Avocado-Chocolate Mousse

Avocado-Chocolate Mousse - Recipe via bakeforcoffee.com

Avocado. Chocolate. Mousse. Yes, you heard me right! I’m sure you are wondering, how on earth avocados mixed with a little chocolate, along with a few other ingredients, could possibly turn into a rich, sweet, chocolatey mousse. Trust me, I was VERY skeptical myself while flipping through Giada de Laurentiis new book Giada’s Feel Good Food, and seeing this recipe. I love avocados, I love chocolate, and I love mousse! I’m not sure I love them all together, because, well, I had never tried chocolate mousse made with avocados before. Skeptical or not, I had to give it a try. I was intrigued!

I made this mousse, chilled it for about 5 hours, and then taste tested it. (The recipe calls for chilling about 3 hours before serving). The texture was creamy and smooth and perfectly moussey! The flavor however… I couldn’t pin it. I wasn’t sure if it was the agave, the avocado after taste, or what? Something was just… off.  I covered up the bowl of mousse and put it back in the fridge, figuring I would have to find some other use for it. I also then had my answer, chocolate mousse made with avocados… no dice.

The next night, Ben and I went to dinner with my mother-in-law and  some wonderful out of town friends of ours. I was telling them about this recipe and how it was just… bleh. A little while after returning home from dinner, I had an intense sweet tooth attack. I don’t know about you, but this occurs often in my household! 😉  So I decided to give the avocado-chocolate mousse another chance. Who knows, maybe my taste buds had been off the day before?

LOW AND BEHOLD, I spooned a tiny bit right out of the bowl, tasting it hesitantly, then tasting a little more, then a little more, and could not believe how much I LOVED it! It tasted completely different than the day before. It was so creamy and smooth, chocolatey-rich, with no weird after taste. It was so good, I could hardly tell it was made with avocados. What a complete difference by  storing/chilling overnight, giving it at least a full day and a half for the ingredients to marinate and bring out the rich, chocolate flavor that was over powering whatever I had been tasting the previous day.  Since I am so pleased with the way it ended up tasting and turning out, I feel it is approved to  sharing it with you!

This Avocado-Chocolate Mousse is a great alternative to a full dairy-rich mousse. It’s also vegan and gluten-free!

Avocado-Chocolate Mousse Recipe via bakeforcoffee.comStart by heating your chocolate chips over a double broiler of barely simmering water over low heat.

Avocado-Chocolate Mousse Recipe via bakeforcoffee.comUsing a heat-proof spatula, stir until the chocolate is melted and looks smooth (no clumps). Once smooth, remove from heat, set aside.

Avocado-Chocolate Mousse Recipe via bakeforcoffee.comIn a mini food processor, blend avocados until smooth and creamy. Pour avocado in a bowl.

Avocado-Chocolate Mousse Recipe via bakeforcoffee.comIn the bowl with the avocado, combine the melted chocolate, sifted cocoa powder, agave, vanilla, sea salt, and almond milk. Blend together until creamy and smooth. (I used the beaters on my hand mixer – low setting).

Avocado-Chocolate Mousse via bakeforcoffee.comCover bowl with a lid, and store in your refrigerator for at least a day and a half before serving.

Avocado-Chocolate Mousse Recipe via bakeforcoffee.comAfter being chilled, the mousse will have thickened up, making it easy to pipe pretty swirls in your dish! Or, if you don’t care about the pretty swirls, you can just spoon the mousse into your dish. Or, just eat it right out of the bowl… I won’t tell anyone 😉  I topped the mousse with candy raspberries (real raspberries would have been ideal, but didn’t have any on hand). Or you can top with whatever you like, such as blackberries, strawberries, mini chocolate chips, almond slivers, no topping at all… you get the idea.

Avocado-Chocolate Mousse Recipe via bakeforcoffee.com

Avocado-Chocolate Mousse

Recipe

*Serves 6 in small bowls (makes about 2 1/2-3 measuring cups)

Ingredients

1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

4 large, ripe avocados, chopped

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted

1/2 cup light agave nectar

1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (if the almond milk or coconut milk you are using is sweetened, omit the 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract)

1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

1/3 cup unsweetened almond milk or coconut milk

Garnish- raspberries, strawberries, blackberries, slivered almonds, etc.

Instructions

  • Put the chocolate chips in a pan over a double broiler lightly simmering water on low heat. (If you don’t have an actual double broiler pan set, you can make a double broiler by heating a small pot of water to just simmering on low heat and putting a heat-proof bowl with the chocolate chips over that pot of simmering water).
  • Using a heat-proof spatula, stir the chocolate chips until melted and smooth (no clumps). Remove from heat. Set aside.
  • In a mini food processor, blend the avocados until creamy and smooth. Pour into a separate bowl.
  • In the bowl of avocados, combine the melted chocolate, sifted cocoa powder, agave, vanilla, sea salt, and almond milk until smooth.
  • Cover bowl, and refrigerate mousse for at least a day and a half before serving.
  • When chilled and ready to serve, pipe or spoon the mousse into bowls.
  • Add your garnish and serve!

Enjoy!

Recipe from Giada’s Feel Good Food

Chocolate Tartlet w/ Dulce de Leche Drizzle

Chocolate Tartlet Recipe - bakeforcoffee.com

Hello my friends! Today I am sharing with you, Chocolate Tartlets with Graham Cracker Crust, topped with Dulce de Leche drizzle. These are rich and smooth, and I think a hot cup of coffee would compliment this dessert very well. Actually, a hot cup of coffee would compliment anything well in my opinion! 😉  The mini tart pans I used are only 4.75″ diameter, perfect for individual servings.

What actually inspired this dessert, was a jar of Dulce de Leche spread. I was browsing the aisles of Home Goods (I love that store!), and I swear, this jar of Dulce de Leche was staring me down. As I stared back at it, my brain was having flashes of all the sweets and desserts that I could make using this jar of caramely, creamy, wonderfulness. So I snatched it up, paid for it, and brought it home with me.

Chocolate Tartlet  - bakeforcoffee.comIt took everything in me to not open this jar and just dive right in with a spoon. Instead, I put it in my baking cabinet (yes I said “baking cabinet”, in which I have two or three baking cabinets – don’t get me started).  So because this jar was burning a whole in my cabinet, I finally put it to use… GOOD use! The Dulce de Leche drizzle was a perfect finishing touch to this chocolate tartlet!

Begin by preheating your oven to 325°F. Grease your tart pans with non-stick spray. Set aside.

Chocolate Tartlet - bakeforcoffee.comIn a bowl, stir the graham cracker crumbs, granulated sugar, and cinnamon together. Add the melted butter and stir until combined and all ingredients are evenly moistened. I used a small spatula. Then scoop a few Tablespoons of the graham cracker mixture into each tart pan. I ended up using about 4 heaping Tablespoons in each pan. Make sure the bottom and sides of the tart pan are evenly covered with the graham cracker crust mixture. Since the tart pans are so tiny, I put them on a baking sheet for ease of taking them in and out of the oven.  Bake the crust for about 7 minutes. The crust is ready when they start to turn golden brown. Remove from oven and cool completely.

Chocolate Tart - bakeforcoffee.comNext, in a saucepan over medium-low heat, bring the milk, cream, and sugar to boil while stirring occasionally. After boiling/stirring for about a minute, take the saucepan off the heat and whisk in the chocolate until smooth. In a separate bowl, lightly beat the eggs together. Now it’s time to temper the eggs to ensure we don’t cook the them when added to the milk/chocolate mixture. We temper the eggs by pouring about a 1/4 cup – 1/2 cup of the milk/chocolate mixture from the saucepan into the bowl with the eggs, whisking vigorously about 8 seconds or so. Pour the egg mixture back into the saucepan with the milk/chocolate mixture, add the vanilla extract and cinnamon and whisk until combined and smooth. Pour the chocolate mixture into the crust-filled tart pans, and bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes. At about 12 minutes, check to see how wobbly the center is. The tart is ready to remove from oven when the liquid has become solid yet the middle will jiggle ever so slightly. It will come out dark and glossy. If you see cracking, the tart is over baked.

Chocolate Tartlet - bakeforcoffee.comThese are ready to serve at room temperature, or after being chilled in the refrigerator. However you prefer. Make sure the chocolate tarts have cooled to at least room temp before drizzling the Dulce de Leche on top. I made the drizzles by warming the Dulce de Leche spread for 10-20 seconds in the microwave, cutting a tiny hole in the corner of a ziplock bag, and going drizzle crazy! The tarts can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days if you are not serving them immediately. I suggest adding the Dulce de Leche right before serving.

Chocolate Tartlet - bakeforcoffee.comGently push the bottom of the pan upwards while holding onto the sides of the pan. The tart will release easily from the pan while the crust holds it’s shape. The crust can be a bit fine and crumbly, so once the pan is removed, handle with care!

Chocolate Tartlet - bakeforcoffee.com Room temp and ready to serve! Oh and don’t forget to make some coffee! After the first bite, you will wish you were enjoying this while sipping coffee!

Chocolate Tartlets w/ Graham Cracker Crust & Dulce de Leche Drizzle

Recipe

*Makes 4-5 tartlets

Ingredients:

Graham Cracker Crust

2 cups Graham cracker crumbs

2 Tablespoons granulated sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Chocolate Filling

*This makes more filling than you will actually use. I suggest making extra crust by halving the crust recipe above, which will give you two more tartlets.

3/4 cups plus 2 Tablespoons whole milk

2 cups heavy cream

3 1/2 Tablespoons granulated sugar

12 1/2 ounces dark chocolate, coarsely chopped OR semi-sweet chocolate chips

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease tart pans with non-stick spray. Set tart pans on a baking sheet. Set aside.
  • In a bowl, stir the graham cracker crumbs, granulated sugar, and cinnamon together. Add the melted butter and stir until combined and all ingredients are evenly moistened.
  • Scoop a few Tablespoons of the graham cracker mixture into each tart pan. I used about 4 heaping Tablespoons in each pan. Make sure the bottom and sides of the tart pan are evenly covered with the graham cracker crust mixture.
  • Bake the crust for about 7-8 minutes. The crust is ready when they start to turn golden brown. Remove from oven and cool completely.
  • In a saucepan over medium-low heat, bring the milk, cream, and sugar to boil while stirring occasionally. After boiling/stirring for about a minute, take the saucepan off the heat and whisk in the chocolate until smooth.
  • In a separate bowl, lightly beat the eggs together. Pour about a 1/4 cup – 1/2 cup of the milk/chocolate mixture from the saucepan into the bowl with the eggs, whisking vigorously about 10 seconds or so. Pour the egg mixture back into the saucepan with the milk/chocolate mixture, add the vanilla extract and cinnamon and whisk until combined and smooth.
  • Pour the chocolate mixture into the crust-filled tart pan, and slide into the oven for 12-15 minutes. Chocolate should look solid but the center should wobble ever so slightly.
  • Remove tarts from oven and allow to cool completely.
  • Serve at room temperature, or after being chilled in the refrigerator.
  • Warm the Dulce de Leche spread for 10-20 seconds in the microwave.  Cut a tiny hole in the corner of a ziplock bag, pour in warmed Dulce de Leche and drizzle on top of the tartlets.
  • The tarts can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days if you are not serving them immediately. I suggest adding the Dulce de Leche right before serving.

Enjoy!

Chocolate filling recipe slightly adapted from Cook with Jamie

Chocolate-Pumpkin Cupcakes w/ Pumpkin Swiss Meringue Buttercream

chocolate12

Today, we are celebrating my husband, Ben’s birthday!  What better reason than to make cupcakes!

icing

I won’t turn this post into a long, mushy, confess my deepest feelings for my husband sort of post. I do however, want to take a minute to tell you, that not only is Ben my best friend, my teammate, the absolute love of my life, etc., my list is endless, but he has been the biggest supporter in the creation of this blog. Ben is the most patient person I know. I just want to express, how grateful I am to him, and for all of his help and support with getting this blog up and running. He has encouraged me to get my voice out there, which has turned my inspiration switch on to a whole new level. So Ben, if you are reading this, thank you for everything my love!

For this recipe, I did not do a lineup of ingredients, as you may have seen I’ve done in previous posts. The cake itself calls for so many ingredients, that I figure you would get the list in the recipe list of ingredients down below anyway. I eventually want to keep the posts consistent in appearance, so you can come here and know what to expect, but for now, while I am finding my groove, you might see different styles of blog posts.

chocolate7In a large bowl, beat the sour cream, eggs, vegetable oil and vanilla extract until well combined.

chocolate3Add the pumpkin and sugars to the same bowl and stir until combined.

chocolate5Stir in flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon until combined. The batter will be VERY thick. Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full of batter, bake 20-22 minutes.

chocolate2Real life. I swear I must use every spatula, spoon, measuring cup I own every time! I secretly love these kind of messes 😉

chocolate9Let cool in muffin tin about 5 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely. While cupcakes are cooling, is a good time to prepare your buttercream!

chocolate4When buttercream is ready (see directions below), pipe onto your cupcakes however you like! I used a medium-large round piping tip, but you can use any tip, as Swiss meringue buttercream is a very piping-friendly frosting as I like to call it. Meaning it holds it’s shape very well. You can also snip the corner of a ziplock bag to achieve a similar look as the round tip.

chocolate8The buttercream…. ooooh the buttercream! Might be one of my new favorite flavors!

chocolate13Time to celebrate! Let’s light those candles and party! Happy birthday my amazing husband! I love you!

Chocolate-Pumpkin Cupcakes w/ Pumpkin Swiss Meringue Buttercream

Makes 16-18 cupcakes

Recipe:

Cupcakes

1/2 cup light sour cream

1/4 cup vegetable oil

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup pumpkin puree (such as Libby’s canned pumpkin)

1 cup granulated sugar

1/4 cup packed light brown sugar

1 & 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 cup cocoa powder (not dutch processed) – I used Ghirardelli Natural Unsweetened Cocoa

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Buttercream

5 egg whites

1 & 1/4 cup granulated sugar

1 & 1/2 cups unsalted butter (3 sticks), almost room temp but still slightly cool

1/2 cup pumpkin puree

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon pumpkin spice bakery emulsion

pinch of salt

*It is important to have a candy thermometer on hand when making this buttercream to ensure your egg whites reach an edible/safe temperature.

Directions:

Cupcakes

  • Preheat oven to 350° and put 16-18 cupcake liners in muffin tins.
  • In a large mixing bowl, beat the sour cream, vegetable oil, eggs and vanilla with an electric mixer on low until combined.
  • In same bowl, stir in pumpkin, granulated sugar and brown sugar until combined.
  • Stir in flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon until well combined.
  • Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full of batter. Bake for 20-22 minutes or until inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  • Let cool in muffin tin for 5 minutes, then transfer cupcakes to a cooling rack until completely cool.

Buttercream

  • Cut your butter into cubes, set aside.
  • Make a double boiler with either a heat safe bowl or a stand mixer bowl over a pot of simmering water. Add egg whites and granulated sugar, whisking constantly but gently, until sugar has completely dissolved and your candy thermometer reaches between 150° and 160°.
  • With the whisk attachment of a stand mixer, whip the meringue on high speed for about ten minutes until the meringue is thick and glossy. The bottom of the bowl should feel neutral, not warm. If your meringue is ready, but the bowl feels a bit warm still, place your bowl of meringue in the freezer for about 2 minutes.
  • With the paddle attachment, and mixer on low speed, add the butter cubes one at a time until incorporated. Once all the butter cubes are added, mix on medium speed until you have achieved a silky, smooth texture. If you see curdles, don’t panic, just keep mixing until it looks smooth.
  • On low speed, add vanilla extract, pumpkin spice emulsion, salt, then the pumpkin puree and continue beating on low speed until well combined.
  • Fill your piping bag with your choice of piping tip and pipe those cupcakes!

Enjoy!

Cake recipe adapted from Picky Palate