Monday, March 2, 2009

Bread and Chocolate

baked chocolate truffle, blood orange-port reduction, toasted cocoa nibs, sweet crostini

This is one of those dishes that just evolved into itself, completely by accident. It was inspired by the random grazing of a line cook, and the chocolate bar made by local company, Theo (and only organic, fair trade chocolate company in the country. Seriously. Click that link and buy some chocolate. I highly recommend the coconut curry).

The original idea was for just the baked truffle, the blood orange-port reduction, and perhaps an olive oil gelato- and I still mean to try that one day. But while I was working it out in my head, a question of texture kept popping up. I wanted something crunchy. But something other than the cocoa nibs or standard issue praline/brittle-type situation.

I was fiddling with the truffle recipe- which has the exact same texture as softened butter, when I put out a sample batch for the cooks to nosh on. We were standing around bullshitting and having coffee when one of them tore off a piece of fresh baguette, ripped it open, and smeared the truffle down the middle. Without a word, the rest of us followed suit. It was as delicious as it sounds, and I was mentally bitch slapping myself for not putting a spin on bread and chocolate on the menu until now.

I knew I couldn't serve it the way we had it, which to honest, might be how I like it best. This is where the Theo 'bread and chocolate' candy bar enters in. It's dark chocolate with baguette crumbs mixed it. It's crispy and salty-sweet and if I am ever in a munchy, it's a good place to turn. I sliced up a fresh baguette, moments after it's delivery, brushed it with melted butter, sprinkled it with raw sugar (I'm now using crystal sugar because it's prettier), and baked at 400 for about 8 minutes. Then I smeared one with a thick layer of the truffle and didn't look back.

see instructions for sweet crostini in post. Blood orange-port reduction is equal parts tawny port and blood orange juice, a small handful of sugar, and a piece of star anise. Simmer until reduced and syrupy.

Baked Chocolate Truffle
slightly tinkered with version of the recipe from
Susan G. Purdy's
Pie in the Skyserves four

4 oz 70% good quality dark chocolate, chopped
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp espresso powder
4 oz very soft butter (like, the texture of mayonnaise)
2 room temperature eggs
1/4 tsp sea salt

Pre heat oven to 300 degrees. In a food processor, gind up chocolate until you have fine crumbs. Brush 4 small ramekins with melted butter. Line the bottoms with small circles of parchment paper and brush with more butter. Place ramekins in a tea towel lined roasting pan.
Bring the sugar, espresso powder and water just to a simmer, do not boil. Add to chocolate in a slow steady stream through the feeding tube with the machine running. Once all the syrup has been added, continue to process for about 10 seconds. Scrape the bowl down, then turn machine back on. Add the butter, a few tablespoons at a time, through the feeding tube with the machine running. Continue to process for about 30 seconds. Scrape the bowl and process a few seconds more.
Whisk the eggs and salt together. Slowly add to the chocolate mixture, pulsing every few seconds just to combine. You do not want to add much air at this point.
Divide the mixture between the ramekins and fill roasting pan with enough hot water to submerge them halfway. Cover pan with foil and bake for about 25 minutes. Remove foil and bake 5-7 more minutes. Truffles will be set, but still look moist.
Always serve at room temperature.


JennDZ - The Leftover Queen said...

Now that totally works! YUMMMM! I love bread and chocolate - how can you go wrong?

matt wright said...

mmmm my two favorite things! Absolutely awesome stuff. Columbia City per chance?

Brittany said...

Matt- I wish! Like you, we do the 'keep it in the neighborhood' thing and go with Macrina. I hate how Columbia City Bakery has to be all the way out in Cloumbia City. And I hear they don't deliver on Sundays.

Peter M said...

Britt, the pics are sexy...I want this for dinner!

Brooke said...

That was hands down the best chocolate orgasm I've had to date. The texture is just dreamy. And I love the red currant garnish in the last picture. So pretty!

Elyse said...

You had me mesmerized with the title of this post alone: two of my favorite things! This looks so delicious. I'd love a slice of bread with some truffle on it. Please?

Jennifer said...

That is genius and YUMMY!!!

Heather said...

I commented earlier, I swear it. I think I'd like to try this with the untoasted baguette (or brioche - swoon!) to compare to the toasted crouton. I need a side-by-side comparison, for sure.

Foodycat said...

ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! Amazing! WOuld it be wrong to have pain au chocolat for lunch?

Dawn said...

this is something I can totally dig. wonderful creation here!

Scrumptious said...

This looks so amazing it shouldn't be legal. It reminds me of when I lived in France for a summer when I was a kid and discovered Nutella ("they let you eat chocolate... on bread... for BREAKFAST??). But much, much more sophisticated and sexy.

I wanted to let you know that the March theme for Sugar High Fridays is "Test of Time - Desserts over a century old." I thought the theme might tickle your fancy and I would really love to see anything you make!

Brittany said...

Peter M- I know, it's a dirty dirty bitch

Brooke- So good, you need a cigarette after

Elyse- It's two of my faves too : )

Jennifer- thanks!

Heather- I'm making brioche right now @ work for the burger buns and I tried it. I needed to change my panties after.

Foody- I don't want to live in a world where pain au chocolate for lunch is wrong.

Dawn- thank you ;)

Scrumptious- Thank you!!! I am always finding out about the SHF themes waaaay too late! It's been too long since I played. Great theme btw.

cook eat FRET said...


cook eat FRET said...

of course i mean that in a good way

Emily said...

Ohhh man. What have you done! I'm going to go crazy until I get to taste this. What a great idea.

I've never ever heard of a baked truffle before!

cookiecrumb said...

It's charming that you just used "regular" bread, and gave it a sprinkling of sugar. Something so Winnie the Pooh about that.
Nice dessert.

peter said...

This is like a Nutella sandwich raised to the nth power. Only without the hazelnuts. If you baked the truffle in a long terrine mold, the result would fit right on a sliced baguette for the dessert sub of my dreams.

Peabody said...

Hello Chocolate....come to me.

Brittany said...

Claudia- I can always recognize a complimentary fuck

Em- I just made the title up. the original recipe called it truffle cake- but it just didn't seem cakey to me, so I dropped that part.

cookie- Beary nice of you to say....

Peter- so i've been making brioche buns at work, and here's what we've been doing: bake a bun with crystal sugar on top (rather than black sesame seeds), split it open, smear it liberally with this chocolate business, add a huge scoop vanilla ice cream. Squish together.
It's a giant dessert burger.

Pea- I know. It haunts me too.

The Spiteful Chef said...

Blood oranges and chocolate...mmmmmmmmm. I love custard in all forms, but a chocolate custardy thing is right up there for top honors on my affection roster.

Ken Albala said...

That is singularly beautiful. Send shivers down the spine. I almost want to see salt instead of sugar on the toast. In any case, I am going to hunt down your chocolate source right now.

Sara said...

I love bread with chocolate - it's also good with the addition of a little olive oil. It sounds strange, but it works!

Brittany said...

Kristie- the texture of this is like when butter and custard make love, and chocolate was a third party "fluffer"

Ken- some big grey sel de mer rocks would be pretty tasty on here.

Sarah- I was planning on serving the truffle with olive oil gelato at first. It is a lovely combo.

Anonymous said...


Yue Edwards said...

hmmm, bread and chocolate, sounds and looks so good!! that's my thing~

The Budding Gourmet Indian Food said...

looking very delicious & yuummmmmmmmyyyyyy

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