Thursday, January 19, 2012

French Fridays with Dorie--Quatre-Quarts

Quatre-quarts 
I can't believe I'm baking a cake so soon after the holidays. I promised myself I would stay away from cakes and cookies, since my husband is on South Beach...AGAIN!!!!  It's French Friday and our mission this week, if we choose to accept it, is to make a Quatre-quarts which literally means "4 fourths". Sounds funny...but it's a cake! A french cake similar to our pound cake. All the ingredients are based on equal measures of the four main ingredients: eggs, flour, sugar and butter. This is a very basic traditional french cake. Popular as a snack cake, it can be dressed up nicely for a lovely dessert by adding some whipped cream and berries. You can also modify it by adding chocolate, or lemon juice for flavor.
This cake was relatively easy to put together; even though there are several steps including beating the egg whites until stiff. My only problem came with the timing of the cake. Dorie suggests 20 to 25 minutes...I needed to leave mine in for about 35 minutes. My oven is pretty accurate, so I was surprised when it was still wet in the middle after 25 minutes. This cake was delicious. A perfect accompaniment with a cup of tea. Sorry to say my husband had to exercise self control. I froze the rest of the cake so that he can have a small piece when he reaches his goal! This was a lovely everyday cake that will definitely be on my "go to" list for quick desserts.
This recipe can be found in Dorie Greenspans cookbook "Around My French Table" and you can also find it here. To see what other Doristas have done check it out here!

I sprinkled my batter with Demerara sugar

After it came out of the oven the sugar caramelized and cracked

I thought it still looked great
And tasted even better
Yum!!



30 comments:

  1. I have a feeling that more than one committment to stay away from cake has been broken in the name of Dorie :-)
    I admire your will power in freezing the leftovers. Bravo!

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  2. Your cake looks wonderful! I really enjoyed this & plan to make it again with different flavors - lemon & orange zest and liqueurs. Too bad your husband missed out, but it was nice of you to save him some!

    Have a lovely weekend!

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  3. My cake baked longer than the recipe suggested too. I agree with you - this cake was delicious and I will definitely be making it again!

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  4. I love your berries! We all enjoyed this cake and I am happy to have found a good quick and tasty recipe that can be used in so many ways. I know what you mean about more goodies right after the holidays. We continue to have house guests...and more arrived today so the goodies keep appearing; I've given up for now...and then I start thinking about Valentine's Day goodies right around the corner...can't win. But I do enjoy all the good foods and maybe I'll try harder in a week or two. This cake was worth eating...really enjoyed it.

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  5. You can never go wrong with a Dorie recipe!!

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  6. Your cake looks beautiful, Kathy! Maybe now that I have a little extra room in the freezer I can play catch up. Good luck to your husband with South Beach. I'm getting flashbacks of the flavored ricotta cups!

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  7. I shouldn't be baking cakes, cookies or breads in January either! I guess when it comes to baking we just can't resist! Your cake looks lovely with the brown sugar topping and berries, your husband must have very good will power to resist trying a piece! Can't wait for the game, we should have some kind of cookie exchange going on this week, right coasters versus left coasters,lol!

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  8. It looks so pretty with that sugared topping. And hey, if you're break the cake-fast, a light cake like this, topped with fruit, is the way to go!

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  9. It's a classic! Yours looks delicious!

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  10. You're right. It does look great. You will be sending me back to the cookbook - even though I am trying not to bake until Valentine's Day...

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  11. I'm glad I did not make any New Year resolutions this year. Between FFWD and Tricia signing us up for
    baking on Tuesdays, there is no way I could keep them. Hubby and I did enjoy this french version of a
    pound cake and sharing half with Tricia took away some guilt. Your cake looks great, and I like the way the sugar
    gave it a sort of glaze.

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    1. I signed up for Tuesdays with Dorie too! It will be fun baking with all of our friends from French Fridays!

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  12. I think the cracked look is very appealing! Great post!

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  13. Ahhh... blackberries. I'm sure that was delicious ... another excuse to try this recipe again.

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  14. Your cake looks delicious. I needed to cook mine longer but didn't realise until it started sinking in the middle a little while after I took it out of the oven. I'll definitely make this one again!

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  15. The texture of your cake looks good. Glad you had a good handle on the baking time. It would be a pity if the cake ends up underbaked!

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  16. Your cake looks lovely, Kathy! I really like how the sugar gave it a glazed effect and the slice with the blackberries is gorgeous. I hope you have a great weekend!

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  17. This reminds me of genoise or what we endearingly called "fluffy cake" when I was a kid. Beautiful!

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  18. The top of your cake has the most caramelized glaze I've seen. It looks delicious! And the blackberries are a nice touch. I enjoyed this with tea also. I looked up and printed out the chocolate quatre quarts recipe you mentioned. That looks like a winner too. Have a great weekend, Kathy!

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  19. Your cake looks beautiful with the berries on top.

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  20. The cake looks super moist and delicious. Love the caramelized sugar coating.

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  21. I love all of the simple cakes. Forget the fancy stuff. Simple usually tastes so good!

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  22. So beautiful with the blackberries...I froze all but one of my mini-Bundts, too :)

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  23. Quatre-quart was what my grandmother, mother and aunts baked for years; it is the most classic and homestyle cake to come out of France, basically a pound cake where all the eggs had to me weighed and the flour, sugar and butter needed to weigh the same. Makes for a delightful tea-time cake , as yours is.

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  24. What a lovely cake. I have made another version of this cake and really loved it. Yours looks delicious and I'll have to give this recipe a try. I hope you have a great fay. Blessings...Mary

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  25. Kathy-I just love to see your Dorie challenges...you have so much enthusiasm with each and every dish and dessert you make!
    Love the cake...turned out so beautiful and moist. The Demerara sugar sure made the final touch tasting incredible!
    Have a wonderful Sunday, my dear friend:DDD

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  26. That is one fantastic looking cake! Your comment about baking so close after the holidays made me laugh. I ordered some of the Demerara sugar to try - can't find it in my markets. Have a great Sunday!

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  27. Looks wonderful! Love the topping as well...really sets it off nicely.

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  28. I really like the carmelized sugar! It was a great, easy cake.

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