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Saturday, October 24, 2009

Graveyard Pots



Graveyard Pots
Recipe: Sunset Magazine
Makes 8 servings

14 ounces (about 3 cups) semisweet or bitter-sweet chocolate, roughly chopped
2 large eggs, plus 2 yolks
2 1/2 cups whipping cream
1/3 cup coffee-flavored liqueur
1/2 cup chocolate wafer crumbs
Tombstone Cookies (recipe below)

1. In a food processor or blender, whirl chocolate until finely chopped. Pour into a bowl. Put eggs and yolks in the processor or blender.

2. In a 4-cup glass measure, heat whipping cream in a microwave oven (see Notes) at full power (100%) until cream boils, 3 to 5 minutes.

3. With processor or blender on high speed, add boiling cream to egg. Check temperature of mixture with an instant-read thermometer; if below 160°, pour mixture back into glass measure and reheat in microwave oven at full power until it reaches 160°, stirring and checking at 15-second intervals.

4. Combine hot cream mixture, chopped chocolate, and liqueur in blender or processor (or whisk the ingredients together in a large bowl); whirl until smooth, about 1 minute.

5. Pour chocolate mixture into 8 ramekins or glasses (1/2-cup size). Chill until softly set, 30 to 45 minutes. If making ahead, cover and chill up to 1 day. For creamiest texture, let desserts stand at room temperature about 30 minutes before eating.

6. Spoon 1 tbsp. wafer crumbs onto each pot de crème. Insert a Tombstone Cookie into each serving.


Tombstone Cookies
Makes about 2 1/2 dozen

2 tablespoons cocoa (or cacao) nibs (see Notes)
6 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar, plus extra for sprinkling cookies
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Melted semisweet or bittersweet chocolate

1. Preheat oven to 400°. In a blender, whirl cocoa nibs until each is about the size of a grain of rice.

2. In the large bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and 1/2 cup sugar until creamy; beat in egg and vanilla.

3. In another bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and cocoa nibs; gradually add to butter mixture, blending thoroughly, to form a soft dough. Divide dough into thirds, cover each portion tightly with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm (at least 1 hour), or up to 3 days.

4. On a floured board, roll out dough, a portion at a time, to a thickness of 1/8 in. (keep dough refrigerated when not in use). With a sharp knife, cut out free-form tombstone shapes (about 1 1/2 by 3 in.; cut bottom edges at an angle to make them easier to poke into the pots de crème), and place slightly apart on ungreased baking sheets. Sprinkle generously with sugar.

5. Bake cookies until edges are lightly browned, about 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer to racks and let cool completely before handling.

6. Using a pastry bag with a very fine tip, pipe the letters "RIP" in chocolate on at least 8 of the cookies. Stick these cookies into the Dark Chocolate Graveyard Pots de Crème and serve the rest of the cookies alongside.