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11 March 2011

Potato & Chocolate Cake Balls


I never thought potatoes can be mixed with chocolate and be considered as a cake.  It was just an idea that at first seemed absurd but as the recipe took shape, I was amazed at the result.  It was excellent!  You don't even realize that what you're eating is actually mashed potatoes.  There is no trace of its taste at all.

I prepared a dinner composed mainly of potatoes and I cooked one potato too many.  I didn't want to toss it in the trash so I waited for the calm in the kitchen after dinner.  Here I was in the middle of the night, staring at a boiled potato.  Yes, some people can be strange.  I thought of chocolate.  Chocolates & potatoes, can it be possible?  I started working on my boiled potato.  I melted the chocolate and as the moment of amalgamating it with the potato arrived, I hesitated a bit.  Oh well, cooking is experimenting, trial & error, being wrong, getting it right, a whole world to explore.  That is actually the beauty of it.  It's like playing.  I used to play a lot of "cooking" games when I was a kid.  I would put different kinds of leaves, seeds & twigs in a makeshift cooking pot and imagine that it was dinner. 


I tasted the mixture with the main ingredients together.  I couldn't control my smile, thinking of my childhood.  It tasted so much like the chocolate cake mixtures that I used to lick from the emptied bowls that my aunts used when they were baking cakes.   I added some cinnamon to give it a bit of twist, sugar, flour, then some chocolate chips to make it more chocolatey.  Then my kids arrived to say goodnight.  My 5-year old son was so interested in the brown thing I was mixing at such an odd hour while the kitchen was still in mishap.  He tried it and his eyes perked up, my one-year old tried it too and she said gnam-gnam (yummy) then my husband.  I told them that what they just ate is potatoes.  They were not sure if they should believe me or not.  I shaped the balls & popped them in the oven.  I waited with my fingers crossed.  After 15 minutes, I took them out, tasted one and in the process, almost burned my tongue, but I couldn't wait.  It was perfectly how I would want my cake to be.  Moist, compact & oozing with chocolate!


The following day, all the balls were finished because all of us couldn't stop reaching in the plate for one, then two, then three, one-year old included.  It was time to bake another batch. 

On my second trial of the recipe, I found out that the potatoes need to be cold and the mixture needs to be worked on a lot by mixing with two spoons to arrive to a compact ball.  If you don't work on the mixture enough, you will not be able to shape the balls because they are too sticky and loose.  What I did for the second time was to let it rest for an hour at the bottom shelf of the refrigerator.  If you still cannot get the right consistency to make balls, adjust the flour.



Potato & Chocolate Cake Balls


Ingredients:
Makes about 20 balls
  • 300 g. potatoes
  • 4 spoons white sugar
  • 100 g. chocolate for melting
  • 1 egg
  • 10 g. butter
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon + extra for sprinkling
  • 1/3 cup chocolate chips
  • 4 spoons flour
  • crushed pistachios (optional)
Directions:
  1. Boil the potatoes.  Drain the water.  Mash. 
  2. Melt the chocolate in the microwave at the defrost position or in a bain marie. 
  3. Mix all the ingredients together except the chocolate chips.  Mix well until it becomes very compact.  Just keep on working on them using two spoons until they become almost one big compact ball. 
  4. Let it rest for an hour, preferably at the bottom shelf of the refrigerator. 
  5. Mix in the chocolate chips.
  6. Shape them into balls.  If they stick too much to your palms while shaping them, wet your palms lightly.  
  7. Line the baking pan with wax paper.  Sprinkle the balls with cinnamon powder or roll them on crushed pistachios.  Bake in the oven at 200 degrees Celsius for 15 minutes.  Leave in cooling rack.