06 September 2011

Chocolate, Recipes and A Baking Challenge!

My husband absolutely loves good food!  But not only ordinary good food. No, he loves strong tasting good food, like the PERFECT espresso, real Indian curry and chillies and real organic cacao/chocolate.  Since God designed me with the purpose to be my husband’s helpmeet, it is my passion to educate myself in becoming The Helpmeet of his dreams!  That is why I absolutely love books!  Reading is my doorway to become everything I want to be, right here where God intended me to be - in the centre of my home!
Needless to say books are the ultimate gift to me.  My husband knows it too and since he loves good food, he has surprised me countless times with an Out-of-the-ordinary cookbook! This past weekend while we visited Exclusive books (our most favourite place to browse around), he spoiled me with yet another cookbook, Willie’s Chocolate Factory Cookbook!  

The whole first half of the book is the story and memories of Willie Saludos’ years of travel, seeking his purpose in life, pursuing the finest cacao beans in the world, his cacao farming and building his own Chocolate Factory. 

All inseparable elements of his life with cacao. 

The second half of the book is Recipes!  Willie suggests you place a bar of top quality cacao alongside the salt, pepper, chillies and garlic by the side of your oven!  After reading through only a few of his recipes, I’m convinced to do that! Willie does warn his readers that some of the recipes will come as a surprise and it sure surprised me! 

Next time your children don’t want to eat their Spaghetti Bolognese, add 50 g finely grated 100% cacao with the tomatoes, stock/broth, bay leaves, oregano and thyme.

Or what about Chicken Breasts stuffed with Red Pepper and Cacao, to really impress your guests and make them wonder for days to come what gave that different taste. 

Sure is different, isn’t? 
But the best part is the recipes on Cakes, Puddings & Other Sweet Stuff!  Recipes like Cloud Forest Chocolate Cake, Heavenly Cheesecake with finely grated cacao,

Chocolate Pecan Tart, Tiramisu, Baked Apples with finely grated cacao, Blackberry and Apple Cacao Crumble, or just a plain, silky smooth chocolate sauce!   
I just had to try out a recipe the same day and decided to bake an all-time classic: A dynamite gooey pudding in portions that you don’t have to share. :-)

It’s so easy to make, it is even a gluten-free recipe, since it doesn’t ask for flour!  When it starts to split on the top it’s ready and needs to be served straight from the oven!  (Be warned it can leave you on a caffeine high, and you most probably will not be able to fall asleep easily if you have it as pudding after dinner - I did)

So here it is:
Gooey Chocolate Puddings
(makes 6-8)
180g cacao, finely grated
200 unsalted butter
175g caster sugar (I used organic brown Rapandura sugar, and it worked perfect)
6 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract (or natural vanilla seeds)
40 g ground almonds

Preheat the oven to 160 degrees C (fan).  Grease 6-8 ramekins.
Melt the cacao and butter by placing them, along with 60g of the sugar, in a large heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water.

Meanwhile, lightly beat the eggs in a bowl and add the remaining sugar and vanilla extract.
Stir the ground almonds into the melted cacao and butter mixture.

Gradually fold the egg mixture into the cacao mixture. 

Divide the mixture between the ramekins and bake for 12-15 minutes. 

The tops will rise and start splitting then they are ready. 

Serve at once.  
Willie’s Tip:  Try adding dried fruit soaked in alcohol (such as apricots in brandy or raisins in rum) for an adult twist.
Many of you might know that my daughter Heidi-Mari started a Fortnightly Baking Fun Challenge a few months ago. 

She is enjoying every minute in planning, preparing, baking for and hosting this challenge. Her current challenge is Desserts and Puddings and since she loves books too (what did you expect with a Mother and Dad who love books), she is now giving away a Recipe book as prize for the Best Voted Recipe under this theme, Desserts and Puddings! 

The prize is The Australian Women’s Weekly Recipe book: Delicious Desserts - With 70 Delicious recipes! 

The Australian Women's Weekly Cookbooks are some of the world's most successful cookbooks, filled with old traditional recipes. 

You have two weeks to enter this fortnightly baking fun challenge, which will run till Monday the 19th of September until noon!
CJ, the sweet tooth in my home, gave the book one look and asked me to enter the challenge, so he can stand a change to have more of the desserts in this little book!  So here I am, entering Heidi-Mari’s Fortnightly Baking Fun Challenge, on behalf of CJ :-)
But I want to challenge all my Blog Friends to enter too!  I once read, “A pudding is the perfect end to a great meal!”  Some of us will remember at least one childhood incidence where pudding were the bribing method our parents used to get us to finish our dinner.  I have to admit at more than one occasion I used pudding to motivate my children to be good at the meal table and finish their food!  When was the last time you prepared a nice pudding or dessert to bless your family?  And while you at it, enter it through your blog or via e-mail into Heidi-Mari’s Fortnightly Baking Fun Challenge and stand a change to win this excellent little book filled with easy-make-it-do-dessert recipes! Heidi-Mari will ship this little book to anywhere in the world!
Be sure to go back to Heidi-Mari’s blog after the 19th of September to vote for your favourite Dessert and Pudding Recipe and get your family and friends to vote too!
I hope you have a creative week in the Kitchen, filled with good, tasty, nutritious food!
With love


Heidi-Mari said...

Dear Mother
This Gooey Chocolate pudding was SO nice!
I love individual puddings.
Thank you SO much for joining my Fortnightly Baking Fun Challenge!
Loads of love

Trudie said...

I love Willie's recipes and I especially love his cacao bars! I only have one left after a huge sale at Woolies and I'm really careful not to use it too much! These puds look amazing, must give them a try with my leftover bar.

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