Author of Ed Engoron’s Choclatique, Running Press, 2011
I got an email last week from Clyde in Phoenix, Arizona asking me about the secrets of making Dark chocolate ice cream.
This is a question that is often asked. How do I get a deep, dark, rich chocolate ice cream when the main ingredient is milk and cream? Obviously, the milk and cream lighten the mix so that if looks a lot like a light milk chocolate ice cream. So here is the ChefSecret—ultra-alkalized cocoa powder is what the professionals use. For my Dark Chocolate Ice Cream recipe I use Choclatique Black Onyx (ultra-Dutched) Cocoa Powder.
But that’s only half of the ChefSecret. The other half is a healthy helping of dark chocolate ganache. “Ganache” is not a scary concept, although the word may not be immediately familiar to most Americans. It’s a blend of chocolate, creams and syrups that results in a velvety, ultra-smooth paste. In the case of my recipe for Dairy-Free Dark Chocolate Ganache the dark chocolate is blended with light corn syrup, cocoa powder and chocolate extract, and whipped until smooth. With no sacrifice of taste or texture, this dark ganache is the perfect building block for those who are lactose intolerant, those on a vegan diet or those who just love really great dark chocolate ice creams.
But Choclatique Black Onyx is not only for ice cream, but for all your darkest cocoa needs. It is an intensely black, ultra Dutch-processed cocoa powder that has been alkalized to the extreme, resulting in a dark, jet black cocoa powder. It sort of resembles copy machine toner in the intensity of the color, but not in the flavor. When used in baking, it produces an impressive, black-as-coal colored appearance.
Black Onyx has less fat, and a little less flavor. The processing to blacken it takes a lot of the complex flavor notes away and also tends to create a drier finished baked product. So, for baking we strongly recommend using a 50/50 mixture of Black Onyx along Choclatique Red (Rouge) or Natura Cocoa Powders, which will add back a lot of chocolaty flavor. Less processing during the Dutching process preserves a truer chocolate flavor. If you want to use 100% Choclatique Black Onyx in your baked goods, be sure to increase the shortening in the recipe to alleviate the dryness.
Because not all cocoa powders are crated equal, for making the most successful, decadent chocolate desserts and confections I recommend you only use the finest quality, premium cocoa powders.
I’ve posted the recipes below for Dairy-Free Dark Chocolate Ganache and Dark Chocolate Ganache Ice Cream that will give you an outrageous dark chocolate ice cream that everyone will be talking about for years to come. You can also find these recipes in my new book Choclatique, available on our website and in bookstores nationwide after September 27th.
Dairy-Free Dark Chocolate Ganache
Makes about 2 pounds of ganache.
1 Cup Water
1/2 Cup Light Corn Syrup
2 Tablespoons Cocoa Powder, Unsweetened
1/4 Teaspoon Salt
1 Pound Bittersweet Chocolate (at least 64% high in mass), Coarsely Chopped
1 Teaspoon Chocolate Extract, see Note
- In a large, heavy saucepan, bring the water, corn syrup, and cocoa powder to a boil over medium-high heat. Remove the pan from the heat.
- Immediately add the chocolate and chocolate extract to the pan and whisk until smooth. Set aside for about 1 hour to cool completely, whisking every 15 minutes or so to keep the emulsion.
- When cool, transfer the ganache to a rigid plastic or glass container, cover and refrigerate for up to 3 months.
Note: Chocolate extract is sold in most supermarkets and confectionary shops. I like to use Star Kay White’s Chocolate Extract.
Dark Chocolate Ganache Ice Cream
Makes 1 1/2 Quarts
Prep Time: 8 Minutes
Inactive Prep Time: 8 Hours
Cooking Time: 10 Minutes
- Place the cocoa powder, Dark Chocolate Ganache and 1 cup of the half-and-half into a medium saucepan over medium heat and whisk to combine.
- Add the remaining half-and-half and the heavy cream. Bring the mixture just to a simmer, stirring occasionally, and remove from the heat.
- In a medium mixing bowl whisk the egg yolks until they lighten in color. Gradually add the sugar and whisk to combine.
- Temper the cream mixture into the eggs and sugar by gradually adding small amounts; until about 1/3 of the cream mixture has been added.
- Pour in the remainder of the mixture and return the entire mixture to the saucepan and place over low heat. Continue to cook, stirring frequently, until the mixture thickens slightly and coats the back of a spoon.
- Pour the mixture into a container and allow to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.
- Stir in the vanilla extract.
- Place the mixture into the refrigerator and once it is cool enough not to form condensation on the lid, cover and store for 4 to 8 hours or until the temperature reaches 40° F or below.
- Pour into an ice cream maker and process according to the manufacturer’s directions. This should take approximately 25 to 35 minutes. Serve as is for soft ice cream or freeze for another 3 to 4 hours to allow the ice cream to harden.