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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Mousse au Chocolat with raspberry




















There are two categories of people's conception of what dessert is. The minimalist (the brownie and cookie lover) and the eccentric (the high- end- plated dessert lover). But what if you are looking for something in the middle, something that would attract the minimalist and also the eccentric, some concoction that would satisfy the minimalist and the eccentric taste buds.???
Mousse au chocolat: simple yet grandiose, delicate yet striking. graceful yet airy.
Introducing a simple marriage between egg yolks, chocolate, sugar and cream .
It’s a graceful and airy invention that was named "Mayonnaise de Chocolat" in the early 1890's. But as we know, there is nothing mayonnaise about it. It is a pure, delicate and exquisite dessert. A dessert that has an abundance of option. Hundreds of different versions exist around the world. Some boasting fancy ingredients and some are made with complicated directions. But to me it seems that less is more. And even though there are occasions that would benefit these fancy ingredients or complicate direction, in the end it only masks the pure delicate flavor of the original delicacy.
So minimalists an eccentrics unite! Delve into Mousse au Chocolat!

Enjoy!
















Mousse Au chocolat with Raspberry

5 large egg yolks

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/3 cup chambord (non-drinkers substitute 1/4 cup water and 2 tbs vanilla extract )

4 ounces bittersweet chocolate (preferably 66% cacao), finely chopped

4 ounces milk chocolate, finely chopped

1 cup heavy cream, chilled

a pinch of salt

In a heat safe bowl, beat the eggs and sugar together until the mixture is uniform and light in color. Place over a double boiler and whisk until slightly thickened. A ribbon of the egg sugar mixture should flow back into the bowl when the whisk is lifted and the sugar should just be beginning to dissolve. Add the Chambord (or water/vanilla mixture) and then continue to whisk over the simmering water until the mixture hits roughly 160°F and coats the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and add the finely chopped chocolate and the pinch of salt. Stir until your arm cramps or the mixture becomes cool to the touch, whichever comes first (roughly 10 minutes).

Set the chocolate aside and beat the heavy cream to soft peaks. Fold the cream into the chocolate, then cover and chill for 4 hours.

Note: This is the simple version for those who are looking for something quick and easy. I usually make my mousses with the pate bomb method. It is more stable.




Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Its Just Cake!!!!


When I hear the words chocolate cupcakes, my mouth starts to water. I believe that this is the reaction a true cupcake aficionado has. What is it about these little cakes? Is it the ease of eating it or is it the simplicity of ingredients that makes us not able to cease or even pause at best from going back for more.

Is it the different fillings, toppings and additional flavors that contribute toward making it impossible to stop? Of course the ingredients are the most essential part of making a chocolate cupcake so irresistible.

So, I ask forgiveness from those who I will burden with guilt for destroying there 2010 New Year's resolution of eating healthier and losing weight…. But, I have to say that it will be the most wonderful tasting guilt you will have to endure. Enjoy!


MARTHA'S ONE BOWL CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES

adapted from Martha Stewart

INGREDIENTS

Makes 18 to 24.

  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup warm water
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners; set aside. Sift together cocoa powder, flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl. Add eggs, warm water, buttermilk, oil, and vanilla, and mix until smooth, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of bowl to assure batter is well mixed.
  • Divide batter evenly among muffin cups, filling each 2/3 full. Bake until tops spring back when touched, about 20 minutes, rotating pan once if needed. Transfer to a wire rack; let cool completely

CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

INGREDIENTS

Makes about 4 cups.

  • 16 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, cut into pieces, room temperature
  • 1 stick salted butter, cut into pieces, room temperature
  • 2 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS

  1. Place cream cheese in a medium mixing bowl. Using a rubber spatula, soften cream cheese. Gradually add butter, and continue beating until smooth and well blended. Sift in confectioners' sugar, and continue beating until smooth. Add vanilla, and stir to combine. (You will have a bit left over).

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

A 2010 Start


I recently graduated from the Professional Pastry of The Cambridge School of Culinary Arts. What a year! Burning sugar, overwhipping egg whites, making fondant, and burning my fingers while pulling sugar. It was the best year of my life!

After deciding to leave the graphic design world, I was uncertain about my next step. Luckily, I knew that I wanted to fuse my two loves, art and baking. That is how I decided to take the step towards becoming a pastry chef.

Even though I have learned so much from Master Chef Delphin Gomes who is the Pastry Instructor at CSCA, I know I have so much more to learn. I wish I had more time under chef Delpin’s instructions, but I must venture out on my own.

As I voyage through my first steps into the professional world of pastry, I hope to evoke proud feeling from my Chef instructor, as well as share with you all my future failures, new discoveries, and ultimate success. Welcome to Sucree!!!