Flourless Chocolate Cake w/ Berry Topping

Fourth of July is juuust around the corner, can you believe it?! Time to get your red, white, and blue on!

IMG_3489.jpg

 

I’ll be making the annual trip to our lake house for the holiday and I couldn’t be more excited about it. There are so many traditions and activities that I look forward to every single year. Picnics on the pontoon boat, swimming in the lake, reading on the hammock, bike rides through the woods, and of course the annual Independence Day festivities!

Last year my family officially took over the responsibility of hosting the bocce-ball-tournament/party for all the neighbors on our little lake. In preparation for this year, my mom enlisted everyone in the family to start brainstorming good, festive dishes we could serve. Obviously, my mind immediately drifted towards desserts.

IMG_3426.jpgIMG_3441.jpg

Here’s the thing. Flourless chocolate cake is…easy. You can make it ahead of time (it’s better that way, in my opinion!) And fun to dress up. And damn, is it good. Nobody asked for this information, but if you want to know my Official Ranking of The World’s Best Cakes, it’s this: 1st. Carrot cake. 2nd. Angel food cake. 3rd. My family’s poppyseed cake. 4th. Flourless chocolate cake. 5th. Cheesecake.

So, anyway, I figured a flourless chocolate cake that’s been dressed up with red, white, and blue toppings would be perfect. Viola! You’re welcome.

Flourless Chocolate Cake w/ Berry Topping

ingredients:

16 tbsp unsalted butter

12 oz high quality dark chocolate

5 eggs

1 + 1/4 cup white granulated sugar

raspberries and blueberries, for topping

powdered sugar, for topping/dusting

directions:

preheat oven to 350 F. grease a 100 inch cake pan with canola oil and then line it with parchment paper.

in a microwavable bowl, melt the chocolate and butter in 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until completely silky smooth.

in another bowl, whisk together the eggs and white granulated sugar.

add the egg mixture to the chocolate, whisking everything until well combined. pour the batter into the cake pan. bake for 75 minutes, or until a fork that’s been inserted into the very center of the cake comes out mostly clean (no obvious liquid batter).

remove the cake from the oven and let cool completely. i even chill mine in the freezer, so that when you remove it from the cake pan there is no chance that it breaks apart.

carefully remove the chilled cake from the pan. top with powdered sugar, then assorted berries, and again with a bit more powdered sugar. serve immediately, and enjoy!

IMG_3467.jpgIMG_3428.jpgIMG_3477.jpgIMG_3494.jpg

 

 

 

Valentine Themed Mini Crunch Hearts & Rose Chocolate Truffles

It’s Mark’s birthday! Let’s celebrate by talking about the Valentine’s Day treats I made for him, failed to send him, and then ate all by myself.

I know. I’m a real catch. 😉

IMG_2389-2.jpg

I had every intention of sending them. I really did. But the post office was closed for two days after I made them…and also they tasted so good. I didn’t want them to go bad, you guys!

Anyway, I just had to share them. Even if it’s past Valentine’s Day. Because they’re so so easy (7 total ingredients for both candies!) and too freakin’ cute.

IMG_2375-2.jpg

My best friend often makes fun of me because my favorite chocolate bar ever is a crunch bar. I guess it’s an unpopular opinion. But last year, on Valentine’s Day, Mark showed up with a bunch of roses & a whole bag of mini crunch bars. We ate them in bed while we watched tv and drank lattes, and I’ve never felt more understood.

Since we couldn’t be together this year, I thought it would be cute to send him homemade crunch bars in the shape of hearts. As a little reminder of that sweet memory of ours! Then I decided to add in the truffles, for a little bit of variety and some festive flare.

Valentine's Day Themed Chocolates

ingredients:

17 Oreo cookies

6 oz softened cream cheese

pinch of salt

1 cup dark chocolate chips

1 tablespoon coconut oil

dried edible rose petals

1/2 cup rice cereal

directions:

for the truffles

line a baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper

pulse the oreos in a food processor until they are a fine powder. add in the cream cheese and a pinch of salt and mix till combined.

scoop a tablespoon of the oreo-cream-cheese batter into your hand and roll it into a perfectly round ball. place the truffle on the baking sheet. repeat with the rest of the batter.

place the baking sheet in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to allow the truffles to harden.

in a microwaveable bowl, melt the chocolate and coconut oil in 20 second increments. after each 20 second run, pull the bowl from the microwave and give the chocolate a good stir.

once the chocolate is completely melted with no chunks present, pull the truffles out of the fridge. dunk each truffle in the chocolate bowl, coating it entirely. use a fork to remove the truffle from the bowl and allow the excess chocolate to drip back into the bowl. transfer the truffle back to the parchment paper.

once all the truffles are covered with chocolate, sprinkle the tops of with crumbled oreo cookies and flecks of rose petals. place the baking sheet back in the fridge for 1 more hour, so that the chocolate can fully harden.

for the crunch hearts

coat heart-shaped candy molds or ice trays with a little coconut oil. set aside for now.

use the leftover melted chocolate from the truffles (there’s no way you would have used it all! but if you did, just add more) and add the rice cereal. stir until all of the cereal is coated in chocolate.

carefully transfer the chocolate to the candy molds/ice trays. level off the tops using a knife.

place the chocolate molds in the freezer for at least 2 hours.

once hardened, pop the hearts out of the molds. freezing just makes them harder and easier to do this. you can store them in the fridge from here on out.

enjoy!

IMG_2395-2.jpg

 

Dark Chocolate Cookies

It’s me! I’m back!

Guys, if I could even tell you how much of a whirlwind my life has been since I moved from L.A. Both emotionally (moving is so, so hard on the psyche) and physically. Searching for an apartment (the first one was a no-go thanks to pests, let’s just say I’m lucky to have gotten out of it efficiently and with such a clean break) while working and getting used to a new and exhausting job has been something else. And trying to get used to my new city without technically residing in that city yet has proven to be difficult (can’t wait for the days when I can actually start my real life here!) I was able to enjoy a whole 9 days at my family’s lake house with my family and Mark, which was easily the highlight of the summer, but on the whole I feel like a chicken with its head cut off. Suffice it to say, I wasn’t finding a lot of time to be in the kitchen. That ends now!

Kicking off, dark chocolate cookies! Simple and delicious. I don’t do a lot of cookies, mostly because I always eat the batter before anything even makes it into the oven. But these had a greater purpose in the form of ice cream sandwiches, which we’ll get to later.

IMG_9355-2

I also got a cookie scoop and how have I gone so long without one of these?! Oh, because I don’t do a lot of cookies. Right. But the thing made scooping out uniform dough balls so frickin’ easy so I’d highly recommend you get one if you do lots of cookie recipes. I got mine from Sur la Table. I get everything from Sur la Table 🙂

Dark Chocolate Cookies (yields 16 cookies)

4 oz (1 stick) salted butter, room temperature

1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

1 egg

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/3 cup extra dark cocoa powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 350 F.

In a bowl fitted with a stand mixer, cream together the brown sugar and the butter until mixture is light and airy. Then add the egg and vanilla extract and mix until well combined.

In another medium bowl, mix together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Add these dry ingredients to the bowl with the butter mixture and stir until combined.

Do everything you can to not devour the dough. Scoop 1-inch spheres onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Leave 2 inches of space between cookies! Bake for 10-15 minutes, then let cool completely on a cooling rack.

IMG_9384.jpg