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Posts Tagged Chocolate

Joconde Imprime Entremet (Daring Bakers)

Posted 27 January 2011 by
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A little while ago, I joined the Daring Bakers, and January marked my first Daring Bakers challenge. It turned out to be one of the best things I’ve ever made.

Completed joconde imprime cake with brown and white sponge, topped with Chantilly cream

The January 2011 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Astheroshe of the blog accro. She chose to challenge everyone to make a Biscuit Joconde Imprime to wrap around an Entremets dessert.

If you’ve never heard of some of the words in the paragraph above, you’re not alone. When I first read the instructions for this challenge I was intimidated to say the least. The biscuit joconde imprime is a fancy French sponge made from two separate parts that  make a design that’s visible on the outside of the finished cake. the sponge, which forms only the outer layer of the cake, is filled with the ”entremet”. If this doesn’t make much sense, hopefully the pictures will enlighten! The challenge provided a recipe for the joconde imprime, but we had to make the entremet up ourselves. I decided on a chocolate hazelnut brownie base, with chocolate nutella cream, topped with chai tea flavoured Chantilly cream. I had no idea if this would work, but it did!

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Dark Chocolate Hazelnut Brownies

Posted 23 January 2011 by
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These dark chocolate hazelnut brownies have a hint of treacle in the background, and extra nuttiness from a little added nutella. I usually prefer my brownies without nuts, but these are lovely. They are definitely more fudgey than cakey, for those that care about that sort of thing, and the nuts give a nice crunch.

A pink plate with three dark chocolate hazelnut brownies on.

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White Chocolate Fudge (almost)

Posted 3 January 2011 by
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I’ve only tried to make fudge one time in my life, about 20 years ago in a home economics class. It was chocolate fudge, and it went so wrong that everyone congratulated me on the lovely treacle toffee I had made. For Christmas, I was lucky enough to receive Gregg’s Favourite Puddings by Gregg Wallace (the pudding-loving Cockney greengrocer and Masterchef judge). For the first recipe I tried from his book, I decided to try to right the wrongs of the past and make white chocolate fudge. Gregg’s recipe for “simple chocolate fudge” actually uses plain chocolate, but I didn’t have any of that, and I had white chocolate left over, so… white it was. This recipe wasn’t 100% successful (read on to find out…) but was a tasty failure.

Pieces of white chocolate fudge in a glass.

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White Irish Soda Bread with Chocolate

Posted 2 January 2011 by
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Irish soda bread is made, as the name suggests, with bicarbonate of soda (also known as sodium bicarbonate). The soda acts as a leavening agent so you don’t need to add any yeast. It doesn’t need to be kneaded really either, so it’s very quick and easy to make. This recipe is for speckled white soda loaf from Country Bread by Linda Collister and Anthony Blake. It’s a bit more special than your average Irish soda bread because it has pieces of dark chocolate added!

Closeup of loaf of white Irish soda bread with dark chocolate Continue reading “White Irish Soda Bread with Chocolate”…

Chocolate Alternative Christmas Pudding

Posted 26 December 2010 by
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Christmas pudding is one of the iconic dishes for Christmas dinner, but lots of people aren’t that keen. Obviously, there are countless alternative dessert out there, and many people would prefer a lighter option. However, if you’re looking for something that’s as dense and rich as traditional Christmas pudding, just without all the dried fruit, this chocolate alternative Christmas pudding might be just the thing. It really is rich, (you only need a small portion at a time, and it might be worth saving it for a few hours after the turkey has been eaten) and has the kind of intense chocolatey decadence that’s only right for Christmas.

Chocolate alternative Christmas pudding, cooked and cut to serve.

This recipe is adapted from one by Safeway (remember them?) and BBC GoodFood and is a microwave recipe. You can do it in a conventional oven though, details below. The pudding contains breadcrumbs, cocoa and lots and lots of chocolate. It’s also very quick & easy to whip up while you’re waiting for the turkey to digest, especially if you prepare a few bits the day before.

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Nigella’s Chocolate Yule Log

Posted 23 December 2010 by
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Every year at Christmas, I ice a chocolate swiss roll, as a yule log. This year is the first time I have made the whole thing. Actually, that’s not strictly true. There was that one time in home economics when I was about 12, when I attempted to make a chocolate yule log. The sponge turned out like rubber, and the “icing” was liquid. It was one big, chocolatey mess. Happily, this one turned out much better. This recipe for a flourless chocolate yule log, or Bûche de Noël, comes from Nigella Lawson’s Nigella Christmas.

Chocolate yule log decorated with chocolate buttercream and icing sugar.

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Nutella Palmiers

Posted 22 December 2010 by
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Palmiers are not only tasty, they’re really quick and easy to make, especially if you use ready-made puff pastry! (Homemade puff pastry will make them even more delicious though…) My first attempt – nutmeg and white chocolate palmiers – were lovely, but not too pretty. These nutella ones were definitely an improvement, but more practise may be needed! A major selling point is, of course, that they are made of nutella… lovely chocolatey, hazelnutty, gooey nutella…

Puff pastry palmier with nutella chocolate spread. Continue reading “Nutella Palmiers”…

Homemade Chocolate Syrup

Posted 15 December 2010 by
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I don’t know if you’ve ever wondered how to make your own chocolate syrup… I can’t say I had until recently. It’s the kind of product that people don’t think twice about buying ready-made. This recipe for homemade syrup is so quick and easy though, and it allows you to cut out all the extra unwanted chemical ingredients there are in commercial products. You can use the syrup in other recipes, as a chocolate sauce on ice-cream, or to make chocolate milk!

Jar of homemade chocolate syrup with a glass of chocolate milk

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Chocolate Brownies with Dulce de Leche and Maya Gold Chocolate

Posted 14 December 2010 by
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Dulce de leche chocolate brownies are somewhat of a departure from the classic chocolate brownie, and a decadent one at that. Dulce de leche is not something well known in the UK, at least not under that name, although it is slowly gaining popularity. It is a “milk caramel”, popular in the US and Latin America, and is similar to the French confiture de lait. Although it’s not a household word here, if you’ve ever boiled up a tin of sweetened condensed milk to get caramel, you’ve pretty much made dulce de leche.

Jar of dulce de leche

It is gradually creeping onto British menus, and when I caught sight of a jar in my local gourmet (ish) supermarket, I made a quick impulse-buy. I then had to quickly find a recipe to use it up, as the temptation to just eat it out of the jar is fairly high! This recipe for dulce de leche brownies came from David Lebovitz.

Dulce de leche chocolate brownies.

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White Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Posted 9 December 2010 by
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These cookies are pretty much what you’d expect from their name. They don’t look gourmet, but distinctly homemade, whether that’s a good or a bad thing is up to you!

White chocolate chunk cookie

You could use chocolate chips, but I thought it would be more indulgent to use nice big chunks of chocolate. The main flavour comes from the chocolate, so you  might as well go for good quality. I used Green & Blacks.


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