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Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Spring is here! Chocolates

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Banana and Chocolate Spring Rolls

Ingredients:

4 large spring or egg roll wrappers (approximately 9 inches [22.5 cm] square)

4 small or 2 large bananas, cut in half crosswise

½ cup (125 ml) grated semi-sweet chocolate

2 tbsp. (25 ml) crystallized ginger cut into thin slivers (optional)

1 tsp. (5 ml) cornstarch dissolved in 1 tsp. (5 ml) water

2 cups (500 ml) vegetable oil

2 tsp. (10 ml) icing sugar

Directions:

Lay the spring roll wrapper flat with one corner facing you; put banana across bottom third and sprinkle with one-quarter of the chocolate and ginger if desired. Roll up, tightly tucking in the sides, and seal with the cornstarch mixture (make sure there are no leaks in the wrapping). Repeat for each banana.

In wok or deep saucepan, heat oil to 350° F (180° C). Cook spring rolls until golden and crispy, turning once, about 90 seconds. Drain on paper towels. Serve warm or at room temperature, sprinkled with sifted icing sugar. Serve alone or with ice cream, whipped cream, or coconut custard cream .

Variation:

Try adding ½ cup (125 ml) chopped nuts or 1 ½ tbsp. (20 ml) toasted sesame seeds.

Yield : Serves 4

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Black Forest Trifle

Ingredients:

1 (8-ounce) package chocolate sugar-free, low-fat cake mix (such as Sweet 'N Low)

3/4 cup water

1 (1-ounce) package chocolate sugar-free, fat-free instant pudding mix

2 cups fat-free milk

1 (16-ounce) package frozen no-sugar-added pitted cherries

2 or 3 drops of red food coloring

2 cups fat-free frozen whipped topping, thawed

Sugar-free chocolate curls (optional)

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 375°.

Prepare cake mix according to package directions, using 3/4 cup water. Let cake cool in pan; remove from pan, and cut into cubes.

Prepare pudding mix according to package directions, using 2 cups fat-free milk; chill at least 30 minutes.

Thaw cherries, reserving 1/4 cup juice. Combine cherries, juice, and food coloring.

Place half of cake cubes in a 3-quart trifle bowl. Spoon half of cherries over cake; spread 1 cup pudding over cherries, and top with half of whipped topping. Repeat layers. Garnish with chocolate curls, if desired (chocolate curls not included in analysis). Cover and chill at least 8 hours.

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Chocolate Daisy

How cute is that!! :)

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Chocolate Chip Cheesecake

Ingredients:

Crust:

1 1/2 cups (about 15) crushed chocolate sandwich cookies

2 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted

2 cups (12-ounce package) Nestlé Toll House Semi-Sweet

Chocolate Morsels, divided

Filling:

2 packages (8 ounces each) Neufchâtel cream cheese, softened

1/4 cup Splenda Sugar Blend for Baking

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

2 large eggs

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

3/4 cup Nestlé Carnation Evaporated Low-fat 2% Milk

1/2 cup sour cream

Preparation:

For Crust: Preheat oven to 300°F.

Combine cookie crumbs with butter in medium bowl until moistened; press onto bottom of ungreased 9-inch springform pan. Sprinkle with 1 cup morsels.

For Filling: Beat cream cheese, sugar blend and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until smooth. Beat in eggs and flour. Gradually beat in evaporated milk and sour cream. Pour over crust. Sprinkle with remaining morsels.

Bake 25 minutes. Cover loosely with aluminum foil. Bake additional 25 to 30 minutes or until edge is set but center still moves slightly. Place in refrigerator immediately; refrigerate 2 hours or until firm. Remove side of springform pan.

Makes 12 to 14 servings

Note: Cheesecake may be baked in 13 x 9-inch pan. Prepare as above. Bake in preheated 300°F oven 20 minutes. Cover loosely with aluminum foil and bake additional 20 to 30 minutes.

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Brownie Bouquet

How sweet!

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Spring Chocolate Coconut Cookies

Ingredients:

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling out dough

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder, sifted

6 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped

1 cup heavy cream

1 teaspoon instant espresso powder

Gel-paste food coloring

2 cups sweetened shredded coconut

6 candy-coated chocolate eggs

Directions:

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper, and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine butter and sugar.

In a large bowl, combine flour, salt, and cocoa powder. Add flour mixture to butter mixture; mix on low speed just until a stiff dough forms, about 2 minutes. Transfer dough to a piece of plastic wrap, wrap tightly, and chill until firm, about 30 minutes.

Place chocolate, heavy cream, and espresso powder in a medium heatproof bowl. Place the bowl over a pan of gently simmering water, stirring occasionally, until chocolate has melted. Remove bowl from heat, and set the chocolate ganache aside to cool, stirring occasionally.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out chilled dough to a 1/4-inch thickness. Using a 2 1/4-inch-round cookie cutter, cut out 24 cookies; place them on lined baking sheets. Chill cookies until firm, about 20 minutes.

Bake cookies until set, about 14 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

For colored coconut, combine a few drops of food coloring with 3 tablespoons water in a medium bowl. Stir in coconut; mix until evenly colored. Spread on an ungreased baking sheet; bake just until dry, about 12 minutes, being careful not to brown. Let coconut cool; transfer to a small bowl.When the ganache has cooled to room temperature, whisk until it becomes stiff enough to pipe. Transfer ganache to a pastry bag fitted with a 3/8-inch-round tip, and pipe around perimeters of cookies. Dip each cookie, ganache-side down, into plain or colored coconut. Fill "nests" with candy-coated chocolate eggs, 2 or 3 eggs per nest.

Yield: Makes 2 dozen

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No matter how long the winter, spring is sure to follow. ~Proverb

image Happy Spring! image

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