Chocolate Cake with Vanilla Cream

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Ingredients

  • 10 oz uncooked butternut squash, peeled, diced (2 cups)
  • 1/4 cup(s) water
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 14 Tbsp powdered sugar, (3/4 c plus 2 Tbsp)
  • 2/3 cup(s) all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup(s) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp table salt
  • 1 1/2 oz bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped (70% cocoa)
  • 2 Tbsp light butter, cut up
  • 1 large egg(s)
  • 2 large egg white(s)
  • 1/4 cup(s) heavy whipping cream
  • 1 Tbsp powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup(s) reduced-fat sour cream
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup(s) pomegranate seeds

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper or nonstick aluminum foil so foil hangs over edges a little bit (or coat pan with cooking spray).

Combine squash and water in a microwavable mixing bowl; cover with vented plastic wrap (or wax paper). Microwave on High until squash is fork-tender, 8 minutes. Mash squash with potato masher or large spoon; stir in 2 tsp vanilla extract and let cool until lukewarm.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, sift together 14 Tbsp powdered sugar, flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt.

Combine chocolate and butter in a small microwavable bowl; cover with wax paper and microwave on Medium until chocolate softens and butter begins to melt, 15 seconds; stir until smooth.

Stir melted chocolate into squash until blended; beat in egg and egg whites by hand. Gently fold in flour mixture just until blended.

Pour batter into prepared pan; spread into an even layer. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out with a few moist crumbs clinging, 25 minutes. Cool completely in pan on wire rack.

While cake cools, in a small bowl, using an electric mixer, beat cream until thickened. Add powdered sugar; beat until stiff peaks form. Fold in sour cream and vanilla just until blended.

Remove cake from pan; remove parchment or foil. Cut into 12 pieces and serve topped with cream and pomegranate arils.

Serving size: 1 piece cake, 1 Tbsp vanilla cream and 1 Tbsp pomegranate arils

 

 

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Baked Chocolate, Almond and Cranberry Wontons

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Ingredients

  • 3 spray(s) cooking spray
  • 1/2 cup(s) semisweet chocolate chips, chopped
  • 1/4 cup(s) dried cranberries, or dried cherries, chopped
  • 1/4 cup(s) almonds, toasted, chopped
  • 32 item(s) wonton wrapper(s)
  • 3 Tbsp powdered sugar

Instructions

Preheat oven to 425°F. Coat a large baking sheet with cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, combine chocolate, cranberries and almonds.

Place wonton wrappers on a flat surface. Drop chocolate mixture by 1/2 tablespoonfuls onto center of each wrapper, making sure to get a combination of the 3 ingredients in each. Dip a finger into water and use it to moisten edges of wrapper; fold over one corner of wrapper to make a triangle and press sides together to create a seal. If desired, create decorative lines along edges of wontons by pressing tines of a fork along bottom edge of each wonton.

Bake until wontons are golden brown on edges and dough is just cooked through, about 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool slightly. Dust with sugar just before serving. Yields 1 wonton per serving.

 

 

 

Baked Pears with Chocolate and Raspberry Sauce

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Ingredients

  • 3 medium pear(s), ripe but firm, halved and cored
  • 1/2 tsp salted butter, melted
  • 1 cup(s) unsweetened frozen raspberries
  • 1 Tbsp sugar, granulated
  • 1 Tbsp semisweet chocolate chips, chopped (or use mini chips)

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Arrange pears, cut sides-up, in a shallow baking dish; brush with melted butter. Bake until tender, 30-35 minutes.

Meanwhile, to make raspberry sauce, put raspberries and sugar in a small saucepan; bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, mashing berries with a wooden spoon against bottom and sides of pan. Reduce heat to low; simmer until raspberries are very soft, 2 minutes. Remove pan from heat and strain sauce through a sieve, pressing on mixture to extract as much liquid as possible; set aside.

When pears are finished baking, turn off oven. Fill each pear cavity with 1/2 teaspoon chocolate chips; return to oven so chocolate can start to melt, 5 minutes.

Remove pears from oven; let stand 1 minute. Drizzle with raspberry sauce (or spoon sauce on a plate and place pear on top); serve.

Serving size: 1 pear half and 2 teaspoons raspberry sauce

 

 

German Chocolate Cake with Coconut-Pecan Frosting

Ingredients

Cake

4 oz milk chocolate, cut into piecesdbab146e76f77c0e402a5a7af7e4b644

1/2 cup water
2 cups sugar
1 cup butter or margarine, softened
4 eggs
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Frosting

1 cup sugar
1 cup evaporated milk
1/2 cup butter or margarine
3 eggs, beaten
1 1/3 cups flaked coconut
1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
1 teaspoon vanilla

Method

  • Heat oven to 350°F. Grease 3 (9-inch) round cake pans with shortening; lightly flour. In 1-quart saucepan, melt chocolate with water over low heat, stirring frequently. Cool.
  • In large bowl, beat 2 cups sugar and 1 cup butter with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, scraping bowl occasionally. Add 4 eggs, one at a time, beating and scraping well after each addition. Beat in chocolate mixture. On low speed, beat in remaining cake ingredients until well blended, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour batter evenly into pans.
  • Bake 35 to 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans 5 minutes. Remove from pans; place on wire racks. Cool completely, about 1 hour.
  • In 2-quart saucepan, cook 1 cup sugar, the evaporated milk, 1/2 cup butter and 3 eggs over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture begins to bubble. Remove saucepan from heat. Stir in coconut, pecans and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.
  • Place 1 cake layer, top side down, on serving plate. Spread with 1/3 of frosting. Repeat with remaining cake layers and frosting, ending with frosting.

Original recipe from http://www.pillsbury.com

Classic Vanilla Pudding

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Ingredients

  • 4 cups 1% low-fat milk
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • Cooking spray

How to Make It

  1. Combine milk and eggs yolks in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk until frothy. Scrape seeds from vanilla bean. Add vanilla bean seeds and pod to milk mixture.

  2. Combine sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a medium saucepan, stirring with a whisk. Slowly add milk mixture, stirring until blended. Cook over medium heat 12 minutes or until mixture comes to a boil and begins to thicken, stirring constantly. Remove from heat; stir in butter. Remove and discard vanilla bean pod.

  3. Pour 1/2 cup mixture into each of 10 (6-ounce) ramekins or small bowls. Cover surface of pudding with plastic wrap coated with cooking spray. Chill at least 2 hours.

Fudgy Brownies

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon hot water
  • 2 teaspoons instant coffee granules
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 tablespoon powdered sugar (optional)

How to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 325°.

  2. Place sugar and eggs in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at high speed until thick and pale (about 5 minutes). Combine hot water and coffee granules, stirring until coffee granules dissolve. Add coffee mixture, butter, and vanilla extract to sugar mixture; beat at low speed until combined.

  3. Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour, cocoa, and salt, stirring with a whisk. Gradually add flour mixture to sugar mixture, stirring just until moist (batter will be thick).

  4. Spread batter into an 8-inch square baking pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 325° for 23 minutes or until brownies spring back when touched lightly in center. Cool in pan on a wire rack. Garnish brownies with powdered sugar, if desired.

Black Forest Gateau

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ingredients

Cake

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled, plus more for buttering cake pan
  • 1/2 cup (2 1/2 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour plus more for dusting cake pan
  • 1/4 cup Dutch-process cocoa
  • Pinch of salt
  • 6 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (4 3/4 ounces) superfine sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Syrup

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) kirsch

Assembly

  • 4 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups Sour Cherries, or a 24-ounce jar sour cherries such as morello or amarena
  • 8 fresh cherries with stems (optional)
  • About 2 1/2 ounces dark chocolate (at least 60% cacao) in a single block
  • About 1/2 cup ground dark chocolate (at least 60% cacao)
  • Powdered sugar for dusting

To Make the Cake:
Preheat the oven to 350°. Place the rack in the center of the oven. Butter and flour a 10-inch cake pan that is 3 inches deep such as a springform mold.

Sift the 1/2 cup flour, the cocoa, and the salt together onto a sheet of parchment paper and set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the eggs, sugar, and vanilla at high speed until the mixture has tripled in volume and is very thick, about 8 minutes. When the whisk is lifted, the batter will form a thick ribbon as it falls back into the bowl.

Lower the speed to stir and carefully tap the dry ingredients into the egg mixture. As soon as all the flour has been added to the eggs, stop the machine. Pour in the melted butter, making sure to leave the white, milky solids behind. With a large rubber spatula, using as few strokes as possible, finish folding the flour mixture and butter into the batter until evenly mixed.

Immediately scrape the batter into the prepared pan, place the pan on a baking sheet, and bake until the cake feels just firm to the touch, about 40 minutes. Transfer the cake to a rack and let it cool for about 5 minutes. Then turn the cake upside down onto a rack to cool. This will flatten the slightly domed top.

To Make the Syrup:
Place the sugar and 1/2 cup water in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring the mixture to a boil while stirring to dissolve the sugar. Add the kirsch and remove from the heat. Pour the syrup into a small cup or bowl and set it aside.

To Assemble the Cake:
In a large bowl, whip the cream with the sugar and vanilla on medium-high speed until it holds firm peaks. Do not overbeat; the whipped cream should be smooth and firm. Divide the cream into 4 equal portions and set them aside. (This helps prevent getting to the last bit of decorating and discovering you have run out of cream.) Drain the cherries and divide them into 2 equal piles. Reserve 8 to 12 cherries to garnish the top of the cake if you do not have fresh cherries.

Place the cake on a work surface with its original top up. Trim off any hard crusts. With a long serrated knife, cut the cake horizontally into 3 even layers. Transfer the top layer to a serving plate, arranging it top side down. Brush it liberally with the syrup. With an offset spatula or rubber spatula, smooth on a 1/2-inch layer of whipped cream. Push the cream a little beyond the edge of the cake. (This prevents gaps when you settle the next layer on top.) Nestle half of the cherries into the whipped cream, scattering them evenly over the top.

Place the middle cake layer on top of the cherries, pressing it lightly into the whipped-cream layer. Brush with syrup, spread with whipped cream, and scatter the remaining half of the cherries over the cream.

Finally, add the last cake layer, cut side up, on top of the cherries, again settling it into the whipped-cream layer. Brush with syrup. With an icing spatula or a large rubber spatula, spread a thin layer of whipped cream over the top of the cake. Spread a thicker layer onto the sides.

Pastry shops add a decorative scalloped edge of ground dark chocolate around the base of the cake. Fill your cupped palm with some of the ground chocolate and lift and tilt it onto the base of the cake all around the bottom edge. Rotate the cake between handfulls. It’s the heel of your hand that forms the scalloped edge.

Rotate the edge of a sharp knife against the block of chocolate to make curls or cut shavings with a vegetable peeler. Pile them on top of the cake.

Scoop the remaining whipped cream into a pastry bag fitted with a medium star tip. Pipe fat rosettes all around the top edge of the cake. Press a fresh or spirited cherry into the center of each rosette. Refrigerate the cake for at least 4 hours to let the flavors meld. Just before serving, dust the top with powdered sugar.

Alcohol-Free Variation
Use about 24 ounces of preserved sour cherries in syrup. Drain the cherries, reserving the syrup and cherries separately. In a small saucepan, bring to a boil 1/3 cup espresso or strong coffee, the reserved syrup, and 3/4 cup sugar (or to taste), stirring until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and reserve until needed.

notes:

If using jarred cherries, drain them, reserving both the syrup and the cherries. Measure the amount of syrup and set aside. Macerate the cherries in a glass bowl in 1/2 cup of kirsch for 1 hour, tossing them occasionally. Drain the cherries, reserving them and the kirsch separately. Pour the syrup into a small saucepan with the kirsch and add sugar, if needed, to make a slightly sweet, cherry-flavored syrup. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and set aside until needed. You need about 1 cup of syrup for the cake. Use the rest as a sauce for ice cream.

 

German Chocolate Cake with Coconut-Pecan Frosting

Ingredients

Cake

4oz milk chocolate, cut into pieces                                     dbab146e76f77c0e402a5a7af7e4b644
1/2 cup water
2 cups sugar
1 cup butter or margarine, softened
4 eggs
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Frosting

1 cup sugar
1 cup evaporated milk
1/2 cup butter or margarine
3 eggs, beaten
1 1/3 cups flaked coconut
1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
1 teaspoon vanilla

Method

  • Heat oven to 350°F. Grease 3 (9-inch) round cake pans with shortening; lightly flour. In 1-quart saucepan, melt chocolate with water over low heat, stirring frequently. Cool.
  • In large bowl, beat 2 cups sugar and 1 cup butter with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, scraping bowl occasionally. Add 4 eggs, one at a time, beating and scraping well after each addition. Beat in chocolate mixture. On low speed, beat in remaining cake ingredients until well blended, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour batter evenly into pans.
  • Bake 35 to 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans 5 minutes. Remove from pans; place on wire racks. Cool completely, about 1 hour.
  • In 2-quart saucepan, cook 1 cup sugar, the evaporated milk, 1/2 cup butter and 3 eggs over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture begins to bubble. Remove saucepan from heat. Stir in coconut, pecans and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.
  • Place 1 cake layer, top side down, on serving plate. Spread with 1/3 of frosting. Repeat with remaining cake layers and frosting, ending with frosting.

Chocolate and Irish Cream Roulade

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Ingredients                                                                                                      

  • butter, for greasing
  • 175g (6oz) plain dark chocolate (about 50 per cent cocoa solids)
  • 6 large eggs, separated
  • 175g (6oz) caster sugar
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 300ml (10fl oz) double cream
  • 4 tbsp Baileys Irish Cream liqueur
  • icing sugar, sifted, for dusting

FOR THE ICING

  • 50g (1¾ oz) icing sugar, sifted
  • 2 tsp double cream
  • 2-3 tsp Baileys Irish Cream liqueur

Serves 8

Method

  • Swiss roll tin, 30cm x 23cm (12in x 9in) and 2cm (¾ in) deep; small piping bag (optional)
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan/350°F/gas 4). Lightly grease the Swiss roll tin with butter and line with baking parchment. It helps to make a small diagonal snip at each corner of the baking parchment, about 3cm (1¼ in) long, so the paper fits snugly into the corners of the tin.
  2. Break the chocolate into pieces and place in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water. The base of the bowl must not touch the water. Leave until just melted, then remove from the heat, stir and leave the chocolate to cool slightly. (See below, Make a light cake, step 1.)
  3. Meanwhile, place the egg whites in a large bowl and whisk using an electric hand whisk on high speed until fluffy and stiff, but not dry.
  4. Tip the caster sugar and egg yolks into another large bowl and whisk on high speed until light, thick and creamy, for about 1½ minutes. Pour in the cooled chocolate and stir until blended. Add two large spoonfuls of the egg whites to the chocolate mixture and mix gently, then fold in the remaining egg whites. Sift the cocoa and fold it into the mixture. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and level the surface. (See below, Make a light cake, step 2.)
  5. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the cake is well risen and firm on top. Remove the cake from the oven and set aside, leaving it in its tin until cold (expect it to dip and crack a little).
  6. Place the cream in a bowl with the Baileys Irish Cream liqueur and whip until thick enough to just hold its shape. If insufficiently whipped it will be too runny to spread; if over-whipped it will become too thick to spread evenly.
  7. Lightly dust a large piece of baking parchment with icing sugar. Turn the cake out on to the parchment and carefully peel off the lining paper. Spread the surface of the cake with the whipped cream, leaving a bare rim of about 2cm (¾ in) all the way around the edges. With one of the short ends near you, make a score mark 2cm (¾ in) in from this edge, being careful not to cut right through. Starting at this point, tightly roll up the roulade. Transfer the roulade to a serving platter or board. (See below, Roll a neat roulade.)
  8. Make the icing: put the icing sugar in a bowl, then mix in the cream and enough Baileys Irish Cream liqueur to give a smooth consistency. Drizzle the icing over the top of the roulade, or pipe it using the small piping bag.

Recipe available from Great British Food Magazine Christmas edition 2014