Oh dear. A kitchen mishap. Big plans to bake a chocolatey, decadent, gorgeous birthday cake for a loved one. Said cake recipe was new to me and untested in my kitchen.
Plus, I was having a bit of a trying day. Not to get all “Like Water for Chocolate” on you guys here, but I find cooking when I’m sad often leads to mishaps. Long story short, the cake fell to pieces when I tried to invert the layers out of the pans. Whoops.
In the back of my mind, I’ve always said that if something like this were ever to happen to me, I’d salvage the situation by making a trifle. And part of me has longed to make a trifle, but not yet found quite the right occasion/excuse to do so.
Now, apparently that day had come, whether I was ready for it or not. Had I willed this into being? Obviously, all of my preaching to my Yoga students about going with the flow was coming home to roost with yours truly. This just might have been a test. Okay, let’s do this, then!
Luckily, no one was expecting a picture perfect cake anyways, so the incident wasn’t a big deal, except in my mind. The trifle was creamy, fun and festive dessert, and crisis was averted. No tears were shed.
The lesson here? I think it’s don’t cry over broken cakes, my friends. It’s generally not worth it. And there’s always tomorrow, or some alternative iteration of a recipe to save the day right now.
Accidental Chocolate Cherry Trifle
1 to 2 layers of chocolate cake, cut into large chunks (or one small pound cake loaf, in chunks)
1/2 cup of sour cherry jam
1/4 cup dried sour cherries
6 ounces chocolate chips or chunks (bittersweet or semisweet)
3/4 cup coconut milk
1 teaspoon each vanilla extract and almond extract
2 tablespoons almond slivers (toasting optional)
For garnish: white chocolate bits and dark chocolate bits
1. Make vegan ganache. Warm coconut milk over low heat. Don’t boil. As milk heats, place chocolate bits in a heat resistant bowl. Slowly pour warmed milk over chocolate chunks, stirring frequently until smooth. Add in vanilla and almond extracts and stir again. Allow ganache to cool and thicken slightly.
2. In a see through dessert glass or jar, spoon in some cherry jam. Top with a layer of cake, then a layer of chocolate ganache, then some dried cherries. Repeat layers, ending with a dollop of ganache. Garnish this with white and dark chocolate curls (Make the curls with a veggie peeler). Put some dried sour cherries on top if you want.
3. Enjoy, and no tears, love. Act like this was the dessert you meant to make, and no one will be any the wiser