Monday, November 7, 2011

Cooking Club #1 {Updated}

[Updated 8/4/14: Over the weekend, I was perusing past Sweet B's posts, and came across my beloved Cooking Club reviews. Oh, how I miss Cooking Club! We made it to 17 meetings, and then it turned into themed parties because some new people wanted to come but didn't want to do the cooking, and other members' schedules were getting too hectic. But, sadly, the themed parties slowly dwindled. I must find a way, errr the time(?), to renew them! Ugh, being an adult is over-rated. Anyhoo, in looking back on these particular posts I realized a few of them were still lacking food photos and details. So now I'm on a mission to re-create those dishes sans photos and highlight, again, the Cooking Club days. If you're a new reader and are unfamiliar with these posts, yay! If you read them when first posted, know that I'm splitting each one into it's own post instead of combining them. I'm aiming to post a new Cooking Club highlight each Monday until I'm through. Maybe you'll rediscover a dish you've been meaning to attempt. Other than photo additions and detail or link updates, the posts will remain intact with original content.]

---> Cooking Club is coming up soon, and now that I'm blogging, I want to share these moments but I thought I should play catch-up first. So without further ado, here (and in more posts to come) is what we've been up to. Enjoy!

I'm sure I scored high on plating. Isn't it pretty?
#1 July: Chocolate Cake    

The Menu:
Super Moist Chocolate Cake with Chocolate-Cinnamon Topping
Cocoa Cola Cake
Hershey Bar Cake

Yay! Our first official Cooking Club meeting. My co-workers, Jessica and Jenny, and I decided to get together once a month to enjoy a hobby all of us adore: COOKING! There's just the three of us, which I LOVE, but we're hoping to expand, to find more friends and family who have a love for cooking and want to share in our hobby. There really aren't any guidelines for the club, other than staying within the monthly theme, and the dish must be prepared on site. Other than that, everything is pretty much up in the air. However, I made my own little personal guideline: It must be my first time making the recipe. I want to explore new foods that I don't get to normally make at home...especially since Mr. B can be a picky eater and he doesn't like sweets. (Gasp, I know.) Except chocolate chip cookies, the brown butter caramel cookies I make every Christmas, and vanilla ice cream.

Four our first meeting, we chose the chocolate cake theme because who doesn't like chocolate cake? Well, actually, I'm not that big of a fan. But most people enjoy it.

I chose to make a Super Moist Chocolate Cake with Chocolate-Cinnamon Topping (<--- check it out!), which I found on the Food Network's web site.

It was quite fun learning how everyone behaves in the kitchen, preps their food, uses utensils, etc. It's interesting how much one can learn about a person by watching them in the kitchen. I'm a very organized person, I follow recipes almost exactly (something I'm hoping Cooking Club helps me break Update:---> it did! Now I rarely follow a recipe, just glance at it for inspiration. I'm very comfortable with my tastes and experiences), I measure, I'm neat and clean. I use the appropriate tools. I can't stand for my kitchen to be dirty, and usually clean as I go. However, I found out that my co-worker, Jessica, is crazy in the kitchen, the complete opposite of me. I was very shocked because she is such an organized person like I am. She's definitely a different person when that apron is on! haha

I had so much fun with my first Cooking Club recipe. It was the first time I had ever worked with tofu, and with zucchini as a dessert ingredient. The cake was by far the most moist chocolate cake I have ever eaten, and I know this will be my "go-to" from now on. The applesauce and yogurt gave it this moist texture, and I couldn't even tell there was zucchini in the batter. The chocolate drizzle and powdered sugar were perfect, and although the chocolate-cinnamon topping was a nice touch, I could do without. Overall, I really liked the dish, and it was my favorite out of the three because it wasn't too sweet.

I hate when desserts hurt my teeth. No thank you.

Hershey Bar Cake, Cocoa Cola Cake, and my cake.

*I hope you enjoyed these Cooking Club snippets. There are many more to come as I try to play catch-up before this month's meeting. I hope these themes, and even Cooking Club itself, inspire you to gather with your friends and family in the kitchen, and make sweet moments (and delicious food) of your own.

**I've only included the recipes to the dishes I made. Only because I'm unsure of where everyone got theirs...and hey, we gotta give credit where credit is due. If you have any questions about the other dishes, I'll ask the other members where they got their recipes and pass it along!

[Update: I keep envisioning making this chocolate cake again for my father-in-law. He likes sweet and chocolate, and I wonder if this healthier version would past the test. I'm thinking next family dinner. Will post new photos when I do!]

With Love and God Bless,

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