December, 2006 Archive

Friday, December 22, 2006

hazelnut truffles

hazelnut truffles

I confess that I roll my eyes a bit at the overhearing of some new truffle recipe. I don’t mean to over-simplify them — yes, fabulous chocolatiers from time to time find new ways to flavor, construct or adorn these decadent orbs of Awesome — but it all simmers down to the same thing: they’re just firm ganache, and ganache is just melted chocolate mixed with cream.

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

parmesan black pepper biscotti

parmesan black pepper biscotti

Short and sweet today, like me after my morning latte — bah! If you are feeling positively sugared out but you still have days of office baked goods and well-intentioned gift bags to go, I offer up this antidote: parmesan black-pepper biscotti. Oh, it’s indulgent but in a way that is precisely 180-degrees from the half of the coconut lemon bar I did not just scarf down. (It was homemade! From scratch! I have principles, you know.) Bright and sharp, accented with mini ka-pows of black pepper, it pairs so well with red wine, eating it without may leave you with a distinct Chianti-tinged longing. Or it would if you’re a wino like me.

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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

marzipan

marzipan

Some people — like my husband who claims it “tastes like medicine,” — fail to see marzipan’s charms but you won’t find any of these misguided souls on my side of the family. My mother loves marzipan, and not those little food dye brushed animals and fruits; she does not wish to eat miniature sculptures, just rolls and rolls of marzipan swaddled in bittersweet chocolate.

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Monday, December 18, 2006

robert linxe’s chocolate tart

miniature chocolate tartlets

Over the years, I’ve made endless desserts for family gatherings: orange-chocolate bundt cakes, flourless chocolate cakes, chocolate caramel cheesecakes, bourbon-pumpkin cheesecakes, apple pies, peach pies, fruit crisps and crumbles, fresh fruit tarts, lemon bundts, but the only things that our families simply never shut up about in the days, months and years after are those that specialize in cocoa. Thus, for our Hanukah dinner I figured I’d cut out the middle men, so to speak — the flour, the baking powder, fruits and cheese — and just give people the big old pile of chocolate they want, namely in the form of Robert Linxe’s Chocolate Tart in Dorie Greenspan’s wonderful Paris Sweets.

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Sunday, December 17, 2006

short ribs bourguignon

short ribs bourguignon

Living in a 660 square foot apartment makes in impossible for us to host Thanksgiving dinner, which is too bad because you just know I’ve got that meal all planned out in my head, from the cornbread-chorizo stuffing to the turkey recipe and root vegetable gratin, ready and waiting for the day we get a dining room table! (Also, a dining room. Details.) We also can’t host the major Jewish holidays or but when we asked for the less-popular or significant Hanukah, we were deemed acceptable hosts so long as we don’t poison anyone, so for the second year now, we’ve run with it.

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