Posts Tagged ‘Chocolate Desserts’

The ChocolateDoctor’s Cuckoo for Chocolate…Churros

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013
Ed Engoron, Co-Founder of Choclatique
Author of Ed Engoron’s Choclatique, Running Press, 2011

This is my favorite Mexican fast food dessert and it’s perfect for a Cinco de Mayo celebration. The long strips of fried dough are comparable to New Orleans beignets or southern-fried fritters… only they’re easier to make. They are a common street food and can also be found at fairs and carnivals in both America and Mexico. In recent years many vendors have resorted to frozen churros choosing to just fry them off. I think my freshly made version presented here is far better than frozen. I made them even more delectable with the addition of Choclatique Cocoa Powder to give it a light chocolate flavor. Fried chocolate-how bad could it be?

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Fry Time: 30 minutes (to fry them all)
Ready In: 40 minutes
Yield: About 24 Churros

Ingredients:
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 quarts vegetable oil for frying
1 cup water
1/2 cup margarine (not butter)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup Choclatique Rouge Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs

Directions:

  1. Stir together the sugar and cinnamon and set aside.
  2. In a heavy deep skillet or deep-fryer, begin to preheat heat the oil to 360º F (use a thermometer). The oil should be at least 1-1/2 inches deep.
  3. In a medium saucepan, heat the water and margarine to a rolling boil. Combine the flour, cocoa powder and salt; stir into the boiling mixture.
  4. Reduce heat to low and stir vigorously until the mixture forms a ball, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and beat in the eggs one at a time.
  5. Spoon the mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a large star tip.
  6. Carefully squeeze out 4-inch long strips of dough directly into the hot oil. Fry 3 or 4 strips at a time, until golden brown, about 3 to 4 minutes on each side.
  7. Remove from hot oil to drain on paper towels.
  8. Roll each of the churros in the cinnamon-sugar mixture while still hot.

ChefSecret: If the oil isn’t hot enough the churros will be greasy; if you fry the pastry at a higher temperature than noted they will not get fully cooked on the inside.

Dress the churros up for a dinner time dessert by drizzling a little dark chocolate sauce over the top and garnish with fresh seasonal berries.

To make the Chocolate Drizzle:

Ingredients:
2 ounces Choclatique Private Reserve Dark Chocolate, chopped
1 teaspoon white vegetable shortening

Directions:

  1. Place the chocolate and shortening in a small re-sealable freezer bag.
  2. Microwave on HIGH for about 30 seconds until chocolate is melted.
  3. Massage chocolate and shortening together in the bag.
  4. Snip off corner and drizzle over the fried churros that have been dredged in cinnamon-sugar.

Special Note: Leave it to Joan to find another use for churros. While surfing the internet for Cinco de Mayo festivities she came across a recipe for Churro Cupcakes on The Curvy Carrot website. I think it a great idea that we will be trying here this week. Go and grab a quick peak for yourself and see what you think. Think of the possibilities… I would consider making a Tres Leaches Churro Cake just to make sure you have a totally indulgent dessert for the May 5th.

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Joan-Made-Me-Make-Them: Mini Chocolate Boston Cream Pies

Thursday, September 6th, 2012

Ed Engoron, Co-Founder of Choclatique
Author of Ed Engoron’s Choclatique, Running Press, 2011

Boston Cream PieWe always try to make a birthday cake for our co-workers. It’s always best to ask them what kind of cake they love so we can “surprise” them with it on their special day. Our Executive Chef, Jonathan, is a Boston Cream Pie kind of guy. We all got together and made his favorite with a little twist—all chocolate of course.

In 1996, the Boston Cream Pie became the official dessert of Massachusetts. However, you should know it’s really not a pie at all but a cake that has been split and filled with a custard or cream filling and drizzled or glazed with chocolate. The Boston Cream Pie was originally created by an Armenian-French chef M. Sanzian at Boston’s Parker House Hotel in 1856. I fully “chocolatized” the recipe about 140 years later and improved upon it in 2012.

Prep Time: 90 minutes
Ready In: 90 minutes

Yield: 24 servings

Ingredients:
1 package (2-layer size) chocolate cake mix
1 cup cold milk
1 pkg. (4 serving size) JELL-O™ Chocolate Flavor Instant Pudding Mix
1 1/2 cups thawed COOL WHIP™ Whipped Topping, divided
4 ounces Choclatique Dark Chocolate Chips, plus another
6 ounces Choclatique Dark Chocolate Chips, melted
2 tablespoons of vegetable oil

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350º F.
  2. Prepare the cake batter following the directions on the box. Bake in 24 medium muffin pan cups that have been sprayed with pan release.
  3. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes. Remove the cakes to wire racks; cool completely.
  4. Beat the milk and chocolate pudding mix with wire whisk for 2 minutes or until well blended. Let stand 5 minutes to thicken.
  5. Meanwhile, use the serrated knife to cut the cakes horizontally in half. Gently stir 1/2 cup of the whipped topping into pudding mixture. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of the pudding mixture onto bottom half of each cupcake; cover with top of the cake.
  6. Microwave the remaining 1 cup whipped topping and the chocolate in small microwaveable bowl on HIGH 1-1/2 min. or until chocolate is almost melted, stirring after 1 min. Stir until chocolate is completely melted and mixture is well blended.
  7. Let stand 15 minutes to thicken. Spread onto cakes. Refrigerate at least 15 minutes.
  8. Before serving, microwave the remaining chocolate chips and oil in small microwaveable bowl on HIGH 1 minute or until the chocolate is almost melted, stirring after 30 seconds. Continue to stir until chocolate is completely melted and mixture is well blended.
  9. Drizzle mini-cakes with chocolate syrup and serve.
  10. Store any leftovers overnight in refrigerator.

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French Cocoa Crêpes

Thursday, August 2nd, 2012
Ed Engoron, Co-Founder of Choclatique
Author of Ed Engoron’s Choclatique, Running Press, 2011

In France, crêpes are traditionally served on Candlemas (La Chandeleur), February 2. This day was originally Virgin Mary’s Blessing Day, but became known in France as “Le Jour des Crêpes” (literally translated “The Day of the Crêpes”). The belief was that if you could catch the crêpe with a frying pan after tossing it in the air with your right hand and holding a gold coin in your left hand, you would become rich that year.

Don’t tell anyone that these great-tasting French-style crêpes are so easy to make. In fact, it is the perfect chocolate crêpe recipe! The taste and consistency are right on if only complimented by brushing with chocolate or filling and rolling them up with fresh fruit, jam and whipped cream. Close your eyes and you’ll think you’re in Paris.

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Resting Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Ready In: 35 minutes

Yield: 12 servings

Ingredients:
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup Choclatique Rouge Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
2 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 eggs
2 cups milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cold strong coffee
2 tablespoons butter, melted

Directions:

  1. Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, sugar and salt; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the eggs and milk together with an electric mixer. Beat in the flour mixture until smooth; add in the coffee and stir in the melted butter.
  3. Let the batter sit for no less than 20 minutes.
  4. Heat a lightly oiled 6-inch frying pan over medium high heat.
  5. Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 2 tablespoons for each crêpe. Tip and rotate pan to spread batter as thinly as possible. Pur out any excess.
  6. Brown on both sides and serve hot.

ChefSecret: Allowing the batter to rest for 20 minutes allows the flour and cocoa powder to rehydrate completely. When you make crêpes, tilt the hot, slightly buttered pan and pour the batter in from the edges to the center. Do not start in the center or else you will end up with a glob of batter set in the middle. Place the crêpes under a warm, slightly damp towel to keep them warm and moist until ready to fill and serve.

Serving Suggestion: Fill with fresh 2 tablespoons of macerated fruit and 1 tablespoon of whip cream and roll into a luscious dessert.

Use as a savory wrap as well. Just fill with chicken mole and you have an elegant entrée that’s sure to impress you foodie friends.

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The Actual “Inventor” Will Never Be Known

Friday, July 20th, 2012
Ed Engoron, Co-Founder of Choclatique
Author of Ed Engoron’s Choclatique, Running Press, 2011

The brownie was born right here in the U.S. of A. and remains one of America’s favorite baked desserts. Where did it come from? We aren’t sure where, although evidence points to New England in the first few years of the 20th century. Cake-like and baked in a cake pan, the brownie is classified as a bar cookie rather than a cake. There are thousands of recipes, both “cakey” and “fudgy” types. They’re all delicious.

As with many foods, the origin of the brownie is shrouded in myth, even though it is a relatively recent entry to the food pantheon, first appearing in print in the early 20th century. The legend is told variously: a baker mistakenly added cocoa to a batch of biscuits…a baker was making a cake but didn’t have enough flour… a housewife in Bangor, Maine was making a chocolate cake but forgot to add baking powder. When her cake didn’t rise properly, she cut and served the flat pieces. Alas, the actual “inventor” will most likely never be known and given credit for this American classic.

Choclatique’s Easiest, Richest, Darkest Chocolate Brownies

(No Frosting Necessary)

Yield 16 bars

Ingredients:
1/3 cup butter, cut into pieces
2 tablespoons water
1 cup granulated sugar
1 2/3 cups Choclatique Dark Chocolate Chips
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped, toasted pecans (optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 325º F.
  2. Grease an 8-inch-square baking pan. Set aside 1/3 cup of the morsels.
  3. Mix together the butter, water and sugar, bring to a boil and remove from het. Add the chips and stir until melted. Pour into a medium bowl.
  4. Stir in eggs, one at a time; whisk until blended. Stir in vanilla extract.
  5. Add flour and salt; stir well.
  6. Stir in remaining 1/3 cup morsels and nuts.
  7. Pour into prepared baking pan.
  8. Bake for 38 to 40 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out slightly sticky.
  9. Cool in pan on wire rack. Cut into bars.

Choclatique Double Dark Chocolate Brownie MixChefSecret: For a richer, more complex flavor and nutty texture add 1/2 cup of Choclatique Roasted Cocoa Nibs when adding the pecans. Experiment by adding different nuts to your brownies—my favorites are roasted cashews and walnuts.

If you don’t have time to weigh and measure, then try our better than homemade Choclatique Double Dark Chocolate Brownie Mix which is made with Crushed Dark Chocolate. In about 20 minutes you can be enjoying my secret recipe of Choclatique’s delicious warm, out-of-the-oven brownies.

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Chocolate Cinnamon Rolls

Friday, July 13th, 2012
Ed Engoron, Co-Founder of Choclatique
Author of Ed Engoron’s Choclatique, Running Press, 2011

My partner, Joan, and I are suckers for state and county fairs. We go for the creative circus food that you find at such events. We always like to get there early and stay late giving us the opportunity to taste as many things as possible. Out first search is always for those gooey cinnamon rolls. Several years ago we discovered colossal, chocolate cinnamon rolls. The aphrodisiac aroma of cinnamon and chocolate alone led us to the food truck making these scrumptious rollups.

With the following recipe you can bake them exactly when and how you like them without waiting for the fair to come to town. Finish them off with a heavenly cream cheese glaze and you have a masterpiece. Chocolate Cinnamon Rolls are not only for the fair; they make a great alternative to traditional holiday breads ane great for brunch too!

Yield: 16 cinnamon rolls

Ingredients:

For the dough
1/4 cup warm water
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 (3.4 ounce) package instant chocolate pudding mix
1 cup warm milk
1 egg, room temperature
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3-1/2 cups bread flour
1/4 cup Choclatique Black Onyx Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1/4 cup Choclatique Natura Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast

For the filling
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar
4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3/4 cup Choclatique Milk Chocolate Chips
3/4 cup chopped pecans (optional)

For the frosting
1/2 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons milk

Directions:

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook combine the water, melted butter, chocolate pudding, warm milk, egg, 1 tablespoon sugar, salt, bread flour, cocoa powders and yeast.
  2. When dough mix becomes somewhat elastic (about 15 minutes), place in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let the dough rest for about 30 minutes.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and roll into a 17×10 inch rectangle.
  4. Spread with softened butter.
  5. In a small bowl, stir together brown sugar, cinnamon and chocolate chips (and pecans, if desired). Sprinkle brown sugar-chocolate chip mixture over dough.
  6. Tightly toll up dough, beginning with long side. Slice into 16 one inch slices and place in 9×13 buttered pan.
  7. Let rise in a warm place for 45 to 60 minutes or until double in size.
  8. Preheat oven to 350º F.
  9. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes.
  10. While rolls bake, stir together cream cheese, softened butter, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla and milk.
  11. Remove rolls from oven and top with frosting.

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The Month of June Empanadas

Thursday, May 31st, 2012
Ed Engoron, Co-Founder of Choclatique
Author of Ed Engoron’s Choclatique, Running Press, 2011

On my monthly trips to Lisbon, my friend, Paul Nitschmann, and I usually go out for a drink or two and order some empanadas. Actually empanadas trace their origins to Galicia and Portugal. They first appeared in the Iberian Peninsula before the Renaissance during the time of the Moorish invasions.

A cookbook published in the Catalan language in 1520, Libre del Coch by Ruperto de Nola, mentions empanadas filled with seafood among its recipes of Catalan, Italian, French and Arabian foods. In turn, it is believed that empanadas and the similar calzone are both derived from the Indian meat-filled pies, samosas.

In Portugal, an empanada is prepared similarly to a large pie with a larded crust which is then cut in pieces, making it a portable and hearty meal for working people. The fillings for Portuguese empanada usually includes tuna, sardines, cheese or chorizo (Portuguese sausage), but can instead contain Bacalhau (salted cod) or various cuts of pork. They are then fried and usually served at room temperature.

My dessert empanadas are very different. First of all, they are baked and not fried, and the dough is made with cream cheese instead of butter or lard. They are beautifully light with a rich, full-flavored, spiced chocolate ganache. Make them ahead of time and keep them in the refrigerator for up to 2 days before baking. In you lived in the Northern California area, we used to serve them during the month of June at my Customs House Restaurants. I have never shared this recipe before.

Baked Chocolate Empanadas

empanadas2

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Chilling Time: Overnight
Assembly time: 20 minutes
Baking Time: 15-20 minutes
Yield: 2-1/2 dozen

Ingredients:
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 (3 ounce) package cream cheese
1 cup sifted all-purpose flour, plus 2 tablespoons extra for rolling
1 cup Azteca Chocolate Ganache (see recipe below)
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions:
The Day Before:

  1. Cream butter and cream cheese together until smoothly blended. Beat in the flour.
  2. Shape dough into a smooth ball, wrap in foil or cling wrap, and refrigerate overnight or up to a week.

At Baking Time:

  1. Remove dough from refrigerator 30 minutes before using. Start heating oven to 375ºF.
  2. Sprinkle a little flour on the rolling service. Roll chilled dough thin. Cut with 3 or 4 inch round cookie cutter. Place about 2 teaspoonfuls of chocolate ganache in center of each round, moisten edges with water.
  3. Fold round over and press edges together.
  4. Refrigerate for 15 minutes to set the dough before baking.
  5. Bake on ungreased cookie sheet 17 to 20 minutes until golden brown.
  6. Remove from the oven and immediately roll in sugar mixed with cinnamon (traditional) OR in confectioners’ sugar if preferred.

Spiced Azteca Dark Chocolate Ganache

I chose Spiced Azteca Chocolate Ganache because the combination of flavors (cinnamon and chili) is a treasure commonly paired with chocolate in Aztec culture and is perfect for empanadas. This is definitely a recipe in which you’ll want to buy the best chocolate you can afford, as you can easily transform this ganache into truly gourmet truffles.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 15 minutes
Cooling Time: 2 hours
Chilling Time: 3 to 4 hours
Yield: 2 pounds of ganache

Ingredients:
11/4 cups heavy cream
4 cinnamon sticks, about 3 inches long
1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle chili powder
1 pound Choclatique Private Reserve Dark Chocolate (64%), chopped
1/2 pound Choclatique Snowy White Chocolate (33%), chopped
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. In a large, heavy saucepan, bring the cream, cinnamon sticks and chili powder to a boil over medium-high heat. Whisk until blended. Remove the pan from the heat. Remove the cinnamon sticks and discard.
  2. Immediately add the chocolate and vanilla to the pan and whisk until smooth. Set aside for about 2 hours to cool completely, whisking every 15 minutes or so to keep the ganache emulsified.
  3. When cool, transfer the ganache to a rigid plastic or glass container, cover, date, and refrigerate overnight before using.

Note: Ganache will keep refrigerated for up to three months.

ChefSecret: For additional depth of flavor, squeeze some fresh orange zest over the melted ganache and stir into the mixture to release the oils from the skin and complement the fruitiness of the dark chocolate.

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Doctor Mudd’s Chocolate Ice Cream Pie

Thursday, May 24th, 2012
Ed Engoron, Co-Founder of Choclatique
Author of Ed Engoron’s Choclatique, Running Press, 2011

Ice Cream Pies were originally made from cookies and cream. These ingredients are combined in such a way as to create a multi-layered rich dessert. My recipe is composed of layers of caramel, espresso fudge and chocolate ice cream built upon a chocolate cookie crust.

Ice cream pies are never baked. They can be made simply for an after dinner dessert or gussied up for a special event. Britney Spears and Victoria Beckham had ice cream pies as their wedding cakes. They are most popular for birthday cakes. The best part is they’re easier to make than one would expect.

Oh, who is Doctor Mudd? Well, he’s the man who created this Chocolate Ice Cream Pie.

Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cooking Time: 30 to 40 minutes
Freezing Time: 5 hours
Ready In: 6-1/2 hours
Yield 1 – 9 inch pie
Serves 8 to 10 people

Ingredients:
2 cups chocolate wafers or chocolate graham crackers, crushed into crumbs
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons water
1/2 cup heavy cream, scalded (scald = heat until just below the boiling point)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 ounces Choclatique Ebony Dark Chocolate Pastilles (72%)
1/4 cup Choclatique Black Onyx Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 cup brewed espresso
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup light corn syrup
4 cups chocolate or chocolate chip ice cream, softened

Directions:

  1. Measure all ingredients and have at your side.

For the Crust:

  1. Combine chocolate wafer crumbs and 4 tablespoons butter. Press the mixture into the bottom and partially up the sides of a 9-inch springform pan.

For the Caramel Sauce:

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine 1/2 cup sugar and the water. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar is completely dissolved. Bring to a boil, and continue boiling without stirring until the syrup turns a light amber. While the syrup is boiling, brush down the sides of the pan with a wet basting brush from time to time to prevent sugar crystals from forming.
  2. Remove the pan from the heat, and stir in scalded cream. Be careful as it will boil up close to the top of the pan. Continue stirring, over low heat until all the caramel is dissolved into the cream.
  3. Stir in 4 tablespoons butter and set aside to cool slightly.
  4. Pour the warm caramel sauce over the crust, rolling it up the sides of the crust. Freeze until firm, about 30 minutes.

For the Espresso Fudge Sauce:

  1. Combine the chocolate, cocoa powder, 4 tablespoons butter and espresso in a medium saucepan. Stir over low heat until smooth.
  2. Add 3/4 cup of sugar and corn syrup; increase heat to medium, and stir until the sugar dissolves.
  3. Increase heat until the sauce reaches a low boil. Cook without stirring until the mixture thickens, about 12 to 15 minutes. Be careful not to scorch.
  4. Remove the espresso fudge sauce from the heat, and cool to room temperature. Pour 1 cup of the sauce over the frozen caramel layer, and return the crust to the freezer. Keep remaining sauce just warm enough so that it remains pourable.

To Assemble The Pie:

  1. Spread the softened ice cream over the caramel layer. Return pie to the freezer until firm, about 1 hour. Pour the remaining fudge sauce over the ice cream layer; freeze the whole pie until firm, about 2 to 3 hours.
  2. Wrap a hot wet towel around the springform pan for about 2 minutes to loosen the pie from the pan and then gently remove the sides of the pan.

ChefSecrets: I use a hair drier set on “high” heat blowing air around the springform pan for about 2-3 minutes and then carefully remove the sides of the pan. I always use a good quality ice cream like Häagen Dazs or Ben & Jerry’s for all of my ice cream pie recipes.

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Meet Karen Centeno

Thursday, November 17th, 2011
Ed Engoron, Co-Founder of Choclatique
Author of Ed Engoron’s Choclatique, Running Press, 2011

One of the people who make a difference at Choclatique

Karen is our senior chocolatier. She’s been with Choclatique from the very beginning and worked on the creation during the very long research and development years when we first got started. She started as an assistant, but soon showed she had much more artistic talent than even she realized. I remember we were working in the lab when she showed me how she would decorate one of our beautiful confections. It was so beautiful I was surprised to hear that she had never worked with chocolate before and had never done much in the way of conventional art work.

Christmas Crunch BrittleWhen working at Choclatique, every piece has to be a miniature masterpiece. Decorating a molded piece of Choclatique chocolate starts by paint molds with the desired design inside-out and up-side down. It takes a steady hand and a lot of patience. When you look at the detail, you have to admire how much goes into just a single piece of chocolate. Karen is responsible for chocolate production and training all of our decorators.

Chocolate EuphoriaOne of the things that I particularly love about Karen is her up-beat personality and wicked sense of humor. She comes to work every day with a big smile on her face. She keeps everyone laughing in the Chocolate Studio every single day no matter how busy we are. I think it may be the euphoria she feels when she eats our chocolate.

Karen played an important part in testing the recipes in Choclatique—150 Simply Elegant Desserts. If you’re interested in learning more about chocolate, its affects on the human body and improving your disposition, buy Choclatique—150 Simply Elegant Desserts. It is a great holiday gift and most importantly, the recipes make luscious tasting desserts perfectly the first time and every time thereafter. It is a foolproof guide to making all of your favorite desserts and improving your sweet disposition and those all around you.

CHOCLATIQUE by Ed Engoron ––––––––––––––– Full-Color Throughout 256 pages • 8 x 10 $27.00 /$31.50 CAN /£14.99 UK ISBN 978-0-7624-3964-5 • Available now on the Choclatique Website and in Book Stores

CHOCLATIQUE by Ed Engoron
Full-Color Throughout 256 pages • 8 x 10 $27.00 /$31.50 CAN /£14.99 UK ISBN 978-0-7624-3964-5 • hc Available on the Choclatique Website and Book Stores, September, 2011

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The Chocolate Psychic

Monday, August 1st, 2011
Ed Engoron, Co-Founder of Choclatique
Author of Ed Engoron’s Choclatique, Running Press, 2011

Look into my eyes… I am Karnack, The Prince of Prognostication, The Chocolate Psychic.

If the eight desserts listed below were sitting in front of you, which would you choose—assuming you had no dietary restrictions – (sorry, you can only pick one)! Trust me….this is very accurate. Pick your dessert, and then look to see what psychiatrists think about you.

REMEMBER – No Cheating. Make your choice before you check the meaning. After taking this dessert personality test, send this e-mail on to others.

Here are your choices:
1. Angel Food Cake
2. Chocolate Brownies
3. Lemon Meringue Pie
4. Vanilla Cake with Chocolate Icing
5. Strawberry Short Cake
6. Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Icing
7. Chocolate Ice Cream
8. Carrot Cake

Play by the rules. No, you can’t change your mind once you scroll down, so think carefully about what your choice will be.

Okay?

Now that you’ve made your choice, this is what the researchers say about you…..

Now it’s okay to SCROLL DOWN

1. ANGEL FOOD CAKE—You are sweet, loving, cuddly. You love all warm and fuzzy items. A little nutty at times. Sometimes you need an ice cream cone at the end of the day. Others perceive you as being childlike and immature at times.

2. CHOCOLATE BROWNIES—You are adventurous, love new ideas, and are a champion of underdogs and a slayer of dragons. When tempers flare up you whip out your saber. You are always the oddball with a unique sense of humor and direction. You tend to be very loyal.

3. LEMON MERINGUE PIE—Smooth, fun, & articulate with your hands, you are an excellent caregiver and a good teacher. But don’t try to walk and chew gum at the same time. A bit of a diva at times, you set your own style because you do your own thing. You shine when it comes to helping others and have many friends.

4. VANILLA CAKE WITH CHOCOLATE ICING—You are fun-loving, sassy, humorous, not very grounded in life, but not very indecisive and lacking motivation. Everyone enjoys being around you, but you are a practical joker. Others should be cautious in making you mad. However, you are a friend for life.

5. STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE—You are romantic, warm and loving. You care about other people, can be counted on in a pinch and expect the same in return. Intuitively keen. You can be very emotional at times but a true person in every way. You like to do things for yourself and help others learn about themselves.

6. CHOCOLATE CAKE WITH CHOCOLATE ICING—You are vivacious, always ready to give and receive. You are very creative, adventurous, ambitious and passionate. You can appear to have a cold exterior but are warm on the inside. Not afraid to take chances. You won’t settle for anything average in life. Love to laugh.

7. CHOCOLATE ICE CREAM—You like sports, whether it’s baseball, football, basketball, or soccer. If you could, you would like to participate, but you enjoy watching sports. You don’t like to give up the remote control. You tend to be self-centered and high maintenance.

8. CARROT CAKE—You are a very fun loving person, who loves to laugh. You are fun to be with. People like to hang out with you. You are a very warm hearted person and a little quirky at times. You have many loyal friends. You were meant to lead and teach others. You are a wonderful role model.

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Chocolate Brownies

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010
Ed Engoron, Co-Founder of Choclatique
Author of Ed Engoron’s Choclatique, Running Press, 2011

Is there actually anyone out there that doesn’t love a great brownie? The key word there is “great.” There are so many brownie mixes on the market that many people have gone away from even trying to make them from scratch. A really great brownie—usually nothing more than melted chocolate, butter, sugar, eggs and some cocoa, all lightly mixed together with a bit of flour—is a decadent, luscious, yet simple treat. And… the brownie is one of America’s favorite desserts.

The brownie was born right here in the U.S. of A. We just aren’t quite sure when or where, although evidence points to somewhere in New England in the first few years of the 20th century. Although it is baked in a cake pan, the brownie is classified as a bar rather than a cake. There are literally thousands of recipes, both “cake” and “fudge” types. Both are perfectly correct—and delicious.

The brownie got its name from its dark brown color. But as with most foods, the origin of the brownie is shrouded in myth, even though it is a relatively recent entry to the food pantheon, first appearing in print in the early 20th century. The legends are told variously: a chef mistakenly added melted chocolate to a batch of biscuits…a cook was making a cake but didn’t have enough flour. One tells of a housewife in Maine who was making a chocolate cake but forgot to add the leavening. When her cake didn’t rise properly, instead of tossing it out, she cut and served the flat bars. That theory, however, relies on a cookbook published in 1912, six years after the first chocolate brownie recipe was published by America’s most famous cookbook author of the time, Fannie Farmer, in 1906.

The actual “inventor” will most likely never be known, but here’s what we do know: The first-known recipe for brownies I found was in the 1897 Sears, Roebuck Catalogue, but this was a recipe for a molasses confection merely called brownies. Larousse Gastronomique, regarded by many as the ultimate cooking reference, writes that a recipe for brownies first appeared in the 1896 The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book, written by Fannie Farmer—but that recipe was for a cookie-type confection that was also colored and flavored with molasses and made in fluted marguerite molds. However, as verified by Jean Anderson in The American Century Cookbook: The Most Popular Recipes Of The 20th Century, the two earliest published recipes for chocolate brownies appeared in Boston-based cookbooks—the first in a second edition of The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book.

Most boxed brownies mixes will never be able to compare or even come close to a homemade brownie, made from quality ingredients and most importantly real melted chocolate. I don’t know about you, but when I read the list of ingredients for my brownies (or any other foods), I would much rather read a list like bittersweet chocolate, cocoa, butter, vanilla, salt, and flour than something that includes any words that I can’t even pronounce, let alone have a clue to what they are. I don’t believe in better living through chemistry.

Choclatique Double Dark Chocolate Brownie MixA great brownie doesn’t even have to involve having a mixer. If you have a couple of bowls, a whisk, a rubber spatula and a little bit of time, homemade brownies can be yours in minutes. You don’t have to be a professional baker or have a mix to prepare basic, delicious, baked goods.

BrowniesThe real keys to successful baking from scratch are simple and finite—use the best quality ingredients you can get your hands on and follow the directions.

You can find one of my basic brownie recipes here or purchase a bag of Ebony Dark Chocolate Pastilles or Double Dark Chocolate Brownie Mix, made with real chocolate-of course.

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