Friday, January 20, 2012

Let them eat....Quatre-Quarts Cake with Olive Oil Ice Cream!


Quatre-Quarts Cake with Olive Oil Ice Cream


“Let them eat brioche!” is the disparaging comment that Marie Antoinette actually did not say.  The mistranslation (“cake” instead of “brioche”) and misattribution (not said by Marie) have continued to this day.  But let there be no misunderstanding.  When it comes to comparing this week’s Fridays with Dorie challenge, Quatre-Quarts Cake, with brioche (even the variety we made in a previous challenge), there is no comparison.  Peasants and royalty alike would choose the cake.

A little Armagnac adds a unique twist to the cake

Quatre-Quarts Cake is a perfectly balanced and delicious cake that is a wonderful accompaniment to an afternoon tea or to finish a meal.  The brown sugar crust adds a delightful crunch and slightly sweet element to the cake.  But I love to experiment, to “kick it up a notch” in the immortal words of Emeril.  I am not sure why, but Jell-O Cakes came to mind.  For those old enough to remember, a Jell-O Cake is made by poking holes in a plain white cake and pouring warm Jell-O over it.  I had some rosemary simple syrup on hand (don’t ask why), and thought it would be perfect with this cake.  So I poked some holes and drizzled on the rosemary simple syrup.  The aroma was delicious and portended a moist, tasty cake.

Rosemary Simple Syrup - not just for cocktails!

Was Jello-Cake just a Montana thing?  Sous Chef has never heard of it.....

But my cake still looked a little naked and needed something to jazz it up a bit.  My sous chef loves ice cream.  We had nothing suitable in the freezer, so I decided to multi-task and make Dorie’s Olive Oil Ice Cream found on page 479 of Around My French Table by Dorie Greenspan. 

Look at that ice cream - don't you just want to take a big spoonful of it before it drips?

The Quatre-Quarts Cake was delicious; however, the Olive Oil Ice Cream stole the show.  It is made in the fashion of custard, with the addition of extra virgin olive oil at the end after the mixture has been strained.  The olive oil really enhances the creaminess of the ice cream, making it pure luxury on your palate.  The savory aspect of the ice cream played well with the rosemary simple syrup added to the Quarte-Quarts Cake.  And to spice things up a bit more, I added a drizzle of Extra Virgin Olive Oil and pinch of Fleur De Sel over the ice cream.   Pure heaven!

Rosemary Simple Syrup – from Heidi Swanson 101 Cookbooks:

2 Cups Water
2 Cups Sugar
2 Fresh Rosemary Sprigs
1 Bay Leave (optional, but recommended)

Combine the sugar and water in a pan.  Stir over medium heat until the sugar is dissolved.  Add the rosemary sprigs and bay leave and let simmer for 3-5 minutes.  Remove from heat and let infuse for 10 minutes.  When cool, transfer to a storage container and refrigerate.

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26 comments:

  1. Oh. My. Goodness.

    I loved the cake the way it was written but with rosemary simple syrup and olive oil ice cream?! That would be pure heaven!

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    1. It really was delicious - a perfect balance of sweet and savory. Hope you get to try it!

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  2. Wow! How delicious! Great idea to use Dorie's own ice cream recipe.

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    1. I hope you get to try the ice cream, I had been wanting to make it the past couple months and finally found a good excuse to indulge in more calories!

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  3. I am sure that whatever the simple syrup was intemded for was absolutely lovely. And the olive oil ice cream. I am sure that was heavenly.

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    1. Hi Cher - I had the simple syrup on hand for cocktails. If you like cocktails, it makes a really great infusion with fruit based drinks and either gin or vodka. The olive oil ice cream was heavenly - it exceeded my expectation!

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  4. That was some combination of ingredients, it had to be good. I'm going to
    check out the olive oil ice cream, sounds interesting. Tricia and I enjoyed this
    recipe, and I will be re-visiting it again, for sure.

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    1. I hope you and Tricia try the ice cream - it is one of those items that really surprises you, and is easy to fall in love with!

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  5. I do want to take a big spoonful before it drips! I have to put this ice cream on my to make list, that's for sure! I like all your flavors here, rosemary is one of my favorite herbs and I like the way you infused the cake with the syrup;-)

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    1. Thanks Patty! I love rosemary and have a lot in my garden so I'm always on the hunt for reasons to use it. The syrup also makes a great addition to cocktails. Hope your football game is going well today!

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  6. I love your tweaks to the recipe...and your ice cream sounds AMAZING!!!

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    1. Thanks Lizzy! The ice cream is a must try!

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  7. I might have to bring the ice cream maker out of hibernation and make some of that ice cream. This cake was soooo delicious and I love your adapation :)

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    1. Definitely bring the ice cream maker out of hibernation! I think it is worth it.

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  8. I LOVE ice cream with olive oil and salt on it - fabulous. What a great idea. Oh the thought of olive oil ice cream is making me hungry. Love both of your twists - so creative.

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  9. Thanks Beth - I hope you get to try it. It really was a terrific combination of flavors, and that salt added this unexpected twist to the flavor.

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  10. I love the way you dressed up this cake, Christy! The rosemary simple syrup sounds amazing (and I'm a huge 101 Cookbooks fan myself). And the Olive Oil Ice Cream sound luscious. BTW, I've heard of jello cake and I grew up in Maryland. Who knows, maybe they only make it in the "M" states.

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  11. I remember Jello-O cakes! Loved them as a child! :) What a great idea to add the rosemary simple syrup - mmm...it must have been delicious. Now you have me also wanting to make the olive oil ice cream. I don't think I can wait for it to come up on the schedule.

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  12. The rosemary syrup and olive oil icecream sound like wonderful flavour accompaniments to this basic cake. Never heard of Jello cake myself, but I'm Australian, so that doesn't really count.

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  13. PS...back to thank you for the sweet words of condolence. xo

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  14. This sounds amazing! Your were definitely inspired this week!!

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  15. Oh my gosh, how amazing! Rosemary simple syrup and olive oil ice cream sound divine!

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  16. What a unique dessert that sounds wonderful! Very inspired choice to pair the olive oil ice cream with the rosemary-scented cake.

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  17. Yum! I'll bet the Roasemary Simple Syrup took this cake right over the top! I agree - I'd choose the cake over the Brioche, too. However, the leftover Brioch made great Bread Pudding.

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  18. Christy, Your being such a great FFWD member and blogger caused and inspired me to include your link in my Post today about Dorie and her online cooking groups. I have so enjoyed reading your Blog and included it in my Link List at the end of my Post. Looking forward to more in the year ahead. Mary

    http://www.lightsonbrightnobrakes.com/mistakes-happen-recipes-bomb-life-goes-on/

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  19. Olive oil ice cream sounds incredible! I can't wait to try that recipe! Rosemary simple syrup sounds fun too. I made a cake with rosemary once and was pleasantly surprised by how great it turned out.

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