What would Valentine’s Day be without chocolate? It’s a example of a perfect union. For this Valentine’s Day I wanted to experiment with making my own truffles. There are a lot of truffle recipes around so I wanted to make mine a little unique in taste. I opened my spice rack and experimented with mixing cocoa powder with a variety of different spices and landed on my favorite pairing which I’m sharing with you here today.
Everyone serves pie on Thanksgiving! I do too , but I like to go along with the abundance theme and serve several desserts and sweets. Here are two great recipes to add to your feast of desserts . The first recipe is for a cranberry and pecan biscotti ( this is also great to serve at breakfast too) and the other is for the perfect peanut brittle. I was never a fan of peanut brittle until the first time I tried it at Craft Bar in New York. I went from loathe to love! Fortunately, Tom Colicchio shared his recipe in “Craft of Cooking”. I’ve tweaked it a little but it’s sublime. Enjoy!
Come back on Wednesday for some great leftover ideas.
From by the bay wishing you the happiest Thanksgiving and fond food memories!
Adapted from “Craft of Cooking” by Tom Colicchio
Makes one 10 x 15 – inch pan
2 cups sugar
1/4 pound unsalted butter
6 tablespoons corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 pound shelled dry roasted salted peanuts
1 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
extra coarse sea salt to top – Maldon preferred
Line a rimmed baking sheet with non-stick aluminum foil or non-stick baking pad. Take a large non-stick pot and add sugar, butter, corn syrup and 1 1/3 cups water. Place on high heat melting sugar until the caramel turns amber color, stir occasionally as this is cooking. This might take awhile, it will thicken as it boils before it finally turns amber. At this point add the baking soda and salt, then remove from heat and add the peanuts. Stirring well, then quickly pour onto the baking sheet and spread out evening with a spatula. Sprinkle with the coarse sea salt. Let the brittle cool and then break into pieces. If you can resist eating this , store in an air tight container.
I used bittersweet chocolate to coat the little cookie dough truffles, I love the depth of flavor from the bittersweet chocolate, especially when set off with a little sea salt!From by the bay wishing you cookie dough food memories!
Toasted Quinoa Bourbon Chocolate Bark with Sea Salt
8 ounces high quality chocolate melting candy
2 tablespoons ( pre- rinsed) quinoa
2 teaspoons bourbon
1/4 teaspoon flaky sea salt such as Maldon
Place the quinoa in a small skillet over medium heat , shaking the pan gently until the quinoa starts to puff and darken in color – this will take 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. In a bowl add the melting chocolate and heat in the microwave for 1 minute. Remove and stir until smooth. Repeat until another 1 or 2 times until the chocolate starts to melt. Keep stirring to finish melting the chocolate. Mix in the toasted quinoa and bourbon. Pour and spread the chocolate onto the parchment lined tray. You can use an offset spatula to help spread the chocolate into a square about 6 by 8 inch square. Sprinkle with sea salt. Let cool and harden. Break into pieces to serve.