Tag Archives: chocolate

Raspberry Chocolate Slices

12 Jul

I adopted the recipe from the French chef Philippe Bertrand. The end results are far from perfect. First of all the bottom layer was supposed to be coconut dacquoise, but my dacquoise was too dry. I ditched it and whipped up a quick sponge cake instead. Secondly the chocolate slices were too thin so the chocolate flavor was lost compared to the prominent raspberry flavor.

I have to mark down my biggest achievement here – my first tempered chocolate wasn’t a total failure. Although I didn’t get the thickness of the chocolate slices right, I managed to tempered it correctly so it was glossy and crispy. Honestly tempering chocolate was a long process, I either made it too hot or too cold so I had to start all over again for a few times. I felt a sense of relief when I finally got the temperature right.

These slices had a perfect flavor and texture profile – sweet and creamy from the white chocolate ganache, tart and soft from the raspberry jelly, bitter and crunchy from the dark chocolate. It was very enjoyable to eat them. One day will make these again and also try to perfect them!

Raspberry Jelly

  • 220g raspberry puree
  • 14g lemon juice
  • 33g caster sugar
  • 6g gelatin powder
  • 30g water
  1. Bloom the gelatin in the water.
  2. Mix the raspberry puree, the lemon juice and the sugar in a sauce pan and heat up until it is boiled. Turn off the heat and add the bloomed gelatin, stir until it is completely dissolved.
  3. Let it cool down to 30C . Pour the mixture into the 15x15cm square mousse ring (put a silicon mat or a baking sheet underneath), let i firm up.

White Chocolate Ganache

  • 200g cream, divide into 2 parts, 100g each
  • 2g gelatin powder
  • 10g water
  • 45g white chocolate
  1. Bloom the gelatin in the water.
  2. Heat up 100g cream in a sauce pan, add the bloomed gelatin and stir until it is completely dissolved.
  3. Put the white chocolate in a bowl. Pour the mixture in the bowl, stir until the white chocolate is dissolved.
  4. Add the remaining cream. Refrigerate until the mixture cools down to 4-5C.
  5. Whisk the mixture until it is fluffy.

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Dark chocolate parfait and plated in two ways

23 Oct

I have been watching a lot of reality cooking shows. I admire the contestants who can undergo a huge amount of pressure but still create amazing dishes. They do not only create delicious food but also put up gorgeous plating. One of the dish that I have seen a lot recently from the cooking show and I want to make is the parfait. Although I haven’t tried it before but I determined to make it and present it just like the contestants!

I have done some research for the recipes. They all make a large quantity that can server 4-6 people, but I only want something as small as serving 2 people. I cut down the quantity of the ingredients and made up my own recipe. I wasn’t sure if the ratio of the ingredients had been changed and the parfait might not set properly. What I could do is to run it from my gut and hope for the best. At the end they came out perfectly! They were silky and smooth. The texture is between mousse and ice cream.

One more thing I have learnt from the cooking shows is the texture of the food is very important. One dessert normally has 3 or more elements on the plate. Restaurant quality desserts can have 5 to 10 elements! To make it more interesting a soft element is always accompany with a crunch element. I am just an amateur home cook therefore I just use what I can find from my pantry to whip up the crunchy elements. The first one was biscuit crumb. It is self-explanatory – crush a biscuit until is crumble. The second is LSA praline because I didn’t have any nuts but some LSA (ground linseed, sunflower seeds and almonds) instead. I simply poured some sugar syrup on the LSA, let it cool and harden. I only had 2 elements in the plates but the presentation had been transformed to a different level. I was very happy with the plating. The simple chocolate parfaits were much attractive after some simple decorations. 🙂

Dark Chocolate Parfait

Made 4 x 6.5cm half circles

  • 1/2 tsp gelatin, 1 tsp water
  • 50g dark chocolate
  • 2 Tbsps sugar, 2 Tbsp water
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup cream
  1. Bloom the gelatin in the water, set aside.
  2. Melt the chocolate in the microwave at 10 second interval until it is completely melt.
  3. Combine the sugar and water in a pan on high heat, stir until the sugar dissolve. Continue cooking until it becomes syrupy.
  4. Beat the cream until it reaches soft peak.
  5. Beat the egg until it is fluffy, gradually pour in the sugary syrup along the side of the bowl and continue beating.
  6. Add the gelatin to the pan that cooks the sugar syrup. Use the residual heat to melt the gelatin. If it is not hot enough then put it on low heat to melt.
  7. Beat the gelatin to the egg mixture. Add melt chocolate and continue beating.
  8. Fold in the whipped cream and mix well.
  9. Pour the mixture into the silicone mold. I used 6.5 cm diameter half circle mold. Put it in the freezer to set (4 hours or more).

 

Rich Chocolate Brownie

19 Aug

I remember a friend said once before – a good chocolate brownie is crispy outside and gooey inside. I can’t agree more on this!

This Anna Olson’s brownie recipe is a bit unusual and this is the reason that I wanted to try – it replaces butter with mayo. Have you ever thought about putting mayo in a cake before? No, I hadn’t! The result was pleasant – it was rich, soft and moist. I didn’t dust the brownie with icing sugar because I wanted it to look rustic and also to show you its crispy outside and gooey inside. 🙂

If you love chocolate and brownie then give it a try!

Rich chocolate brownie

  • 120g unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • ⅔ cup boiling water
  • 2 cups sugar
  • ⅔ cup mayonnaise
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • ½ cup cocoa powder, sifted
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  1. Preheat oven to 180 °C. Line a baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. Place the chopped chocolate in a large bowl and pour boiling water overtop. Let the chocolate mixture sit one minute, then whisk to melt.
  3. Whisk in the sugar, then add the mayonnaise and then the eggs, one at a time. Stir in the vanilla.
  4. With a wooden spoon or spatula, stir in the flour, cocoa powder and salt until evenly blended. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  5. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Bake for about 30 minutes, until a tester inserted in the centre of the brownies comes out clean. Cool to room temperature.

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Art of Cake Awards 2013

7 Jul

Today is the final day of the Art of Cake Awards 2013 in Auckland. Five cakers showcased their arts in the shopping mall and the public can vote for their favorites.  Also four free cake craft sessions were held in the last two weeks. Each sugar craft artist demonstrated one technique, i.e. making flowers, figurine modelling, chocolate modelling etc. I have been to all of them and I had fun and more importantly I have learned new things! Honestly all cakes (technically the chocolate art from Chocolate Earth is not a cake) looked amazing and each one had its own uniqueness, but I liked the cake from Sweet Bites Cakes most. It was inspired by this Christine Dior dress I am impressed by the design and hand painting flowers. Here are the photos, what do you think?

P.S. I don’t know the result yet, I’lll find out tomorrow 🙂

***11/07/2013 update: Sweet Bites Cake won the 1st place, congratulations!***

Christine Dior dress

From Sweet Bites Cakes, Christine Dior dress

Beautiful hand painting

From Sweet Bites Cakes, beautiful hand painting

Technically this is not a cake, but everything is eatable!

From Chocolate Earth, technically this is not a cake, but everything is eatable!

Intricate lace work

From Cake Couture, intricate lace work (front)

Victoria style dress

From Cake Couture, Victoria style dress (back)

Modern and elegant

From Bella Cupcakes, modern and elegant

Integrated with many elements

From Miss Melicious, integrated with many elements