RSS Feed

Tag Archives: dark chocolate

Dark Chocolate Ganache Cupcakes

Dark chocolate cupcakes topped with ganache and vanilla buttercream– so rich and smooth because they are flour-less (lets hear it for my gluten-free friends!!)!!!  YUM!

Ingredients: (makes about 40 mini cupcakes)

Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2 cups of dark chocolate chips
  • 1 stick (4 oz.) salted butter
  • 2 T. cocoa powder
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 6 egg whites
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 c. sugar

Ganache:

  • 1/2 c. dark chocolate chips
  • 1/4 c. heavy whipping cream

Frosting:

  • 1 stick (4 oz.) salted butter (room temp)
  • 1 stick (4 oz.) unsalted butter (room temp)
  • 1 1/2 c. powdered sugar
  • 2 t. clear vanilla flavoring

DIRECTIONS:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • In a microwave safe bowl, melt chocolate with butter in 30 second increments, stirring between until smooth and creamy.
  • Whisk cocoa powder into melted chocolate.
  • Add egg YOLKS and whisk until smooth.  Set aside.
  • Add a pinch of salt to the egg whites and whisk until foamy.
  • Add sugar gradually to egg whites while beating on high until medium peaks form.
  • Add 1/3 of egg whites to chocolate and mix well- until completely combined and smooth.
  • Add remainder of egg whites and fold in gently until completely incorporated.
  • Spoon batter into mini-cupcake liners in tins and bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and cool completely. (Cupcakes will rise high in oven and as they cool they will sink and even become a little concave— perfect spot for our yummy ganache to sit!!)
  • To make the ganache, heat chips and whipping cream in the microwave in 30 second increments, stirring in between, until completely melted and smooth.
  • Gently spoon or pipe ganache into the concave top of each cupcake until all ganache is used up.
  • Allow ganache to cool and harden (place in fridge to speed this process up)
  • Make frosting by combining remaining room temperature butters with powdered sugar and vanilla and beating on high until light and fluffy.
  • Pipe frosting on tops of each cupcake, covering the ganache.
  • Decorate as desired.

My thoughts: Usually, I use a cake mix for my cupcakes and focus on the fillings and frostings for that “wow” factor.  The wow factor in these is definitely the cupcakes themselves….wow.  I tried cupcakes made with a flour-less recipe this past weekend in Chicago at Molly’s cupcakes.  (AMAZING!)  I just had to try making them for myself and the reason I made them mini is because they are SO rich and heavy.  A full-size cupcake would be too much.  These cupcakes are definitely worth the extra effort!  The tiny hearts on top I just made on wax paper using Wilton’s candy melts. Click here for some photos of how to pipe designs in chocolate.  Enjoy!!!  -r

Triple Chocolate Cheesecake

Posted on

Smooth and creamy dark chocolate cheesecake covered in white and milk chocolate toppings….yum.

INGREDIENTS:

Crust:

  • 9 oz. chocolate wafer cookies (I use chocolate animal crackers)
  • 1/4 c. margarine (melted)

Cheesecake:

  • 2 (8oz.) packages of Philadelphia Cream Cheese (softened)
  • 1/2c. sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 c. Nestle Dark Chocolate Morsels (melted)
  • 1 c. heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tbsp. margarine (melted)
  • 3 tsp. vanilla

Toppings:

  • 1/2c. heavy whipping cream (divided)
  • 1/2c. white chocolate chips
  • 1/2c. milk chocolate chips

DIRECTIONS:

Cheesecake:

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees
  • Crush cookies into fine crumbs and add melted margarine. Combine well and press into the bottom of a 9-Inch Springform Pan
  • Beat softened cream cheese with sugar until smooth.
  • Add eggs one at a time, beating in between each one.
  • Add remaining cheesecake ingredients, beating until smooth.
  • Pour into crust and allow to sit at room temp for 30 minutes.
  • Place on a cookie sheet and bake for 60 minutes,
  • Turn off oven, open oven door a little and allow to sit for another 30 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and run knife around edge of pan. Remove edge of pan.
  • Allow cheesecake to cool to room temperature before adding toppings.

Toppings:

  • Put 1/4 cup of whipping cream into small saucepan and heat just until bubbling at edges. Turn heat off, add white chocolate chips, cover and allow to sit for 5 minutes.
  • After 5 minutes, stir until smooth.
  • Repeat this process in another saucepan with the milk chocolate chips.
  • Pour white chocolate over cheesecake and then drizzle with milk chocolate until entire cheesecake is covered.
  • Chill overnight before serving.

My thoughts: I love the new Dark Chocolate Morsels by Nestle. I’m not a huge fan of dark chocolate, but these have just the right amount of sweet. They make a very flavorful cheesecake. My favorite thing about this cheesecake is that everything is smooth and creamy- no chips, no nuts- just rich smooth chocolates. Need a chocolate fix? This is your dessert! Enjoy!

Pecan Pie Cookie Cups

Dark chocolate and pecans baked in a soft sugar cookie cup–yum!

INGREDIENTS:

  • One tube of Pillsbury Refrigerated Sugar Cookie Dough
  • About 2 cups of pecan halves
  • 2/3 c. dark chocolate chips (I use the Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chips)
  • 1 T. corn syrup
  • 1/4 c. heavy whipping cream

DIRECTIONS:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Spoon about 1 T. of cookie dough into a ball in 24 mini-muffin cups.
  • Press into bottom and sides of cup (I use a Mini Tart Shaper )
  • Place one pecan half in the bottom of each cup.
  • Chop one cup of pecan halves into tiny pieces.
  • Mix together chopped pecans, corn syrup, whipping cream and melted bittersweet chocolate.
  • Use a zip-top bag to pipe pecan mixture into cups (just clip a nice big corner off so that the pecan pieces can fit through!)
  • Top with another pecan half
  • Bake at 350 degrees for about 16-18 minutes.
  • Allow cups to cool completely in pan.
  • Once completely cool, twist each cup a bit to free it from the pan and removeMy thoughts:  I usually love my experiments…but I didn’t really like these (just being honest here…)  My friends and co-workers LOVED them though…  I think I just needed milk chocolate instead of the bittersweet.  I need my sweet!  These were a huge hit though- so the bittersweet apparently works for most people.  ENJOY!!

Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake

Creamy peanut butter piled high on rich dark chocolate cheesecake makes this dessert absolutely decadent!

INGREDIENTS:

Cheesecake:

  • 9 oz. chocolate wafer cookies (I use animal crackers)
  • 1/4 c. margarine (melted)
  • 2 (8oz.) packages of Philadelphia Cream Cheese (softened)
  • 1/2c. sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 c. dark chocolate chips (melted)
  • 1 c. heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tbsp. margarine (melted)
  • 3 tsp. vanilla

Chocolate Topping:

  • 1/4c. heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2c. semi-sweet chocolate chips

Peanut Butter Topping:

  • 1/2c. heavy whipping cream
  • 1c. peanut butter baking chips

DIRECTIONS:

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees
  • Crush cookies into fine crumbs and add melted margarine.  Combine well and press into the bottom of a 9-Inch Springform Pan
  • Beat softened cream cheese with sugar until smooth.
  • Add eggs one at a time, beating in between each one.
  • Add remaining cheesecake ingredients, beating until smooth.
  • Pour into crust and allow to sit at room temp for 30 minutes.
  • Place on a cookie sheet and bake for 60 minutes,
  • Turn off oven, open oven door a little and allow to sit for another 30 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and run knife around edge of pan.  Remove edge of pan. 
  • Allow to come to room temperature (make toppings during this time)
  • PEANUT BUTTER: Put whipping cream into saucepan and heat just until bubbling at edges.  Turn heat off, add peanut butter chips, cover and allow to sit for 5 minutes.
  • CHOCOLATE:  Put whipping cream into saucepan and heat just until bubbling at edges.  Turn heat off, add chocolate chips, cover and allow to sit for 5 minutes.
  • After 5 minutes, stir both until smooth.
  • Pour peanut butter over top of cheesecake, smoothing to edges
  • Refrigerate about 10 minutes.
  • Pour chocolate over peanut butter and smooth into a center circle.  
  • Decorate as desired.
  • REFRIGERATE cheesecake overnight before serving for best consistency. Remove bottom part of pan when cake is chilled.

My thoughts: This is my dessert contribution for Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow.  My family is starting to get used to getting desserts that already have a piece cut out- for photo purposes of course!  I’m also bringing broccoli (lest you think I am truly the most unhealthy person in the universe!)  I’ve made this cheesecake for years and it always is just soooo creamy and smooth.  So here’s my little Thanksgiving treat for you my faithful readers!!  I’m very thankful for YOU and all of your encouragement in this crazy new venture in my life!  HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!!!!!

one. last. bite………

Raspberry Truffle Tart

Posted on

Smooth dark chocolate and tangy raspberry filling topped with a shiny glaze make this tart one of the richest and creamiest desserts you’ve ever had!

INGREDIENTS:

  • One refrigerated pie crust
  • 1c. Ghirardelli Bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 2c. Ghirardelli Semi-sweet chocolate chips (divided)
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 5 T. heavy whipping cream
  • 3 cups plus 5 T. powdered sugar
  • 2 T. vanilla
  • 12 T. butter (divided and melted)
  • 2t. raspberry flavoring
  • red food coloring

DIRECTIONS:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Spray an 8 or 9 inch tart pan with cooking spray and line with pie crust.  Poke holes into bottom with fork and set on a cookie sheet.
  • Melt together 1 cup of bittersweet chips and one cup of semi-sweet.  Allow this to cool to room temperature.
  • In a separate bowl combine eggs, cream, vanilla and 5 T. powdered sugar.
  • Add cream mixture to chocolate and blend well.  Pour into crust and bake for 20 – 25 minutes until center is set.
  • Cool tart completely and then remove outer ring.
  • For filling: Combine remaining 3 c. of powdered sugar with 6 T. melted butter and blend well. Add raspberry flavor and food color. Blend well (add extra powdered sugar if needed for thick frosting-like consistency) and spread over the top of cool tart.
  • For Glaze: Melt 6 T. butter (do not use margarine here!) with remaining cup of semi-sweet chips and stir until smooth.  Pour over top of tart and smooth to edges.
  • Garnish with fresh raspberries if desired.

My thoughts…soooo rich (take a small slice!) and so flavorful!  This tart recipe (minus the toppings) is one of my last-minute go-to recipes.  Its SO quick and easy and you can serve it right out of the oven warm -with cool-whip or ice cream.  The toppings are a bonus if you have a little more time- mix those flavors up!  Great with mint and peanut butter and maple and coconut– such a fun and versatile recipe!  ENJOY!!!

A special thanks to my friend Brie from Color Canvas Media who is teaching me about my camera and who helped me take these photos far better than I could have alone!  I’m addicted to Foodgawker and thus far I’ve had 36 photos rejected and 2 accepted (lol!!) I’ve never had any interest in photography and now I think I’m addicted- fun new hobby!   So here’s to better blog pictures! Thanks Brie!!!!!

Chocolate Easter Eggs with Peanut Butter Filling!

Posted on

These chocolate eggs are filled with a creamy peanut butter mixture.  Fill your Easter baskets with this easy to make recipe!!!

INGREDIENTS:

DIRECTIONS:

  • Combine margarine with peanut butter and add powdered sugar until mixture is thick enough to be rolled and molded by hand.
  • Form eggs in any size (I use an egg-shaped 1/3 cup measuring spoon, but you can shape by hand in other sizes as well)
  • Melt chocolate in microwave in 30 second increments, stirring well in between until smooth.
  • Using a fork, dip peanut butter eggs into chocolate until completely covered and slide off fork onto parchment paper.  Allow chocolate to cool and harden.
  • Decorate as desired (drizzle with other colored chocolate, or sprinkle with spring candy…).

My thoughts:  This is my second year making these eggs as a fundraiser for missions trips at my church.  We have improved our technique for making these in large quantities and had a lot of fun this year.  These are HUGE peanut butter eggs.  I always warn people to not eat a whole one all at once!  The filling is so creamy and rich.  I hope you get a chance to try these out for YOUR Easter baskets!  Here’s some shots of our egg-making extravaganza:

%d bloggers like this: