Thursday, November 22, 2007

Dark Chocolate Torte with Spiked Blackberry Coulis

This is such a chocolaty decadent desert that I doubt you can eat a whole slice:) It is rich and moist and dense and wonderful. And the coulis really makes this torte out of this world. And the best part is that it is so easy to make.

The original recipe is from Bon Appetit. But there are some small changes that I've made.

I use bittersweet chocolates instead of semisweet just because I like dark chocolate. If I used semisweet, I would use less sugar. I also substituted butter instead of margarine. So the recipe is how I like it; go ahead and change it if you want.

If you don't have or can't find blackberries you can use raspberries just as well for the coulis. I also suggest that you use this coulis with ice cream, it makes a great topping. I actually serve this torte with vanilla ice cream which complements it very nicely.

DARK CHOCOLATE TORTE WITH SPIKED BLACKBERRY COULIS

Ingredients:
2 2/3 cups bittersweet chocolate chips (16 ounces), divided
1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter, divided
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon instant espresso powder or instant coffee powder
5 large eggs
1 cup sugar
Spiked Blackberry Coulis(recipe follows)
Fresh mint sprigs Fresh blackberries (optional)

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Brush 9-inch-diameter spring-form pan with butter; line bottom with parchment. Stir 1 2/3 cups chocolate chips and 3/4 cup butter in medium saucepan over low heat until smooth. Whisk in cocoa and espresso. Cool 10 minutes.

Using electric mixer, beat eggs and sugar in large bowl on high speed until thick, about 6 minutes. Fold in chocolate mixture. Pour batter into prepared pan.

Bake torte until dry and cracked on top and tester inserted into center comes out with some moist batter attached, about 42 minutes. Cool in pan on rack 1 hour (center will fall). Using spatula, press raised edges so top is level. Cut around pan sides; remove sides. Place plate atop torte and invert onto plate. Remove pan bottom; peel off paper, and cool torte completely.

Stir remaining 1 cup (6 ounces) chocolate and 1/4 cup margarine in small saucepan over low heat until smooth (do not overheat). Whisk in 2 tablespoons blackberry coulis. Cool glaze 15 minutes. Pour glaze into center of torte. Smooth top with spatula, allowing some of glaze to drip down sides. Refrigerate uncovered until glaze is set, about 1 hour. (Can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and keep refrigerated.)

Cut torte into wedges; spoon coulis alongside. Garnish with mint and berries, if desired.

Makes 8 servings.


SPIKED BLACKBERRY COULIS

Ingredients:
1 1-pound bag frozen unsweetened blackberries, thawed
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons semi-dry white wine (such as Chenin Blanc)
6 tablespoons (about) sugar, divided
3 whole cloves
2 Turkish bay leaves
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon brandy (or more if you would like, I use 1 Tablespoon:) )

Directions:
Place berries, wine and 4 tablespoons sugar in blender; puree. Pour into medium saucepan. Add cloves, bay leaves, and allspice. Bring to simmer, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer 8 minutes.

Strain into medium bowl. Discard solids in strainer. Whisk in brandy; sweeten with remaining sugar, if desired. (Can be made 5 days ahead. Cover and chill. Rewhisk before using.)

Makes about 2 cups.

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