Monday, December 30, 2013

cheese and chocolate

Are these your two favorite things to eat? 
me too.
If you are anything like me, you are itching to kick off the new year with whole foods and clean eating after gorging yourself over the past few I right?
So since you have one more day in December, hurry to the store and get yourself some cheese and chocolate to send off 2013 with a bang. 

We love cheese. 
One of my very favorite Christmas traditions we have in our family is our cheese plate for lunch on Christmas eve. 
It's so easy to put together--there are so many combinations of fruit and cheese--I'd love to hear your favorites.
Cheese Plate

-Goat Chevre rolled in fresh herbs
-Spanish Manchego 
-1000 day Gouda

-peach jam
-cranberry sauce (I use THIS recipe)

-toasted baguette 

Let's move on to dessert. 
With whipped mascarpone cream. 
Fallen Chocolate Cake
recipe from Epicurious
the only thing I changed about this recipe was adding 1tsp pure vanilla to the mascarpone cream.
I topped it with pomegranate to add a little color for Christmas, and I can't wait until fresh raspberries this summer--they would go perfect with this cake. 
It's excellent warmed and then topped with the cream.

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 1" pieces, plus more, room temperature, for pan
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, divided, plus more for pan
10 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate (61%-72% cacao), coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
6 large eggs
2 tablespoons natural unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup chilled heavy cream
1/2 cup mascarpone
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Special equipment:
A 9"-diameter springform pan


For cake: 
Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly butter springform pan and dust with sugar, tapping out any excess.
Combine chocolate, oil, and 1/2 cup butter in a large heatproof bowl. Set over a saucepan of simmering water and heat, stirring often, until melted. Remove bowl from saucepan.
Separate 4 eggs, placing whites and yolks in separate medium bowls. Add cocoa powder, vanilla, salt, 1/4 cup sugar, and remaining 2 eggs to bowl with yolks and whisk until mixture is smooth. Gradually whisk yolk mixture into chocolate mixture, blending well.
Using an electric mixer on high speed, beat egg whites until frothy. With mixer running, gradually beat in 1/2 cup sugar; beat until firm peaks form.
Gently fold egg whites into chocolate mixture in 2 additions, folding just until incorporated between additions. Scrape batter into prepared pan; smooth top and sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons sugar.
Bake until top is puffed and starting to crack and cake is pulling away from edge of pan, 35-45 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cake cool completely in pan (cake will collapse in the center and crack further as it cools). DO AHEAD: Cake can be made 1 day ahead. Cover in pan and store airtight at room temperature.
For topping:
Using an electric mixer on mediumhigh speed, beat cream, mascarpone,  vanilla, and powdered sugar in a medium bowl until soft peaks form.
Remove sides of springform pan from cake. Mound whipped cream mixture in center of cake.

Enjoy your cheese and chocolate.....I promise to be back in 2014 with lots of juice, running, and good-for-you-things.

Happy Happy New Year! 


Lindsey Jaye Parry said...

Your cheese platter needs some red pepper jelly. So. Good.

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