The Art of Darkness

Chocolate Chocolate Chocolate! Everyone loves chocolate right?! These recipes will not disappoint.

Making delicious chocolate is way more complex than I ever thought. Roasting the beans to perfection is difficult. Don’t roast far enough and chocolate will be bland and 2 dimentional. Go too far and it’s just toast. Lucikly we don’t have to worry about this and just get to pick it up from our local grocery store and enjoy!

Different chocolates have different percentages of cocoa liquor.

Bitter 90%

Bitter Sweet 35%

Semi-Sweet 15-30%

Milk 10%

White 0% (White contains cocoa butter but no chocolate solids)

There are a couple of rules when melting chocoalte chips. DO NOT BURN THE CHIPS! It happens easy so be careful. Rule #1 Start Small, chips are small and uniform in size, don’t just throw a block in, cut it up into small pieces first if going this route. Rule #2 Start Slow, double boiler, not mircrowave (you cannot constantly stir while in microwave). This is the only way to evenly distribute the heat. Rule #3 Always add a little salt, chocolate loves salt. This may sound strange to some of you, but next time you have a hot chocolate sprinkle a little salt on and tell me if it doesn’t taste better!

Do you ever melt chocolate, do everything right and it turns into this hard ball mess? This has happened to me once before and in watching this episode I discovered the problem. It’s called siezing. You have a very dry particle, chocolate in a rich fat, cocoa butter. A tiny bit of moisture, just a drop of water will glue the dry particles together. To fix this just add more liquid, luckily most recipes have butter or vanilla extract to prevent this from happeneing. Keep this in mind next time your melting chocolate.

Now on to the delicious recipes 🙂

Chocolate Mousse

(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

* 1 3/4 cups whipping cream

* 12 ounces quality semi-sweet chocolate chips

* 3 ounces espresso or strong coffee

* 1 tablespoon dark rum

* 4 tablespoons butter

* 1 teaspoon flavorless, granulated gelatin

Directions

Chill 1 1/2 cups whipping cream in refrigerator. Chill metal mixing bowl and mixer beaters in freezer.

In top of a double boiler, combine chocolate chips, coffee, rum and butter. Melt over barely simmering water, stirring constantly. Remove from heat while a couple of chunks are still visible. Cool, stirring occasionally to just above body temperature.

Pour remaining 1/4 cup whipping cream into a metal measuring cup and sprinkle in the gelatin. Allow gelatin to “bloom” for 10 minutes. Then carefully heat by swirling the measuring cup over a low gas flame or candle. Do not boil or gelatin will be damaged. Stir mixture into the cooled chocolate and set aside.

In the chilled mixing bowl, beat cream to medium peaks. Stir 1/4 of the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture to lighten it. Fold in the remaining whipped cream in two doses. There may be streaks of whipped cream in the chocolate and that is fine. Do not over work the mousse.

Spoon into bowls or martini glasses and chill for at least 1 hour. Garnish with fruit and serve.

(If mousses are to be refrigerated overnight, chill for one hour and then cover each with plastic wrap)

Recipe Courtesy of FoodNetwork.com

Chocolate Lava Muffins

(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

* 8 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

* 1 stick butter

* 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

* 1/2 cup sugar

* 3 tablespoons flour

* 1/4 teaspoon salt

* 4 eggs

* Butter, to coat muffin tin

* 1 tablespoon cocoa powder

* 1 cup vanilla ice cream

* 1 teaspoon espresso powder

Directions

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Place a small metal bowl over a saucepan with simmering water. Melt the chocolate and butter in the bowl. Stir in vanilla.

In a large mixing bowl, combine sugar, flour and salt. Sift these into the chocolate and mix well with electric hand mixer. Add eggs one at time, fully incorporating each egg before adding the next. Beat at high until batter is creamy and lightens in color, approximately 4 minutes. Chill mixture.

Coat the top and each cup of the muffin tin with butter. Dust with the cocoa powder and shake out excess. Spoon mixture into pan using a 4-ounce scoop or ladle. Bake for 10 to 11 minutes. Outsides should be cake-like and centers should be gooey.

While muffins are in oven, melt the ice cream in a small saucepan. Stir in the espresso powder. Serve over warm muffins.

Recipe Courtesy of FoodNetwork.com

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s