Chocolate Pots de Creme

The name sounds fancy, but we're essentially making a cross between a pudding and a mousse.  And don't worry, I have a plan for your leftover egg whites after using just the yolks in this dessert.
How beautiful is that scene?!  Copper measuring cups, oranges ready to be zested, yolks accounted for, and the milk and cream base ready to be heated.  And we haven't even gotten the chocolate in the picture yet! 

We're also making candied blood oranges.  It's another component to the dessert, but another one that's mostly hands off.  I chose not to add an orange flavor to the chocolate itself, so that if chocolate and orange isn't your thing, you can just remove the candied orange and be happy.  So yes, I zested those oranges pictured above, and then didn't end up using it.  But the oranges themselves were used in a delicious citrus salad, so still a win.
I made these for my family for Valentine's Day.  My mom instilled in us that it's a day to celebrate love, whether that's with family, friends, a partner, or all of the above!  We had a wonderful dinner together, with these to top off the meal.  So basically we were each too full to finish a whole ramekin ourselves, and should have split them but whatever.
My candied blood oranges were made the evening before Valentine's Day, and the pots de creme, and chocolate cookies pictured above were made two days before, since it was a Sunday and I had some time.
Here's everyone excited for Valentine's Day!  We were also celebrating Grammie's birthday.  She would have been 97, and it was our first Valentine's Day after she passed away.  I hope our celebration was a fitting tribute to her legacy of love and family.  (And poor Cole had a fever and was a trooper to make it through the meal with us, but he immediately collapsed on the couch afterwards.  You can see the rest of the family was more energetic.)

Chocolate Pots de Creme (adapted slightly from Tasting Table)

serves 5

Note: I increased this recipe by 33%, so that I could have enough individual ramekins for everyone.  I know that sounds random, but it meant I used 2 cups of both milks and 8 egg yolks, so the math was less intense than you think it was (and 13 ounces chocolate, 2/3 cup sugar, and 1 1/3 teaspoon salt, just FYI).  I ended up with 8 healthy portions (didn't photograph the two others that were in mis-matched bowls), but after the large meal we had, I could have left this recipe as is and just had a little less in each ramekin or used smaller bowls.

For the Chocolate Pots de Creme:
½ cups (10 ounces) bittersweet chocolate (chips, or roughly broken up bars)
1½ cups whole milk
1½ cups heavy cream
½ cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
6 egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Place the chocolate in a blender or large food processor and set aside. In a medium saucepan, bring the milk and cream to a simmer over medium heat.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the sugar, salt, and egg yolks until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is thick and pale yellow (this can also be done with the whisk attachment and using a stand mixer). Add the vanilla extract and whisk to incorporate. Temper the egg mixture by whisking continuously while slowly drizzling in 1 cup of the heated milk mixture, then add it all back into the pot with the rest of the milk. Continue cooking the mixture, stirring constantly, until the mixture has slightly thickened so that it coats the back of a wooden spoon, about 5 to 6 minutes.

Pour the hot custard over the chocolate in your blender or food processor, letting it melt the chocolate for a minute or so, and then blend until smooth. Divide the mixture between (5) 8-ounce ramekins.  You can smooth the tops with an offset spatula, or by lightly banging them on the counter :-)  Refrigerate until chilled and set, at least 2 hours.

Candied Blood Oranges:
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup water
1 blood orange, sliced ⅛ inch thick

Preheat the oven to 250° and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.

In a medium saucepan, add the sugar and water over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and stir until the sugar dissolves, 1 to 2 minutes.

Add the blood orange slices and reduce the heat to a simmer; cook until the slices are translucent, 8 to 10 minutes. You may need to shift the slices around in the pan occasionally to make sure each one has been cooked enough. Using a slotted spoon to transfer the slices in a single layer to the prepared baking sheet. Bake in the preheated oven until dried and crisp, 50 minutes to 1 hour. Let cool completely. You can store these in tupperware until ready to be used, up to 3 days, but remember to still cool completely before storing.

To assemble:
Add a spoonful of whipped cream, whipped mascarpone, or creme fraiche to the top, and stick a candied orange in.

Popular Posts