Tag Archives: chocolate

Milkbar Chocolate Chocolate Cookies!

Chocolate-Chocolate Cookies
by Christina Tosi
Makes 10 to 15 cookies

An ode to my favorite baked good of all time, the fudgy brownie, this cookie has a healthy salt content and, to me, is perfection.

INGREDIENTS
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup glucose
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 ounces 55% chocolate, melted
1 1/4 cups flour
3/4 cup cocoa powder, preferably Valrhona
3 g baking powder 3/4 teaspoon
1.5 g baking soda 1/4 teaspoon
7 g kosher salt 1 3/4 teaspoons
1/2 recipe Chocolate Crumb (below)

PREPARATION
Combine the butter, sugar, and glucose in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and cream together on medium-high for 2 to 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the egg, vanilla, and melted chocolate, and beat for 7 to 8 minutes.

Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix just until the dough comes together, no longer than 1 minute. (Do not walk away from the machine during this step, or you will risk overmixing the dough.) Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula.

Still on low speed, add the chocolate crumbs and mix just until incorporated, about 30 seconds.

Using a 2 3/4-ounce ice cream scoop (or a 1/3-cup measure), portion out the dough onto a parchment-lined sheet pan. Pat the tops of the cookie dough domes flat. Wrap the sheet pan tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or up to 1 week. Do not bake your cookies from room temperature–they will not bake properly.

Heat the oven to 375°F.

Arrange the chilled dough a minimum of 4 inches apart on parchment- or Silpat-lined sheet pans. Bake for 18 minutes. The cookies will puff, crackle, and spread. It’s tough (kind of impossible) to gauge if a cookie that is this dark with chocolate is done. If after 18 minutes, the cookies still seem doughy in the center, give them another 1 minute in the oven, but not more.

Cool the cookies completely on the sheet pans before transferring to a plate or an airtight container for storage. At room temp, the cookies will keep fresh for 5 days; in the freezer, they will keep for 1 month.

Chocolate Crumb
Makes about 2 1/2 cups

INGREDIENTS
2/3 cup flour
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/2 cup sugar
2/ 3 cup cocoa powder, preferably Valrhona
1 teaspoon kosher salt
6 tablespoons butter, melted

PREPARATION
Heat the oven to 300 degrees F.

Combine the flour, cornstarch, sugar, cocoa powder, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and paddle on low speed until mixed.

Add the butter and paddle on low speed until the mixture starts to come together in small clusters.

Spread the clusters on a parchment- or Silpat-lined sheet pan. Bake for 20 minutes, breaking them up occasionally. The crumbs should still be slightly moist to the touch at that point; they will dry and harden as they cool.

Let the crumbs cool completely before using in a recipe or eating. Stored in an airtight container, they will keep fresh for 1 week at room temperature or 1 month in the fridge or freezer.

Recipe from bonappetit.com

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REAL Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

I scream, you scream, we all scream for….

Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream
(we promise, once you’ve had the real stuff, you’ll never go back to fake mint ice cream!)  This is one of my all time favorite recipes – I can’t go to any party in the summer without bringing a batch, and I’m always writing out the recipe for newly converted REAL Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream fanatics!

2 1/2 cups whole milk
20 sprigs fresh mint
5 large egg yolks
2/3 cup sugar
1 cup heavy cream
4 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped

In a medium saucepan, combine milk and 18 sprigs of mint. Bring to a gentle boil, cover, and remove pan from heat. Let steep (with cover on) for 30 minutes (or longer for stronger mint flavor).

Strain mixture; reserve milk, and discard solids.

Combine egg yolks and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment. Beat at medium-high speed until very thick and pale yellow, 3 to 5 minutes.

Return milk to a simmer. Add half of the warm milk to egg-yolk mixture; whisk until blended. Return new mixture to saucepan with remaining milk. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon, being careful to not let the milk get too hot and curdle.
Prepare an ice-water bath. Remove saucepan from heat; immediately stir in cream. Pass mixture through a sieve set over a medium bowl. Place bowl in ice-water bath; chill.

When the custard mix is cold, freeze in ice-cream maker according to instructions. (If you put it in the ice cream maker too early, the frozen compartment of the ice cream maker will defrost and the ice cream won’t properly “freeze” and will be very soft.)

Finely chop remaining 2 sprigs mint. Add mint and chocolate; mix in machine until combined, about 30 seconds. Store in an airtight container.

Enjoy!

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Whisked to Wonderfulness!

A couple of nights ago, while watching the Olympics, my darling husband asked if I’d pretty please make him a little dessert with chocolate.  So, I undertook the task of making my first chocolate souffle!  I’ll tell you what, the recipe is not for the faint of heart, but it’s not too too challenging either.  If you can understand the different stages of whipped egg whites, you’ll be fine.  Give it a go – it’s a delicious light and supple treat!

Super Simple Chocolate Souffle
(well, as simple as souffle gets)

butter for greasing baking dish and parchment
1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp sugar
4 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 cup whole milk
3 large egg yolks
1/4 cup flour
5 large egg whites
pinch of cream of tartar
confectioners sugar for dusting

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Proper Macarons!

I did it!  I did it!

I finally made a batch of Macarons that actually look like real French Macarons!  See – look below!  I’ve been trying for months to master the macaron and thought I’d have to take a class or have someone show me how it’s done, but I finally did it!  I made them last night while watching the Super Bowl and literally, was jumping for joy when they came out perfectly with their little feet!

I am still hardly an expert, heck, I’m barely a novice! So, I’m not going to give you a recipe, just send you to this one from Tartelette, the queen of macarons.  Here are the pieces of advice I found incredibly helpful from Helen’s recipe…

  • USE THE SCALE!  This is the single most important tip (in my humble opinion)!  I am always amazed when I weigh something and then measure it, out of curiosity, and see how the measurement is almost always so inaccurate in comparison.
  • Helen talked about holding the bowl of egg whites upside down to determine when they’re ready to have the almond/flour mixture added to them.  I found this was the perfect way to make sure they weren’t under whipped.
  • When grinding the almonds in the powdered sugar, grind and then grind again.  Just when you think they’re fine enough, give them one more minute in the food processor.
  • Give them a rest!  After piping onto the baking sheet, let them rest undisturbed for an hour to form a little bit of a cap.  This seemed to really help them develop a beautiful top and little feet.
  • And finally, I was super surprised to find that when I baked one batch on parchment and the other on a silpat, the macarons on the parchment stuck LESS than those on the silpat.  I’m not sure why, but I can’t wait to make another batch to see if I have the same results.

Happy Baking!!!

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The ABC’s of Thanksgiving Desserts

When I was writing out my to do list for Thanksgiving dinner last night I realized my desserts represent the first three letters of the alphabet – and I really didn’t mean to!  Here’s what I’m making and the links to the recipes…
Apple
Brown Butter
Chocolate

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Jacques Torres NY Times Chocolate Chip Cookies

jtcccLast week my friend, Rachel, called, emailed and texted in search of the recipe I use when making chocolate chip cookies. I simply directed her to this blog, until I she frantically emailed back that she couldn’t find it anywhere.  It was then that I realized I’ve never (dear God, I don’t know how I’ve not) posted the recipe that is the most delicious, complex, perfectly crisp, perfectly gooey chocolate chip cookie recipe ever.  Don’t believe me, give it a try – I promise to change your mind.

Jacques Torres Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 cups minus 2 tablespoons (8 1/2 ounces) cake flour
1 2/3 cups (8 1/2 ounces) bread flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
2 1/2 sticks (1 1/4 cups) unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups (10 ounces) light brown sugar
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (8 ounces) granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons natural vanilla extract
1 1/4 pounds bittersweet chocolate discs (or chocolate chips if you’re in a pinch)
Sea salt

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Peanut Butter Brownie Cups

For a while now, I’ve been wanting to use muffin pans to make brownies. I found several recipes, but none I could really get excited about. Then, I found one from Nestle that features one of my favorite combinations: chocolate and peanut butter.  I slightly modified their recipe to get to the decadent treat below.

chocolate

Peanut Butter Brownie Cups

3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 tablespoon water
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup peanut butter chips plus about 1/3 cup more for garnishing
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips plus about 1/3 cup more for garnishing
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter

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The Incredible Chocolate Cake

I know, I’m showing you a picture of a cupcake and I turned my chocolate cake recipe into a batch of chocolate cupcakes, but I’m still calling it The Incredible Chocolate Cake.  That’s because it is incredible. What’s the secret you ask?  Click below for the recipe and you’ll see what I’m talking about.chocolatecupcake Continue reading

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From the kitchen of: John Therres

chocolate-cherry-jubilee-shortcakesChef John Therres of M Bar at the Renaissance M Street Hotel is serving up Chocolate Cherry Jubilee Shortcakes  during the
Cherry Blossom Festival, free with purchase of any appetizer or entrée. It’s just a sample of the upscale comfort and whimsy used in his modern American menus.  We managed to snag a few minutes of his time to ask the usual questions…

What is your favorite kitchen gadget?
Does a kitchen aid count?  I have a meat grinder attachment, a sausage stuffer attachment, and pasta rollers.  It is certainly the most versatile.  If it doesn’t count, then my tablespoon measure–it slides back and forth so that you can measure a teaspoon, 1/2 tablespoon, and tablespoon all with one device.  I’ve had mine 12 years now.  I am sucker for anything that has multiple uses and is durable.

What is the most overrated food/technique in restaurants today?
Chef tables/open kitchens, and not just because I constantly see the inner workings of a kitchen.  For the most part, they are pretentious and lacking the general zaniness of everyday kitchen life.

If you were to open a restaurant with a different type of cuisine than what you are cooking now, what would it be?
It would probably be some kind of mutant diner with whimsical or upscale versions of classic diner dishes.  Think bacon cheeseburger, but the burger is a patty composed of ground bacon. A popular item for special events at the hotel is my ground bacon and bleu cheese burgers (with pear ketchup! See recipe after the jump.)

What is your favorite local product or purveyor to work with?
I try and go to the farmer’s market most Sundays (Dupont Circle), and I think my favorite local products are the cheeses. They will let you sample all of them, and it takes great restraint not to buy them all.

What is your biggest customer pet peeve?
Customers that douse their food in salt and pepper before they even taste it.  Or even worse, people that talk on their cellphones in restaurants.

What do you drink/eat after work?
Beer.  I really love Guinness, and the Sam Adams Seasonal White Ale.  As for food, it’s probably junk food: potato chips or something fried.  Recently I’ve become obsessed with falafel.

What is your favorite thing to cook at home? Will you share the recipe with us?
My favorite thing to cook at home is probably fettuccine alfredo–it’s simple and decadent. The recipe for the pasta is from a friend–it’s got a lot of eggs, but it holds up really well.  The sauce, well, that was just trial and error.
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Graham Cracker Crusted Chocolate Oatmeal Raisinet Bars

So while I gave up chocolate for Lent, my darling husband gave up asparagus and while I think that’s a lame sacrifice, I can’t resist the smell of chocolate even if I can’t eat it.  I’ve been cooking up a recipe for a cookie with a combination of chocolate, graham cracker, oatmeal and raisins for a while, and I think I’ve got it!  So without any further ado, be introduced to my Graham Cracker Crusted Chocolate Oatmeal Raisinet Bars (I guess I could have just called them Everything but the…, but that’s not very descriptive)

raisinetbars

Graham Cracker Crusted Chocolate Oatmeal Raisin Bars

1 1/2 cups graham crackers, crushed to crumbs
1 1/4 cups AP flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1 cup salted butter, softened and divided
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
2 cups old-fashioned oats, divided
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup golden raisins

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