chocolate

Chocolate Tart with Salted Caramel

December 12, 2013
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Sweet and salty. That combination gets me every time.

Chocolate covered pretzels? You bet! Salted caramel ice cream? My favorite. Even peanut M&Ms have me reaching into the office candy jar.

But chocolate and salted caramel? That’s a long time favorite and if you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you might recognize the topping on the tart above as the same on this popular Chocolate Cake with Salted Caramel. There’s also this Vanilla Bean Cheesecake with Chocolate Crust and Salted Caramel (which has been pinned on Pinterest over 216,000 times!). I’ve also done chocolate tarts in the past with strawberries and with lemon curd.

Call it “recipe recycling” if you want, but why not take the best of several recipes to make something equally delicious? The two caramel desserts above were something I made for previous Thanksgiving dinners (in addition to the Pumpkin Chiffon Pie I make …

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Lemon Curd and Chocolate Ganache Tart

April 22, 2013
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Curd.
It doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue does it? How can something with a name so funky, taste so luscious? It’s the magic of chemistry that turns basic ingredients like sugar, eggs, butter and lemon, with a little heat, into a silky, sweet, and tangy spread that you would swear should not have a name like curd.

The pairing of lemon and chocolate is one of my favorites and goes all the way back to my college years when I had the opportunity to go with my boyfriend’s family to Europe for a summer. This was my first time traveling out of North America and I was so determined to go, I sold my car to be able to afford the trip. It was an eye-opening journey in so many ways, and when we got to Italy, it was there that my boyfriend introduced me to the …

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Ginger Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream

January 21, 2013
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Has everyone just about given up on their New Year’s resolutions to eat healthy yet? It’s about that time now when people start making exceptions in their new diet and take “just a day off” from going to the gym, isn’t it?

Well, here’s one more thing to tempt you (she said with a devilish lilt in her voice), Ginger Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream. I originally created this recipe a couple of years ago for my mother for her birthday dinner. I asked her what flavor she wanted and she told me about this ice cream she’d had in a restaurant. When she tasted it I could tell from the look on her face that I’d nailed it.

You may not think of ice cream as a winter dessert, but I think any time is ok for ice cream. Plus the flavors in this one feel more winter …

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Chocolate Budino With Espresso Cream

October 22, 2012
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Budino.
It’s like pudding, only better.

Why? Because it’s richer, denser and well, Italian, which automatically makes it better, right?

This is no ordinary pudding. There is no comparison with anything J-E-L-L-O. The stuff that comes out of those little boxes is like comparing salmon eggs to Beluga caviar, like chopped liver to foie gras, like cubic zirconia to diamonds. This is the real deal.

See those pretty glasses with the silver rim? They’re tea glasses I bought in Turkey, and while I’ve yet to drink tea out of them, I thought they’d also be great for this dessert because frankly, no one should eat more than what’s in that glass of sinful richness. Trust me.

I like this recipe because it only has three ingredients, yet it can be a show stopper for a dinner party or simple comfort dessert to eat alone (you know what …

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Vanilla Bean Cheesecake with Chocolate Crust and Salted Caramel

February 6, 2012
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I’m frugal, I’ll admit it. I don’t mind spending money when I feel there is good bang for the buck (example, I’ll spend more for hotel room with a great view), but if I can make it myself, better and cheaper, then I will. That’s just a bonus, isn’t it?

When I decided I wanted to make a cheesecake with a chocolate crust for Thanksgiving (and then again  for Christmas Eve) I discovered that one could not just go to the store and buy chocolate cookie crumbs. I knew that graham cracker crumbs were available, but chocolate cookie crumbs only seem to be sold to restaurants. I could have cheated and bought some from work, but that wouldn’t work for you, would it? The only other option was to buy the Nabisco Famous Chocolate Wafers, but at $4 a package (and I thought I’d need two or maybe three), …

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Chocolate Banana Bread with Flax and Whole Wheat

March 29, 2011
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Do you associate banana bread with the 1970′s? I know I do. In that era of hippies and free love, there was a push toward eating healthy and that’s when natural food stores, macrobiotics and crimes against nature like carob came into vogue. But banana bread actually became popular in the 1930′s during the depression as a way to salvage over ripe bananas, along with a rise in the use of baking powder in recipes to create such things as “quick breads.” Regardless of association, banana bread is often thought of as healthy, though it can be loaded with fat and cholesterol and in general is not exactly good for you despite the addition of fruit.

Banana bread is not always my favorite because it’s usually loaded with walnuts (which I loathe). However, remove the walnuts and add chocolate and I’m a happy girl. I wanted to see if …

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