Friday, October 21, 2005

Chocolate Butter Creams

It was a fairly forgettable week for cooking, mostly because I was so busy at work I only had one night where I attempted anything dramatic. I made a Pakistani chicken curry and potato-spinach patties, but both turned out to be forgettable and therefore not worth reporting. (I was checking out some sample recipes from a new Indian cookbook, but I probably won't buy it since Julie Sahni's Classic Indian Cooking, along with a few books by Madhur Jaffrey already have me covered...)

Which brings me to the week's one culinary success: butter creams. My mother often made these. She said her favorite way to spend her birthday as a child was to get to eat butter creams all day and read comic books. These are decadent and impressive, rich dark chocolate coating a creamy, buttery center-- it's like making your own chocolates and will impress everyone, though it's not at all difficult. The only drawback is that they stick to the plate, and I haven't figured out a way around that-- I tried putting these on a plate coated with Pam, but to no avail. They have to be pried up with a sharp knife, or if you take them out of the refrigerator for a few minutes, they usually are soft enough to pull off more easily. But they are worth it.

Chocolate Butter Creams

1/2 cup butter (one stick), slightly softened
4 cups sifted powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 Tblsp. Condensed milk
Semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate-- a couple ounces

Cream butter using electric mixer, sift powdered sugar gradually into it, incorporating little by little. Add vanilla, mix everything well and form into balls by rolling in the palm of your hand. Place in the refrigerator on a plate for one hour to harden.

I then took a bar of Ghiradelli's semisweet baking chocolate and melted it over low heat with a couple squares of unsweetened baking chocolate (the bitter contrast is nice with the sweetness of the interior). Once melted, I took out the butter cream balls and used cooking tongs to quickly dip and coat each ball with chocolate, removing and placing on perhaps a greased cookie sheet. Cover and return to refrigerator to chill for another half hour or so, then eat and enjoy, or serve to guests. Decadent.


Jon (was) in Michigan said...

Ahh, those do look good! Totally bad for me ofcourse. :)

The sticking problem is exactly the same as you would see for dipping truffles. Try putting them on wax paper, they should come up easily.

And don't use Pam when you make them because she would just eat them all herself.

Mia Goddess said...

Hey Rachel! So, I made the Afghani chicken, and you were so right ~ easy and delicious! I'll totally make it again, no question.

I just have a "tip" type of question... is there some trick to getting the rice to NOT stick to the non-stick dutch oven??? About 1/3 of the rice was inedible because it was stuck on there...

Rachel said...

Thanks for the tip, Jon. I need to use wax paper! I should have thought of that... Mia, the trick, I think, is to keep adding broth if things start to look dry and don't be afraid to stir once in awhile to keep the rice from sticking to the bottom. I didn't have this problem-- but I also noticed I had to keep adding broth because the rice was absorbing more than the recipe claimed. Let me know how that works!

Mia Goddess said...

Ah. Yes, thanks. I think that's exactly what happened, and I definitely needed permission to stir. That would have shown me just how dry it was becoming in the lower depths. But I was afraid of disrupting the chicken. I've mentioned I'm not much of a cook, right?

I'll try the entire recipe again next weekend and let you know how it goes. In the meantime, I've got boneless skinless chicken breasts that are begging to be cut up for tagine!

angie said...

where do you use the condensed milk?