A Chocolate Recipe with a Little Flair for Valentine’s Day

I interrupt all this talk about Cupcakes and Las Vegas, although I NEED to go there one more time!

Valentine’s Day is Friday!  

birdsvalentine002

Treat your sweetheart or other special ones to some chocolate decadence.

I’ll be sharing some “flair” to use with all sorts of Valentine treats too.

I made this decadent flourless Chocolate Truffle Cake over the weekend to share with my daughter and chocoholic son-in-law.

021014 single dessert on plate

Here are the Love Birds…

lovebirds red vintage

These newlyweds just took their honeymoon last month.

Sharon Gary sitting at sweetheart table

 It seemed only fitting that I make it for them, especially since Mr. Hungry could care less if I made it for Valentine’s Day or any day.  In fact, his favorite dessert would likely be no dessert at all {boo/hiss}, but he’s particularly not enamored with chocolate.  So sad but true.

I copied this recipe from a friend years ago and it’s been made many times over the years:

Flourless Chocolate Truffle Torte

Flourless Chocolate Truffle Cake

It’s been sitting inside the back of a cookbook for ages.  Don’t worry – I’ll clean it up a bit for you.

My recipes are not in a state of respectable organization.  I was never able to corral them into a neat little metal file box.  I’ve spent years ripping them out of magazines and stuffing them into grocery bags & boxes that have been hanging around wayyy too long.  I’m ready to ditch every one if it’s not an Old Faithful.

One thing I will say, one tip, one thing I’ve always done, is to write notes all over my recipes like this one.  I do this in all my cookbooks too.  Many a time I’ve been quite thankful for them.

My cookbook and recipe collecting has taken on a whole new life with {PINTEREST}

pinterest-logoHow about you? Ohh how I love the limitless supply of recipes at my fingertips…the search-ability…the organization.  It’s addictively fun and ever-so useful.  If you don’t have a Pinterest account, you might want to check out mine {here} and see what the hoopla is all about.  These days, if I’m not making an old favorite, Pinterest is the first place I go. And not just for recipes either.  It’s become “my Google” for decor, holidays, DIY and more.  If you had a Pinterest account you could Pin this post onto your Food board and it would forever link back here through a photo.  No need to waste paper or spend time copying.  It’s easy to get the hang of it.

Here’s a look at the finished product:

four desserts

The “flair” I speak of is something to elevate the ordinary.  Something that says “you’re special”, such as the hearts on these plates.  You could totally leave it out, but it’s pretty simple. And wouldn’t your honey be impressed?

I was feeling lazy about putting the sauce into a squeeze bottle, so I just painted it onto the plates with a silicone basting brush.

‘sgoodenough

Another option is to take a spoon and place drops of sauce around the edge of the plate…like this:

021014 dots of rasp on plate

 Then with a knife or a chopstick or whatever, drag through the dots.  Use it to fill them out a little to make them more heart-like…

021014 little hearts

 You know it’s cute.

You could put just about anything on that plate for Valentine’s Day…a scoop or slice of ice cream with a few berries, brownies – baked or bought (& even cut into heart shapes).  It could be the garnish on individual plates of salad served with raspberry vinaigrette or chicken with a raspberry glaze.

For more on a sweet garnish, I’ve found that the easier way to grate a bar of chocolate is to place it in the microwave for just a few seconds.  Like ten.  Then run the edge of the bar over your cheese grater, like this:

021014 grating chocolate

And no, this isn’t an ad for Hershey’s chocolate.  It’s what I happen to have and it works just fine.

To make this very simple raspberry sauce, I defrosted a 12 oz bag of frozen raspberries.  I put the whole thing in the blender & blended it till smooth.  Well, it wasn’t totally smooth because it was filled with raspberry seeds.  So I put the pureed raspberries into a mesh strainer over a bowl and used the back of a spoon to press the smooth sauce through.

021014 berries in blender torte in torte in background

021014 rasp into strainer

021014 rasp sauce and seeds

Add some sugar if it seems tart for you.  If you’re serving it along with something real sweet (like this), you may want to go very light.

You won’t need much sauce to garnish a few plates.  Save the rest to make a vinaigrette or throw into a Smoothie.

A couple of quick tips…you’ll need a Springform pan. I used one that was 9″.  It’s the kind that enables you to take the sides off the pan when done, with a clamp on it like this:

021014 springform pan buckle

 And take your eggs out of the refrigerator first thing so that they come to room temperature.

So here’s the recipe for you and there are only THREE ingredients in the chocolate layer.

Flourless Choclate Truffle Cake:

1 lb semi-sweet chocolate, broken into pieces

10 Tbsp Unsalted Butter, cubed

5 Eggs, separated

2 C. Whipping or Heavy Cream, Whipped (sweeten if desired)

Optional: Chocolate shavings, Raspberry Sauce and Fresh Raspberries for Garnish.

021014 choc & butter wrapped

Place chocolate pieces and butter in a microwave-safe bowl.

021014 choc and butter chunks

Microwaves will vary.  It only took two minutes (on high) to melt the two ingredients together.

After one minute it looked like this:

021014 choc and butter bef stir

 And so after the first stir it looked like this:

021014 stirred @ 1 min

 By the end of the second minute in the microwave it could be stirred easily until smooth and glossy:

021014 stirred @ 2 minutes

Alternatively, if you don’t want to use a microwave, you can melt the butter and chocolate together in a double boiler set over simmering water on top of the stove.

Allow this to cool for about 15 minutes.  Stir it ocassionally to hasten cooling.

Use this time to pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees, and prep your remaining ingredients or garnishes.

Separate your eggs carefully.  You don’t want to get any yolk in the whites or they won’t beat up fluffy and firm.  You might find it helpful to break & separate each egg into a cup before adding it to the bowl in case you don’t get one quite right.

021014 eggs separated

 Beat the yolks together till smooth.

Then, with super clean beaters, whip the egg whites till stiff.

021014 beating eggwhites

They start out looking very frothy.  You need to keep going until you can lift the beaters & see firm peaks that don’t lose their shape.

Once the chocolate mixture has cooled slightly, add about a third of the beaten yolks and stir to combine.

021014 swirling in yolks Add the remaining yolks and again, stir to combine.

Now, take just a portion – about a half cup or so – of the stiffly beaten egg whites and FOLD it into the chocolate mixture.

021014 first blob of egg white in

The trick here is to add the whites gradually.  Gently fold and turn the mixture with a spatula to combine it.  If you added it all at once and stirred like a normal batter, you’d deflate all that air you just whipped into the whites.  This is what’s going to help it rise.

Once combined well, spoon it into the greased Springform pan (I sprayed it with cooking spray).

Bake the torte for a mere 12 minutes!

021014 torte just out of oven

Allow it to cool completely on a rack. The cake will fall significantly as it cools.  This is normal.

Next, whip the 2 cups of cream.  It’s up to you whether you sweeten the cream with a little sugar.  I did not.

While still in the pan, spread all of the whipped cream onto the cooled base.

021014 whipped cream on top in pan

Place it into the refrigerator for at least a half hour before cutting, and up to several hours ahead.  Heck, it’s even fine the next day.

When ready to serve, carefully remove the sides of the pan by releasing the clamp.  Your plates should be garnished with the raspberry sauce first if you’re using it (totally optional).

021014 four hearts only on plates

Cut into wedges and lay them right on top of the sauce.

021014 dessert cut still in pan

021014 four desserts on platesSprinkle with a little grated chocolate if you want.  Fresh raspberries are a nice touch too.

So there you have it.

I hope I’ve inspired you to take your Valentines’ dessert to a new level – whatever it may be – with a little flair.

Wishing you Love. ~donna

6 thoughts on “A Chocolate Recipe with a Little Flair for Valentine’s Day

  1. Yum, yum!!! That looks like Shelley’s recipe….yours has been well used and shows its age by the bargain prices in the margin. Finished product is gorgeous with the Donna flair. Happy Valentine’s Day to you and Mr. XXOO Kathy D

    Like

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