Posts Tagged ‘hot chocolate mix’

I’m still having a blast with  my new food processor!

Here’s our lime and almond cake, which Pete has now declared to be the best non-chocolate cake I’ve ever made, baked in a Wilton Queen of Hearts bundt pan.  The icing was decorated with lime zest…

We were off to the markets and needed something quick and easy to feed the stall holders, so I tried baking a very basic chocolate pound cake in a roasting tray to see if we could turn it into a slab cake.  It worked a treat!  We took some to the markets and our sons demolished the rest while we were out…

This simple and unpretentious chocolate cake is made special by its icing. I love that the pound cake recipe is so easy that I can make them from memory – even when I mess about with the ingredients!  The instructions are here

  • 250g (8oz) unsalted butter
  • 185g (6oz) self-raising flour
  • 65g (2oz) sifted Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • 250g (8oz) castor (superfine) sugar
  • 4 large (59g) free range eggs

The batter was baked in a 23cm x 33cm (9″ x 13″) parchment lined pan in a preheated 160C (320F) fan-forced oven for 30 minutes, then topped with icing while still warm and popped into the fridge to set.  Allow the cake to come back to room temperature before serving.  To make the icing, stir and melt the following ingredients together in a double boiler..

  • 100g (33/4oz) dark chocolate callets, or finely chopped chocolate
  • 100g (33/4oz) unsalted butter
  • 100g (33/4oz) icing sugar, sifted (it’s important to sift, or you’ll get lumpy icing)
  • 60ml (¼ cup) milk

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Making hot chocolate mix in the old food processor used to be hard work, but our new Magimix blitzed it up in record time.  I made two kilos (a double batch) using our favourite recipe

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A dollar’s worth of dried chick peas was turned into a large vat of Syrian hommus.  We ate a little of it for lunch, with pita bread and grilled eggplant…

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And finally, using the small bowl and blade of the Magimix, I turned the last of our cayenne chillies…

…and a few of the bishops’ crown chillies…

…plus a handful of spearmint…

…into a small jar of harissa. I’ve been smearing it on toast for breakfast!

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Oh, to be fifteen again.  Yesterday I had this conversation with Timothy:

“Hey Celia, I’m glad you rang. I’ve just asked dad to take me to your house!”

“Have you, Tim?  That’s nice, why are you coming over?”

“Well, firstly because we’ve run out of hot chocolate, but also because I wanted to see you guys…”

It was delivered with so much charm and genuine affection that there was nothing I could do but get up early this morning to make him an extra-large batch (they’re on their way over now – the Boy Wonder can’t cope without his daily fix).

We’ve been making this recipe for years and Small Man has a mug every night before bed.  Inspired by an old Epicurious recipe, we make it with a mix of Belgian chocolate and Dutch cocoa, which is extravagant but oh-so-worth it. Because it includes finely ground chocolate rather than just cocoa, you’ll need to either heat the milk in a small saucepan and whisk the mix in, or buy a little whizzy gadget for a few dollars to ensure that it dissolves properly.  Trust me, it’s worth the extra effort!

Callebaut chocolate is our “house” brand and works particularly well because it comes in callet form, which makes the grinding process a lot easier. Whichever chocolate you choose to use, please hunt out the best you can afford – there isn’t a lot to this mix, so you really can taste every ingredient.

  • 2 cups white sugar (granulated)
  • ½ vanilla bean – scrape the seeds out (optional)
  • 12oz (340g) Callebaut 56% dark (semisweet) chocolate (sometimes I’ll use some 70% in this mix as well)
  • 4oz (115g) Callebaut milk chocolate
  • 1 cup Dutch process unsweetened cocoa powder (we use Callebaut, but apparently Droste is very good as well)

1. In the bowl of a really large food processor, grind the dark and milk chocolates until finely ground (do this by pulsing the processor in short bursts – you don’t want to melt the chocolate).

2. Add white sugar, cocoa powder and the scraped out vanilla seeds (if using) and process some more.  If your machine is too small, you can tip the chocolate into a large mixing bowl and stir the other ingredients in with a whisk.

The original recipe specified ¼ to 1/3 cup of mix to each cup of milk, but we use much less than that – about two heaped dessertspoons per cup.

Using the quantities above, you’ll end up with just over a kilo (about 21/4 lb) of hot chocolate mix.  It makes a fantastic Christmas present!

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