chocolate Cake

Welcome to Monday Munchies where I share my experiences with various cookbooks and magazines.
If you are visiting from the Grow you Blog hop, welcome!  My Grow Your blog hop with a giveaway is HERE.
Today I am going to share a success and well, a not so pretty success out of my Cuisine at Home magazine.  This is their free sample issue, which did it's job, I have now re-subscribed.
 French Onion Steaks with Cheese Toasts
This is an updated version of Salisbury steak that was very simple and earned 4 stars from all family members.  The girls didn't eat the onions but that was fine with Mr. Glitter Tart and I, we loved them.

For the Steak-
1 1/4 lb. ground chuck
1/4 cup mined fresh parsley (I substituted dry)
2 Tbsp. minced scallions (I used regular onion chopped very small)
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
For the Sauce-
1 Tbsp. Olive oil
2 cups sliced onions
1 tsp. sugar
1Tbsp. minced garlic
1 Tbsp. tomato past (mine had Italian seasoning in it)
2 cups low-sodium beef broth
1/4 cup dry red wine (I used Cabernet sauvignon)
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
It also called for Minced Fresh parsley and Shredded parmesan as a garnish, I omitted these.
Combine ground chuck, parsley, scallions, salt and paper.  Divide evenly into four portions and shape each into a 1" thick oval patties.  Place 2 Tbsp. flour in a shallow dish, dredge each patty in the flour. (reserve 1 tsp. flour)
Heat oil in a sauté pan over medium-high heat.  Add patties and sauté 3 minute son each side or until browned.  Remove from pan.
Add onions and sugar to the pan and sauté 5 minutes.  Stir in garlic and tomato paste and sauté until paste begins to brown (about 1 minutes).  Sprinkle mixture with reserves 1 tsp. flour and cook 1 minutes.  Stir in broth, wine, salt and thyme.
Return meat to pan and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium low, cover and simmer 10 minutes.
Serve steaks on cheese toast with onion sauce ladled over. 
Our favorite part was the Cheese Toasts.
you will need
4 slices baguette cut diagonally
2 Tbsp. butter at room temperature
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
Pinch of paprika
1/4 cup shredded Swiss cheese
1 Tbsp. shredded Parmesan
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Place bread on a baking sheet.  Combine butter, garlic and paprika and spread on the bread.  Sprinkle each cheese evenly over the butter and bake until bread is crisp and cheese is bubbly.  about 10-15 minutes.

 While the French Onion Steaks were a success the Old-Fashioned Cake had some serious issues.  I knew right away that there were a few things wrong with the recipe but decided to follow it to the t simply to share the final result here.
You will need:
3 cups all purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I used Ghirardelli)
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. table salt
2 cups hot water
3/4 cup vegetable oil (I used butter)
2 Tbsp distilled white vinegar
1 Tbsp. instant coffee granules
1 Tbsp. Vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F with the rack in the center.  Spray two round cake pans with nonstick spray.
Combine together water, oil, vinegar, instant coffee and vanilla in a large measuring cup. Whisk together (I used a mixer) flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda and alt.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix until combined.  Divide the batter evenly and bake 30 -40 minutes.
Cool cakes on a rack for 15 minutes. (here is where things went south) Then invert them onto a rack.  Leave the cakes upside down (this supposedly flattens domed cakes (NOT) to cool completely.
As you can see from the image below the cakes cracked badly and then never got "flattened".  My suggestion is to cool then place on rack right side up and slice off the extra to make the cakes smooth.
 The next issue came with the frosting.
Glossy Chocolate Icing
1 Stick unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
pinch of salt
1 1/4 cups heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup sour cream (I was out so used Greek yogurt)
1 tsp. instant coffee granules
2 tsp. vanilla extract
Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Stir in sugar, cocoa and salt.  Combine heavy cream, sour cream and instant coffee in a large measuring cup, mixing until smooth.  Gradually add cream mixture to chocolate until blended and smooth.  Cook until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is smooth and hot to the touch, 6-8 minutes.  Do not boil.
The problem with the 6-8 minutes is that the frosting never gets thick enough. 
Off of the heat add the vanilla and cool icing to room temperature until spreadable 2-3 hours. 
After 3 hours my frosting was still in the pourable phase, so that's what I did, I poured it over my lumpy cake. 
Despite the cracked cakes and runny frosting the flavor was there.  Next time I will cool my cakes my way and heat my frosting until it has thickened (then probably whip it a bit also).
So what have you been cooking?


Joluise said...

Yum, those two recipes looking lovely. Could do with a slice of that chocolate cake:)) No baking here, just too hot to use the oven but I made chilli beans for dinner - made early this morning so I won't need to cook this evening and make the kitchen uncomfortable.

I love cooking and I have found some really great recipes through blogging:))

Lorena Rey said...

yumm, now I'm hungry :)
I love your blog and your art is amazing !! you're very creative and talented girl