Last night we had dinner at the home of our good friends Judy and Peter and, it was there that we met their good friends Art and George. What a wonderful evening filled with great stories, movie discussions and a lot of laughing.
And, of course…..Peter was cooking so that meant an outstanding meal was to be enjoyed by all. We made dessert, but before I give you the recipe for an easy, delicious and impressive cake (from Giada de Laurentiis, Everyday Italian cookbook) let me tell you what Peter served.
We started the cocktail portion of the evening with Brie covered in melted honey! I could have eaten that all night. I will be trying that in our home. We drank Prosecco. We then moved into the dining room where the dinner started with homemade porcini gnocchi. Our main meal was pork tenderloin stuffed with cheese and spinach, asparagus drizzled with a thick balsamic and white barley accented with sauteed onions and peppers. We drank Robert Foley, The Griffin.
Peter…..as usual, you put your all into a dinner party and as usual, it was a smashing success!
Then there was our dessert: (what you don’t see in the photo is that right before running out of the house with the cake we decided to surround it with fresh raspberries) What you also don’t see is that Sandy snuck in a couple of small brown paper sacks filled with Irish potatoes from Crossroads Bakery!
Chocolate Amaretti Cake
Butter-flavored nonstick cooking spray
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup slivered almonds
1 cup (about 2 ounces) baby amaretti cookies (we used the regular size cookies and measured out 2 ounces)
1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), at room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons grated orange zest (approx. 1 orange) (we left this out)
4 large eggs
About 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, for sifting
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Spray a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick spray and refrigerate.
In a small bowl, microwave the chocolate chips, stirring every 30 seconds, until melted and smooth, about 2 minutes.
In a food processor, combine the almonds and cookies, and pulse until finely ground. Transfer to a bowl. Add the butter, sugar and orange zest to the processor and blend until creamy and smooth. With the machine running, add the eggs one at a time. Add the nut mixture and the melted chocolate. Pulse until blended.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake until the center puffs and a tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Cool the cake in the pan for 15 minutes. Transfer to a platter, sift the cocoa powder over, and serve.
(as I said above, we then surrounded it with fresh raspberries)