SEPTEMBER 1998
RECIPES


Chocolate Mint Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream

Brandy Alexander Milkshake

Triple Chocolate Cake



SweetSpot

 


Chocolate Pates

Tips: These are really just mixtures of chocolate and heavy cream that you use as a spread or a dip. You MUST use very high quality chocolate, because you'll really be able to tell the difference here. Suggestions for "go-withs"--fresh raspberries, seedless orange sections, fresh pineapple chunks, dried apricots, prunes, apples (try Braeburn, Fuji, Gala, or Jonathan), pears, graham crackers, any very plain and not-too-sweet cookie (I like the Petit Beurre biscuits marketed by Peek Freans), pretzels, potato chips, any mild and fresh cheese (mascarpone, fromage blanc, fresh ricotta). Experiment and see what you like. For a different dessert idea, serve one or more types of chocolate pate, a good dessert cheese or two, fruit, and wine. With the bittersweet pate, try an oak-aged Chardonnay or a late-harvest Johannisberg Riesling. With the semisweet, you might like a Pinot Noir or, again, the late-harvest Johannisberg Riesling. Any of the above-mentioned wines would probably work with the milk chocolate pate. The preceeding suggestions are courtesy of Mr. Joseph Maxian of the Sand Castle Winery (1-800-PA2-WINE or http://members.aol.com/winesand/index.html).
Additionally, I have heard that a semi-dry champagne goes nicely with any chocolate.

Bittersweet Pate:

  • 11 ozs. best-quality bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • Few grains salt
  • 1-1/3 c. + 1 Tbsp. heavy cream
  • Yield: Generous 2-1/3 cups
Yield: Generous 2-1/3 cups

Semisweet Pate:

  • 13 ozs. best-quality semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • Few grains salt
  • 1-1/4 c. heavy cream
Yield: About 2-1/3 cups

Milk Chocolate Pate:

  • 11 ozs. best-quality milk chocolate, finely chopped
  • 2 ozs. best-quality semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • Few grains salt
  • 3/4 c. + 3 Tbsp. heavy cream

Yield: About 2-1/4 cups

Technique for any of the above pates: Place finely chopped chocolate(s) and salt in medium heatproof bowl. In small heavy saucepan over low heat, heat cream, stirring occasionally, just until it comes to a simmer. Remove from heat. Add about 2/3 of hot cream to chocolate. Let stand for a minute or two, then stir or whisk very gently (do not beat) to melt. Gradually stir/whisk in remaining hot cream. If chocolate is not completely melted, place medium bowl over simmering water on low heat (water should not touch bottom of bowl); stir frequently until almost smooth. Remove from heat and hot water; stir until completely smooth. (Note: Milk chocolate can be stubborn about melting. If it refuses to melt smoothly even after you've placed it above the simmering water, place your mixture into a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process briefly, just until perfectly smooth.) Cool the pate briefly, then turn into a nonreactive metal or other container and chill at least six hours.

To serve, let stand at room temperature 15-30 minutes before serving. Stir well. If pate is too stiff to spread smoothly, add small additional amounts of hot cream, stirring each in thoroughly before adding the next. If you want to place the pate in a pretty crock or bowl to serve it, wait until it's warmed up and of spreading consistency before doing so. Refrigerate any leftovers.

Servings: Number of people served depends on what else is to be served with each pate. I should think, though, that 2 cups of any of these pates would serve 6-8 people, depending on what else you serve with them.


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