Woah. Can you see anything different? Please, please, please do me a favour, and if you are reading this in an email, or in a reader program, or on your phone, click over to the main site and check it out.
It’s a big day here on The Muffin Myth! For one thing, it’s our birthday; I hit publish on the first ever post exactly two years ago today! Time to celebrate, right? And another thing – IT’S RELAUNNNCHHHH DAAAAAAAYYYYY (please use your best internal Oprah voice while reading that sentence)!!!!!!!!!!!
Before I blow your mind with some chocolate yoghurt bundt cake, I want to share a little about the growth of me and The Muffin Myth, and what exactly it is we’re celebrating on this anniversary. If you’ve been hanging around here for a while you may have already noticed some changes over the last few months, largely to the content and structure of the blog. Back in January I was talking to my best Stockhomie, Alison (that’s us above, doing what we do best), who happens to be a brand planning and marketing expert, about how I wanted to take the blog to the next level. We sat down over drinks and had an invaluable strategy session, in which she helped me to realize what my my goals are with this space; to really reach people and teach about food, and to build credibility as a nutrition professional. I wanted to streamline the content in a way that focused in on nutrition, yet still allowed me to post recipes for treats every once in a while. We came up with the ‘know what you’re eating’ segments at the end of each recipe. Alison also suggested the weekly ‘what’s good around the web’ series.
Around the same time I started listening to the Joy the Baker podcast. Joy’s first cookbook was published in February, and she was heading out into the world on a book tour, which, I learned from the podcast, she was funding herself. Joy the Baker was funding her own book tour? That totally blew my mind. And, it was a light bulb moment. You want stuff to happen in your life? Then get out there and make stuff happen in your life!
Then, I got accepted into a masters program in nutrition, studying at The Center for Biosciences and Nutrition at the Karolinska Institute. It’s kind of a big deal, right? So, I got all fired up and talked to Alison again and was like, okay, lets do this thing. Let’s reach people! Let’s teach people about food! Let’s help people know what they’re eating!
Alison introduced me to David, who volunteered his time to come and take professional profile pictures for me. He’s one of the loveliest people I’ve ever met. And then she introduced me to Emelie, a fellow Canadian and an extraordinarily talented designer. Alison held my hand through much of the early design process, coming with me to meetings with Emelie, and helping to choose a logo direction and template. She asked questions that I didn’t have the vocabulary for, and I know I got so much more out of the process because of having her on board. All of this she did pro bono, on her own time, out of the goodness of her heart. And folks, it is a good heart. I am forever in her debt, and really have come to think of this space as our blog.
What you see today is the results of several months, many meetings, and hours of work by Emelie, Alison, and myself. Emelie has been outstanding to work with, and I can’t even begin to express how glad I am to have gone with someone who was truly an experienced, professional designer who knows logos and branding well. I just love it!
I need to also mention my sister Emily, a small business and web strategy expert, who spent countless hours on the phone with me while I was trying to decide what to do, how much to spend, and who to go with. She also reached out to many of her personal contacts and asked around for advice. My good friend Steve, who knows the design business, similarly indulged a string of lengthy emails, answered a zillion questions, and encouraged me to go with someone professional. My parents, whose love and support is endless, are the reason I was able to fund the project. And my dear husband, Paul, the man who constantly challenges me to go beyond what I believe I can do, gave the nod of support so I could chase this dream of mine.
Watch out, world, I’m coming at you. You will know what you’re eating!
Don’t think I’ve forgotten about you, dear readers. Without you, all of this would be for nothing. I want to thank, from the bottom of my heart, the hundreds, yes, hundreds, of you who visit this space each day from all corners of the world. It is humbling and mind blowing both. Your presence here means so much to me, as do your comments, and your emails. I wanted to do a little something for you, and so, I’m giving away a copy of a book which I am enjoying more than any food book I’ve read in some time: Tamar Adler’s ‘An Everlasting Meal’ (pictured above).
There are three ways you can enter this giveaway, and you can enter all three ways if you please.
1. Simply leave a comment on this post.
2. Subscribe to this blog, either through the email subscription button, or using a RSS reader program like Google Reader. Then, leave a comment letting me know you’ve done that. If you’re already a subscriber, just leave me a comment and let me know.
3. ‘Like’ The Muffin Myth on Facebook! Then leave a comment letting me know you’ve done that.
If you enter all three ways, please leave three separate comments; I’ll be using a random number generator to choose the winner. The giveaway is open until midnight, PST, on Friday July 6th, and is open to anyone, anywhere.
Do you remember a while back when I was telling you about a day where I just couldn’t live another moment without owning a bundt pan? This is the cake that pushed me over the edge. It’s dense, it’s moist, it’s chocolately, it’s coated in a dark chocolate ganache which really rounds the whole thing out. It is most definitely a cake worthy of a celebration, but it is also a simple cake, one you could make for a casual weeknight dinner party. I’ve made this cake for birthdays, I’ve made it (in multiples) for dinners of more than 30 people, and I’ve made it just because. I dare say this may be my favourite chocolate cake at the moment. I really hope you like it.
Chocolate Yoghurt Bundt Cake Recipe:
Listen, if you know me you know that I believe in keeping treats as treats. But, I know you and I knew you might want to play around with the ingredients a bit. The original recipe called for only all purpose flour and sour cream instead of yoghurt. I tried out swapping in 50% whole wheat pastry flour and using yoghurt instead of sour cream (that move was out of laziness primarily, I had yoghurt in the fridge and didn’t feel like going to the store) and frankly, I could note no difference in taste or texture. I have written the recipe as such. Do what you will.
Recipe adapted from Shutterbean via Bi Rite Market’s Eat Good Food Cookbook
For the cake:
1 cup (225g) butter, plus more for the pan
1 cup water
1/3 cup cocoa powder, plus more for the pan
1 tsp salt
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
2 large eggs
1/2 cup plain yoghurt
1 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat your oven to 350 F / 180 C. Butter your bundt pan generously, then add a couple of tablespoons of cocoa powder to the pan and shake around to coat. Tap out the excess and set aside.
In a small pot over medium heat, combine the butter, water, salt, and cocoa powder. Let the butter melt, and whisk the mixture together. Remove from the heat.
In a large bowl, sift together the flours, sugar, and baking soda. Pour in half of the cocoa mixture, and stir to combine, then the other half. Add eggs, one at a time, and stir until well combined. Lastly, add the yoghurt and vanilla extract.
Pour cake mixture into your prepared bundt pan, and set in the oven. Bake for 40 – 45 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean. Let the cake cool in the pan for about 5 minutes, then carefully invert onto a wire rack and let cool completely. Don’t stress if it doesn’t come out perfectly, the ganache will cover up any flaws!
For the ganache:
120g dark chocolate (I used 70%)
1 tbsp agave nectar or honey
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 cup heavy cream
Finely chop chocolate, then set it in a bowl with the agave nectar or honey. In a small pot heat the cream and sugar until just barely boiling – the sugar should be dissolved. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate, and stir to combine. Let the ganache cool to thicken just slightly, 5 or so minutes.
Place the cooled bundt cake on a plate or serving tray, then spoon the ganache over the top. You can give it a bit of a shake to get the ganache to pour down the sides. Allow the cake to rest while the ganache sets up.
You’re eating cake, no matter how you slice it! Even if you’ve subbed in whole wheat pastry flour and yoghurt, as I have, this is as cake as cake can be. Enjoy it in moderation! Then maybe a salad for lunch? How about Broccoli Kamut Slaw?!
Do ahead: The cake can be made in advance and stored in an air tight container overnight. It’ll last a day or so on your counter top, or a few more in your fridge. You can also freeze this cake, tightly wrapped in plastic, and it’ll last a month or so.
All text and photos © The Muffin Myth 2012