Chocolate Razzmatazz Martini

I thought it would be fun to kick-off the first Friday of the year with a dreamy dessert cocktail.



Gingerbread Ice Cream

Today I’m going to share with you part two of my holiday trifecta dessert, which consists of a Gingerbread Financier, topped with a subtle Gingerbread Ice Cream, and a Candy Cane shapped Tuile topped with Candided Goji berries.

We started this trifecta which I pictured in my previous post with Candied Goji Berry Topped Tuiles in the shape of Candy Canes.



Burnt Orange Panna Cotta

Some thoughts on burning…

Here are a few scenarios in which burning is not quite a good thing:

  • Getting called out for something you know you did wrong and didn’t want to admit. BURN!!!
  • Thinking you are getting a good deal, then come to realize you got burned.
  • Not wearing any sunscreen and end up with a terrible sunburn.

These on the other hand, I don’t mind in the least:

  • Burning a few calories during a workout or other activities.
  • Burning through a few gallons of gasoline on a nice drive.
  • Burning some wood in the fireplace.
  • The sun burning off the fog.
  • And last but not least… Burning a little orange zest to make this very yummy dessert, a very good thing!

Burnt Orange Panna Cotta

from The gourmet Cookbook

1 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin (from one 1/4-ounce envelope)
2 tablespoons whole milk
1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
3/4 cup sour cream
2 navel oranges

Lightly oil six 4-ounce molds or ramekins.

Sprinkle gelatin over milk in a small bowl and let stand for about 1 minute to soften.

Whisk together confectioners’ sugar, salt, and 1 cup heavy cream in another small bowl.

Heat granulated sugar in a dry small heavy saucepan over moderate heat, without stirring, until zest is fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Stir cream mixture and carefully add to caramel (it will bubble and harden). Cook over moderately low heat, strirring, until caramel is dissolved. Add gelatin mixture and remaining 1 teaspoon zest and stir until gelatin is dissolved.

Stir in orange juice, remove from heat, and let stand just until cooled to room temperature.

Pour caramel mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a medium bowl.

Beat remaining 1/2 cup heavy cream in a small bowl with an electric mixer until it just holds soft peaks.

Whisk sour cream in another small bowl until smooth. Fold whipped cream into sour cream, then fold into caramel mixture until well combined.

Spoon into molds and refrigerate, covered, until firm, at least 8 hours.

When ready to serve, dip molds into a bowl of hot water for about 30 seconds.

Then run a very thin flexible knife around the edge mold, while tilting mold so panna cotta pulls away from side.

Invert mold onto center of a dessert plate, holding mold and plate at a 45-degree angle so panna cotta slips out. let panna cotta stand at room temperature for 20 minutes.

Top your Panna Cotta with a drizzle of dark chocolate syrup, a couple of sections of orange and if you really want to go all out… how about sprinkling the tops with a few chocolate covered cacao nibs. Mmmm, mmmmm, mmmm!


Chocolate Cookies and Cream Birthday Cake

Leave it up to a 10 year 364 day year old boy to change his mind last minute… I should have known better.

A couple of weeks ago we had agreed on making a yummy S’mores Tart for the big day however, the night before his birthday, as soon as I got home from work he asked what kind of birthday cake I was going to make, to which I replied “I thought we were going to make a S’mores Tart since you like s’mores so much?”


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