Monthly Archives: November 2017
Gooey Chocolate-Caramel Fantasy
This luscious dessert includes a chocolate crumb crust and caramel-pecan filling crowned with melted chocolate.
1/3 cup butter, melted
2 cups chocolate wafer crumbs (about 38 wafers)
30 vanilla caramels
1/2 cup caramel ice cream topping
2 cups chopped pecans
1/4 cup whipping cream
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate pieces
1/4 cup whipping cream
1.In a medium mixing bowl, stir together chocolate wafer crumbs and melted butter. Press onto the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. Bake in a 350 degree F oven for 10 minutes. Cool slightly on a wire rack.
2. In a heavy medium saucepan, melt caramels in caramel ice cream topping over low heat, stirring often. Stir in the first 1/4 cup whipping cream. Remove from heat; stir in nuts. Spread over crust. Cool; cover and chill for 1 hour.
3. For topping: In a heavy small saucepan, melt chocolate. Remove from heat; stir in remaining whipping cream.
4. Drizzle or spread over caramel-pecan mixture. Cover and chill for at least 1 hour. Makes 12 servings.
Mini Chocolate Snowball Cakes
For when a snack-cake craving (or nostalgia) strikes. Confession: Sometimes we get a little nostalgic for a classic Hostess snack cake, specifically of the Sno Ball variety. When the craving strikes, we turn to this recipe for mini chocolate snowball cakes.
½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar
½ cup sugar
1½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2¾ cups all-purpose flour
½ cup cocoa powder
1¼ teaspoons baking soda
¾ teaspoon salt
½ cup buttermilk
½ cup warm water
3 cups shredded coconut
2 2/3 cups whipped topping or whipped cream
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
2. Make the cakes: In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter with the brown sugar and sugar until light and fluffy, 4 to 5 minutes.
3. Add the eggs one at a time, and scrape the side of the bowl well after each is added. Add the vanilla extract and mix to combine.
4. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour with the cocoa powder, baking soda and salt to combine. Add about half of the flour mixture to the mixer, and mix on low speed to combine.
5. Gradually add the buttermilk and water to the mixer; mix to combine. Add the remaining flour mixture and mix to combine.
6. Scoop the batter (an ice-cream scoop works great) into 16 even mounds on the prepared baking sheets. Stagger the cakes, leaving at least 2 inches of space all around—the cakes will spread during baking.
7. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cake comes out clean, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool completely.
8. Trim the uneven edges from the cakes by pressing a 3-inch circle cookie cutter (or the rim of a large glass) into the center of each cooled cake. You will end up with 16 perfect circles.
9. Spread the coconut into an even layer on a large plate or baking sheet.
10 .Build the cakes: Scoop ⅓ cup whipped topping or whipped cream onto a cake and then place another cake on top. Press down on the top cake until some of the filling comes out the sides and then use a spatula to spread this excess all over the sides and top. Repeat with the remaining cakes and whipped cream.
11. Roll the cakes in the coconut to coat all over. Refrigerate the cakes until ready to serve. They will keep in the refrigerator, stored in an airtight container, for up to a week.
Happy Veterans Day!!
Chocolate Cream Pie
The filling of this chocolate-crust pie is luscious, but not too rich. (Think old-fashioned chocolate pudding.) A bit of sour cream in the whipped topping balances the chocolate perfectly.
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
4 1/2 teaspoons granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup shortening, chilled and cut up
3 -4 tablespoons ice water
1 cup chopped semisweet chocolate (6 ounces)
2 tablespoons butter
3 cups whole milk
2/3 cup granulated sugar
4 egg yolks
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons sour cream
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
Chocolate curls or grated semisweet chocolate
For crust: In a medium bowl, combine flour, 2 tablespoons cocoa, 4 1/2 teaspoons sugar and the salt. Using a pastry blender, cut shortening into flour mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.
Sprinkle 1 tablespoon water over part of the mixture. Gently toss with a fork. Continue adding water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until all dough is moistened. Form dough into a ball. On a lightly floured surface press dough into a disk. Roll dough into a 12-inch circle. Ease circle into a 9-inch pie plate. Trim pastry to 1/2-inch beyond edge of pie plate. Fold under extra crust and crimp as desired.
Prick bottom and sides of pastry with a fork. Line crust with a double layer of foil. Bake in a 425 degrees F oven for 10 minutes. Remove foil and bake for 8 minutes more or until set and dry. Remove from oven and cool completely.
For filling: Place chopped chocolate and butter in a medium bowl. Set aside. Heat milk in a large heavy saucepan over medium heat until steam rises from surface (do not let boil). Meanwhile, in a medium mixing bowl, whisk together 2/3 cup sugar, the yolks, cornstarch, and 2 tablespoons cocoa powder (mixture will be thick).
Slowly whisk 2 cups of the hot milk into egg mixture. Add egg mixture back into saucepan. Cook and stir until mixture comes to a boil. Cook for 30 seconds more. Pour over chopped chocolate and butter. Let stand for 3 minutes. Add vanilla; whisk until chocolate and butter are melted and mixture is smooth.
Pour into cooled crust. Cover pie with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight until set.
When ready to serve, prepare topping. In a large mixing bowl beat cream, sour cream and powdered sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed just until stiff peaks form. Spread over pie and top with chocolate curls.
Chocolate Pecan Turtle Clusters
WARNING – May cause a Turtle Addiction so DON’T shoot the messenger 🙂
CHOCOLATE PECAN TURTLE CLUSTERS!!!
These are so easy to make and a great gift idea!!! Thanks to my life long #friendsofTenaciousM, Freida Bookman!
2 1/2 C pecans
1/2 C butter (I use salted)
1 C brown sugar
1/2 C light corn syrup
7 ounces sweetened condensed milk (1/2 of a 14 ounce can)
1/2 t vanilla
1 (12 ounce) package milk chocolate chips
1/2 t shortening (I use butter flavored Crisco)
1. Toss 2 1/2 cups of pecans into a large skillet. Toast them over medium high heat, stirring occasionally, until they have darkened just a bit and smell fragrant and wonderful. Should only take a few minutes.
2. Find yourself 2 large cookie sheets. Line them with parchment paper and spray it with cooking spray. Arrange your pecans into clusters, three to a group works well. You want to leave some space (about an inch) between each cluster.
3. Make your caramel. Place 1/2 C butter into a medium-sized sauce pan. Melt it over medium high heat. Add 1 C brown sugar, 1/2 C light corn syrup and 7 ounces sweetened condensed milk to the pan. Increase the heat just a bit and stir it continually. Cook and stir until it reaches 235-240 degrees. I generally remove it from the heat when it reaches about 234 degrees. It will continue to rise in temperature just a bit even without the direct heat, making the caramel just the right texture.
4. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon vanilla.
5. Carefully drizzle about 1 1/2 teaspoons of caramel over each nut cluster. You’ll want to work quickly, as the caramel will begin to set up. Be sure there is caramel touching all of the nuts in your cluster. The caramel works like glue, sticking the nuts together.
6. In a microwave safe bowl pour 12 ounces of milk chocolate chips. Heat in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time, stirring after each cooking interval.
7. Add 1/2 teaspoon of shortening to the melted chocolate. Allow it to sit for a minute or two (so it can melt and make the chocolate chips more spreadable). Stir it all together.
8. Spoon about 1 1/2 teaspoons of melted chocolate over the top of the caramel and nuts. Swirl it around along the top making a pretty swoop with your spoon.
9. Allow the chocolate to set up. Once
it has hardened and cooled you can serve them immediately, or transfer them to an air tight container.