Mar. 9th, 2010

thesoupfairy: (desserts)
Maka's Super-Simple Chocolate Mousse

This will seriously impress anybody to whom you serve it. Just be sure to make it up ahead of time so they'll never known it only took you 15 minutes!

Prep: 10-15 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients
  • One 4-oz good quality dark chocolate bar plus 1/8 of another, chopped/broken into smallish pieces

  • 14 oz heavy cream, divided

  • 1 large egg white

  • 1/4 cup superfine sugar*

  • 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1 tablespoon powdered sugar

  • Another 1/8 of a chocolate bar, grated, for garnish


Directions

Fill a large mixing bowl with enough ice water to float another mixing bowl in.

Heat 5 ounces of the cream in a small saucepan until almost simmering. Do not let it boil or it will curdle! Remove pan from heat and stir in the chocolate pieces until they melt and you have a smooth-looking chocolate sauce. Immediately scrape into mixing bowl and place in ice water to halt cooking. Add the remaining 5 ounces of cream and use your electric mixer to beat the chocolate until it is thick and creamy, forming soft peaks when you lift the beaters out of it.

Wash beaters and dry well. In another mixing bowl, beat the egg white until stiff peaks form. Add the superfine sugar slowly, about a tablespoon or so at a time. Around the time you add the last tablespoon, a glossy stiff meringue should be forming.

Fold the meringue very gently into the chocolate until well-mixed. Spoon into individual serving bowls or parfait dishes (or pipe in for even more elegance) and refrigerate.

Again clean and dry your beaters. Combine 1/2 cup heavy cream, 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract, and 1 tablespoon powdered sugar into a bowl. Beat with your electric mixer on high until you get nice stiff peaks (about 4-5 minutes).

Top individual servings of mousse with whipped cream and sprinkle with grated chocolate.

* If you don't have superfine sugar, you can run 1/4 cup of regular granulated sugar through your food processor until it is very finely ground.
thesoupfairy: (Default)
The Dulce De Leche was a last-minute addition born of my apparent NEED for it tonight. In fact, I very may well keep its creation all to myself and sneak in after everyone goes to bed, eating it directly from the can with a spoon :) If so, I will make it up to my family by making them a Quadruple Milk Cake later this week!

Magical Mystery Bread

Magical Mystery Bread


This is my most beloved and requested bread... as well as my easiest! Start off with this bread with the full 1/2 cup of sugar and no extras. After a while, switch it up a bit. Use less sugar and add some savory herbs. Throw in some oats or other grain. Experiment - it's pretty tough to go wrong with this one.

Prep: <5 minutes
Servings: 8

Ingredients
  • A little butter for the pan

  • 3 cups self-rising flour

  • 12 ounces dark beer

  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup sugar

  • herbs, seasonings, some grated cheese, etc. if you like


Directions

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Grease the entire inner surface of a standard-sized loaf pan with butter. (I keep the wrappers from my sticks of butter in a baggie in my fridge and just use the wrappers to grease pans with.)

Combine remaining ingredients in a mixing bowl, using a wooden spoon to mix them just enough to have the entire bowlful of dough equally moistened. Scrape dough all together in a ball and then turn dough into the loaf pan. Use your spoon or your hands (Warning! It's very sticky dough!) to press it evenly into the pan.

Moisten your fingers and palms with warm water and smooth the top of the loaf.

Place in the oven and bake for about 50-55 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Turn out of pan and cool on a wire rack for at least 30 minutes before slicing.




Fabulously Quick and Easy French Onion Soup

The first French Onion Soup recipe I ever made took about nine hours to prepare! This one is much, much quicker, but you and whoever you're feeding will love it just as much. We usually use sourdough or French bread for the crouton on the top, but tonight I'm using the Magical Mystery Bread for the first time. I'll let ya know how it goes.

Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes or so
Servings: 6-8

Ingredients
  • 1 stick of butter (or an equal amount of olive oil if you're vegan

  • 6 yellow onions, peeled and sliced thinly

  • 4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped

  • 6 cups stock (beef if you like, or vegetarian if you prefer)

  • 1/3 cup cooking sherry

  • salt and pepper to taste

  • sliced bread, about half an inch thick

  • Sliced cheese for melting on top (Provolone, Gruyere, Swiss, Mozzarella)


Directions

Melt butter in a heavy soup pot. Add the onions and sauté until they are translucent and soft, about 15 minutes. Stir occasionally. Add garlic about half-way through the onion cooking period.

French Onion Soup
French Onion Soup


Once the onions have cooked down, add the broth and sherry. Simmer for half an hour, then season with salt and pepper.

French Onion Soup
French Onion Soup


While the soup cooks, preheat the oven to 350°F. Toast the sliced bread on a baking sheet until it starts to turn golden, turning to toast both sides. Turn on the broiler and top each slice of toast with 1 or 2 slices of cheese (or an equivalent amount of grated cheese). Broil until cheese is bubbling and browning.

Float one of these crouton on the top of each serving of soup.

French Onion Soup



Dulce De Leche

Seriously amazing creamy caramel sauce. Some folks will tell you this is unsafe to make without piercing the top of the can, that your can will explode. The truth is that it's quite safe so long as you keep the level of the water well above the top of the can. Keep checking the water level throughout the cooking time and keep it at least an inch above the can.

Cook: 2 to 3-1/2 hours

Ingredients
  • one can sweetened condensed milk (Eagle Brand is fine, but i've not found one, even the store brand, that wasn't just as fabulous)


Directions

Remove the label from the can and place it in a large cooking pot. Add water to well higher than 1 inch above the top of the can. Bring to a boil, and continue boiling, adding water as needed to keep the level up.

Dulce De Leche


Boil two hours if you want a creamy sauce and 3-1/2 hours if you want a thick puddinglike consistency.

Allow can to cool slightly, then remove lid carefully. Serve over ice cream, as a dip for fresh fruit, and anywhere caramel seems like it would be tasty.

(A photo of the finished caramel will be up when it's done!)
thesoupfairy: (Default)
The Soup Fairy

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