Posts tagged ‘Chocolate’

April 25, 2011

Flourless Chocolate Cake

Flourless Chocolate Cake

I know Passover is almost over, but I just had to end it with a something absolutely delicious, and this cake is definitely that. It’s rich and has almost a fudge-like quality.

Almost every year, Easter falls during Passover, which wouldn’t be such a big deal except that my husband’s family always has a big Easter party with amazing food and amazing desserts…most of which I can’t eat. This year, I decided to allow myself to indulge in some of the celebration by making this flourless chocolate cake. With only three ingredients, it was a breeze to make and great for someone (like me) whose kitchen is mostly packed up in boxes (did I mention we’re moving into our first house in 2 weeks?).


Flourless Chocolate Cake

Ingredients
8 large eggs, cold
1 lb. semisweet (or bittersweet) chocolate, coarsely chopped
16 Tbsp. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 16 pieces
Optional toppings: Confectioners sugar and/or berries

Directions:

Adjust an oven rack to the lower-middle position and heat the oven to 325 degrees.
Line the bottom of an 8-inch springform pan with parchment paper or waxed paper and grease the sides of
the pan. (Be sure to grease the sides really well!)
Wrap the outside of the pan with 2 sheets of heavy-duty aluminum foil and set it in a large roasting pan. Bring a kettle or pot of water to boil.
In a stand mixer using the whisk attachment, beat the eggs at high speed until the volume doubles (5-10 minutes).
Meanwhile, melt the chocolate and butter together in a heatproof bowl over a simmering pot of water until the chocolate reads 115 degrees on an instant-read thermometer – stirring occasionally.
Fold about a third of the beaten eggs into the chocolate mixture using a large rubber spatula until only a few streaks of egg are visible.
Fold in half of the remaining egg foam, and then the last half of the foam, until the mixture is totally homogenous.
Scrape the batter into the prepared springform pan and smooth the surface with a rubber spatula. Place the roasting pan on the oven rack and pour in enough boiling water to come about halfway up the sides of the springform pan. Bake until the cake has risen slightly, the edges are just beginning to set, a thin-glazed crust has formed on the surface, and an instant-read thermometer inserted halfway into the center reads 140° F, 22-25 minutes.
Remove the springform pan from the water bath and set on a wire rack; cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate overnight to mellow and firm. (The cake can be refrigerated for up to 4 days.)
About 30 minutes prior to serving, carefully remove the sides of the springform pan, invert the cake onto a sheet of waxed paper, peel off the parchment paper, and reinvert the cake onto a serving platter.
Lightly dust the cake with powdered sugar and top with berries. To slice, use a sharp, thin-bladed knife, dipping the knife into a pitcher of hot water and wiping the blade before each cut.

Source: Gimme Some Oven! , Originally from Cooks Illustrated

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April 4, 2011

Teddy Bear Cupcakes for a Teddy Bear Picnic

 

Teddy Bear Cupcakes

I know I’ve been on a bit of a hiatus, but honestly, it hasn’t been without good reason. We’ve had some major life-changing events in the past few weeks that have kept me pretty busy.

A short summary of the past few weeks for us:

– I ‘matched’ into a surgical residency position. This basically means that I got my first job! I know that I’ll have to work harder than I ever have in my life, but the way I look at it is that I’ll be doing exactly what I want to be doing (surgery)…I’ll just be doing a whole lot of it. So I’m thrilled to start this new stage in my medical education.

-My husband graduated from his MBA program in the top 20 percent of his class. For the past two years, he’s been working full time and doing a weekend MBA program and I am extremely proud of him for graduating and doing so well.

-We started looking for a home. This was so exciting at first, but it’s been a bit of a roller coaster. We lost one home to another offer and are now in a bidding war on another home. Maybe it’s some sort of first-time-home-buyers curse? Anyways, I’m hoping it works out.

So as you see, it’s been busy, but hopefully things will slow down a bit and I can actually update it now since I have lots of great recipes waiting to be posted.

These cupcakes were made together with my good friend and great baking buddy Bree (who I know I’ve mentioned several times in this blog). Her daughter turned one last weekend and since her nickname is Brynne Bear, Bree thought that it was most appropriate to throw her a teddy bear picnic. She actually found this recipe in the Jewish Chronicle Online (a bit random) but these were  so adorable a cinch to make. For the base cupcake, we used my favorite Hershey’s Perfectly Chocolate Cake batter…always a winner.The frosting wasn’t overly sweet, which was a perfect contrast to the cupcakes. The only catch with the frosting is that the directions were in grams and while this was not a problem for me (since I recently purchased a kitchen scale to make macarons with), I know that many people do not own a scale. Bree and I were having a bit too much fun baking, chatting and sipping wine that I didn’t think to count how much chocolate and butter 75 grams is, but I will definitely take note of this next time.  And the decorations? Well, I think they speak for themselves. Bree reported back that everyone was very impressed, especially the birthday girl.

Happy Birthday Brynne!

Teddy Bear Chocolate Cupcakes

For the cupcakes

Ingredients

2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cups Hershey’s Cocoa
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake tins with liners.
Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes.
Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Fill cups 2/3 full with batter. Bake 22 to 25 minutes. Cool completely. Frost.

For the frosting:

Ingredients:

75g semisweet baking chocolate
75g butter
2 tsp powdered sugar
pinch of salt

Directions:

Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of warm water, then allow to cool for five minutes.
Beat the butter and sugar together with a pinch of salt, then beat in the cooled chocolate.
The icing will be very soft, so refrigerate for 20-30 minutes, stirring halfway through until firmer, but spreadable. Swirl the buttercream over the cakes using a palette knife.

For the decorations:

Ingredients:

Ready to roll white icing
Chocolate buttons
Chocolate M&Ms
Black writing icing

Directions:

Make small balls of white icing and flatten into oval shapes.
Place in the center of each cupcake and attach and M&M for the nose using a little of the writing icing.
Draw on a mouth using a tube of black writing icing and add chocolate buttons for ears and M&Ms for eyes.

Source: Hershey’s Perfectly Chocolate Cake , The Jewish Chronicle Online

February 11, 2011

Oreo Truffles

 

Oreo Truffles

Friday…the most wonderful day of the week!

Okay, so I’m working both Saturday and Sunday this week, but for some reason, I still absolutely adore Fridays, and what better way to enjoy a Friday than with Oreo Truffles. These are, the original truffle…at least for me. They are the absolute first truffle I made and so, stand out in my mind as the best, most chocolaty and most romantic.

I felt compelled to post the picture in black and white just because it seemed more romantic and these truffles are definitely romantic (if you’re still searching for something to serve as dessert on Valentine’s Day). They take only about 15 minutes to make but absolutely taste gourmet.

To those of you celebrating Valentine’s Day this weekend like me, enjoy, and bon appetit!

Oreo Truffles

Ingredients

30 Oreo cookies, crushed
6oz cream cheese
2 (8 ounce) packages Semi-Sweet Baking Chocolate, melted
1 (6oz) package white baking chocolate

Directions

Combine crushed Oreos and cream cheese in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add cream cheese and mix until well blended.
Using a melon scoop, cookie scoop or your hands, create 1Tbsp sized balls.
Place balls on waxed paper and freeze for 15 minutes.
Melt the semisweet chocolate in a bowl over simmering water.
Dip truffles into semisweet chocolate.
Repeat chocolate melting with white chocolate.
Using a whisk, drizzle white chocolate over the truffles.
Refrigerate at least  1 hr.

Source: I have used this recipe for years and know it has been making its way around the internet so I’m really not sure where it originated from, but if you’re the original owner, please feel free to contact me so I can give credit where credit is due.

February 7, 2011

Gingerbread Truffles

 

 

Gingerbread Truffles

 

It’s the week before Valentine’s Day, and I’ve decided to dedicate this week of blogging to one of my favorite desserts: truffles. The truffle trend started years ago and I really don’t think that it has ever gotten ‘old’ (because seriously, who could get tired of these delicate, rich, chocolate bites of heaven?).

Through the years of making truffles, I’ve discovered so many wonderful truffle recipes and this year, have given boxes of homemade truffles as gifts to my family. The boxes included Gingerbread truffles (this post), Peppermint truffles (Wednesday’s post) and Oreo truffles (Friday’s post). They also included cookie dough truffles though I didn’t manage to get a good picture of them before they were devoured. Anyways, the point being, truffles would make a fabulous Valentine’s Day gift.

I know that gingerbread is normally thought of as a Christmas food, but as I was just discussing with one of my girlfriends in the ICU, who determines what’s normal or ethical or ‘right’? Of course, we weren’t talking about truffles, or gingerbread for that matter, but I think it still applies. Who decided that gingerbread should only be eaten between December 1st and 31st?

These truffles are chewy and have a ton of flavor in such tiny bites. In the original recipe, they were supposed to have nutmeg sprinkled on top, but I’m a bit of a chocolate junkie so I decided to just pour on the chocolate (dark on white) and they turned out fabulous.

Happy early Valentine’s Day! It’s going to be a sweet week!

Gingerbread Truffles

Ingredients

1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup molasses
1 egg
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup boiling water

For the coating

12oz white chocolate
1 8-oz. block cream cheese, at room temperature
6oz semisweet chocolate

Directions

Mix together the butter and sugar, then add the egg and molassess, mixing well.
In a separate bowl, combine the flour, spices, soda and salt, then add to wet mixture.
Stir to combine, then add the boiling water and mix. Pour batter into a greased 9×13 pan and bake at 350 degrees for 25-35 minutes or until springy. Let cool completely.
When cake is completely cooled, crumble into the bowl of a stand mixer and add in the cream cheese. Mix until the cake and cream cheese is totally combined.
Roll out into walnut-sized balls and place on a sheet pan lined with wax paper. Chill for 1 hour.
Melt the white chocolate in a bowl over simmering water stirring, until it is completely smooth.
Dip the balls in one at a time (I use two forks for this) and coat with the white chocolate. Set on a sheet of wax paper.
Melt semisweet chocolate in a bowl over simmering water in a similar fashion. Drizzle the darker chocolate over the truffles using a fork or whisk. Allow to harden completely. At this point you can serve immediately or freeze for later use.

Source: Adapted from: Sing for your Supper

 

Valentine's Day Gingerbread Truffles

December 20, 2010

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

 

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

I don’t think  December would be complete without holiday baking with friends. When my friend Breanna offered to come over with her adorable 8 month-old daughter and bake with me, I agreed in an instant. Her daughter, Brynn also was the perfect taste-tester, and these Chocolate Crinkle Cookies appeared to be something that Brynn really enjoyed. They were the perfect texture, being soft and gooey without falling apart–perfect for a small toddler and elegant enough to put in a holiday gift package (which is what I did with the leftover cookies).

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

Ingredients

1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups white sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar

Directions

In a medium bowl, mix together cocoa, white sugar, and vegetable oil.Beat in eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla.
Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt; stir into the cocoa mixture.
Cover dough, and chill for at least 4 hours (I chilled this overnight).
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
Roll dough into one inch balls with lightly oiled palms. I used a cookie scoop to portion the dough.
Coat each ball in confectioners’ sugar before placing onto prepared cookie sheets. [Alternatively, try other ingredients like cinnamon-sugar or sprinkles.]
Bake in preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes. Let stand on the cookie sheet for a minute before transferring to wire racks to cool.

Makes approximately 5 dozen cookies

Source: http://17andbaking.co, originally from allrecipes.com

Photograph Courtesy of : Breanna Thiede