Luscious Romanian chocolate dessert, a delicious treat now available in Ann Arbor

ANN ARBOR – When Vlad Taralunga and his family came to the US in 2003, it wasn’t that difficult for Vlad Taralunga and his family to find traditional Romanian food.

But one that escaped them was the Joffre, a chocolate buttermilk layer cake with a thick chocolate ganache filling that Taralunga describes as very rich without being too sweet. The cream and the lighter bottom cake layer of the cake make it a delicious treat.

And now it’s a treat that is available to Michiganders through a collaboration between Taralunga and the boss of the 24th Cheesecakerie, Sean Brezzell.

While working with the 24th Cheesecakerie, Taralunga said the Joffre is not a cheesecake. It’s a chocolate cake made from five organic ingredients – butter, cocoa powder, eggs, flour and powdered sugar.

The cake melts in your mouth and has notes of rich and hearty flavors, Brezzell said. Unlike many American cakes, it’s not enough to just eat the icing or the cake. The buttercream filling and wet cake are meant to be eaten together for a texture that pretzel thinks is incredible.

For Taralunga from Ann Arbor, however, Joffre, from Bucharest, Romania, is more than a chocolate cake. It’s a piece of his life and something his father Mircea made him for each of his birthdays.

“I also see it as my way of contributing to society – or as part of myself with my community,” said Taralunga, a 36-year-old software developer.

For years, Taralunga said friends and family would compliment his father’s baking, but selling the cake never went beyond an idea until the COVID-19 pandemic. Finding pretzel through talking to friends was key to being able to share the joffre, Taralunga said.

To do justice to his father’s baking, Taralunga made videos for pretzel and gave him handwritten notes. In order to move the Joffre from a homemade dessert to a cake that can be shipped and stored, a few little things have changed, such as: B. Freezing the cake so its buttercream doesn’t melt.

“The fact that we freeze it very, very lightly changes the texture of the cake itself, where I think it’s a little wetter than the version my dad makes,” Taralunga said. “But that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing, several people have told me, including my father himself, that he likes it better.”

Brezzell’s goal is to help other entrepreneurs like Taralunga grow like the 24th Cheesecakerie. Taralunga’s idea was the perfect opportunity to turn a homemade dessert into a business product.

The value of the cake is not the price of $ 55, but what it represents, Brezzell said.

“It’s an opportunity for him to have some kind of footprint in this world, more than just a piece of cake,” said Brezzell. “And I think he can offer us a product that we’ve never seen before is how we’re really going to revolutionize the way companies help other companies grow.”

The Joffre can be ordered from the Taralunga website and shipped or picked up at the 24th Briarwood Mall.

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