Chocolate, caramel & peanut slice

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Preparation Time

30 minutes

Cooking Time

40 minutes

Ingredients (serves 16)

  • Melted butter, to grease
  • 190g (1 1/4 cups) self-raising flour
  • 70g (1/3 cup, firmly packed) brown sugar
  • 120g butter, melted
  • Caramel filling

  • 1 x 395g can sweetened condensed milk
  • 70g (1/3 cup, firmly packed) brown sugar
  • 60g butter
  • Chocolate & peanut topping

  • 150g (1 cup) unsalted roasted peanuts
  • 300g good-quality dark cooking chocolate, chopped
  • 80ml (1/3 cup) thickened cream


  1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Brush a 13 x 30cm (base measurement) loaf pan with melted butter to lightly grease. Line the base and 2 opposite sides with non-stick baking paper, allowing the sides to overhang.
  2. To make the biscuit base, combine the flour and sugar in a medium bowl. Add the melted butter and stir until just combined. Spoon mixture into the prepared pan and press firmly over the base. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes or until golden. Remove from oven.
  3. Meanwhile: to make the caramel filling, combine the condensed milk, sugar and butter in a medium saucepan over low heat. Cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, for 8 minutes or until caramel thickens (do not boil).
  4. Pour the hot caramel over the biscuit base. Bake in oven for 15 minutes or until caramel begins to bubble. Remove from oven and set aside for 1 hour to cool slightly.
  5. To make the chocolate & peanut topping: sprinkle the caramel evenly with peanuts. Place the chocolate and cream in a medium saucepan over low heat and stir with a metal spoon for 3-4 minutes or until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth. Pour the chocolate mixture evenly over the peanuts and use a round-bladed knife to smooth the surface. Place in the fridge for 1-2 hours to set. Cut into 16 pieces to serve.

Chocolate and blueberry mousse

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Ingredients (serves 4)

* 1 punnet fresh blueberries, 200g frozen
* 200g dark chocolate
* 300ml thickened cream


1. Scatter fresh blueberries, or some thawed frozen blueberries, over the base of 4 small-sized serving glasses and set aside.
2. Melt chocolate in a large heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (making sure the bowl does not touch the water). Remove and cool to room temperature.
3. Beat cream in a bowl to soft peaks, then fold into the melted chocolate.
4. Spoon the mousse among serving glasses over the blueberries, and serve immediately.

Notes & tips

* You can replace the blueberries with strawberries, raspberries, or a berry mix.


Molten Chocolate Cakes

Wednesday, September 3, 2008


4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces
4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces
3/4 cup unsalted butter, cut into pieces
4 eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon instant espresso powder or 2 teaspoons instant coffee granules
1/2 teaspoon salt
Black Cherry Sauce (see recipe below)
Whipped cream
Shaved Chocolate

Preheat oven to 375&degF. Liberally spray six (6-ounce) ramekins with nonstick spray. In a small saucepan over low heat melt the chocolate and butter, stirring often to prevent burning. Remove from heat and cool.

In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs and sugar with electric hand mixer until "ribbon" stage, approximately 7 minutes. At that stage, it will be pale yellow and look like lightly whipped cream.

Add flour, cocoa powder, vanilla extract, espresso powder, and salt. Beat the batter for 2 additional minutes; add the melted chocolate mixture and beat another 5 minutes. (The batter needs a lot of beating. This incorporates air, lightening the cake's texture.)

Scoop the batter into the prepared ramekins, approximately 3/4 cup of batter in each ramekin.

NOTE: At this point, the cakes can be refrigerated and then baked later.

When ready to bake, place the ramekins on a baking sheet and bake 15 to 17 minutes or until puffed and mostly dry on top around edges. NOTE: It's critical to bake these cakes for the right amount of time. Otherwise, they'll either be way too "molten," or end up as brownies. Oven temperatures vary, so check the cakes after 15 minutes. If they're really moist on top, bake one minutes and check again.

Remove cakes from oven and let rest 3 minutes (it's okay if they sink a little).

To unmold, place serving plate on top of ramekin and invert. Carefully remove ramekin, tapping lightly on the plate to loosen cake. Serve the molten cakes warm with warm Black Cherry Sauce, whipped cream, and shaved chocolate.

Makes 6 servings.

Black Cherry Sauce:

1 cup dry red wine
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
2 pieces lemon and orange peel (use a peeler to shave of pieces of citrus peel)
1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
1/4 teaspoon whole cloves
1 cinnamon stick
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon cold water
1 1/2 cups frozen black cherries
1/4 teaspoon pure almond extract

In a small saucepan, combine wine, sugar, vinegar, citrus peel, and spices. Bring to a boil and reduce to 3/4 cup, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Strain and return liquid to pan.

In a small bowl, mix cornstarch with water. Bring wine mixture back to a boil; whisk in cornstarch mixture, and simmer until thickened, about 2 minutes. Add cherries and simmer to heat through. Remove from heat; add almond extract. Serve warm.

Whipped Cream:

1 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons sugar
2 to 3 drops pure almond extract

In a medium-sized bowl, whip cream, sugar, and almond extract to soft peaks.

source: Whats Cooking America

Chocolate Caramel Marshmallow Candy Bars

Monday, September 1, 2008

Prep Time: 25 minutes | Cook Time: 20 minutes


* 2/3 cup butter
* 1 egg
* 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
* 2/3 cup firmly-packed brown sugar
* 1/2 cup powdered sugar

* 1/4 cup powdered cocoa
* 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
* 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* .
* 14 ounces (1 package) wrapped caramels, papers removed
* 6 Tablespoons heavy cream
* 10 ounces semi-sweet chocolate candy bars, broken into small pieces
* 6 Tablespoons heavy cream
* 1 cup mini-marshmallows


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). Line a 13 x 9-inch (33 x 23 cm) baking pan with non-stick foil.

Combine butter, brown sugar, egg, vanilla, and powdered sugar in medium bowl. Beat at medium speed of electric mixer until well blended.

Combine cocoa, graham cracker crumbs, flour and salt. Add to creamed mixture. Mix at low speed until just blended. Spread dough evenly into prepared pan.

Bake at 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) for 13 to 15 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned and set. DO NOT OVERBAKE. Cool completely.

Place 6 tablespoons cream and caramels in microwave-safe mixing bowl. Cook on high for 1 minute. Stir. Continue warming in microwave in 30-second increments until melted and smooth. Cool to just barely warm, but still spreadable. (This may also be done in a double boiler on the stove-top.)

Spread caramel mixture in a thin layer over the cookie bottom and refrigerate for 15 minutes until caramel firms up a bit.

Follow the same procedure used for the caramels using 6 tablespoons cream and the chocolate chunks, mixing until smooth and creamy. Cool to lukewarm, but spreadable. (May also be done in a double-boiler.) Add marshmallows and stir gently until the marshmallows are coated.

Gently spread the chocolate marshmallow mixture over the cold caramel layer. Refrigerate for at least two hours until firm, then cut into bars with a long serrated knife. Dipping knife frequently into hot water will ease the cutting. Refrigerate bars until serving time.

Yield: 36 bars

source: Home Cooking

No-bake chocolate delights

Saturday, August 30, 2008

These delicate easy-to-make sweets are a fuss-free way to please chocolate lovers.

Preparation Time : 15 minutes

Cooking Time : 10 minutes
Makes 35


* 125g butter, chopped
* 430g (2 cups) caster sugar
* 125ml (1/2 cup) water
* 2 tbs cocoa powder
* 255g (3 cups) desiccated coconut
* 260g (1 cup) crunchy peanut butter
* 125g white chocolate melts, melted


1. Line 2 baking trays with non-stick baking paper. Place the butter, sugar, water and cocoa powder in a large saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring, for 2-3 minutes or until the butter melts and the sugar dissolves.

2. Bring the butter mixture to the boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in the coconut and peanut butter.

3. Drop 1 tablespoon of the chocolate mixture onto the lined trays. Repeat with the remaining chocolate mixture. Place in the fridge for 2-3 hours or until firm.

4. Place the chocolate melts in a medium heatproof bowl over a saucepan half-filled with simmering water (make sure the bowl doesn't touch the water). Use a metal spoon to stir until the chocolate melts and is smooth. Dip a fork into the melted chocolate. Drizzle the chocolate over the delights. Serve.


chocolate milkshake

Friday, August 29, 2008


* 1/2 cup chocolate fudge sauce
* 250ml (1 cup) whole milk
* 75ml Bailey's Irish Cream Liqueur, optional
* 2 scoops good-quality chocolate ice-cream


1. Dip the rim of a glass in sauce, allowing it to drip down the side. Place the remaining sauce in a blender with the milk, liqueur and 1 scoop of the ice-cream and whizz until thick and rich.

2. Spoon remaining ice-cream into the glass and pour in the milkshake.


Chocolate Chip Cookies

Thursday, August 28, 2008

2 ½ cups blanched almond flour *
¼ teaspoon celtic sea salt
¼ teaspoon baking soda
10 tablespoons butter, melted
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
½ cup agave nectar
1 cup dagoba chocodrops

1. Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl
2. Stir together wet ingredients in a smaller bowl
3. Mix wet ingredients into dry
4. Form 1¨ balls and press onto a parchment lined baking sheet
5. Bake at 350° for 7-10 minutes
6. Cool and serve

Makes 24 cookies

Chocolate Mascarpone Brownies


1 cup unsalted butter
3 ounces best-quality semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup cocoa powder
½ cup mascarpone cheese, softened
3 large eggs, at room temperature
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
½ cup all-purpose flour
¼ tsp Salt


6 ounces best-quality semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped
6 Tbs whipping cream
3 Tbs unsalted butter


1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Butter an 8-inch square pyrex pan.

2. Place chopped chocolate in a mixing bowl; set aside. In a small glass bowl, melt butter in microwave (take it out before it starts bubbling.) Pour butter over the chocolate and let stand for 30 seconds. Stir until chocolate is completely melted. Sift in sugar and cocoa powder.

3. With a wooden spoon, beat in mascarpone, eggs and vanilla, mixing until smooth. Gently fold in flour and salt.

4. Pour batter into prepared pan and spread evenly. Place into preheated oven and bake 45 to 50 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean.

5. Place pan on cooling rack and let brownies cool 10 to 15 minutes while you make the ganache.

6. Place chopped chocolate in a mixing bowl. In a small saucepan, bring the cream and butter to just below boiling point, over medium heat. Pour this hot mixture over the chocolate and let stand for 30 seconds, then stir until smooth. Pour ganache over brownies while still warm, and spread to cover evenly.

7. Let ganache firm up before cutting. It's best to refrigerate them until quite firm. Once the ganache is firm and the brownies have been cut, they do not need to be kept in the refrigerator.

Yield: About 16 brownies

Cooking Tips:

*Trader Joes carried mascarpone cheese at a good price (as well as good quality chocolate bars.)

source: The Recipe Girl

Oreo Truffle Balls


1 (1 pound, 2 ounce) package Oreo cookies
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, room temperature
2 (8 ounces) packages semi-sweet chocolate chips
8 ounces white chocolate, optional

* Use a good-quality chocolate. The taste and quality of these truffles are dependent on the quality of chocolate you start with.

Lin two large baking or cookie sheets with wax paper or a silpad; set aside.

In a food processor or blender, process and crush all of the Oreo cookies into fine crumbs. Add cream cheese and process until thoroughly mixed (there should be no white traces of cream cheese). Using your hands, roll into walnut-size balls, approximately 3/4-inch diameter. If the mixture becomes too soft to work, place the remaining mixture back into the refrigerator to slightly harden. Place Oreo Balls on the lined baking sheet and refrigerate or at least 45 to 60 minutes.


The Oreo Balls may be stored in the freezer for up to 1 week.

If you put the Oreo balls in the freezer for a short time before dipping in chocolate, this helps keep the balls cold longer. I also put the cookie sheets in the freezer first so they are really cold when I place the chocolate covered Oregon Truffle Balls onto the cookie sheet.

Using one of the below methods, melt the chocolate chips:

Double Boiler:

In the top of a double boiler over hot water, not boiling water (don't let the bottom of the bowl touch the water, melt chocolate; stirring until smooth. Be careful boiling water may cause steam droplets to get into chocolate which can result in "seizing," when the chocolate becomes stiff and grainy. NOTE: If you don't have a double boiler you can improvise one by placing a glass or stainless steel bowl over a pot of simmering water. Remove from heat. Let the chocolate cool slightly, but it should not set.

Microwave Melting Chocolate:

In a microwave-safe bowl, melt chocolate chips using either the defrost setting or 10-percent power in the microwave. Microwave for 1 minute, then check and stir. If you need more time, do it in 10 to 20 seconds intervals and check and stir after each addition of microwave time. Remove the container from the microwave and stir the chocolate until completely melted. Baking chips and baking chocolate may appear formed and un-melted after heating but will become fluid after stirring. Blend in cream, brandy, liqueur, or coffee

When ready to coat with chocolate, remove the chilled Oreo Balls from the refrigerator. Replace wax paper on baking sheets if they are not clean. NOTE: A small fork, toothpicks, or chopsticks are great to use as dipping tool. Dip each Oreo Ball into the melted chocolate, allowing the excess to drip back into the pot. Place the Oreo Truffle Balls onto the wax paper. NOTE: If the chocolate gets too hard to dip well, reheat it over the double boiler or in the microwave.

Optional: In a separate bowl either melt the white chocolate in a double boiler or the microwave. When melted, using a fork, drizzle white chocolate over the harden chocolate balls to decorate.

Let Oreo Truffle Balls harden and then store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Makes 40 to 50 candy balls, depending on the size balls your roll.

source: What's Cooking America