Chocolate

Chocolate

Chocolate-Tahini Fudge

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Chocolate Tahini Fudge

© John Kernick

Chocolate-Tahini Fudge

  • TOTAL TIME:
  • SERVINGS: Makes about 80 pieces

Spoke Wine Bar in Somerville, Massachusetts, serves fantastic food in addition to great wine and awesome cocktails. At the end of the meal, they pass around tiny squares of this luscious chocolate-and-sesame fudge.

Ingredients

  1. 3/4 cup whole milk

  2. 6 tablespoons unsalted butter

  3. 3 cups sugar

  4. 12 ounces dark chocolate (70%), finely chopped

  5. 1/4 cup tahini

  6. 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil

  7. 1 tablespoon hot water (optional)

  8. 2 cups Marshmallow Fluff (8 ounces)

  9. 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

  10. 2 tablespoons lightly toasted sesame seeds

  11. Flaky sea salt

  1. Line a 9-inch-square baking pan with parchment paper. In a medium saucepan, combine the milk and butter and cook over moderate heat until the milk is hot and the butter is melted. Whisk in the sugar and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture reaches 240°, about 5 minutes.
  2. Remove the saucepan from the heat. Add the chocolate, tahini and sesame oil and stir until the chocolate is completely melted. If the mixture separates, whisk in the hot water until it is smooth again. Add the Fluff and vanilla and stir vigorously until the Fluff is completely incorporated.
  3. Scrape the fudge into the prepared pan and smooth the surface. Sprinkle with the toasted sesame seeds and let cool, then refrigerate until cold, about 2 hours.
  4. Cut the fudge into 1-inch squares and sprinkle with sea salt.
Make Ahead
The fudge can be stored in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

Chocolate Fudge

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Chocolate fudge

© Abby Hocking

Chocolate Fudge

  • ACTIVE: 15 MIN
  • TOTAL TIME:
  • SERVINGS: Makes sixty-four 1-inch pieces

Bittersweet chocolate and unsweetened cocoa powder give this simple fudge an almost brownie-like flavor. Kosher salt stirred into the fudge keeps our version from being too sweet, while the flaky sea salt sprinkled on top lends a welcome crunch.

Ingredients

  1. 1 teaspoon unsalted butter, softened

  2. 1 pound 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped, or 3 cups bittersweet chocolate chips

  3. One 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk

  4. 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder

  5. 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

  6. 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  7. Flaky sea salt, for sprinkling

  1. Line an 8-inch square baking dish with foil, leaving 2 inches of overhang on 2 sides. Grease the foil with the softened butter.
  2. In a medium heatproof bowl, combine the chopped chocolate with the sweetened condensed milk, cocoa, vanilla and kosher salt and place over—not in—a pot of simmering water. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the chocolate is completely melted and the mixture is smooth, about 15 minutes.
  3. Scrape the fudge into the prepared pan and smooth the surface with a spatula. Sprinkle flaky salt over the surface while the fudge is still warm, so it adheres. Refrigerate the fudge until firm, about 2 hours.
  4. Using the foil, lift the fudge out of the pan and cut it into sixty-four 1-inch squares.
Make Ahead
Cut or uncut, the fudge can be stored in an airtight container for 5 days.

Dark Chocolate Fondue

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Chocolate Fondue

© Evi Abeler

Dark Chocolate Fondue

  • ACTIVE: 10 MIN
  • TOTAL TIME:
  • SERVINGS: Makes 3 cups

Chocolate fondue does not have to wait until dessert. You can start your day with a decadent chocolate fondue breakfast. Dip a chunk of artisanal bread for an instant pain au chocolat.

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Ingredients

  1. 2 cups heavy whipping cream

  2. 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

  3. 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

  4. 1 cup (8 ounces) 60% cacao bittersweet chocolate chips

  5. 3/4 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips

  6. 1 tablespoon brandy or liqueur of your choice

  7. Assorted fruit and bread for dipping

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine the cream, vanilla extract and salt. Heat over medium heat until the mixture barely simmers.

  2. Remove from the heat and stir in the chocolates and brandy until completely melted and smooth.

  3. Transfer to the fondue pot or a chafing dish that is on low heat. Stir the mixture occasionally.

  4. Using skewers dip pieces of cake, bread or fruit into the melted chocolate sauce.

Notes

Try these variations:

Hazelnut Fondue
Add 1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts to the fondue. Replace brandy with hazelnut liqueur.

White Chocolate Fondue
Remove the salt from the recipe and replace chocolate chips with 2 cups white chocolate chips. 

Hazelnut Chocolate Bars

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Hazelnut Chocolate Bars

  • ACTIVE: 25 MIN
  • TOTAL TIME:
  • SERVINGS: 12

These supersimple little nutty homemade candy bars from blogger Molly Yeh are satisfyingly chewy and sweet. They come together quickly in a food processor.

  1. 2 cups peeled toasted hazelnuts

  2. 1 cup confectioners’ sugar

  3. 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  4. 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract

  5. 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

  6. 1/2 cup light corn syrup

  7. 8 ounces dark chocolate, finely chopped

  8. Sprinkles, for garnish

  1. In a food processor, pulse the hazelnuts just until finely ground. Add the sugar, vanilla extract, almond extract and salt and pulse to combine. With the machine on, drizzle in the corn syrup and blend until the mixture comes together. Turn the mixture out onto a parchment paper–lined baking sheet and form into a 12-by-2-inch bar. Cut the bar crosswise into 12 equal pieces and freeze until firm, at least 15 minutes.
  2. In a microwave-safe medium bowl, melt the chocolate in 30-second intervals, stirring, until smooth. Let cool to room temperature.

  3. Using a fork, dip the hazelnut candy into the chocolate to evenly coat, letting the excess drip off. Arrange the bars on the baking sheet and top with sprinkles. Refrigerate until firm, at least 30 minutes. Serve cold.
Make Ahead
The bars can be refrigerated for 5 days.

Chocolate-Cookie Crunch Trifle

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Chocolate-Cookie Crunch Trifle

© Christina Holmes

Chocolate-Cookie Crunch Trifle

  • ACTIVE: 50 MIN
  • TOTAL TIME:
  • SERVINGS: 8

Any kind of cookie works as a layer in this decadent and super-chocolaty trifle from Washington, DC, pastry chef Tiffany MacIsaac.

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PUDDING

  1. 2 cups heavy cream

     

  2. 2 cups whole milk

     

  3. 1 cup granulated sugar

  4. 1/4 cup cornstarch

  5. 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

  6. 2 large eggs

  7. 6 ounce bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (1 1/2 cups)

  8. 1 tablespoon unsalted butter

  9. 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

WHIPPED CREAM


  1. 2 cups heavy cream, chilled

  2. 1/2  cup confectioners’ sugar

  3. 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  4. Pinch of kosher salt

  5. 4 cups coarsely chopped crunchy cookies, such as Oreos, Thin Mints, shortbread, biscotti, Nutter Butters, Samoas 

  1. Make the Pudding In a medium saucepan, combine 1 3/4 cups of the heavy cream with the milk and granulated sugar and bring to a bare simmer over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, about 
12 minutes. Meanwhile, sift the cornstarch and cocoa powder into a medium bowl, then whisk in the eggs and the remaining 1/4 cup of heavy cream to form a smooth paste. Gradually whisk 1 cup of the hot milk into the cornstarch mixture, then scrape the mixture into the saucepan and cook over moderately low heat, stirring constantly, until the pudding is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 30 minutes.
  2. Put the chopped chocolate in a heatproof medium bowl and set a fine sieve over it. Strain the pudding over the chocolate and let stand for 3 minutes. Whisk until smooth, then whisk in the butter and salt. Press a sheet of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the pudding and refrigerate until chilled, about 
3 hours.

  3. Make the Whipped Cream In a medium bowl, using a hand mixer, beat the heavy cream with the confectioners’ sugar, vanilla and salt until firm, about 5 minutes. 

  4. In a 3-quart trifle bowl, make 4 layers each of the pudding, whipped cream and crushed cookies. Serve.
Make Ahead
The recipe can be prepared through Step 2 and refrigerated for up to 4 days.

Dark Chocolate Pudding

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Dark Chocolate Pudding by Spike Gjerde

© Fredrika Stjärne

Dark Chocolate Pudding

  • ACTIVE: 35 MIN
  • TOTAL TIME:
  • SERVINGS: 4

Since the pudding has so few ingredients, Spike Gjerde insists that they be of high quality: For the chocolate, Gjerde likes Mast Brothers Brooklyn Blend but says to use your favorite dark chocolate (about 70 percent or higher). For the cocoa powder, he prefers Valrhona.

Slideshow: More Pudding Recipes

Recipe from Food & Wine Chefs' Easy Weeknight Dinners.

Ingredients

  1. 2/3 cup sugar

  2. 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch

  3. 1 1/2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder

  4. 1/2 teaspoon salt

  5. 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped (1 cup)

  6. 1 tablespoon unsalted butter

  7. 1 1/2 cups whole milk

  8. 1/2 cup heavy cream

  9. 3 large egg yolks

  10. Whipped cream, for serving

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk the sugar with the cornstarch, cocoa and salt. In a large bowl, combine the chocolate and butter.
  2. In a medium saucepan, heat the milk and cream over moderate heat just until bubbles form around the edge of the pan; remove from the heat. Whisk 1/2 cup of the hot milk into the sugar mixture, then whisk in the egg yolks and another 1/2 cup of the hot milk. Return the mixture to the saucepan and cook over moderate heat, whisking constantly, until bubbles begin to form around the edge of the pan and a candy thermometer inserted in the pudding registers 165°, about 5 minutes.
  3. Strain the pudding into the bowl with the chocolate and butter and whisk until incorporated, about 2 minutes. Press a sheet of plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the pudding and refrigerate until chilled, about 2 hours. Scoop into bowls and serve with whipped cream.
Make Ahead
The pudding can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.

Puff Au Chocolat

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Chocolate and hazelnut pastry

© Chris Court

Puff Au Chocolat

  • ACTIVE: 25 MIN
  • TOTAL TIME:
  • SERVINGS: 8 to 10

To keep the buttery puff pastry base here flat and easy to eat, Lynch bakes it between two cookie sheets until golden and crisp. She then tops the pastry with a gooey dark- and milk-chocolate ganache, fresh fruit and toasted hazelnuts. 

Slideshow: More Pie and Tart Recipes

Recipe from Food & Wine Best New Chefs All-Star Cookbook
  1. One 14-ounce package frozen all-butter puff pastry, thawed and chilled 

  2. 1 large egg, beaten

  3. Fleur de sel

  4. 1/3 cup hazelnuts (about 2 ounces)

  5. 5 ounces milk chocolate, finely chopped

  6. 5 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped

  7. 3/4 cup crème fraîche or heavy cream

  8. 1 tablespoon rum

  9. 1 tablespoon sugar

  10. Fresh raspberries or sliced strawberries, for garnish

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°. Unfold the puff pastry onto a parchment paper–lined baking sheet. Pierce the pastry 
all over with a fork, brush with the egg and sprinkle with fleur de sel. Top with another sheet of parchment paper and a second baking sheet. Transfer to the oven and set a heavy ovenproof skillet on the top baking sheet. Bake 
for 30 minutes, until the pastry is lightly golden and almost cooked through. Remove the skillet, the top baking sheet and the parchment paper and bake for another 20 minutes, until the pastry is cooked through, golden and crisp. Transfer to a rack to cool completely.

  2. Meanwhile, spread the hazelnuts in a pie plate and toast in the oven for 6 to 7 minutes, until golden. Let cool slightly, transfer to a clean kitchen towel and rub off the skins. Chop the hazelnuts.

  3. In a medium heatproof bowl, combine the chocolates. In a small saucepan, combine the crème fraîche, rum and sugar. Whisk over moderately low heat until simmering, then pour over the chocolate; whisk until smooth. Pour the chocolate evenly over the cooled puff pastry, smoothing the top. Top with raspberries and sprinkle 
with the toasted hazelnuts and fleur 
de sel. Cut into pieces and serve.

Suggested Pairing

Nutty, vanilla-inflected Madeira.

Chocolate Babka

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Chocolate Babka

© Con Poulos

Chocolate Babka

  • ACTIVE: 1 HR 15 MIN
  • TOTAL TIME:
  • SERVINGS: Makes two 9-inch babkas

This amazing chocolate babka from pastry chef Melissa Weller at Sadelle’s in New York City gets extra flavor in the swirl from chocolate cookie crumbs. As a bonus, the tender-crumbed babka is topped with a thick and luscious chocolate glaze.

Slideshow: Cake Recipes
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Dough

  1. 4 cups all-purpose flour, preferably King Arthur

  2. 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar

  3. 2 teaspoons fine sea salt

  4. 1 cup whole milk, warmed

  5. 1 packet dry active yeast

  6. 1 large egg plus 1 large egg yolk

  7. 1 stick plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons, at room temperature

Filling

  1. 9 ounces milk chocolate, finely chopped

  2. 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

  3. 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, cubed

  4. 1 1/2 cups finely ground chocolate wafer cookies

  5. 3 tablespoons honey

Glaze

  1. 12 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

  2. 4 ounces milk chocolate, finely chopped

  3. 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, cubed

  4. 2 tablespoons light corn syrup

  1. Make the Dough In a medium bowl, whisk the flour with the sugar and salt. In a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the milk with the yeast and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. Add the egg and egg yolk and sprinkle the dry ingredients on top. Mix at low speed for 2 minutes. Scrape down the side of the bowl and mix at medium speed until all of the dry ingredients are incorporated and the dough is smooth, about 5 minutes. Add all of the butter at once and mix at low speed until it is fully incorporated and a tacky dough forms, about 3 minutes; scrape down the side of the bowl as needed during mixing. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough stand at room temperature for 1 hour.
  2. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and coat the paper generously with nonstick baking spray. Scrape the dough out onto the parchment paper and cut the dough in half. Pat each piece into a neat square. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
  3. Make the filling In a large heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water, melt both chocolates with the butter, stirring occasionally, until smooth. Let cool to room temperature, then stir in the cookie crumbs and honey.
  4. Coat two 9-by-4-inch loaf pans with nonstick baking spray and line with parchment paper, allowing 2 inches of overhang on each of the long sides. Roll out each square of dough to a 16-inch square. Using an offset spatula, spread all but 1/2 cup of the filling in an even layer over the dough squares to within 1/2 inch of the edges. Starting at the long edge nearest you, tightly roll up each dough square jelly roll–style into a tight log.
  5. Using a sharp knife, cut the logs in half crosswise. Using an offset spatula, spread 1/4 cup of the reserved filling on the top and sides of 2 of the halves. Set the other halves on top in the opposite direction to form a cross. Twist to form spirals and transfer to the prepared pans. Cover the loaves with a towel and let stand in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about 2 hours.
  6. Preheat the oven to 375°. Bake the loaves in the center of the oven for about 45 minutes, until puffed and well browned. Let cool slightly, then use the parchment paper to lift the babkas out of the pans and onto a rack set over a baking sheet. Discard the paper.
  7. Make the glaze In a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water, melt both chocolates with the butter; stir until smooth. Stir in the corn syrup. Spread the glaze on top of the warm babkas and let stand until set, about 30 minutes.

Coffee-Caramel-Jam Toasts

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Coffee-Caramel-Jam Toasts

© John Kernick

Coffee-Caramel-Jam Toasts

  • ACTIVE: 1 HR
  • TOTAL TIME:
  • SERVINGS: Makes about 24 

Instead of using a fruit jam, chef William Werner spreads a rich, thick and silky coffee-caramel jam over toasts to make an elegant dessert.

Coffee-Caramel Jam

  1. 1/2 cup crushed coffee beans

  2. 1 1/4 cups heavy cream

  3. 1 cup whole milk

  4. 1 cup sugar

  5. 1 tablespoon light corn syrup

  6. 2 teaspoons instant espresso

  7. 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt

Chocolate Crumble

  1. 3/4 cup all-purpose flour

  2. 3/4 cup almond flour

  3. 1/2 cup sugar

  4. 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

  5. 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

  6. 1 stick cold unsalted butter, cubed

  7. Dark rye toasts, for serving

  1. Make the jam Preheat the oven to 350°. Spread the coffee beans on a baking sheet and toast for 10 minutes, until fragrant. Transfer to a large bowl. Stir in the heavy cream and milk, cover and let steep in the refrigerator overnight. 

  2. Strain the coffee cream through a fine sieve, pressing on the solids; you should have 2 cups. In a large saucepan, cook the sugar over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until a light amber caramel forms, about 5 minutes. Slowly add the coffee cream; be careful, as it will boil vigorously. Add the corn syrup, espresso and sea salt and bring to a simmer; the caramel will harden but will dissolve as it simmers. Cook over moderately low heat, stirring, until a candy thermometer inserted in the caramel jam registers 210°, about 12 minutes. Carefully transfer the jam to a blender and puree until smooth and shiny. Scrape into a medium bowl and let cool to room temperature.
  3. Meanwhile, make the crumble In a medium bowl, whisk the all-purpose flour with the almond flour, sugar, cocoa powder and sea salt. Using your fingers, rub in the butter until coarse crumbs form. Spread the crumbs in an even layer on a parchment paper–lined baking sheet and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350°. Bake the crumble for about 18 minutes, until golden. Transfer to a rack to cool completely.

  5. Spread some coffee-caramel jam on the toasts. Sprinkle the chocolate crumbles on one half of each toast; press gently to help them adhere. 

Make Ahead
The jam can be refrigerated for up to 1 week. Serve at room temperature. The baked crumble can be stored in an airtight container for 1 week or frozen for 1 month.


Triple-Layer Sour Cream Chocolate Cake

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Triple-Layer Sour Cream Chocolate Cake

© Nicole Franzen

Triple-Layer Sour Cream Chocolate Cake

  • ACTIVE: 1 HR 15 MIN
  • TOTAL TIME:
  • SERVINGS: 12

This magnificent cake has three layers of moist, tender chocolate with a hint of cinnamon and a silky chocolate ganache.

Slideshow: Cake Recipes

Cake

  1. Unsalted butter, for greasing

  2. 3 cups cake flour, plus more for dusting

  3. 9 ounces unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped

  4. 2 cups hot brewed coffee

  5. 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

  6. 4 large eggs, at room temperature

  7. 1 cup canola oil

  8. 1 cup sour cream, at room temperature

  9. 3 cups sugar

  10. 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

  11. 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  12. 1 teaspoon fine sea salt

GANACHE

  1. 1 1/2 cups heavy cream

  2. 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces

  3. 1/2 cup sugar

  4. 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

  5. 1 1/2 pounds semisweet chocolate, finely chopped

  6. 1/3 cup hot brewed coffee

  7. 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

  8. Sugared cranberries, for garnish (see Note)

  1. Make the cake Preheat the oven to 350° and position the racks in the center and lower thirds. Butter three 9-by-2-inch round cake pans and line with parchment paper. Butter the paper and dust the pans with flour, tapping out the excess.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the chocolate with the coffee and vanilla and let stand for 2 minutes, then stir until the chocolate is melted. In another medium bowl, whisk the eggs with the oil until pale yellow, then whisk in the sour cream. Gradually whisk in the melted chocolate mixture until smooth.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle, combine the 3 cups of flour with the sugar, baking soda, cinnamon and salt and mix well. At medium speed, beat in the wet ingredients in 3 batches until just incorporated. Scrape down the bowl and beat until the batter is smooth.
  4. Pour the batter evenly into the prepared cake pans. Gently tap the pans on the counter to release any air bubbles. Bake for about 35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of each cake comes out clean; shift the pans halfway through baking. Let the cakes cool completely, then carefully invert onto a rack and peel off the parchment.
  5. Meanwhile, make the ganache In a medium saucepan, bring the cream, butter, sugar and salt just to a simmer over moderate heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Remove from the heat and add the chocolate. Let stand for 2 minutes, then stir until smooth. Stir in the coffee and vanilla. Let cool completely, stirring occasionally.

  6. Transfer 1 cake to a plate. Spoon one-fourth of the ganache on top and spread in an even layer. Top with another cake and one-fourth of the ganache. Cover with the third cake and spread the remaining ganache over the top and side 
of the cake; decoratively swirl the ganache on top. Top the cake with sugared cranberries, cut into wedges and serve. 

Make Ahead
The frosted cake can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
Notes

Toss fresh cranberries in simple syrup, drain and chill. Roll the cranberries in sugar and spread on a plate; chill for about 1 hour before serving.