Posts by tag: chocolate

  • Rhubarb-Berry Hand Pies with Chocolate

Rhubarb-Berry Hand Pies with Chocolate

Posted on March 14, 2017
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Whether you’re a baker, math nerd or just a straight up hungry person, today is a day worthy of celebration. It’s Pi Day. The annual observance of the mathematical constant π (pi), who’s first three digits are 3.14 ( = March 14).

So of course, the best way to celebrate Pi Day is by making, eating and sharing actual pies. Right?

Did you know that I basically spent all of my 20’s in either a research laboratory or a classroom? Yup, it’s true. I was busy getting my PhD in Biochemistry, and then later completing a post-doctoral fellowship in Cancer Biology. And I was blinding men with my scientific prowess left and right (not really, but a girl can dream). Full on goggles and lab coat and all that good stuff. So as a bona fide science dork turned food blogger, Pi Day hits home for me on so many levels. Thus, it’s a day that I couldn’t let pass without some recognition.

Rhubarb-Berry Hand Pies with Chocolate | www.floatingkitchen.net

As much as I love desserts, I must admit that pie is never really my go-to. I’m much more of a cake and ice cream kind of gal. So for my Pi Day inspiration, I asked my Mom for some help. She sent me a rhubarb and berry pie recipe that she had torn out from the pages of a 2001 issue of Better Homes and Gardens. It’s a recipe that she’s made successfully dozens of times over the years. And with some early season rhubarb in hand, I decided it would be a good one to adapt for today’s post.

The original recipe is for a full pie. But I flipped the script and turn it into individual hand pies instead. Because who doesn’t love cute little hand pies?!?!

Rhubarb-Berry Hand Pies with Chocolate | www.floatingkitchen.net

Because these hand pies don’t take as long to bake as a full sized pie, I pre-cooked the filling ingredients on the stove top for a few minutes. This also helps to get rid of some of the excess juices from the fruits, so the hand pies come out with a wonderfully flakey crust that isn’t mushy at all. The filling is almost jam-like, and these Rhubarb-Berry Hand Pies with Chocolate kind of remind me of a Pop-Tart, which were a childhood favorite of mine.

Rhubarb-Berry Hand Pies with Chocolate | www.floatingkitchen.net

The buttermilk pie crust recipe is from Joy the Baker. It’s hands down my favorite pie crust recipe ever. I can’t imagine ever needing another one. If you’ve ever made pie dough before, I’m sure you’re familiar with the phrase “pea-sized pieces of butter”. This is the size of butter that most recipes will tell you to aim for as you work the butter into the dry ingredients. I actually find this to be misleading. You want the butter to be pea-sized by the END of making/shaping the dough. Not during the middle of the process. Because as you work the dough, the butter pieces will just keep getting smaller and smaller. So I aim for kidney bean-sized pieces of butter, which by the end will be reduced in size closer to that of a pea. Does that make sense?

To make sure all my hand pies were the same size, I actually created a template with a piece of paper and used that as a guide to cut out the rectangles of dough. You certainly don’t have to be that fussy, but I wouldn’t be my overly obsessive scientific self if I didn’t go the extra mile to make them all evenly sized. Using a 4 X 5-inch template, I was able to cut out 14 rectangles, giving me a total of seven hand pies. If you need more pies, just make and use a smaller template.

Rhubarb-Berry Hand Pies with Chocolate | www.floatingkitchen.net

The final ingredient worth mentioning here is the chocolate. I added chopped dark chocolate to the filling, which melts into deliciously decadent little pockets of goodness during baking. And for the finishing touch, I channeled Jackson Pollock and drizzled some melted chocolate over top. Personally, I LOVE chocolate paired with fruit. But if you’re a purest either way, you can leave it out.

Happy Pi Day! I hope you all get the chance to celebrate!

Cheers,

Liz

Rhubarb-Berry Hand Pies with Chocolate

Yield: Makes 7 hand pies

Rhubarb-Berry Hand Pies with Chocolate

Ingredients

  • For the Pie Crust
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup (16 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cubed and chilled
  • About 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 2 tablespoons turbinado sugar
  • Melted dark chocolate for drizzling, if desired

  • For the Filling
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced fresh rhubarb
  • 1 1/2 cups trimmed and sliced fresh strawberries
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons quick-cooking tapioca
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup chopped dark chocolate

Instructions

  1. To make the pie crust, combine the flour, granulated sugar and salt in a large bowl. Add the cubed butter and toss to coat the butter in the dry ingredients. Then, using your hands, work the butter into the dry ingredients by squeezing it between your fingers. Try to work quickly so the butter doesn’t get too warm. Once the butter pieces are about kidney bean-sized, make a well in the center of the flour mixture. Add about 1/2 cup of the buttermilk and use a fork to incorporate the flour mixture into the buttermilk. Add more buttermilk as necessary to make sure all the flour is moistened. The dough will be a bit shaggy at this point. Dump the dough out onto a floured work surface and using your hands, knead and shape the dough together into a ball. Divide the dough ball in half and shape each half into a disk. Wrap the disks with plastic wrap and chill them in your refrigerator for 1 hour.
  2. Meanwhile, make the filling. Add the rhubarb, strawberries, blueberries, sugar and lemon juice to a medium saucepan. Bring the filling to a simmer over medium heat and cook, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat and allow the filling to cool for 10 minutes. Then stir in the tapioca and vanilla extract. Allow to filling to cool completely before stirring in the chopped chocolate.
  3. Pre-heat your oven to 425 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and 1 tablespoon of water. Set aside.
  5. Remove the dough disks from your refrigerator and unwrap them. Working with one dough disk at a time, roll it out onto a well floured work surface until it’s about 1/8-inch thick. As you’re rolling the dough, occasionally rotate it a quarter of a turn to ensure it’s not sticking to your work surface. Once the dough is rolled out, cut out rectangles 4 X 5-inches in size. Place the dough rectangles on one of your parchment paper lined baking sheets. Re-shape and re-roll the scrapes, continuing to cut out as many rectangles as possible. Repeat the same process with the second dough disk.
  6. Add 2 rounded tablespoons of filling to the center of half of the dough rectangles. Brush the edges of the rectangles with some of the egg wash. Then top with the other half of the dough rectangles. Press the edges together gently with your fingers. Then use the tines of a fork to press more firmly and seal the edges. Transfer the baking sheets to your refrigerator to chill the pies for 10-15 minutes.
  7. Remove the baking sheets from your refrigerator. Use the tines of a fork to poke a vent in the top of each pie. Then brush the tops of the pies with some of the remaining egg wash. Sprinkle with a little turbinado sugar.
  8. Transfer the baking sheets to your pre-heated oven and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow the pies to cool slightly before serving. If desired, you can drizzle melted chocolate on top before serving.
http://www.floatingkitchen.net/rhubarb-berry-hand-pies-with-chocolate/
  • Baileys Chocolate Mousse with Whiskey Caramel Sauce and Whipped Cream

Baileys Chocolate Mousse with Whiskey Caramel Sauce and Whipped Cream

Posted on March 9, 2017
Category:

This post was originally published here on March 6, 2015. I’ve since updated the photos and text to better showcase how deliciously decadent these little desserts really are!

St. Patrick’s Day is just around the corner. And even though I’m not Irish, I like to celebrate this very special day in the best way that I know how. By using an ungodly amount of Irish cream, Irish whiskey and/or stout beer in my kitchen.

Go big or go home. Right?

I sure do hope that you’re on board with this plan. Because today I want to talk about this supremely decadent Baileys Chocolate Mousse with Whiskey Caramel Sauce and Whipped Cream. I’m feeling all the feels over these babies. And I have an inkling that you’re going to love them, too!

Baileys Chocolate Mousse with Whiskey Caramel Sauce and Whipped Cream | www.floatingkitchen.net

So let me just mention right away that these little triple-layer desserts are no-bake. Yes. It’s true. Absolutely no ovens are required to make these babies. Which is pretty darn awesome. And kind of a safety requirement, too. Because we probably shouldn’t operate our ovens while using (= drinking) all of the above alcohols. It’s just common sense.

The base for these desserts is an adaptation on this blender chocolate mousse recipe from Food52 that I’ve been making for a couple of years now. All you have to do is toss the ingredients into your blender and whiz everything together into creamy, dreamy oblivion. Seriously, it couldn’t be any easier. The addition of the Irish cream just takes it even more over the top.

Baileys Chocolate Mousse with Whiskey Caramel Sauce and Whipped Cream | www.floatingkitchen.net

The mousse takes a couple of hours to set up. But during that time you can get to work preparing the homemade caramel sauce and whipped cream. Both of which contain a little splash of Irish whiskey. A very good idea, if I do say so myself.

So even though I’m not Irish, I certainly feel like it when I’m eating this Baileys Chocolate Mousse with Whiskey Caramel Sauce and Whipped Cream. And I think that’s a pretty good compromise.

Do you want more boozy St. Patrick’s Day themed desserts? Then check out my Guinness Popsicles with Irish Cream Soaked Brownies!

Cheers,

Liz

Baileys Chocolate Mousse with Whiskey Caramel Sauce and Whipped Cream

Serves 4

Baileys Chocolate Mousse with Whiskey Caramel Sauce and Whipped Cream

Ingredients

  • For the Baileys Chocolate Mousse
  • 6 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons Baileys Irish Cream
  • 4 tsp. sugar
  • 2 egg whites

  • For the Whiskey Caramel Sauce
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons room temperature butter, cubed
  • 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons Irish whiskey
  • Sea salt

  • For the Whiskey Whipped Cream
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon sugar (granulated or powdered will both work)
  • 1 tablespoon Irish whiskey

Instructions

  1. Make the mousse. Add the chopped chocolate and vanilla extract to your blender. Bring the water to a boil. Add the Baileys and sugar to the hot water, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Pour this hot liquid mixture over the chocolate in your blender and let it sit for about 30-60 seconds, partially melting the chocolate. Cover and blend on high for 30 seconds. Add the egg whites and blend again on high for about 60 seconds. Divide the mousse into four small serving containers, making sure the containers are big enough that there is room at the top for the caramel sauce and the whipped cream. Cover and refrigerate until the mousse set up, at least 2 hours or up to overnight.
  2. While the mousse is setting, make the caramel sauce. Spread the sugar in the bottom of a heavy-bottom saucepan. Pour the water over the sugar and swirl the pan gently to moisten the sugar evenly with the water. Heat over medium-high heat. Allow the mixture to cook without stirring. It will bubble quite vigorously. If it’s not cooking evenly, you can gently swirl the pan, but avoid stirring if possible. After 5-8 minutes, the mixture will turn a deep caramel color. Once it gets to this stage, quickly but carefully remove it from the heat. Whisk in the cubed butter. Then gradually whisk in the heavy whipping cream and whiskey until smooth. Stir in the sea salt, starting with just a pinch, adding in more as necessary to suit your taste preferences. Once the sauce has cooled slightly, it can be transferred to a small container and stored in your refrigerator for 2-3 weeks.
  3. Make the whipped cream. Place the bowl of your mixer and the whisk attachment in your freezer for about 5 minutes to chill. Remove them from the freezer, immediately add the heavy whipping cream and start whisking on high. Once the cream starts to thicken, add the sugar. Continue whisking until soft peaks form. Add the whiskey and whisk until combined. Whipped cream is best when it's used immediately, but it can be stored in the refrigerator for a couple hours if necessary.
  4. Finish assembling the desserts. Spread about 1-2 tablespoons of the whiskey caramel sauce (if the sauce has been refrigerated, you can microwave it briefly to soften it) on top of the set mousse. If you don't use all the caramel sauce, you can refrigerate it and save it for another use. Then divide the whipped cream evenly over top of the caramel sauce layer. Serve and enjoy!
http://www.floatingkitchen.net/baileys-chocolate-mousse-with-whiskey-caramel-sauce-and-whipped-cream/

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