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Astar's chocolate recipes - 15 July


Wonderful ways with chocolate

Chocolate and beef

Sounds a very strange combination, but trust me it's beyond delicious&

Shopping list:

1kg rump or blade steak cut into thick hand sized pieces
Olive oil
1 large red onion, finely chopped
4 rashes of bacon, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
Salt and pepper to season
About 2 heaped tbsp of plain flour
6 - 8 sprigs of fresh thyme bound with a bit of string
2 fresh bay leaves
1 cup dry sherry
1lt beef stock
4'' stick cinnamon
1/2 block rich dark cooking chocolate - or more

Method:

Cooking time around 1 ý hours&

- Coat beef steaks in seasoned flour
- Into a large pot, heat a little oil, then add bacon and cook until golden.
- Cook off onion and garlic.
- Remove from pan and set aside.
- To pot, cook in batches, the beef and quickly brown on both sides.
- Add bacon, onion and garlic back to pot.
- Stir in sherry, then beef stock and stir to thicken.
- Add bay leaves and thyme along with cinnamon stick.
- Bring up to boil, then reduce to simmer for a good hour.
- In the final 1/2 hour of cooking add chocolate which has been broken into small squares.
- Give it a good stir to make sure it melts.
- Serve with lashing of mashed potatoes and seasonal greens.

 

Italian chocolate slice - yields around 30 thin slices

Shopping list:

70g each of slivered almonds, chopped macadamia nuts and chopped walnuts
1 1/2 cups mixed chopped fruit - figlets, pitted prunes, glace cherries raisins sultanas apricots
3/4 cup plain flour
2 large tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp cinnamon
75g each dark chocolate cut into pieces, chopped butter
1/4 cup each caster sugar and liquid honey
Tin foil to wrap and store
Icing sugar to dust
20cm shallow baking dish and baking paper to line

Method:

Preset oven to 180c

- Combine the nuts and dried fruits in a large bowl. 
- Sift in the flour, cocoa and cinnamon and stir until well mixed.
- Combine the chocolate, butter, sugar and honey in a small sauce pan over low heat.  Stir until melted and combined.
- Add to dry ingredients and stir to mix well.
- Spoon mix into prepared cake pan, smooth the surface and bake 50 minutes or until cake is firm to the touch in the centre.
- Wrap in foil and keep in a cool place. 
- This slice is best left a good couple of weeks before serving. 
- Dust with icing sugar before serving.

Little pots of chocolate - serves 4 - 6

This is my all time favourite dessert and a treat I give myself at least twice a year.

Shopping list:

100g dark chocolate
25g butter
2 eggs, separated
100g marshmallows
1 tbsp of strong black coffee or water

To decorate - chocolate flake or curls

Method:

- Put the chocolate, broken into small pieces into the top of a double saucepan or basin and melt over hot water
- Add the butter, egg yolks and the marshmallows and cook, stirring well until the marshmallows have melted and mixture is smooth and shiny.
- Add the coffee or water and stir well, then allow mixture to cool, but not SET.
- Whisk the egg whites until very stiff, fold into the chocolate mixture, and then put into 4 - 6 individual dishes.
- When quite cold top with chocolate flake or curls.


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