Once again, I was taken in by a photo. Not even a good one. This year's Bon Appetit Restaurant issue (Sept., '08) has a minute photo on the cover of a chocolate cake. Referenced to an incorrect page number by the index, I did finally locate the Vanilla Bake Shop's recipe for Chocolate Caramel Fleur de Sel Cake.
Anyway. Hmmmm. Yummm. I thought when I read the recipe title. And here I am trapped in a culinary black hole far from my beloved New York where something like this is only a train, subway, and long foot race away! I was going to have to do it myself. And so, I did. I skipped the almond garnish they called for, it seemed like an unnecessary cloaking device for an imperfect ganache (isn't is supposed to be? I don't want it to look like the bake shop made it, after all.).
That is not the camera's resolution preventing a clearer shot, the cake is black as death with chocolate, espresso, deep amber caramel (and perfect insanity).
The trouble with this drop-dead magnificent moist, rich heavy four layer chocolate, caramel and salt cake is that I am half passed out on the floor, using the keys of the computer which landed next to me to me as I was felled by this chocolate demon, to type on the keys I know so well and desperately advise you ever so delicately that one should be ever so careful with this cake, ah-hem (Look out! Don't try to eat a slice alone! Have a battalion on standby! And a freaking medic, for Pete's sake! This thing is madness! What kind of lunatic could come up with such a thing?!). What did I think I was going to do? Take these pictures then eat that slice of cake?! Three bites later, here I am, really only writing to advise this is probably goodbye.
Here is a shot I took as I was heading towards the floor: Hail Mary play of food blogging.
Sure, make this cake. Then try to eat it. I triple dog dare you. Is is good? Perhaps a tad too sweet for my taste but if you care for overwhelming rich desserts then, by all means. The recipe is accurate and the method was pretty much fool-proof (as evidenced by this post, from the floor!)
Fun Hostess Fact: The Hostess is a little obsessed with roses in just-overbloom, just starting to be "gone by" as they used to say. These were the last thing I saw before blacking out they brought me a last moment of joy...