Peppermint Bark Flourless Chocolate Cake

Peppermint Bark Flourless Chocolate Cake


As I was perusing… I love the word perusing… I also love the words Beijing, Machu Picchu, Monkey and Pretoria.ย  What? Why are you looking at me that way? I like words. I’m a blogger. It stands to reason that words would make me happy. They’re my life, man! My livelihood! My reason for living!

Sorry. I’m done now.

Erhmmm, as I was perusing the blog the other day, I noticed that it had been 12, I’ll type that again as a word…(I like words. have I mentioned that?) TWELVE, posts since I had done anything chocolate. And even then, it wasn’t pure chocolate. It was cookies that merely involved chocolate chips. Not that that’s a bad thing. But it’s not the type of chocolate that makes one swoon. It’s not the type of chocolate that leaves you gasping for breath and thinking that you never want to eat chocolate again.ย Or for at least an hour. It’s not the type of chocolate that has you planning secret hideaways into the closet, leaving your six year old naked, shivering and waiting for his bath as you whisper sweet nothings to the chocolate.

This isn’t just me, is it?

Sorry. I’m done now. Maybe.

This is pure chocolate overload… pure chocolate nirvana…pure chocolate…

Sorry.

This is yummy. I have made a flourless chocolate cake before here on the blog and I won’t tell you that this is miles away from that one in preparation and baking. This one is, however, gussied up for Christmas. It looks like a huge round of peppermint bark. And rather tastes like it too. It’s dense, fudgy, outrageously rich and decadent (this uses a pound each of chocolate and butter, after all) and totally over the top delicious. You can’t eat but a sliver of this at a time (closet hideaways notwithstanding) so it goes a long way, making it perfect for a party. Make this at Christmas and Santa will bring you diamond rings, houses, BMW’s, your own pool boy named Juan. Ok, maybe not.

You know the drill…. ๐Ÿ™‚

Love you!

Mrs. Cupcake

Peppermint Bark Flourless Chocolate Cake

  • 16 ounces good quality semi sweet or dark (not too dark or the cake will be bitter) chocolate, chopped
  • 1 pound unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 9 eggs (yes, nine)
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons peppermint extract
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup crushed peppermint candy (candy canes work great)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 10 inch springform pan (you can get this size at Wal mart) and set the pan on a baking sheet. This is in case of any leakage.
  2. In a medium saucepan, combine the chocolate, butter, sugar, salt and cream. Cook over low heat, stirring frequently, to melt the chocolate and butter. Make sure to stir it all up and get this nice and smooth.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, vanilla and peppermint extract. Slowly whisk in half of the chocolate mixture. Again, slow is the key so you don’t scramble the eggs. You want to slowly temper them. Return the egg mixture to the chocolate mixture, stirring to combine.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake at 350 for about 45 to 55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let the cake cool in the pan for about 2 hours, then refrigerate it for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight. When the cake comes out of the oven, it will look puffy, then will fall and sink. This is what it’s supposed to do, so don’t panic and think you did something wrong.
  5. In a small bowl, combine the white chocolate and cream. Microwave for 35 seconds on high, then stir. It should be melted. If not. put it back in for about 5 seconds. Drizzle the white chocolate over the cake, then sprinkle with the crushed peppermint.
  6. Cut into thin slices to serve. It’s easiest cut with a knife run under hot water, then wiped dry.

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It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas??? Somewhere.

Peppermint Bark Chocolate Chip Cookies

But that somewhere is so not here in Kentucky. We have, thus far, been having an annoyingly mild holiday season. Thanksgiving day it was close to 60 degrees. Today, as I baked Christmas cookies, it got up OVER 60. Tomorrow, which according to my calendar is supposed to be December 3rd, is supposed to be almost 70 degrees. W…T….H…??? At this rate, Santa is going to be coming here by surf board. Ok, I live in a landlocked state… maybe convertible would be better. Whatever. You get my point. It’s too darn warm for December! I want snow! I want a reason to light a fire! I want to have a reason to complain about being cold!

You all have my permission to remind me of this post when I’m whining about being cold, by the way.

Anyway, I’ve started my yearly Christmas cookie baking. Ever since my now grown and married kids were little, that has meant that I make approximately 352 dozen cookies. The kids aren’t allowed any until Christmas day (well, Christmas eve nowadays) whereupon we all eat cookies until we are ill and then I spend the next week or so foisting them off on unsuspecting strangers. “Hi… I don’t know you and I’m sorry to interrupt you while the paramedics are wheeling you into the ER gushing blood from several arteries but here… have 3 dozen gingersnaps. You’ll love them after you recover from surgery!”

I remember the year I was working about 70 hours a week as an assistant banquet manager for a hotel. Baking became an….interesting…proposition. I had one day off before Christmas. I used that day and made FIFTEEN different types of cookies so as to not disappoint my kids. Yes, yes I AM insane… why do you ask?

Ahhhh, good times… good times. Or something like that.

Today I made my version of Peppermint Bark in a cookie. I swear… I love that stuff. So putting the flavors in a cookie was a natural extension. I know I could have bought those pre crushed bags of the Ghirardelli’s peppermint bark but what would be the fun in THAT? Twas much more interesting to use all the separate components and do it that way. PLUS, the added bonus is that you get far more chocolate in it my way.

So go buy the ingredients. Unless of course you’re like me and always have somewhere in the vicinity of 1200 bags of different baking chips in the house at any given time. Then go hunt through them and get what you need. These are a little bit chewy, a little bit rock and roll. Sorry; I was channeling Donny Osmond. These are a bit chewy, a bit gooey from the chocolate and then you have those awesome crispy bites when you get some of the crushed candy canes. Bottom line? These are oh so yummy!

One thing? Line your cookie sheets with a silicone mat. Trust me. The candy leaks and prying melted candy cane off a cookie sheet is a pain in the arse. This makes a large batch of cookies. The dough freezes well so you could make your dough now and then freeze it, thaw it, pop it into the oven a bit closer to Christmas.

Peppermint Bark Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • 4 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups unsalted butter, room temp
  • 1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 small (3.4 ounces) boxes instant vanilla pudding mix (I actually used one French vanilla and one cheesecake flavored)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons peppermint extract
  • 1 bag dark chocolate chips
  • 1 bag white chocolate chips
  • 16 regular sized candy canes, crushed (the kind that come in boxes of 12) (also, crush in a bag. Using the food processor causes them to get just hot enough to get sticky and lump up)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line your cookie sheet(s) with a silicone mat.
  2. In a bowl, mix together the flour, salt and baking soda.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the butter and sugars. Cream until light and fluffy(ish)
  4. Beat in the pudding mixes, then the eggs, vanilla and peppermint extract.
  5. Using a wooden spoon, mix in the flour mixture.
  6. Pour in the chocolate chips, white chips and crushed candy canes. Mix well. Cuss me out cause your arms are getting really tired about now.
  7. Drop the cookie dough by spoonfuls onto the prepared sheet(s).
  8. Bake for about 12 minutes or until they are a light golden brown. If you prefer your cookies crispier, give them about another minute or 2 in the oven.
  9. Let cool on a wire rack, then eat them until you feel ill. Thank me later.

 

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I’ve Been Told I’m An Airhead

That must be why I like nice airy souffles so much. Wait. Does that mean I’m a cannibal if I eat one? Ehhh, who cares; they’re tasty (wonders suddenly if I was a member of the Donner Party in a past life).

Once upon a time, I wouldn’t eat souffles. I also wouldn’t eat sushi, anything with Acai Berries, Quinoa or any sort of thing touted as an ancient grain,. Nor would I touch Risotto, anything “Blackened” (unless I accidentally burned it) Avocados, Organic Foods, bottled water, artisan anything or anything bought at the “it” store of any given moment. I had/have a thing about being trendy.

Ok, really, I have this slight quirk when it comes to being non-conformist. Fine! I admit it! I really really hate to follow the crowds. I think it comes from being that “bully target” when I was a kid. If I wasn’t good enough then, I’m sure as hell not changing and being like everyone else just to fit in NOW. ๐Ÿ˜› That stupidly extended to what I would eat.

Yeah. I need therapy.

I have however gotten to the point of eating most of those things. I still tend to roll my eyes at organic simply because I’m too cynical for my own good and don’t believe that 1) the vast majority of organic/clean foods are any better for you (unless you raise them yourself) than other foods and a lot of studies agree with that idea and 2) I’m not rich. Plus, unless it is in a California roll piece of sushi, I still don’t care for avocados. Nor will I buy 99.9% of anything labeled artisanย  simply because I hate snooty foods lol and that I’m not rich thing again ๐Ÿ˜›

I have learned to love souffles. Sweet, savory, whatever, I’ll try them. I admit to a fondness for the sweet ones though. Whoda thunk it huh?

I have always loved the chocolate mint combo. I have mentioned that on a number of blogs recently because it tis the season for that combination right now. However, even there, I have to be different. It’s a sickness; I swear. I need rehab. Or chocolate. Whichever.

So I didn’t make mine with milk or dark chocolate (or the real stuff as my friend Bel would say. According to her, white chocolate isn’t real ๐Ÿ˜› ). I made it with white chocolate. But being me, I had to mess with it even more. So I added that nice minty Christmas mint flavor by adding some Peppermint Schnapps.

This turned out really really good. I was kind of tickled with myself to be honest. It would be a perfect fit on Christmas or just whenever you want a treat. So try this one. I insist. Or I’ll make you eat raw liver. This is a change up from a white chocolate souffle recipe I found at thatsmyhome.com

White Chocolate & Peppermint Schnapps Souffle

  • 5 large eggs, room temp & separated
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar (USE this… it helps stabilize the egg whites which is important in souffles)
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar (no, that’s not a typo)
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 3/4 cup whole milk (or just mix a little cream into lighter milk. Just use milk with some fat. It helps add richness and height)
  • 4 tablespoons peppermint schnapps
  • 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 8 ounces good quality white chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 crushed candy canes
  1. In a microwave safe bowl, combine the white chocolate, cream. 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract, 2 tablespoons of the schnapps and butter. Microwave in one minute increments, stirring after each, until melted. Set aside.
  2. In a medium heavy bottomed sauce pan, beat the egg yolks with the 4 tablespoons sugar. Add the flour and beat just until blended.
  3. Slowly beat in the milk & 2 tablespoons of the schnapps.
  4. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is thick. Don’t boil. Do NOT get bored and walk away. You’ll regret it. Please don’t ask how I know this.
  5. Cool the egg mixture until it is barely warm. Stir the white chocolate mixture into it.
  6. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Butter and sugar 4 individual souffle dishes.
  7. In a VERY clean preferably glass, bowl (make sure it is squeaky clean or your whites won’t rise), beat your egg whites with the cream of tartar until foamy. Add in the 1 tablespoon sugar. Beat until stiff.
  8. Pour the egg and chocolate mixture into a large clean bowl. Fold the beaten whites into the yolk mixture; about half at a time. Make sure no white streaks remain.
  9. Bake at 375 for about 35 minutes or until they are puffy, set and lightly browned. They can move but they shouldn’t jiggle. The center should look dry. Use just your oven light to check them because it doesn’t take much in the way of cool air to deflate a souffle.
  10. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the crushed candy canes. Serve immediately. Souffles wait for no one. ๐Ÿ˜€