Mamiverse Executive Chef Daisy Martinez’ appears on “Good Day New York” May 10th to provide viewers with a triple-delight of Mothers Day treats! Here are her exquisite recipes for you to enjoy: Chocolate Mousse with Cookie Crumbles, Cherry Cordial Bread Pudding, and Flourless Chocolate Chili Cake.
CHOCOLATE MOUSSE WITH COOKIE CRUMBLES/TIERRITA DULCE
These adorable desserts, which look like little potted flowers, are all the rage now in Puerto Rico. The “earth” is a rich chocolate mousse topped with dark chocolate cookie crumbs—an edible flower (or candy flower from a specialty baking store) poking out of the soil completes the illusion.
Makes 6 to 8 servings (depending on the size of the pots)
Prep Time: 45 minutes (plus 2 to 24 hours of chilling)
One 12-ounce bag bittersweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons dark rum
1 ½ tablespoons instant espresso powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
3 extra-large eggs, separated
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup heavy whipping cream
2 packages of Oreo Crisps chocolate cookies, crushed
6 to 8 edible flowers, with stems if possible or candy flowers from a bakery supply shop
- Mix chocolate chips, rum, espresso powder, vanilla, salt, and ½ cup water in a large heatproof bowl.
- Set over a pot of simmering water and whisk until melted.
- Set aside.
- In a separate bowl, using a hand mixer, beat the egg yolks with ½ cup of the sugar until pale yellow and fluffy and you can see the bottom of the bowl as you beat, about 2 minutes.
- Fold about 1/3 of the chocolate mixture into the yolks with a rubber spatula, then fold the egg mix into the chocolate remaining in the bowl.
- Set aside.
- Wash the beaters and bowl thoroughly and dry them.
- Beat the egg whites with the remaining ½ cup sugar until they hold soft peaks when the beaters are lifted from them.
- Fold 1/3 of the whites into the chocolate mixture with a rubber spatula.
- Once incorporated, fold the remaining whites into the chocolate mixture.
- In a clean bowl, beat the cream until it holds firm peaks.
- Fold the cream into the chocolate mixture one-third at a time using a rubber spatula.
- Divide the mousse among 8 food-safe flower pots (see Note) or dessert cups.
- Chill at least 2 hours or up to one day.
- Put the cookies in a heavy sealable plastic bag.
- Whack them with a rolling pin into coarse pieces, then roll until fine crumbs.
- Top each dish of mousse with crumbled chocolate cookies to resemble “soil”.
- Finish with edible flowers. Standing them straight up by inserting the stems into the mousse.
Food-safe pots are available in specialty bakeware shops and online at www.kingarthurflour.com.
CHERRY CORDIAL BREAD PUDDING
Bread puddings were always reserved for celebrations—not just in PR, but all around the Caribbean. That was certainly the case when I was growing up and watching abuela in the kitchen. (For extra-special occasions, we’d add a whole can of fruit cocktail to the mix!) This very simple recipe features a chocolate custard teamed up with two of chocolate’s long-time friends: cinnamon and cherries. It has all the appeal of one of those ‘cherry cordial’ candies (sweet cherry in a liqueur-flavored syrup encased in dark chocolate). Be sure to give the bread enough soaking time so the chocolaty custard penetrates all the way to the center of the bread cubes. (Break a bread cube open to check.)
Makes 12 generous servings.
1 tablespoon butter
One (10-inch) loaf challah bread, cut (crusts and all) into ¾-inch cubes (about 12 cups; see Notes)
6 cups heavy cream
12 large eggs
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons rum
1 (11 1/2-ounce) bag bittersweet chocolate chips
1 ½ cups semisweet chocolate chips
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup dried cherries (about 5 ounces)
1. Using the butter, grease an 9 x 13 inch baking dish.
2. Beat 2 cups of the cream with the eggs, sugar, and rum in a large bowl until smooth. Heat the remaining 4 cups of cream in a medium saucepan until the edges are bubbling. Remove from the heat, add the bittersweet and semisweet chocolates, let stand a minute, then whisk until smooth.
3. Slowly pour the chocolate cream into the cream-egg mixture, whisking continuously until the two are blended. Add the bread, turn gently to coat with the chocolate cream let stand until the bread soaks up as much of the cream mixture as it will, 30 to 45 minutes, depending on how stale your bread is.
4. While the bread is soaking, preheat the oven to 350 F.
5. Stir the cherries into the custard mix. Pour the pudding mixture into the prepared pan. Bake until the edges are set and the center jiggles a little when you wiggle the pan, 40 to 45 minutes. Let cool at least thirty minutes before serving warm or cool completely and serve at room temp. The pudding is best eaten before refrigeration.
Day-old bread is best for this. It will soak up more chocolaty cream and, as an added bonus, will be easier to cut into cubes.The bread pudding is best eaten warm or room temperature without ever having seen the inside of a refrigeratorRefrigerated bread pudding just won’t have that same creamy-custardy texture, but leftovers will still be quite delicious. If you would like to warm them, do so gently, wrapped in aluminum foil on a baking sheet in a 250 F oven.
FLOURLESS CHOCOLATE CHILI CAKE
Mayordomo chocolate is an Oaxacan specialty sold in many markets all over Mexico. Flavored with cinnamon, almonds, and/or vanilla, it is used throughout Oaxaca in hot chocolate, in desserts, and as a ingredient in one of Oaxaca’s famed “seven moles”. In addition to their chocolate, freshly made hot chocolate, and cocoa beans, the Mayordomo stores feature huge blocks of “mole”. Not the finished sauce but a highly seasoned sauce base made with spices, chocolate (of course!), and chiles. I discovered during my trip that Oaxacan cooks buy a chunk of this “mole” and use it to season the mole sauces the make at home.
After my return, I ran in to a premium ice cream brand’s take on the chocolate-chile theme: Mayan chocolate ice cream. Apparently the pairing of chocolate and chilies wasn’t just for savor dishes! So the wheels started turning and I decided to test out a flourless chocolate cake tinged with chile. Here are the results.
Makes 12 servings
1 cup brewed espresso
1 cup packed dark brown suar
3 cinnamon sticks
12 ounces (3 sticks) unsalted butter, cubed
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
12 ounce semisweet chocolate
4 ounces unsweetened chocolate
8 large eggs, beatenCinnamon ice cream and raspberries, for serving.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Prepare a 9-inch springform pan: Cut a circle of parchment paper the size of the removable bottom of the pan. Fit the parchment circle into the bottom of the pan. Tear off an 18-ich length of aluminum foil. Center the pan over the sheet of foil and crumple and crimp the foil tightly all around the sides of the pan. (The foil will prevent water from seeping into the pan during baking.) Set the pan aside.
- In a medium saucepan, bring the espresso, brown sugar, and cinnamon sticks to a simmer over very low heat. Turn the heat to the lowest setting and steep until the syrup is very fragrant, about 20 minutes. Remove the cinnamon sticks. Stir in the butter until melted and then stir in the cayenne pepper. Set aside.
- Pulse the chocolate in the food processor until coarsely chopped. Transfer to a deep bowl. Pour in the warm coffee syrup and whisk until the chocolate is completely melted. Whisk in the beaten eggs until completely blended.
- Scrape the batter into the prepared springform pan. Set the pan in a large, deep ovenproof skillet or a roasting pan and set on the oven rack. Pour in enough hot water to come halfway up the sides of the springform pan. Bake until the center is set and barely wiggles when you shake the cake pan gently, 50 to 60 minutes.
- Remove he cake from the water bath. Let the water bath cool before removing it from the oven. Let the cake cool to room temperature. Remove the foil and chill the cake in tis pan for at least 8 hours. Remove to room temperature about 30 minutes before serving. Run a wet knife around the sides of the pan, then pop the spring to release. Place a platter on top of the cake and flip the pan over. Remove the bottom of the pan, and peel off the parchment. (To cut near slices of the cake, dip the knife in hot water before and wipe it clean after cutting each slide.) Serve with cinnamon ice cream and raspberries.
These recipes were originally published in Daisy: Morning, Noon and Night and Daisy’s Holiday Cooking, ©2010 by Daisy Martinez; Photo by Frances Janisch (Atria Books, a division of Simon & Schuster, Inc.) and is available for purchase HERE.