Amaretto Mousse in Chocolate Cups

A stunning presentation for a special event!

You may prepare the chocolate cups in advance, fill them with the mousse and freeze until needed. Just before serving arrange on single plates and voilà a wonderful dessert is ready!

It was fun to prepare the cups and I will prepare these again!

Amaretto Mousse in Chocolate Cups

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: medium
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You need

Chocolate Cups (pieces)

  • 15 g white chocolate (optional), chopped
  • 120-150 g dark chocolate, more if needed
  • Silicon molds for muffins or other shapes (each for about 100 ml content)

Zabaglione mousse

  • 2 egg yolks
  • 60 g sugar
  • 4 tablespoons amaretto liqueur
  • 4 egg whites or 1/2 cup heavy cream

Serving suggestion (to taste)

  • Shaved chocolate (white or dark chocolate)
  • 250 g strawberries
  • Amaretto liqueur to taste
  • Heavy cream (whipped) to taste

Preparation

Chocolate Cups

  1. Place the chopped white chocolate in a small plastic bag and close it tightly with a knot.
  2. Hold the bag over the knot and dip the part with the chocolate for 2 seconds in hot water. Take out and knead the bag with the chocolate with your fingers, dip very shortly again and knead. Repeat until completely dissolved.
  3. Drizzle the white chocolate on the sides of the molds. Place in the freezer for 30 minutes.
  4. Melt dark chocolate in a bowl over a pot of hot water stirring constantly until dissolved. Remove from the heat. Brush the sides and the bottom of the mold using a food-safe paintbrush with the dark chocolate taking care not to damage the white chocolate decoration. If needed prepare more melted dark chocolate to make the cups walls thicker.
  5. Place in the fridge to cool down and to set completely.
  6. Gently remove the cups from the molds and place them in chilled place

Zabaglione mousse

  1. Beat egg yolk in a heatproof bowl with about 40 g of sugar until fluffy.
  2. Add the amaretto and place the bowl over a pot of boiling water; take care that only the steam and not water gets in contact with the bowl.
  3. As soon as the zabaglione begins to rise place the bowl over in vessel with cold water and stir from time to time until cooled down. Place in the fridge
  4. As soon as the zabaglione is cold, beat the egg whites to stiff peaks (or the heavy cream) add the sugar and beat until glossy. If using the heavy cream do not overbeat!
  5. Gently fold the beaten egg whites (or heavy cream) under the zabaglione.
  6. Fill the mousse in the chocolate cups and refrigerate (for a chilled mousse) or freeze for at least 2 hours (for ice-cream mousse) or until needed. Best use the same day.

Serving suggestion

  1. Prepare shaved chocolate
  2. Arrange sliced strawberries in single plates, spoons some amaretto over them.
  3. Place the filled chocolate cups in the plate near the strawberries.
  4. Decorate with whipped cream and shaved chocolate.

Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

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Sourdough Brioches with Orange

Our delicious oranges from Crete (the best I know!) inspired me to prepare homemade candied orange zest and since then I am using them for different recipes.

Just before Easter, I prepare my “Colomba” again (Easter Italian Dove Cake) and this week these easier version perfect for breakfast and for giveaway!

In recipe I mentioned the soft candied orange zest; I made it at home boiling the cleaned orange peels (after easting the orange first) in water, throwing away most of the liquid and adding the sugar (same weight as the zest). I’ve boiled until the water was evaporated and the zest quite dry but still soft. I spread it on a baking tray and the next day I sliced it and placed it in small jars.  In order to prevent mold, I placed the closed jars in a pot with boiling water (covering half of the height of the jars) and after simmering for at least 30 minutes, switched of the heat and waited until cooled down in the pot. This is not the conventional way to prepare the zest, but it’s easy for me and I love to have this wonderful ingredient ready to be used.

If you don’t make the candied orange zest yourself, I suggest soften it for a few hours in little hot water prior use.

We know that not everybody has his culture of sourdough, for this reason a placed the alternative directly in the ingredients!

Sourdough Brioches with Orange

  • Servings: 40 pieces
  • Difficulty: medium
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You need:

Dough:

  • 1/2 cup sourdough starter (100% hydration), alternative: 1/4 cup + 1/4 cup flour + 1 teaspoon instant yeast
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 orange grated zest
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup melted butter (for the dough)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup of soft candied orange zest (best if made at home)
  • Additional flour for rolling out
  • 6 tablespoons melted butter for brushing

Glaze

  • 3 tablespoons hot water
  • 3 tablespoons sugar for clear glaze

Procedure:

  1. Combine in a big bowl the sourdough starter, stir well, add the first cup of flour and stir well again. Cover and place in a war warm place to rise (I use the oven with only light on). The best temperature is around 26-27°C.
  2. When the mixture is foaming add the orange zest, salt, the first 1/4 cup of butter, the sugar, and the egg. Stir well. Mix together 3 cups of four with the orange zest and add them to the dough. Stir and knead until well combined. You may stir/knead with the dough spatula in the bowl or use the kneading machine. The dough should result wet but not too sticky. If necessary, add some more flour.
  3. Cover and let rise until doubled in a warm place (see above).
  4. Divide the dough into two portions. Roll out the first portion onto a floured surface to the size of about 50 to 40 cm. Brush with 3 tablespoons of melted butter and roll the dough form the longer side. Now you have cylinder about 50 cm long. Cut the cylinder into 2.5 cm slices and place each one in a prepared muffin mold (I use silicone ones so I don’t need to prepare the surface). Repeat the same with the second part of the dough.
  5. Place a heat-resistant bowl of warm water into the oven and place the molds in the oven to rise. Depending on your yeast/sourdough and the temperature, this takes 1 hour to a few hours!
  6. Let rise until they rise (I let them rise until three fold volume!) and preheat the oven to 170°C (let the bowl in the oven.
  7. For the glaze combine the hot water with the sugar and stir until the sugar almost completely melted. Gently brush the risen brioches.
  8. Bake for about 20-25 minutes until golden brown!

Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

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Orange Chocolate Mousse

It is super easy to prepare a decadent and excellent chocolate mousse. This basic recipe can be adapted to many liquor of your choice, but I found the combination of chocolate, amaretto and orange superlative especially if you have good quality oranges (I used Cretan oranges! ).

You may prepare the mousse the day before, but the quality of the eggs is very important and for safety reason I recommend not to keep this too long in the fridge. Depending on where you live and on the quality of the eggs you get, you should opt for the best safest quality and work properly (salmonella are not in the egg, but on the shell!) and if necessary buy pasteurized eggs.

If you are in the hurry, you may use ready-made whipped cream instead.

Orange Chocolate Mousse

  • Servings: 3-4
  • Difficulty: easy
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You need

Mousse

  • 150 g chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons amaretto liquor (or Grand Marnier or other liquor to taste)
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 orange, finely grated zest
  • 2 very fresh eggs, separated into whites and yolks

Topping

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon powdered sugar
  • Orange zest strips (fresh or candied)
  • Shaved chocolate

Procedure

  1. Place chocolate, amaretto and heavy cream in a large bowl set over a bain marie or in a double boiler at a low simmer. Stir until the chocolate melted. Turn off the heat and let stand until lukewarm.
  2. With the mixer, whip egg white until firm. Set aside.
  3. Then with the mixer beat the yolks with the orange zest and add this mixture into the cooled chocolate cream, stir to combine.
  4. Fold the whipped egg whites all at once into the chocolate mixture and refrigerate for approximately 4 hour or until set.
  5. Just before serving beat the heavy cream with the powdered sugar.
  6. Top the mousse with the whipped cream, the orange zest strips and the shaved chocolate.

Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

 

Nachos de Pollo – Chicken Nachos

In my life I have prepared nachos only once  ( Nachos de Camarones) and my family asked me to make some more.

This special wish came perfect with the given list of ingredients I for the game “ready set cook” as tortilla and chicken were among the options.

The combination were done quite quickly and the result delicious.

I did not add cheese (as not in the list J ), and exactly had been appreciated as the dish resulted lighter; I think I would have added some cumin, but all spice was a great alternative and finally the addition of the thick yogurt made the dish fresher!

I recommend not adding too much salt, as the chips are usually salted; adapt the quantity to the chips!

Nachos de Pollo – Chicken Nachos

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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You need

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 400 g chicken breast, skinless, boneless diced in 2 cm pieces
  • 1 cup diluted chicken broth (don’t add to much salt)
  • ½-1 cup tomato sauce, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • hot Sauce, to tast
  • 1/4 teaspoon all spice powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 4 tablespoons cilantro
  • Salt and pepper to
  • 8 cups tortillas chips (not too salted)
  • 8 heaped tablespoons thick yogurt to served
  • Additional cilantro or parsley, chopped

Procedure

  1. Fry gently the garlic with the butter in a medium saucepot until fragrant add chicken and gently roast stirring from time to time for about 5 minutes.
  2. Add chicken broth and tomato sauce. Let simmer for about 30 minutes or until the chicken turns tender.
  3. In the meantime, arrange the chips on four oven save dishes and place them at 80°C/180°C to preheat them in the oven.
  4. When the chicken is done and sauce thicker add cream, hot sauce, spices, cilantro and adjust with salt and pepper.
  5. Remove the plate from the oven; pour the chicken sauce over the tortilla chips, dot with yogurt and top with fresh herbs.
  6. Serve immediately with extra yogurt if desired.

Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

 

Respect for Nature and Cretan Flowers

Crete has an amazing flora, rich in variety with over 2,000 different kinds of flowers; of them at least 150 plants and wild herbs are endemic, which means that they do not exist in any other place in the world. An incredible variety of orchids are spread all over the island, different colors, sizes and many of them with sweet smelling scent.

The fabulous spring, with all the colors is like the garden of the paradise and when the sun burns the flowers in lower altitudes in the mountain and in the gorges we can find many many flowers all year round.

Arriving on Crete we immediately can smell the scent of this island covered with aromatic  herbs and plants. No wonder that Cretan food is so goo!

Respect the flowers, don’t pick up orchids an other rare flowers; take a picture instead the flowers will be preserved and your souvenir will stay longer! Thanks!

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Black Forest Mocha

A great surprise for your family or friends: a warm dessert with a caffeine kick and more!

Black Forest Mocha

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: easy
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You need:

  • 30 g black chocolate ( or milk chocolate if preferred)
  • 1 small cup of freshly brewed coffee, best if espresso
  • 1 tablespoon chocolate syrup (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons Kirsch (cherry brandy), quantity to taste
  • 1/2 cup whipped cream (sweetened if preferred)
  • Cherry syrup
  • Additional whipped cream, for topping
  • Shaved chocolate, for topping

Procedure

  1. Cut chocolate into pieces and place it in a microwave proof bowl or in a saucepot.
  2. Top with hot coffee and heat (microwave or stovetop) and stir to dissolve completely. Add Kirsch and stir once.
  3. Combine whipped cream with cherry syrup and stir only shortly.
  4. Poor the coffee into the cup, spoon the prepared cherry-whipped cream on top.
  5. Dot with little more white whipped cream and top with the shaved chocolate.
  6. Serve immediately and enjoy.

Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

 

Italian Flat Bread with Sourdough Starter – Piadina al Licoli

This kind of flatbread is a very popular street food from the Italian region called “Emilia-Romagna” but now you can find it not only in Italy but in many other countries.

The original piadina is non-fermented bread prepared with lard, but in this version we will use the sourdough starter (perfect if you need to refresh it) and I will use olive oil instead of animal fat.

I can remember the piadine as streed food, filled with thin slices of prosciutto crudo or with cheese.

Today you may find all kind of piadinas, filled with many different ingredients but the most important thing is to enjoy it still warm, soft inside and crunchy outside.

My filling this time? Smoked salmon with a fresh guacamole sauce with chopped tomatoes. So good!

Italian Flat Bread with Sourdough Starter – Piadina al Licoli

  • Servings: 8 flatbreads
  • Difficulty: easy
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You need:

  • 100 g sourdough starter (100%) hydration
  • 120 g water
  • 300 g bread flour
  • 50 ml olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

 

Procedure:

  1. Dissolve the sourdough with the water, add flour add the other ingredients and knead well until combined and it comes together (use a kneading machine if you have it!). If necessary add a few more tablespoons water.
  2. Wrap with foil or cover with a bowl and lest rest at least 60 minutes.
  3. Cut into 6-8 slices and shape them into balls, place them on floured surface, cover with an inverted big bowl and let rise until when almost doubled.
  4. Roll out each ball to rounds of about 25 cm (10 inches). You will not need flour on the table.
  5. Put the rolled out piadine on a tray using parchment foil to separate them. Or prepare them one by one cooking them just after rolling each one out. Pinch each one with the fork all over the surface before cooking them.
  6. Now heat up your non-stick skillet to medium high. Don’t add any kind of oil or fat!
  7. Bake dry on the first side, when well roasted, flip it and bake the other side. The piadina should be pale, but with dark brown spots. Be careful not to burn it. During baking if necessary pinch them and turn them with the fork. In about 3-4 minutes they should be ready.

Tip: I have two old nonstick pans that I reserved for this recipe or to roast nuts. I use both at the same time!

Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/