There are occasions when layer cakes are really in order. Big birthdays, anniversaries, or graduations often warrant a towering cake. And then there are times when your standard chocolate cake recipe just won't do. When it's time to really knock it out of the park, s'mores do the trick.
Sometimes shaking up the routine is good. Replacing the typical square of chocolate for dessert with a few ripe figs or a bowl of really good ice cream. Or something just a bit richer. Meet the chocolate pot.
There are a lot of things we tell ourselves about chocolate in order to eat it on a frequent basis. It's great for headaches, it's good for the heart, it's better than other things I could be eating! But what if we told you it's been proven to make you smarter too? Hot diggity-dang!
Have you ever been in the situation you where you have a recipe calling for a very specific percentage of cacao in a chocolate bar and you get to the store only to find vague indicators like "Very Dark," or "Special Bittersweet"? Well, now there's a way to do the guessing all on your own.
While I no longer live in San Francisco, I dream of the dessert pizza at Gialina Pizzeria to this day. It was buttery and flaky and slathered with mascarpone and chocolate. The good news? San Franciscan or not, there are a few great dessert pizza recipes out there just awaiting a hungry audience.
When is it considered too early to start thinking about holiday menus and desserts? My general feeling is September is far too early, although once October rolls around I start to flirt with different pies I may want to serve for Thanksgiving. And this year, we have a new contender: The Brownie Pecan Pie.
I have always felt alternately fascinated and frustrated by carob chips. They're advertised as a low-sugar chocolate substitute, but as any true chocolate devotee will confirm, they are definitely not chocolate. So what's up with carob chips? Do you ever bake with them?
Have you ever tried your hand at molding your own chocolate? It doesn't have to be a special occasion and there's no expensive molds required when you have a well stocked pantry. Want to see which three items you can use in your kitchen for perfectly molded custom sweets?
In the summer, there are often competing forces when it comes to dessert. First are all the wonderful fruit desserts that we can really only have during these three or four months. (Hopefully you've had your fill of crumbles, crisps and pies this season. If not, you've got a little time yet.) The other force, for me at least, are the overly-sweet, fluffy cupcakes and confections you find at weddings, graduations and other summer celebrations. Often nice to look at, they generally don't taste all that great. So by the end of the summer, I find myself craving something different, a not-messing-around dessert: chocolate cake.
I go through phases. I used to be a decidedly dark chocolate gal, but these days I flirt with the milk chocolate side of things as well. In the winter, a cup of hot chocolate is often dessert and in the summer, a few squares of a Ritter bar does the trick. It's certainly not news to you that some chocolate is much better than others, but why is this so? I decided to look at the ultimate favorite, Belgian chocolate, to see what sets it apart.