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Red Eye Devil’s Food Cake…fit for the White House and Our House

I know Andrew is good, I mean really good. But his baking skills really hit an all-time personal best with the making of this sinfully rich, fudgy, bittersweet cake.  As Melissa Clark, who co-wrote “The Perfect Finish” (W.W. Norton and Co. (2010) the cookbook it came from wrote, “If this is not the ultimate birthday cake, I can’t imagine what is.”  Its inventor is a pastry chef named Bill Yosses. While his may not be a household name, in one household, he was the king of all pastries. That household was the White House, where he presided as Pastry Chef for both the Bush Family and the Obamas.  Chef Yosses trained in France and then was scooped up by Daniel Boulud and later, Thomas Keller.  From there he went on to work at Bouley Restaurant and Bakery.  Chef Yosses left the White House in June, a departure he says was “all Michelle Obama’s fault.” The First Lady, it seems, piqued his interest in the relationship between food and health. “Mrs. Obama’s quest to improve the way children eat was done “ with humor and good will, without preaching, just the way you would hope the ‘Mom-in-chief’ would do,” he said. Yosses said Mrs. Obama is “definitely an inspiring boss, a combination of spontaneity and seriousness.”  She inspired the Chef to such an extent that he’s headed back to New York to educate children about nutrition.  But I am sure he’ll be forever remembered there for his Red Eye Devil’s Food Cake alone.  Why “Red Eye”, you may wonder ?

Pastry Chef Bill Yosses         
The Bridgehampton Florist’s Incomparable
Birthday Party Decorations in our Garden
above and at left. 
       Chef Yosses updated the American Classic Devil’s Food Cake with a double shot of expresso.  He took the name “Red Eye” from Expresso Coffee Bars.  Now coffee in a chocolate cake isn’t new. But in this case, the cake itself has slightly bitter edge.  Then, the coffee-enhanced cocoa layers are separated by layers of a glorious bittersweet chocolate ganache.  This is no half-hour-in-the-kitchen cake.  I reckon a half hour alone was spent curling the block of bittersweet chocolate that decorates the top and sides of this 6 layer cake. This is truly a labor of love.  In this case, we were celebrating the birthday of a dear friend named Huey, whom we adore, and whose birthday was cause for a great celebration.  I shared the “Best Ever Ribs” recipe that we served at the same party last week.  I also want to share the spectacular décor that Jim and Michael of The Bridgehampton Florist (631-537-7766) put together in the garden.  I cannot tell you how happy Huey was with the party.  And it was truly beautiful as you can see.  And here’s the recipe:

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