Friday, December 28, 2007
A hot chocolate pudding makes an especially welcome dessert on a chilly day - its chocolatey richness is a perfect comfort food. This recipe's simplicity is great; it's so simple, and yet so decadent.
250 grams plain chocolate, with at least 70% cocoa solids, cut into small chunks
250 grams unsalted butter, diced, plus extra for greasing
6 large eggs
5 large egg yolks
125 grams caster sugar, plus extra for dusting
75 grams plain flour
Grease 8 individual ramekins (or one large ovenproof dish) with butter and dust with caster sugar. Put the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl and place over a saucepan of simmering water, making sure the water doesn't touch the base of the bowl. Leave until melted. Meanwhile, using an electric mixer on full speed, whisk the eggs, yolks and sugar together for about 6 minutes, until they have at least tripled in volume. Sift the flour into a bowl and slowly pour on the melted chocolate and butter mixture, whisking constantly until a thin paste has formed. Fold this into the whisked egg mixture very carefully but quickly, as the chocolate will start to set. Pour into the prepared dishes and bake in an oven preheated to 350°F/180°C/Gas Mark 4, until risen and firm on the outside but soft in the center. A large dish will take about 30 minutes to cook, the individual ramekins about 13 minutes.
Serve with whipped cream, ice cream, or pureed berries.
Almost anything tastes better dipped in chocolate. Use your imagination and offer cubes of your favorite cake and sliced fruit for dipping. Marshmellows, fresh strawberries, dried fruit, shortbread or Oreo cookies... the combinations are endless!
1/2 cup whipping cream
5 tablespoons water
12 oz bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate, chopped
Bring cream and 2 tablespoons water to simmer in heavy medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low. Add chocolate; whisk until melted and smooth. Whisk in remaining 3 tablespoons water (or substitute with 3 tablespoons liqueur of choice; see variations listed below). Transfer to fondue pot and keep warm over fondue burner. If fondue becomes too thick at any time, mix in more water by tablespoonfuls as needed.
Servings: Makes 2 cups chocolate fondue for dipping
Thursday, December 27, 2007
If you can't find fresh strawberries in your local supermarket, frozen strawberries may be used in this recipes; substitute two (10-ounce) cans frozen strawberries for the 2 cups fresh strawberries.
2 cups fresh strawberries, stems removed
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tbsp. kirsch (clear cherry brandy) or framboise (raspberry liqueur)
6 oz. white chocolate, finely chopped
1/4 cup milk, warmed
1 cup heavy cream
2 egg whites, at room temperature
Pinch of cream of tartar
3/4 tsp. vanilla extract
In a food processor, combine 1 1/2 cups of strawberries with the sugar. Puree until smooth. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl. Add the kirsch and stir to mix. Cut the remaining 1/2 cup strawberries lengthwise into thin slices and stir into the puree. Set aside.
Place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water; do not allow the bowl to touch the water. Heat the chocolate, stirring occasionally, until it is melted and smooth. Gradually add the warm milk to the chocolate, stirring constantly until smooth. Remove the bowl from the pan of water and let the mixture cool until it is almost at room temperature.
Beat the cream just until soft peaks form. In another bowl beat together the egg whites and cream of tartar on high speed until stiff peaks form. Using a rubber spatula, fold half of the whites into the chocolate mixture to lighten it. Fold the remaining whites, whipped cream and vanilla into the chocolate mixture just until combined and no white drifts remain. Do not overmix. (At this point, you may cover and refrigerate the mousse for up to 1 day).
To serve, spoon about half of the mousse into 6 parfait glasses, half filling each glass. Top with the strawberry sauce, again using about half and dividing it equally. Repeat with the remaining mousse and strawberry sauce.
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
The rum and gelatin give this pie a richer taste and satisfying firmness. Vanilla wafer biscuits can be used in place of butter cookies if desired. Garnish pie with fresh banana slices.
1 ½ cups finely ground butter cookies
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
7 ripe bananas, divided
3/4 cup whole milk
8 ounces white chocolate, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons dark rum
1 teaspoon unflavored powdered gelatin
3 cups heavy cream
Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350°(F). Butter the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. In a small bowl, combine the ground butter cookies and melted butter. Press evenly into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake for 8 - 10 minutes or until lightly browned; set aside to cool.
Cut 5 of the bananas into 1-inch pieces and combine with the milk in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes. Puree this banana mixture until smooth. Pour into a medium bowl and stir the white chocolate into the mixture until completely melted; set aside to cool.
Place the dark rum in a small microwave-safe bowl. Sprinkle the gelatin over and let stand for 5 minutes to soften. Microwave the gelatin mixture on HIGH for 7 seconds until melted. Let stand 2 minutes. Stir ½ cup of the banana mixture into the gelatin. Fold the banana gelatin mixture into the remainder of the banana puree and set aside.
Whip the cream until stiff peaks start to form. Stir 1/4 of the cream into the banana filling to lighten it, then fold in the remaining whipped cream in three additions. The filling may have a slightly grainy appearance. Cut the remaining bananas into 1/4-inch pieces. Place the banana slices evenly over the bottom of the crust. Spoon the filling into the cooled crust and refrigerate for 5 hours or overnight until set.
Monday, December 24, 2007
This fantastic looking cheesecake has a minty taste that adds a refreshing touch.
1 cup chocolate cookie crushed
1/4 cup unsalted butter melted
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 packages cream cheese at room temperature
3 tbsp Creme de Menthe liqueur
2 oz. chopped chocolate thin mints (Optional)
1/2 tsp all purpose flour (if using chocolate mints)
Preheat oven to 325°F. Blend cookie crumbs and butter in medium bowl. Press mixture over bottom of springform pan. Bake crust until lightly browned at edges, about 8 minutes. Cool completely. Reduce oven temperature to 300°F.
In an electric mixer, beat cream cheese in large mixer bowl until fluffy. Slowly mix in sugar and beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy (1 to 2 minutes). Continue beating, adding eggs 1 at a time, until well mixed - do not over beat. Stir in liqueur by hand. In a small bowl, mix the chopped chocolate mints with the flour. Gently fold in chopped mints into cream cheese mixture. Pour filling onto crust. Bake cake until edges are set and center moves only slightly when pan is shaken, about 45 mins - 1 hr. Cool completely in pan on rack. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours.
Sunday, December 23, 2007
This truffle recipe has a subtle mocha flavour. It's very good and you will feel guilty after just eating two of them, so you know they're good truffles! These quantities will make around 30 - 40 truffles.
1 1/2 lb. dark chocolate
1/2 lb. milk chocolate
3 cups whipping cream
3 tablespoons espresso powder
1/4 cup Kahlúa
About 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (to coat hands for rolling)
3 lb. dark chocolate (for dipping)
Chop the dark and milk chocolate into small pieces and melt in a double boiler of hot water. Do not boil the water — melt the chocolate slowly. Take your time to avoid overheating the chocolate. Stir the chocolate occasionally to help with melting.
While the chocolate is melting, heat the cream over medium heat, stirring frequently until the cream boils. Add the espresso powder and mix thoroughly. Let the cream mixture cool just a bit from boiling before adding it to the thoroughly melted chocolate. Keep stirring until the cream has disappeared into the chocolate. Wipe the bottom of the double boiler with a towel to remove water and pour ganache into a bowl to cool.
Once the ganache is cool, spoon into a plastic bag (preferably with sharp corners), snip one corner off, and pipe the filling into small mounds. Coat your palms with cocoa powder and roll mounds until round. Melt the 3 lbs of dark chocolate slowly. You can dip the rolled centers by hand or using dipping tools. Dip the truffle centers in chocolate and then quickly transfer them to a cookie sheet lines with wax paper.
Decorate with melted white or milk chocolate.
This tangy, sweet delight is very quick to make and absolutely delightful to eat. You can use almost any fruit with this recipe.
1 cup Seedless Grapes
4 Dried Apricots
1 Vanilla Bean, Seeds Scraped (or 1 tsp. extract)
4 tbsp. Honey
2 tbsp. Butter
3 inches Fresh Ginger
Dark Rum (optional)
1. Mix the small vanilla seeds (cut bean in half lengthwise, and scrape out seeds with the tip of a knife) with the honey.
2. Peel and cut mango, papaya, and pear. Cut lime (with skin on) into very thin slices. Peel and slice ginger into thin sticks.
3. Melt butter in a large saucepan. Add all fruits and ginger. Cook for about 5 minutes on a high flame. Then, lower flame, and add the vanilla honey. Stir delicately. Flambé with rum if desired. Serve right away with sorbet or ice-cream.
Banana Fritters are a favorite, especially in tropical or hot countries whose climates are ideal for bananas. Variations of this popular recipe are found in Malaysia, Brazil, Jamaica and Africa. Like a lot of desserts, this goes well with ice-cream!
2 oz flour
¼ tsp salt
¼ pt milk
¼ tsp baking powder
2 large bananas, barely ripe
Lime or lemon juice
Vegetable oil for deep frying
Sugar for tossing
Sieve the flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Make a well in the center, break the egg and add it to the flour. Add a small quantity of milk and stir. Continue adding the milk gradually, stirring all the while, until the batter is a smooth consistency. Beat for about 5 minutes, cover and set aside.
Peel and slice the bananas diagonally into ¼ inch pieces. Coat thoroughly with batter. Heat the oil and fry the coated banana pieces until golden brown. Drain and sprinkle with lemon juice. Toss in sugar and serve hot.
Thursday, December 20, 2007
This velvet-like chocolate mousse recipe is a delicious classic. If possible, use dark chocolate with around 75% cocoa solids; this will make the mousse beautifully rich.
7 oz (200 g) dark chocolate, broken into pieces
3 large eggs, separated
1½ oz (40 g) golden caster sugar
Melt the chocolate slowly – it should take around 6 minutes. Now remove it from the heat and give it a good stir until it's smooth and glossy, then let the chocolate cool for 2-3 minutes before stirring in the egg yolks. Then give it another good mix with a wooden spoon.
Whisk the egg whites to the soft-peak stage, then whisk in the sugar, about a third at a time. Whisk again until the whites are glossy. Gently fold the egg whites into the chocolate mixture. Divide the mousse between the ramekins or glasses and chill for at least 2 hours, covered with clingfilm. Serve the mousse with a blob of softly whipped cream on top.
Monday, December 17, 2007
This recipe makes a cheesecake that tastes like it came from a deli. Serve this with berry toppings (cherries, raspberries, strawberries or blueberries), or make variations using an Oreo cookie base and Bailey's Irish Cream in place of the milk.
15 graham crackers, crushed
2 tablespoons butter, melted
4 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese
1 1/2 cups white sugar
3/4 cup milk
1 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9 inch springform pan.
In a medium bowl, mix graham cracker crumbs with melted butter. Press onto bottom of springform pan.
In a large bowl, mix cream cheese with sugar until smooth. Blend in milk, and then mix in the eggs one at a time, mixing just enough to incorporate. Mix in sour cream, vanilla and flour until smooth. Pour filling into prepared crust.
Bake in preheated oven for 1 hour. Turn the oven off, and let cake cool in oven with the door closed for 5 to 6 hours; this prevents cracking. Chill in refrigerator until serving.
Bursting with fruit, this recipe couldn't be simpler. Serve with cream or custard.
900g/2lb (approx 5) apples, peeled, cored and halved
100g/4oz caster sugar
225g/8oz frozen mixed berries
1. Preheat the oven to 200ºC/Fan 180ºC/400ºF/Gas Mark 6. Place the apples in a shallow ovenproof dish. Add the sugar and toss until the apples are coated.
2. Shake the apples so they form a single layer and bake for 10 minutes.
3. Add the frozen fruits and bake for a further 15 minutes or until the Bramleys are tender. Serve warm with ice cream, cream or custard.
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Cookies and Cream ice-cream is a universal favorite. This great recipe shows you how to make it quickly and easily, without needing an ice-cream maker.
3 egg yolks
1 (14-ounce) can condensed milk
4 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate sandwich cookies, coarsely crushed
2 cups heavy cream, whipped
In a large bowl, beat the egg yolks and stir in the condensed milk and vanilla. Fold in the crushed cookies and whipped cream. Pour mixture into a 9 by 5-inch loaf pan lined with foil. Cover and freeze for 6 hours or until firm.
To serve, scoop ice cream from pan or cut into slices.
From The Food Network
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
This cheesecake absolutely could not taste better - people go CRAZY over it.
2 cups crushed Oreo cookies
1 tablespoon white sugar
1/4 cup butter, melted
6 tablespoons seedless raspberry jam
2 tablespoons white sugar
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 cup water
2 cups white chocolate chips
1/2 cup half-and-half cream
3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
In a medium bowl, mix together cookie crumbs, 3 tablespoons sugar, and melted butter. Press mixture into the bottom of a 9 inch springform pan.
Preheat oven to 325 °F (165 °C). Microwave jam on medium for 30 seconds until it has the consistency of sauce. Melt white chocolate chips and half-and-half in microwave, stirring occasionally until smooth.
In a large bowl, mix together cream cheese and 1/2 cup sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs one at a time. Blend in vanilla and melted white chocolate. Pour half of batter over crust. Spoon 3 tablespoons raspberry sauce over batter. Pour remaining cheesecake batter into pan, and again spoon 3 tablespoons raspberry sauce over the top. Swirl batter with the tip of a knife to create a marbled effect.
Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until filling is set. Cool, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 8 hours before removing from pan. Serve with white chocolate buttons, and remaining raspberry sauce and Oreo crumbs.
Sunday, December 9, 2007
This recipe combines the coffee flavors of Tiramisu with the creamy richness of New York cheesecake.
3 8 oz. packages cream cheese
1 C. sugar
8 oz. mascarpone cheese
4 T. flour
4 T. coffee flavored liqueur or espresso
1 12 oz. package Lady Fingers
4 T. butter, melted
Preheat oven to 350°F. Place a pan or baking dish filled with about an inch of water on the bottom of oven rack.
Crush the package of ladyfingers to fine crumbs. In a small bowl, melt the butter, add 2 T. of the coffee flavored liqueur or espresso and add the crumbs. Mix to moisten the crumbs. Press the crumb mixture into an 8 or 9 inch springform pan.
In a large bowl, mix cream cheese, mascarpone cheese, and sugar until very smooth. Add 2 tablespoons coffee flavored liqueur or espresso, and mix. Add the eggs and the flour and mix slowly until just smooth. The consistency of the mascarpone can vary sometimes making your batter too thick - if this happens add about a teaspoon to a tablespoon of cream. Be careful not to over mix. Pour batter into crust and place on the middle rack of the oven.
Bake at 350°F / 180°C for 40 to 45 minutes, or until just set.
Let cool by opening the oven door with the heat off for about 20 minutes. Let the cake continue to cool and then refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.
Dust with chocolate powder and serve.
Banoffee Pie is reputed to be the most popular 'named' pudding in the world - with this recipe it is easy to see why!
100g (3½oz) butter, melted
250g (9oz) digestive biscuits
100g (3½oz) butter
100g (3½oz) dark brown soft sugar
397g can Condensed Milk
4 small bananas
284ml carton double cream, lightly whipped
Cocoa powder, for dusting
To make the base, crush the biscuits until like fine crumbs then tip into a bowl. Stir in the melted butter. Press the mixture into the base and 4cm (1½in) up the sides of the tin. Chill the base while you make the filling.
Place the butter and sugar into a non-stick saucepan over a low heat, stirring until the butter melts and the sugar dissolves. Add the condensed milk and bring gently to the boil, stirring continuously to make the caramel. As soon as it thickens, remove from the heat. Spread the filling over the biscuit base, cool, and then leave to chill for about 1 hour, until firm.
To serve, remove the pie from the tin and place on a serving plate. Slice the bananas; fold half of them into the softly whipped cream and spoon over the toffee base. Decorate with the remaining bananas and dust liberally with the cocoa.
Creme Brulee is a timeless classic, a simple yet delicious custard.
8 egg yolks
1 cup (225 ml) sugar
1 tbsp (15 ml) vanilla
1 quart (950 ml) whipping cream
Heat cream in saucepan on low heat until tiny bubbles form around the edges.
In large mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks and sugar until pale and creamy.
Gradually add cream to egg and sugar mixture while mixing.
Pour into eight 4 oz (112 grm) ramekins or custard dishes.
Place in a pan with warm water (bain-marie).
Bake at 350 degrees (175 C.) for 45 minutes.
Chill. Can be prepared ahead of time up to this point.
Just before serving, sprinkle top with 1 tbsp (15 ml) sugar and bake for 5 to 10 minutes more or until golden brown in color. Or use a torch to caramelize the sugar.
In this versatile recipe, you can use just about any fruit, fresh or frozen, in place of the blueberries.
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
4 cups blueberries (fresh, or leave frozen)
1 tsp. lemon juice
2 Tbsp. butter
1 cup flour
2 Tbsp. sugar
1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup whole milk
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix 1/2 cup sugar and cornstarch in a 2 quart saucepan and stir in blueberries and lemon juice. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until mixture boils and thickens. Boil and stir for 1 minute. Pour into ungreased 2 quart glass casserole dish and keep mixture hot in oven.
In a medium bowl, cut butter into flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt until mixture resembles fine crumbs. Stir in milk. Drop dough by 6 spoonfuls onto hot blueberry mixture.
Bake for 25-30 minutes until topping is golden brown. Serve warm topped with whipped cream or ice cream.
Makes 8 servings.
Thursday, December 6, 2007
This refreshing sorbet recipe has less than a gram of fat per serve, and is wonderfully light and refreshing. It only requires a process of mixing together and freezing fruit, water, sugar, and egg whites.
500ml (2 cups) water
215g (1 cup) caster sugar
1.2kg seedless watermelon, rind removed, coarsely chopped
2 egg whites
1. Combine the water and sugar in a medium saucepan and stir over low heat for 5 minutes or until sugar dissolves. Increase heat to high and bring to the boil. Boil for 5 minutes or until mixture thickens. Set aside for 30 minutes to cool.
2. Blend watermelon until pureed. Strain puree through a fine sieve into a jug, pressing with the back of a spoon to extract as much liquid as possible (you should have about 600ml of watermelon juice).
3. Add sugar syrup to watermelon juice and stir until well combined. Pour into an airtight container, cover and place in the freezer for 4-5 hours or until almost set.
4. Roughly break up the sorbet with a metal spoon and transfer to the bowl of a food processor. Process briefly until sorbet is smooth and has a soft, icy texture.
5. Return sorbet to container and place in the freezer for a further 4 hours or until firm. Remove from the freezer and repeat step 4. Return sorbet to the container and place in the freezer for a further 5 hours or until firm.
6. Place the sorbet and egg whites in the bowl of a food processor and process until sorbet is pale and smooth. Return to the container and place in the freezer for a further 4 hours or until almost firm. Scoop into serving glasses or bowls and serve immediately.
Wednesday, December 5, 2007
This is a very sweet little recipe and easy to make. The cake can be chilled for up to 1 day.
1/3 cup chilled heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 chocolate wafers such as Nabisco Famous
1/3 cup fresh raspberries
Beat cream with sugar and vanilla in a small deep bowl with an electric mixer until it just holds stiff peaks.
Spread 1 heaping teaspoon cream onto each of 4 wafers. Arrange enough raspberries side by side (as close together as possible) on 1 cream-topped wafer to form an even layer. Stack 2 cream-topped wafers on a plate (cream sides up) and top with berry wafer, then carefully spread another teaspoon cream over berries. Top with last cream wafer and cover cream with remaining plain wafer. Frost top and sides of cake with remaining cream. Cover with an inverted bowl and chill at least 4 hours.
Serve cake with remaining berries.
This is perhaps the quickest recipe on our site. Can you open two cans, chop a banana, mix and grill? Congratulations – you’ve got a delicious dessert! Serve these in individual ramekins with an ameretti biscuit for a quick triumph on special occasions.
1 banana, peeled and diced
410g / 15 oz can Fruit Salad, well drained
420g / 15 oz can Vanilla Creamed Rice
2 tbsps toasted flaked almonds (optional)
1/4 cup brown sugar
1. In a bowl mix together the banana, Fruit Salad, Vanilla Creamed Rice, and flaked almonds (if using).
2. Divide among 4 ramekin dishes and sprinkle each evenly with 1 Tbsp brown sugar. Fan grill in the middle of the oven at 190°C for 10 minutes until the top is golden and the creamed rice hot.
Tuesday, December 4, 2007
This delicious recipe is sweet and rich with the texture of silk. The secret is in the mixing of the eggs - be sure to mix for a full 5 minutes per egg.
4 x eggs
1 cup butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cup white sugar
4 (2 oz) squares unsweetened baking chocolate, melted and cooled
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 prepared 8" pastry shell, baked and cooled
Cream butter in a mixing bowl. Gradually beat in the sugar with an electric mixer until light colored and well blended. Stir in the thoroughly cooled chocolate, and vanilla extract. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating 5 minutes on medium speed after each addition. Spoon the chocolate filling into a cooled, baked pie shell.
Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving.
Sunday, December 2, 2007
This recipe makes a devine trifle that every chocoholic will need second helpings of!
1/2 cup water
1 x 20 oz / 500 gm package brownie mix
1 x 4 oz / 100 gm pack instant chocolate pudding mix
1 x 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
1 x 12 oz / 330 gm container French Vanilla Cool Whip
Approx half a pint of heavy whipped cream
Approx half a bottle of caramel topping
1 x 1.5 oz / bar chocolate candy
Prepare brownie mix according to package directions and cool completely. Cut into 1 inch squares.
In a large bowl, combine pudding mix, water and sweetened condensed milk. Mix until smooth, then fold heavy whipped cream until no streaks remain.
In a trifle bowl or glass serving dish, place half of the brownies, half of the caramel topping, half of the pudding mixture and half of the 12 ounce container of Cool Whip. Repeat layers. Shave chocolate onto top layer for garnish. Refrigerate 8 hours before serving.
If you know someone who loves Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, then this is the recipe for them! Garnish with shaved chocolate.
2 pkg. instant chocolate pudding
1 (8 oz.) Cool Whip
6 Reese Cups
2 chocolate Graham Cracker pie crust
Follow directions for mixing instant pudding. Dice Reese Cups up; mix into pudding and mix well. Mix in Cool Whip until smooth. Pour into pie crust. Freeze 4-6 hours. Let thaw 10 minutes before serving.