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Decadent Hot Chocolate Soup With Caramel Brioche Croutons

This creamy, luscious hot chocolate soup is delicious! It’s quick, easy, ultra-rich and served with caramel brioche croutons! It’s perfect for Valentine’s Day or any day! 

a bowl of chocolate soup with a hand holding a spoon in it and a red rose and red satin tablecloth in the background

Have you ever had chocolate soup?? If not, let me introduce you to my new chocolate fix and your new best friend!

This soup is a cross between rich hot chocolate, thick warm pudding and chocolate fondue! What better way to celebrate Valentine’s Day than with this mind-blowing dessert!

I have to tell you, though, this is NOT a light and airy dessert, that’s why I serve it in really small bowls! 

It’s quite rich and definitely NOT for the weak, but it is sooooo good! 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What’s in this chocolate soup?

This recipe only has a handful of ingredients: dark chocolate, cream, milk, alcohol, and cinnamon. 

Can I tweak or adapt this recipe?

Sure! I added two different kinds of alcohol and some cinnamon, which give it a really nice delicate flavor. Of course, you can add your favorite alcohol (like mint liquor or ouzo) or omit it altogether! 

How do you serve it?

This soup is best served warm, so I’d make it about half an hour before serving it. Fresh fruit is divine with this! You could put some fruit on a skewer for dipping in the soup! Or you could top it with whipped cream or ice cream! 

 

two bowls of chocolate soup with a skewer of fruit on top

What you need to make it:

Good quality dark chocolate: I use 72% dark couverture chocolate for a richer flavor.

Milk: I use low-fat, but you can use regular milk.

Heavy cream: I added this to thicken the soup so I wouldn’t have to add any flour, cornstarch, or eggs. It really gives it a beautiful, silky creaminess to it, too!

Cinnamon: I use a cinnamon stick, which really boosted the overall flavor. I think cinnamon pairs really well with all the other flavors and it’s very subtle.

Alcohol: I use Kahlúa and whiskey, but you could use your favorite alcohol.

 

For the caramel Brioche Croutons you need:

Brioche: You only need a few slices of brioche bread.

Sugar & water: To make the caramel, you need a small amount of sugar and water.

two bowls of chocolate soup with a spoon in each bowl surrounded by rose petals and a porcelain jug dripping with soup and a red satin tablecloth and a red rose in the background

 

HOW TO MAKE CARAMEL BRIOCHE CROUTONS

caramel brioche croutons steps, step 1 whisk butter, sugar and water over medium heat until sugar dissolves, step 2 boil until sugar turns medium amber color, step 3 add brioche cubes and stir quickly then spread onto a baking sheet and separate them using two forks so they’re not touching

HOW TO MAKE HOT CHOCOLATE SOUP

hot chocolate soup step one with milk, cream, alcocohol and cinnamon stick simmering in a saucepan and step two remove cinnamon stick and add chocolate and whisk until smooth

VARIATIONS & ADD-INS

There are so many ways you can play around with this recipe! Here are just a few ideas for variations and add-ins:

  • Nuts and pomegranate seeds would go great with this soup! They would also offer a nice crunch!
  • You could add some orange zest to the soup!
  • I think coffee would be great with this soup, too!
  • I used a combination of Kahlúa and whisky! Another nice blend is Cointreau or Grand Marnier! Or if you like mint, you could add mint liquor, like Crème de menthe!

TIPS FOR SUCCESS

  • You can easily reheat any leftovers, just add a little milk (1 or 2 tablespoons) and stir over medium heat. Add more milk if you want a thinner consistency.
  • This is a very rich dessert, so I suggest you serve it in very small bowls, but of course, you could

IDEAS FOR LEFTOVER CARAMEL BRIOCHE CROUTONS

Sometimes I don’t always use all the croutons with this soup, so I like to save them for later.

Here are a few ideas for leftover caramel croutons:

  • You could top your favorite ice cream with them.
  • You could put them on top of hot chocolate, instead of marshmallows.
  • You could add them over Greek yogurt.
  • You could nibble them on their own as a sweet snack (yes, I have actually done that!).

MORE CHOCOLATE RECIPES

Classic Homemade Brownies From Scratch

Classic Chocolate Cupcakes (No Mixer)

Ultimate Chocolate Chunk Cookies (+ Secret Ingredient)

Cheater’s Chocolate Mousse (+Easy Chocolate Garnishes)

Chocolate Pomegranate Bark

Easy Egg-free Chocolate Salami – Greek Kormos/Mosaiko (No-bake + Vegan Option)

Easy Homemade Chocolate Syrup (Without Corn Syrup)

Easy Vegan Fudge Brownies

Sugar Free Whole Wheat Chocolate Cupcakes

 

For another AMAZING chocolate recipe, check out Tasy Oven’s Crockpot Hot Chocolate! Simple and delicious!

Let me know how this decadent hot chocolate soup with caramel brioche croutons turns out for you in the comments below! I’d love to hear from you!

Decadent Hot Chocolate Soup With Caramel Brioche Croutons

This creamy, luscious hot chocolate soup is delicious! It’s quick, easy, ultra-rich and served with caramel brioche croutons! It’s perfect for Valentine’s Day or any day! 
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American, Greek
Keyword: hot chocolate, soup, caramel brioche croutons, easy
Servings: 2 -3

Ingredients

For the Caramel Brioche Croutons

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • ½ cup (100 g / 3.5 oz) sugar
  • ¼ cup (60 ml / 2 fl oz) water
  • 2-3 slices brioche bread, cubed

For the Soup

  • ¾ cup (200 ml / 7 fl oz) milk
  • ½ cup + 1 tablespoon (150 ml / 5 fl oz) heavy cream
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 tablespoons Kahlua
  • 2 tablespoons bourbon or whiskey
  • 7 oz / 200 g dark chocolate (I use 72% couverture chocolate), finely chopped

Instructions

Make the Caramel Brioche Croutons

  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
  • In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the butter, sugar and water. Whisk until the sugar dissolves, about 2 minutes.
  • Allow the sugar mixture to boil until it turns a medium amber color, about 4 minutes.
  • Remove the saucepan from the heat and add the brioche cubes, a handful at a time and stir to coat evenly.
  • Transfer to the lined baking sheet and quickly spread the croutons. Use 2 forks to separate them so they're not touching. Set aside to cool.

Make the Soup

  • In a medium saucepan, add the milk, cream, alcohol and cinnamon stick and simmer over medium-low heat for about 20 minutes.
  • Discard the cinnamon stick and quickly stir in the chopped chocolate. Whisk until smooth. If you want a thinner consistency, add 1-2 tablespoons of milk.
  • Serve immediately.
  • Enjoy!

Notes

  • This soup can be stored in the refrigerator for about 4 days.
  • You can easily reheat any leftovers, just add a little milk (1 or 2 tablespoons) and stir over medium heat. Add more milk if you want a thinner consistency.
caramel brioche croutons adapted from: https://www.marthastewart.com/345424/ice-cream-with-caramel-brioche 
 
© Pastry Wishes

 

Classic Homemade Brownies From Scratch

These classic brownies are moist, rich, and fudgy with a beautiful crackly crust! Two ingenious methods make these brownies ultra chocolaty, thick, chewy, and velvety inside! These are by far the best homemade brownies from scratch

brownies cut into 9 squares on parchment paper

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like brownies!

And there has always been a long-standing controversy: those who love cakey brownies and those who love fudgy ones. 

Personally speaking, I have always loved thick brownies that are somewhere in between, but with more of a chewy texture. 

HOMEMADE VS. STORE-BOUGHT

Boxed brownie mixes are convenient but, to be perfectly honest, they’re nothing compared to homemade! 

Don’t get me wrong. I understand that not everyone has a tried and trusted brownie recipe, or they may just feel intimidated by making them from scratch. 

Well, I’m here to tell you that making homemade brownies from scratch is SO easy, and SO totally worth it that you probably won’t buy store-bought ever again! I’m convinced that this will become your new go-to recipe!

Why I believe these homemade brownies are better than store-bought mixes:

  • They’re incredibly easy to make.
  • They’re not overly sweet, yet they’re decadent.
  • They’re not greasy.
  • They have an exceptional distinctive chocolate flavor that far surpasses any box mix.
  • They taste even better the following day! Time really allows for the flavors to develop, creating a much richer taste.

3 brownies piled together with sliced brownies in the background

HOW THIS RECIPE STANDS OUT FROM TRADITIONAL ONES

For years, I’ve been making brownies using the standard method: whisking together the melted butter and chocolate and then the eggs, followed by adding the dry ingredients. Easy, peasy and delicious. However, I discovered 2 amazing techniques that take these brownies to a whole new level: the “ribbon stage” and “blooming” the cocoa powder!

The Ribbon Stage

I learned about this technique in this amazing article on Epicurious .  After reading it, I knew I had discovered a secret weapon for making the most incredible brownies EVER! 

The article discusses whipping the eggs until you reach “the ribbon stage”. This is a technique that is common among pastry chefs and bakers, especially when making sponge cakes. Generally speaking, the ribbon stage refers to beating the eggs and sugar together until you get a really thick mixture that almost looks like a thick cake batter. When you lift your whisk or beaters, the egg mixture falls off into beautiful thick ribbons that hold their shape for a few seconds. 

Beating the eggs and sugar together until you reach the ribbon stage incorporates a lot of air into the mixture, which is crucial for the texture and thickness!

Blooming the Cocoa For a Rich Chocolate Flavor

For this recipe, I used Dutch-processed cocoa powder, which I think has a deeper flavor and color than natural cocoa powder. I also “bloomed” the cocoa so that the chocolate is even more intense!

(Check out this post if you want to learn about “blooming” as well as the difference between duch-processed cocoa powder and natural cocoa powder.) 

The result of using these methods? 

PHENOMENAL!

The top is crackly and shiny.

The inside?

OMG!!  Soooo chewy, creamy, chocolaty, and thick! 

Brownies stacked on top of each other surrounded by brownies and pieces of chocolate scattered around

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Flour
  • Butter
  • Unsweetened Dutch-processed Cocoa Powder (If you don’t have it, you could use natural unsweetened cocoa powder, instead.)
  • Baking powder
  • Coffee powder (Don’t worry, you don’t taste the coffee!)
  • Salt 
  • Eggs
  • Packed Brown sugar (You could use granulated sugar, but I found that packed brown sugar gives a slight hint of caramel.)
  • Bittersweet or semisweet chocolate (I use couverture chocolate, which is perfect for baking.)

HOW TO MAKE CLASSIC HOMEMADE BROWNIES

homemade brownie steps, melt butter, chocolate, coffee and cocoa powder, in a bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, and cocoa powder, in another bowl mix sugar and sal add egss and beat for 5 minutes

 

add melted chocolate mixture to egg mixture and beat well, gently fold in the flour mixture, pour into pans and bake

VARIATIONS

  • Feel free to mix in your favorite add-ins, like chocolate chips or chopped walnuts!
  • Although they are amazing on their own, you could top them with your favorite frosting. For a delicious chocolate buttercream cream frosting, check out my recipe here. It’s vegan, but if you’re not vegan you could replace the vegan butter/margarine with real butter and the almond/coconut milk with real milk or heavy cream.

TIPS FOR SUCCESS

  • Get the best quality ingredients you can.
  • Measure all the ingredients properly. A digital scale will result in CONSISTENT results every time.
  • When adding the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, don’t overmix the batter. You need to GENTLY fold it in until it’s just combined, otherwise you will deflate all the air that you created in the egg mixture (see the picture tutorial above).
  • Use the right brownie pan size. For this recipe, I used a 9 X 9 inch (23.5 X 23.5 cm) pan. If you have an 8 X 8 inch pan, the brownies will be a bit thicker, if you use a larger pan, they’ll be thinner. Keep in mind that pan size will also affect the baking time.
  • When you line your pan with parchment paper, make sure you leave about 2 – 2 ½ inches hanging over so you can just lift the whole pan of brownies out at once without breaking it.
  • Don’t overbake! You should take them out of the oven when you see a few crumbs on the toothpick inserted to test if they’re done (see picture tutorial above). If you prefer cakey brownies, just bake them for an additional 5 minutes or so.
  • Let them cool completely in the pan before removing them so they don’t fall apart.
  • You can easily freeze these brownies. Just wrap individual squares in plastic wrap and then place in a freezer-safe container. They can be frozen for up to about 3 months. To thaw, just put them in the refrigerator overnight.

3 brownies piled together with sliced brownies in the background

Enjoy!

~Voula

MORE EASY CHOCOLATE DESSERTS!

Classic Chocolate Cupcakes (No Mixer)

Ultimate Chocolate Chunk Cookies (+ Secret Ingredient)

Cheater’s Chocolate Mousse (+Easy Chocolate Garnishes)

Chocolate Pomegranate Bark

Easy Egg-free Chocolate Salami – Greek Kormos/Mosaiko (No-bake + Vegan Option)

Easy Homemade Chocolate Syrup (Without Corn Syrup)

Easy Vegan Fudge Brownies

Sugar Free Whole Wheat Chocolate Cupcakes

Let me know how these classic homemade brownies from scratch turn out for you in the comments below! I’d love to hear from you!

 

Classic Homemade Brownies From Scratch

These classic brownies are moist, rich, and fudgy with a beautiful crackly crust! Two ingenious methods make these brownies ultra chocolaty, thick, chewy, and velvety inside! These are by far the best homemade brownies from scratch
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: brownies from scratch, brownies, homemade,, chocolate, classic brownies, easy,
Servings: 9

Ingredients

  • ½ cup (113 g / 4 oz) unsalted butter
  • 4 oz (125 g) good quality bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped (I use couverture chocolate)
  • 1 tablespoon instant coffee powder
  • ½ cup (60 g / 2 oz) unsweetened dutch-processed cocoa powder, sifted & divided (If you don’t have it, you could use natural unsweetened cocoa powder, instead.)
  • ½ cup (127 g / 4.5 oz) all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup (200 g / 7 oz) packed brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 3 eggs

Instructions

  • Grease and line a pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F / 180°C.
  • In a medium saucepan, add the butter, chocolate, coffee powder and half of the cocoa powder. Melt over medium heat, whisking until everything has melted together. Set aside to cool.
  • In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and half of the cocoa powder. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, mix the sugar and salt together. Add the eggs all at once and beat on high with an electric mixer for about 5 minutes. The mixture should be thick like cake batter.
  • Add the melted chocolate mixture to the egg mixture and beat until well incorporated.
  • Gently fold in the flour mixture until just combined. Don’t overmix.
  • Pour into the prepared pan and even out the top.
  • Bake for about 15- 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few moist crumbs on it.
  • Allow it to cool completely to room temperature, then lift out of the pan. 
  • Cut into squares and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.
  • Enjoy!

Notes

TO FREEZE
Wrap individual brownie squares in plastic wrap and then place in a freezer-safe container. They can be frozen for up to about 3 months. To thaw, just put them in the refrigerator overnight.
© Pastry Wishes
 

Chocolate Pomegranate Bark

This dark chocolate pomegranate bark is the perfect indulgent sweet treat! It’s easy to make and only has 3 ingredients! This festive bark would also make a beautiful edible Christmas gift!

chocolate pomegranate bark broken into pieces

I really love making this chocolate bark around Christmas. There are so many things you can do with it! It’s a nice little snack, but it also looks great on a holiday platter, too!

It has an amazing combination of flavors: dark chocolate + pomegranate! Dark chocolate goes so well with pomegranate!  If you haven’t tried it before, you really should! It’s amazing!

What does this chocolate Pomegranate bark taste like?

This bark has a crunchy texture, but the best part is when you bite into the pomegranate seeds! The contrast between the crunchy chocolate and the juicy pomegranate seeds is incredible! It just melts in your mouth! The pistachios give a nice salty undertone!

This Chocolate Pomegranate Bark is

SO simple to make.

made with only 3 ingredients.

a no-bake dessert.

ready in less than an hour.

colorful and festive with ruby red pomegranate seeds and green pistachios.

low in sugar!

vegan friendly!

an ideal homemade gift!

absolutely delicious!

chocolate pomegrante pistachio bark pieces stacked in a pile

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What kind of chocolate can I use?

You can use your favorite kind of chocolate, milk, dark, or white! The only thing I would avoid is using chocolate chips because they’re not really ideal for melting. Use high quality chocolate bars, like bittersweet chocolate. For this recipe, I use couverture chocolate.

What kind of mix-ins and toppings can I use?

The options are endless! You can get really creative! Here are a few ideas:

Dried fruit will not only add sweetness, of course, but it will also add a nice, chewy texture. You could try raisins, chopped mango, or figs.

Nuts and seeds always go great with chocolate. I personally love pistachios, walnuts, almonds and sesame seeds. Caramelized nuts would be great, too! Nuts and seeds also add a nice crunch.

Other add-ins you could try are sea salt, crushed candy canes or pretzels, mini marshmallows, or shredded coconut.

White chocolate can be used to make gorgeous designs. Add some melted white chocolate on top and swirl it around with a knife or a toothpick to create beautiful patterns.

How do I store this chocolate pomegranate bark?

I always store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week because of the fresh pomegranate seeds that are in it. Other mix-ins that are dried and don’t contain fresh fruit can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature.

Can I freeze this chocolate pomegranate bark?

YES!!! After I break the bark up into pieces, I always wrap each piece in plastic wrap. Then I put all the pieces in a larger freezer bag or container and freeze.

TOP TIP

This bark can also be frozen for a couple of months. You don’t even need to thaw it! It’s absolutely DELICIOUS frozen! Just pop a piece out of the freezer whenever you get a craving! It’s definitely a healthier way to get your chocolate fix!

HOW TO MAKE CHOCOLATE POMEGRANATE BARK

First you melt the chocolate.

Then you spread it on a sheet of parchment paper. I like my bark thin (about ¼ inch), but you could make it thicker by not filling the entire sheet of parchment paper.

Then just add the pomegranate seeds and the pistachios.

I press them into the warm chocolate so that they don’t fall off when the chocolate sets.

pressing pomegranate seeds and pistachios into melted chocolate

After that you chill it for half an hour and then break it into pieces.

TIPS FOR SUCCESS

  • Have all your add-ins and toppings ready before starting because the chocolate hardens fast.
  • Drain the pomegranate seeds on a paper towel and then blot them dry with another paper towel as much as possible. Doing this before adding it to the chocolate will prevent the chocolate from seizing (becoming clumpy, like thick paste).
  • If you’re using any dried or candied fruit, use your fingers to break any clumps before adding it to the chocolate.
  • Press your toppings firmly into the warm, melted chocolate. This will prevent them from falling off.
  • Chilling the bark before cutting it helps to set chocolate. That way it’ll be easier to cut into pieces.
  • I suggest breaking or cutting the bark immediately after it’s been chilled. You can use a knife or just snap it using your hands. It’ll be easier to do so once it comes out of the fridge.

GIFT IDEAS

You can really get creative when gifting this dark chocolate bark! Here are a few ideas:

Bags

I like putting this bark in cellophane bags and then tying them up with a cute ribbon. You could also put them in small gift bags.

Boxes

Boxes are really festive, especially the vintage tin ones! All you need is some parchment paper to line inside the box before adding the bark. Paper boxes are also cute as they come in a variety of shapes and sizes.

Mugs

You could fill some holiday mugs with the bark, and then wrap it with cellophane! Coffee lovers would appreciate it, too, as this chocolate pomegranate bark is AMAZING with coffee!

Plates 

Small wooden or antique plates would be a nice, classy way to give someone this chocolate bark. Just wrap some cellophane around it and add a cute ribbon!

chocolate pomegranate bark in antique plate

MORE POMEGRANATE & HOLIDAY RECIPES!

Let me know how this Chocolate Pomegranate Bark turns out for you in the comments below! I’d love to hear from you!

~Voula

chocolate pomegranate bark broken into pieces
Print Recipe
5 from 8 votes

Chocolate Pomegranate Bark

This dark chocolate pomegranate bark is the perfect indulgent sweet treat! It’s easy to make and only has 3 ingredients! This festive bark would also make a beautiful edible Christmas gift!
Prep Time10 mins
30 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chocolate, pomegranate, bark, edible gift, Christmas, festive, vegan, low sugar, easy, no bake dessert
Servings: 15 pieces (approximately)

Ingredients

  • 8.8 oz / 250 g bittersweet chocolate (I use couverture), chopped
  • 1 cup fresh pomegranate seeds, (from 1 large pomegranate) 
  • ¾ cup (2.6 oz / 75 g) pistachio nuts

Instructions

  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
  • Melt the chocolate either in a heat-proof bowl over a pot of just simmering water, or in the microwave in 10 second increments.
  • Pour the melted chocolate on the parchment sheet and smooth it out into an even layer, about ¼ inch thick (or thicker, if you like).
  • Add the pomegranate seeds and the pistachio nuts and press them firmly into the warm chocolate.
  • Put it in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes to set.
  • Break the bark into pieces with your hands or cut it with a knife.
  • Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • Enjoy!

Notes

This Chocolate Pomegranate Bark is absolutely DELICIOUS frozen! You don’t even need to thaw it! Just wrap each piece in plastic wrap and put in a larger freezer bag or container. It can be frozen for a couple of months. 
© Pastry Wishes

Easy Egg-free Chocolate Salami – Greek Kormos/Mosaiko (No-bake + Vegan Option)

Chocolate and salami together? Well, there’s no actual salami in this recipe, it just looks like salami! It’s a delicious combination of chocolate, cookies, and nuts! It’s so easy to whip up and it would also make a nice gift!

chocolate salami covered in powdered sugar and cut with two slices

I often make chocolate salami at different times during the year and it’s a great accompaniment for coffee or on its own. It’s a no-bake dessert made with crushed cookies, chocolate and nuts.

There are lots of different versions of chocolate salami all around the world. It’s very popular here in Greece, too. It’s called kor-MOS, which means a tree log. It’s also called mo-sa-ee-KO, which means mosaic, because of the design inside.

What I love most about this recipe:

You only need a few ingredients.

It’s super simple to make.

It’s adaptable.

It’s a no-bake dessert.

It’s egg-free.

It lasts for up to 2 weeks in the fridge or 2 months in the freezer.

There’s a vegan option.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What kind of chocolate can I use?

I use couverture chocolate, which is just perfect for baking. I think it produces the best texture and flavor for this recipe. You could use good quality bittersweet chocolate, too.

What kind of cookies can I use?

You can use your favorite plain cookies, like vanilla wafers, graham crackers or tea biscuits. If you don’t use plain cookies, you won’t get the same “salami” look inside.

How do you store chocolate salami?

You can store this chocolate salami in the refrigerator or the freezer. I like to have some in the freezer for unexpected guests.

To freeze, wrap it well in plastic wrap and then put it in a freezer bag or freezer-safe container. Then slice it and allow it to soften up a bit at room temperature. Or, you can put it in the refrigerator a day before to thaw.

How long does chocolate salami last?

Chocolate salami keeps really well in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks or in the freezer for up to 2 months. Just make sure it’s in an airtight container.

chocolate salami sliced and wrapped in kitchen twine

ADD-INS & ADAPTATIONS

  • There are lots of different things you could add, although I don’t usually go overboard with a lot of add-ins, because I want more of a chocolate flavor. Pistachio nuts adds some color and a savory touch. You could also add caramelized nuts or even crushed pretzels. Dried fruit, like cranberries, raisins would be nice, too. Feel free to add whatever you like – this recipe is very adaptable!
  • Instead of cognac or brandy, you could use whiskey, or rum. The touch of alcohol really brings out the overall flavor, but you could omit it if you don’t drink alcohol.

VEGAN OPTION

For a vegan option, just replace the butter with vegan butter or margarine and the milk with a non-dairy vegan milk alternative.

HOW TO MAKE CHOCOLATE SALAMI :

how to make chocolate salami in six steps

TIPS FOR SUCCESS

  • Most recipes require placing the salami in the refrigerator for hours (or even overnight) to firm up and harden, but I found that freezing it is MUCH faster.
  • When the salami has set, it’s usually flat on the bottom. Some people don’t mind this, but I like making a perfectly round log shape, especially if I’m going to give it as a gift. To do this, I simply re-roll it after it has set and then put it in the fridge for a few minutes before removing the plastic wrap and rubbing it with powdered sugar.
  • Make sure it’s stored in an airtight container so it doesn’t absorb other smells in the fridge or freezer.

MORE NO-BAKE DESSERTS!

Let me know how this chocolate salami turns out for you in the comments below! I’d love to hear from you!

 

chocolate salami sliced and wrapped in kitchen twine
Print Recipe
5 from 2 votes

Easy Egg-free Chocolate Salami – Greek Kormos/Mosaiko (No-bake + Vegan Option)

Chocolate and salami together? Well, there’s no actual salami in this recipe, it just looks like salami! It’s a delicious combination of chocolate, cookies, and nuts! It’s so easy to whip up and it would also make a nice gift!
Prep Time5 mins
Total Time1 hr 5 mins
Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: Greek
Keyword: chocolate, no-bake, easy, dessert, kormos, mosaiko, egg-free, vegan option
Servings: 10 -12

Ingredients

  • 8.8 oz / 250 g bittersweet/semi-sweet chocolate, chopped (I use couverture chocolate)
  • ½ cup (113 g) unsalted butter
  • 7 oz / 200 g plain vanilla cookies, coursely crushed
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 2 oz / 56 g walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons cognac/brandy (optional)
  • a pinch of salt
  • powdered sugar (for the coating)

Instructions

  • Melt the chocolate and butter together in a bowl over a pot of just simmering water. Stir until they've melted.
  • Add all the remaining ingredients except for the powdered sugar. Mix until well combined.
  • Spread the mixture onto a sheet of plastic wrap and shape into a log. Fold the plastic wrap over and shape like candy by rolling it back and forth a few times. Tie the ends.
  • Put it in the freezer for an hour to firm up. When it sets, the bottom is slightly flat. Take it out of the freezer and roll it again to make it all round.
  • Remove the plastic wrap and rub it with the powdered sugar. For an authentic salami look, wrap it with kitchen twine.
  • Enjoy!

Notes

You can store this chocolate salami in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks or the freezer for up to 2 months.
To freeze, wrap it well in plastic wrap and then put it in a freezer bag or freezer-safe container. Then slice it and allow it to soften up a bit at room temperature. Or, you can put it in the refrigerator a day before to thaw.
© Pastry Wishes

 

EASY HOMEMADE CHOCOLATE SYRUP (WITHOUT CORN SYRUP)

This incredibly easy homemade chocolate syrup is the perfect topping for all your favorite desserts! Make it without any corn syrup in less than 15 minutes! You won’t go back to buying store-bought ever again!

homemade chocolate syrup

Don’t you just want to lick that spoon?!?!?

This homemade chocolate syrup is AMAZING! 

It’s NOT to be confused with hot fudge, which is usually made with butter and cream. This chocolate syrup is like the popular one you would buy in a bottle, only MUCH BETTER!

It’s thick, but pourable!

It’s velvety!

It’s chocolaty!

It’s silky smooth!

It’s sooo delicious and rich in flavor!

AND… 

There is absolutely NO corn syrup in it!

homemade chocolate syrup

I’m not totally against using corn syrup in baking (because there is a difference between corn syrup and high fructose syrup), but I always prefer simple, easier methods, which include few ingredients and produce excellent results.

This recipe is one of them! Perfect, chocolate syrup with basic pantry ingredients!

Why you’ll love this homemade chocolate syrup recipe

  • You know EXACTLY what’s in it! There are only 4 ingredients and NONE of them are artificial!
  • It’s super inexpensive and remarkably easy to make!
  • It tastes so much better than store-bought chocolate syrup!

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

  • Cocoa Powder: I use good quality, unsweetened cocoa powder. I prefer Dutch processed cocoa powder, but you could use natural cocoa powder, instead.
  • Sugar: I use granulated white sugar. You could adjust the sugar by using more or less, depending on your preferences.
  • Salt: I use a pinch of salt to enhance the chocolate flavor.
  • Cornstarch: I use it because I like my chocolate syrup on the thick side, but if you don’t want it too thick, you can omit it altogether. 
  • Water: I use water instead of cream or milk so that the syrup lasts longer.

HOW TO MAKE EASY HOMEMADE CHOCOLATE SAUCE IN 3 EASY STEPS

STEP 1

Whisk together the cocoa powder, sugar, water, and salt over medium high heat. Stir constantly until it begins to simmer.

STEP 2

In a small bowl, whisk the cornstarch and water to make a slurry.

STEP 3

Add the slurry to the saucepan and stir until it thickens.

VARIATIONS

  • Add a shot of your favorite liquor.
  • Use light or dark brown sugar for a more caramel flavor.
  • Add ½ – 1 teaspoon of vanilla.
  • Make it spicy! Add a dash of cayenne pepper for a Mexican twist or a dash of black pepper for an ancient Greek twist.   Yes, you read that right! (Check out my post where I explain it!)

How long does it take to make?

It takes about 10 – 12 minutes to make this chocolate syrup. Then you need to wait about an hour for it to cool down before storing it.

What can you use it for?

There are SO many ways you can use this homemade chocolate syrup. Here are a few of my all-time favorites:

Stir it into hot or cold milk.

Stir it into coffee. 

Dip cookies in it.

Drizzle it over buttered toast topped with cinnamon. OMG! It’s one of my faves for breakfast! 

Drizzle it over your favorite desserts, like ice cream, cheesecake, cinnamon rolls, or warm brownies. 

Drizzle it over pancakes, waffles, or French toast.

Pour it over your favorite fruit salad.

Impress your guests by drizzling some on a plate before serving your favorite dessert for a fancy, gourmet food styling presentation!

 

TIPS FOR SUCCESS

  • Try and get the best quality unsweetened cocoa powder you can!
  • Make sure you stir it constantly to prevent it from burning.

HERE ARE A FEW MORE AMAZING CHOCOLATE RECIPES YOU MAY WANT TO TRY: 

Ouzo-spiked Chocolate Orange Cake 

Cheater’s chocolate Mousse (+ Easy Chocolate Garnishes)

Sugar Free Whole Wheat Chocolate Cupcakes 

~Voula

Let me know how this Homemade Chocolate Syrup turns out for you in the comments below! I’d love to hear from you!

 

homemade chocolate syrup
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

EASY HOMEMADE CHOCOLATE SYRUP (WITHOUT CORN SYRUP)

This incredibly easy homemade chocolate syrup is the perfect topping for all your favorite desserts! Make it without any corn syrup in less than 15 minutes! You won’t go back to buying store-bought ever again!
Cook Time12 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chocolate, easy,, homemade, syrup
Servings: 1 1/2 cups (approximately)

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (110 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup (200 g) sugar
  • 1 cup (250 ml) water
  • a pinch of salt

For the slurry

  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 4 tablespoons water

Instructions

  • In a saucepan, whisk together the cocoa powder, sugar, salt, and the cup of water over medium high heat.
  • Stir constantly until it begins to simmer.

Make the slurry

  • In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and water to make a slurry.
  • Add the slurry to the saucepan and stir until the syrup thickens, about 10 - 12 minutes.
  • Serve warm or allow it to cool completely (for about an hour) and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Notes

The chocolate sauce will thicken as it cools.
This homemade chocolate syrup can be refrigerated in an airtight container (like a glass jar) for about 3 weeks.
If you want, you can reheat it over the stove or in 5 minute increments in the microwave, stirring regularly.
© Pastry Wishes

Easy Vegan Fudge Brownies

Who can possibly resist gooey, fudgy brownies topped with creamy chocolate frosting? These mouthwatering vegan fudge brownies are rich, dense and seriously addictive!

easy vegan fudge brownies

If you’re a brownie fan, you’ll love these vegan fudge brownies – they never disappoint!

This recipe is SO easy. You won’t find any unusual or hard-to-find ingredients, either.

These vegan fudge brownies are:

incredibly simple to make.

egg free.

dairy free.

tried, tested & trusted.

absolutely delicious!

easyveganfudgebrownies

What you’ll need:

All-purpose flour

Salt

Unsweetened cocoa powder (preferably Dutch-processed) – Read about the differences here.

Baking powder

White, brown & powdered sugar

Vegetable oil

Bittersweet/Semisweet or Couverture chocolate

Walnuts

Vegan butter/Margarine

Almond/Coconut milk

How to melt chocolate without scorching it

  1. Chop the chocolate into small pieces.
  2. Place the chocolate in a heat-proof bowl.
  3. Place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Make sure the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water so it doesn’t scorch the chocolate.
  4. Stir the chocolate until it melts.

 TIPS FOR MAKING THESE EASY VEGAN FUDGE BROWNIES

This recipe is practically foolproof! However, there are a few things you should consider to ensure the brownies come out great!

  • Get the best quality chocolate and unsweetened cocoa powder you can find; it makes such a difference. I personally love couverture chocolate because it’s a high-quality baking chocolate.
  • Make sure you melt the chocolate properly.
  • Measure the ingredients well, especially the flour. I use a digital scale to get consistent results each and every time.
  • If you don’t want any chocolate chunks in your brownies, you can just melt all of the chocolate in the recipe and put it into the batter.
  • Don’t overmix the batter.
  • Use the right brownie pan size. For these brownies, I used a 9 X 9 inch (23.5 X 23.5 cm) pan. If you have an 8 X 8 inch pan, the brownies will be a bit thicker, if you use a larger pan, they’ll be thinner. This will also affect the baking time.
  • When you line your pan with parchment paper, make sure you leave about 2 – 2 ½ inches (5-6 cm) hanging over so you can just lift the whole pan of brownies out at once without breaking it.
  • All ovens vary, so start checking the brownies after about 20 minutes. The longer you bake them, the drier they become.
  • Allow the brownies to cool COMPLETELY in the pan before cutting & frosting, otherwise they will fall apart.

easyveganfudgebrownies

I really hope you enjoy these Easy Vegan Fudge Brownies!

~Voula

WANT MORE DELICIOUS CHOCOLATE RECIPES? You’ll love these:

Let me know how these vegan fudge brownies turned out for you in the comments below! I’d love to hear from you!

EASY VEGAN FUDGE BROWNIES

Who can possibly resist gooey, fudgy brownies topped with creamy chocolate frosting? These mouthwatering vegan fudge brownies are rich, dense and seriously addictive!
Prep Time15 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: EASY, VEGAN, FUDGE, BROWNIES,
Servings: 9

Equipment

  • You'll need a 9 X 9 or 8 X 8 inch square pan ( 23.5 X 23.5 / 20 X 20 cm).

Ingredients

For the brownies

  • 1 cup (127 g / 5 oz) all purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (45 g / 1.6 oz ) unsweetened cocoa powder (preferably Dutch-processed)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons (75 g / 2.6 oz) granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons (75 g / 2.6 oz) brown sugar
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • ½ cup hot water
  • 125 g (4.4 oz) bittersweet/semisweet or couverture chocolate, chopped into small chunks
  • 100 g (3.5 oz) walnuts, roughly chopped

For the frosting

  • ½ cup (113 g / 4 oz) vegan butter/margarine, at room temperature
  • 1 cup (90 g / 3 oz) unsweetened cocoa powder (natural or Dutch-processed)
  • 2 cups (240 g / 8.5 oz) powdered sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 3-6 tablespoons almond/coconut milk

Instructions

Prep the oven and the pan

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F / 180 °C.
  • Line the baking pan with parchment paper. Make sure to leave about 2 – 2 ½ inches (5-6 cm) hanging over so you can just lift the whole pan of brownies out at once without breaking it. Set aside.

Melt the Chocolate

  • Place half of chocolate chunks in a heat-proof bowl & set aside the other half. Place the heat-proof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Make sure the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water so it doesn’t scorch the chocolate. Stir the chocolate until it melts. Alternatively, you can melt all of the chocolate chunks, instead of half (* see NOTE below).

Make the Batter

  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, granulated & brown sugar, baking powder, cocoa powder and salt.
  • Pour in the melted chocolate, vegetable oil, and hot water and whisk until well combined.
  • Fold in the chocolate chunks and walnuts.
  • Evenly spread the mixture in the baking pan.
  • Bake for 20-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean**.
  • Let it cool COMPLETELY IN THE PAN. Then use the overhanging parchment paper to lift the brownies out of the pan. Cut into squares & frost if desired.

Make the frosting

  • Using a mixer, beat the vegan butter/margarine until creamy.
  • Gradually add the powdered sugar, cocoa powder, salt and 2 tablespoons of the almond/coconut milk. If you want a thicker consistency, add more powdered sugar. If you want a creamier consistency, add more almond/coconut milk. Spread over the cooled brownies.
  • Enjoy!

Notes

  • * If you don't want to bite into chocolate chunks, you can melt all of the chocolate and put it into the batter.
  • ** All ovens vary, so start checking the brownies after about 15 minutes. The longer you bake them, the drier they become. 
  • Allow the brownies to cool COMPLETELY IN THE PAN before lifting them out of the pan and cutting them, so that they don't crumble apart.
These brownies will keep for about 3 days at room temperature in an airtight container unfrosted, or in the refrigerator for about a week. 
© Pastry Wishes

Sugar Free Whole Wheat Chocolate Cupcakes

These moist, fudgy cupcakes are delicious and healthier than your average cupcake! They are made with whole wheat flour and stevia and are topped with a decadent whipped chocolate ganache! Get your chocolate fix without feeling guilty!

Sugar Free Chocolate Cupcakes

Stevia is a popular plant-based sweetener and sugar substitute. It’s something I’ve been meaning to experiment with for a while, so I came up with this recipe. I have to say I was quite impressed with the results!

What do these sugar free whole wheat chocolate cupcakes taste like?

The whole wheat flour has a subtle but unique nutty flavor and the stevia isn’t overly sweet, which I love!

One reader suggested adding the stevia a teaspoon at a time and tasting it to your desired sweetness before baking, which makes a lot of sense considering the fact that not all stevia products are the same – some are stronger and sweeter than others.

What I absolutely love the most, though, is the whipped chocolate ganache! OMG, it’s delicious!

Whipped ganache has a very light, airy, mousse-like texture. It’s silky smooth and rich with a deep dark chocolate flavor. Whipped ganache is great for piping. For these cupcakes, I used a Wilton 1M tip, but you could use a knife or an offset spatula to spread the ganache on top.

Sugar Free Chocolate Cupcakes

To make these sugar free whole wheat cupcakes, you’ll need:

Whole Wheat Flour: I used a light whole wheat flour, which is milder in flavor than the darker one.

Stevia: I used stevia powder.

Salt: I always use salt to enhance the flavors.

Leaveners: I used both baking powder and baking soda.

Unsweetened cocoa powder: This gives the cupcakes an intense chocolate flavor.

Vegetable oil: I used a light vegetable oil to help keep the cupcakes moist.

1 egg: I use organic eggs.

Buttermilk / Sour Milk: If you don’t have buttermilk, you can add some vinegar to the milk, mix and let it stand for about 5 minutes.

Hot black strongly brewed coffee: This really brings out all the chocolate goodness!

Chocolate: I used good quality bittersweet chocolate with stevia, but you could use unsweetened chocolate which doesn’t contain any sugar.

Whipping Cream: Make sure it contains at least 30% fat, otherwise it won’t whip properly.

sugar free chocolate cupcakes

TIPS FOR PERFECT WHIPPED GANACHE

  • First of all, make sure you whip the ganache right before you want to frost the cupcakes; otherwise it becomes too firm to pipe.
  • Make sure you chop the chocolate into really small pieces so it melts faster. Put the chocolate in a heat-proof (or microwave safe) bowl.
  • When you heat the cream, make sure you don’t boil it. You want to heat it to the point where tiny bubbles appear, but it’s not boiling. When you pour the hot cream over the chocolate, make sure it covers all of the chocolate and then let it sit for about 2 minutes without touching it. Stir the chocolate until it has melted. If you see that there are still a few chunks of chocolate that haven’t melted, put the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and then continue to mix it until the chocolate has melted completely. You could put it in the microwave, but I prefer melting it over simmering water because it’s the best way to avoid scorching the chocolate.
  • Cover with plastic wrap and let it sit at room temperature for 2-3 hours, until the chocolate has thickened. Trust me, it’s well worth the wait!  If you’re in a rush, though, you could put it in the refrigerator for about 20-30 minutes, but keep an eye on it every 5 minutes or so because it can get firm really quickly and if it gets too firm, you won’t be able to whip it.
  • To whip the chocolate ganache, use a hand mixer or a stand mixer. Whip it for about 3-5 minutes, starting on medium speed and then increasing to high. You don’t want to mix it any longer than 5 minutes because you’ll split the cream, which means it separates and curdles and becomes grainy. If, however, you do split the ganache, don’t panic! Just heat a few tablespoons of milk and whisk it into the chocolate mixture until the ganache comes back together again!

How to store these sugar free whole wheat chocolate cupcakes

I keep them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

I hope you enjoy these sugar free chocolate cupcakes!

~Voula

Let me know how these sugar free whole wheat chocolate cupcakes turned out for you in the comments below!

I’d love to hear from you!

sugar free chocolate cupcakes
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

SUGAR FREE WHOLE WHEAT CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES

These moist, fudgy cupcakes are delicious and healthier than your average cupcake! They are made with whole wheat flour and stevia and are topped with a decadent whipped chocolate ganache! Get your chocolate fix without feeling guilty!
Prep Time15 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chocolate, cupcakes, free, from scratch, ganache, stevia, sugar, wheat, whole
Servings: 12

Ingredients

For the whipped ganache

  • 400 g (14 oz) good quality bittersweet/semisweet chocolate with stevia (or unsweetened chocolate), chopped
  • 200 ml (3/4 cup) whipping cream

For the cupcakes

  • 1/2 cup buttermilk*
  • 1/2 cup (50 g / 2 oz) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ¼ cup hot black strongly brewed coffee
  • 1 cup (127 g / 4.5 oz) whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup (100 g / 3.5 oz) stevia powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 egg

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 180 °C (350 °F).
  • Line a 12-cup muffin/cupcake pan with cupcake liners. Set aside.

Make the ganache

  • Heat the whipping cream (but don’t boil) and pour it over the chopped chocolate. Let it sit for about 2 minutes to melt the chocolate. Whisk the mixture until it’s smooth and the chocolate has melted. Cover with plastic wrap and let it sit at room temperature for 2-3 hours, until the chocolate has thickened.**

Make the cupcakes

  • Whisk together the unsweetened cocoa with the black strongly brewed coffee until combined. Set aside.
  • Whisk together the whole wheat flour, stevia, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Set aside.
  • Add the egg, buttermilk, and vegetable oil to the cocoa mixture and whisk until combined.
  • Add the dry ingredients and mix until combined. The batter should be thin.
  • Fill the cupcake liners halfway.
  • Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow the cupcakes to cool.

Make the whipped ganache

  • Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer, whip the ganache for about 3-5 minutes, starting on medium speed and then increasing to high. Do not overmix.
  • Put into a piping bag and pipe onto the cooled cupcakes.***
  • Enjoy!

Notes

* If you don’t have buttermilk, you can make your own by putting 4 teaspoons of vinegar into a measuring cup and then adding enough milk to make ½ a cup. Let it stand for about 5 minutes before using.
** You could put the ganache in the refrigerator for about 20-30 minutes, but keep an eye on it every 5 minutes or so, because it can get firm really quickly. If it gets too firm, you won’t be able to whip it.
*** I used a Wilton 1M piping tip for the cupcakes in the pictures.
© Pastry Wishes

Ultimate Chocolate Chunk Cookies (+ A Secret Ingredient)

The epitome of the perfect chocolate chunk cookie: thick and crispy on the outside, soft, chewy and gooey in the middle and packed with oodles and oodles of melted pools of chocolate! These cookies are to die for!

Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Friends, I must warn you! These chocolate chunk cookies are ADDICTIVE!

It took me soooo many trials and errors to finally come up with this recipe, but it was totally well worth it!

These cookies are thick, soft, and chewy. And they’re about 3.5 inches (9.5 cm) in diameter – go big or go home, I always say!

Not only do these chocolate chunk cookies taste phenomenal, but they are also really easy to make – you don’t even need a mixer!

chocolate chunk cookies

Here’s what you’ll need:

Flour: I use all-purpose.

Butter: I use unsalted, but you could use salted butter instead, just omit the salt.

Sugar: I use a combination of granulated sugar, packed light brown and dark, packed brown sugar. The dark brown sugar gives a really nice, caramel flavor!

1 Egg: I use organic.

Salt: I use to enhance the overall flavors, but you could leave it out if you’re using salted butter.

Cornstarch: I use a tablespoon.

Baking soda: This is needed to leaven the cookie, of course. Make sure it hasn’t expired!

Chocolate: I use good quality dark, semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, cut into chunks instead of chocolate chips.

SECRETS TO MAKING THE ULTIMATE CHOCOLATE CHUNK COOKIE

  • See all those puddles of chocolate in the picture below?

chocolate chunk cookies

You won’t get the same gooey results with chocolate chips; use good quality dark, semisweet or bittersweet chocolate instead. Also, when you chop the chocolate, you have complete control over how big you want your chunks to be! This is important because when the chunks are all different sizes, they make the cookies all gooey, rich, luscious, and chocolaty!

  • My secret ingredient is cornstarch! Using cornstarch helps make the cookies chewy and maintain a soft center. This is something I learned from one of my favorite pastry gurus, Anna Olson.
  • DO NOT OVERMIX THE DOUGH. This could make the cookies hard.
  • DO NOT OVERBAKE. The best time to take them out of the oven is when they still look a bit underbaked – soft in the middle, but brown around the edges.
  • When you take them out of the oven, let them cool on the cookie sheet for about 10 minutes, otherwise they’ll fall apart when you transfer them.
  • Using a cookie scoop ensures that all the cookies are the same size, allowing them to bake uniformly.
  • For an extra chocolate kick, press a few chocolate chunks on top of each cookie as soon as you take them out of the oven. Trust me on this one, guys! It’s unbelievable!

TIPS

  • Before adding the chocolate to the dough, you could sift the chocolate chunks after you chop them if you don’t want the really tiny bits and shards to spread throughout the cookies.
  • You could keep the cookie dough in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

How to freeze the cookie dough

Use a small cookie scoop or teaspoon to make small balls of dough and then put them on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Cover them with plastic wrap and put them in the freezer. After about an hour, take the tray out of the freezer and put the frozen dough balls in a freezer bag or other container and freeze for about a month. Defrost them in the refrigerator and then bake as directed or you could bake them frozen; just add a few more minutes to the baking time.

How to store your baked cookies

When the cookies are completed cooled, store them in an airtight container. They will stay fresh at room temperature for about a week.

If you’re looking for some more cookie inspiration, check out my other cookie recipes!

~Voula

Let me know how these chocolate chunk cookies turned out for you in the comments below! I’d love to hear from you!

chocolate chunk cookies

Ultimate Chocolate Chunk Cookies (+ A Secret Ingredient)

The epitome of the perfect chocolate chunk cookie: thick and crispy on the outside, soft, chewy and gooey in the middle and packed with oodles and oodles of melted pools of chocolate! These cookies are to die for!
Prep Time10 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: easy, chocolate chunk cookies
Servings: 12

Ingredients

  • 191 g (1 1/2 cups) all purpose flour (+ extra if needed*)
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 113 g (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, melted
  • 50 g (1/4 cup) granulated sugar
  • 50 g (1/4 cup) packed light brown sugar
  • 50 g (1/4 cup) dark packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 150 g (5.3 oz) good quality dark, semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, cut into chunks + 25 g/1 oz extra to top hot cookies (optional)

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 180 °C / 350°F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
  • In a bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt until combined.  Set aside.
  • In another bowl, whisk together the melted butter with the sugars until creamy.
  • Add the egg & whisk again for a few seconds, until it's well incorporated.
  • Add the flour mixture and mix until combined.
    * If the dough is too wet, add a little bit more flour, one tablespoon at a time, but don't overmix.
  • Fold in the chocolate chunks, using a spatula or wooden spoon (or by hand), until they are evenly combined.
  • Using a cookie scoop or a teaspoon, form dough balls that are about 30 g (1.1 oz) each.  Place them on a baking sheet, about 2 inches (5 cm) apart.
  • Bake for about 10-15 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown.  The centers may look slightly undercooked.
  • Remove the cookies from the oven & immediately press some extra chocolate chunks on top of the cookies, if you like.
  • Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for about 10 minutes or DEVOUR them while they’re still nice and warm! 
  • Transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Store the cookies in an airtight container for up to a week.
  • Enjoy!

Notes

 
  • You could keep the cookie dough in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • To Freeze the Cookie Dough: Use a small cookie scoop or teaspoon to make small balls of dough and then put them on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Cover them with plastic wrap and put them in the freezer. After about an hour, take the tray out of the freezer and put the frozen dough balls in a freezer bag or other container and freeze for about a month. Defrost them in the refrigerator and then bake as directed or you could bake them frozen; just add a few more minutes to the baking time.
 © Pastry Wishes

Cheater’s Chocolate Mousse (+ Easy Chocolate Garnishes)

This creamy, decadent dessert is a snap to make! Its chocolaty, luscious, silky smooth texture is divine, but not overly sweet! Great for Valentine’s Day!

cheater’s chocolate mousse

This delicious and impressive chocolate mousse is perfect for entertaining or whenever you want a  super quick chocolate dessert that just melts in your mouth!

If you celebrate Valentine’s Day and you’re looking for something quick and easy to make, this no-bake mousse is  for you! But even if you don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day, you will absolutely love this chocolate mousse.

What makes this Cheater’s Chocolate Mousse AMAZING:

It has only 4 ingredients.

It’s made in ONE bowl.

It’s egg-free.

It’s quick.

It’s no-bake.

It’s easy.

It tastes like sheer heaven in a glass.

It’s eye-catching.

This is my kinda dessert!

Cheater’s Chocolate Mousse

What you’ll need :

Heavy Cream: This is also called whipping cream. It helps make the mousse thick and adds to the overall flavor.

Cocoa Powder: I use unsweetened Dutch process cocoa because it has a more intense chocolate flavor. It’s also darker than natural cocoa powder, but you can use either one, as long as it’s unsweetened.

Powdered Sugar: I use just enough to balance out the bitterness from the cocoa powder.

Cream Cheese: I use full fat cream cheese, but you could use low fat varieties.

Chocolate Cookies: I use crushed Oreo cookies, but you could use your favorite chocolate cookies, instead.

Chocolate: I use good quality bittersweet or semisweet chocolate and white chocolate to garnish the mousse with chocolate hearts and shards, however, this is optional.

Serving Glasses: I use liqueur glasses to serve them in, but they also look fantastic in tall wine glasses or small glass pots.

Pastry bag & tip: I use a Wilton 2D tip to make them look fancy! Of course, you don’t have to pipe them into serving glasses, you could just spoon them in.

Heart-shaped Cookie cutter: To make the chocolate cutouts.

How to make Two-toned Chocolate Hearts

I use silicone molds because the chocolates just pop right out without cracking or breaking. To make the chocolate hearts, melt the white chocolate and pour it into a silicone mold halfway, let it cool until chocolate is set and then top it with melted bittersweet chocolate. When it cools completely, gently remove the hearts from the mold. They’re great with cognac or on their own!

Two-toned chocolate hearts

For the Chocolate Shards/Cutouts

Melt the bittersweet chocolate and pour it on a large sheet of parchment paper. Evenly spread it out using an offset spatula or the back of a spoon. Let it cool until chocolate is set. Drizzle some melted white chocolate into lines over the dark chocolate. When it cools completely, cut out chocolate hearts using a heart-shaped cookie cutter or break it into shards.

Store the chocolate hearts, shards or cutouts in the refrigerator until you’re ready to garnish.

Variations 

Instead of crushed cookies or chocolate hearts, you could add grated chocolate, sprinkles, or nuts.

You could also add 1 or 2 teaspoons of your favorite liqueur if you want a boozy boost.

I hope you enjoy this Cheater’s Chocolate Mousse!

~Voula

LOOKING FOR MORE EASY AND DELICIOUS NO-BAKE DESSERTS? 

Check these out:

Let me know how this cheater’s chocolate mousse turns out for you in the comments below! I would love to hear from you!

Cheater’s Chocolate Mousse (+ Easy Chocolate Garnishes)

Prep Time30 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: easy chocolate mousse no-bake Valentine's Day
Servings: 4

Ingredients

For the mousse

  • ¾ cup (200 ml / 6 fl oz) heavy cream
  • ¼ cup (25 g / 0.9 oz) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ½ cup (60g / 2.1 oz) powdered sugar
  • 100 g (3.5 oz) cream cheese
  • 2 chocolate cookies, crushed
  • a pastry bag & tip (optional)

For the Two-toned Chocolate Hearts

  • 125 g / 4.4 oz bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 125 g / 4.4 oz white chocolate, chopped

For the Chocolate Shards/Cutouts

  • 50g / 2 oz bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 50g / 2 oz white chocolate, chopped

Instructions

Make the Garnishes

  • For the Two-toned Chocolate Hearts
    Place the chopped white chocolate in a heat-proof bowl, preferably glass, and place it over a pot of just simmering water. Make sure the bowl DOES NOT TOUCH the water or it may burn the chocolate! Pour into silicone molds halfway, and tap gently to even out the mixture, and let it cool until chocolate is set. Melt the semisweet chocolate the same way and pour on top of the white chocolate. Tap gently and allow it to cool completely. Gently remove the hearts from the mold. Refrigerate until you’re ready to garnish.
  • For the Chocolate Shards/Cutouts
    Melt the bittersweet chocolate as mentioned above and pour it on a large sheet of parchment paper. Evenly spread it out using an offset spatula or the back of a spoon. Let it cool until chocolate is set. Melt the white chocolate and drizzle it over the bittersweet chocolate. When it cools completely and has set, cut out chocolate hearts using a heart-shaped cookie cutter or break it into shards.
    Refrigerate until you’re ready to garnish.

Make the mousse

  • Using an electric hand mixer, whip together the heavy cream, unsweetened cocoa powder and powdered sugar until stiff peaks form, scraping the sides of the bowl often.
  • Add the cream cheese and beat until thoroughly combined.
  • Transfer to a pastry bag, fitted with a Wilton 2D tip, and pipe the mousse into serving glasses.
  • Top with crushed chocolate cookies and chocolate garnishes.
  • Enjoy!

Notes

Melting the chocolate: By melting the chocolate over barely simmering water, you prevent the chocolate from burning, which tastes awful. This is another reason why I usually don’t melt chocolate in the microwave, either. It’s best to use a heat-proof glass bowl that fits nicely over a pot of simmering water so that you can see how the chocolate changes as it melts. This is really a fool-proof way of melting chocolate because you have better control over the heat. It’s worth the extra time and effort!
Adapted from https://entertainingwithbeth.com/no-bake-chocolate-mousse/
© Pastry Wishes

Ouzo-spiked Chocolate Orange Cake 

Anyone for a slice of ouzo-spiked orange chocolate cake? This orange cake is made with a delicious chocolate ganache with a hint of ouzo which gives it a very subtle, yet distinctive flavor. You will definitely impress your guests with this unique cake!

ouzo-spiked chocolate orange cake

I have a confession to make. 

I do not like ouzo! 

If you’re not Greek, you’re probably saying “What?!? You’re Greek!” 

And if you’re Greek, you’re probably saying “What?!? How can you possibly not enjoy a shot of ouzo with a ‘meze’ by a beautiful beachside tavern overlooking the Aegean?”

I know, I know… weird!

I just never liked ouzo. I’m pretty sure I’m the only one in my family that doesn’t like it!  

Having said that, though, I do like ouzo in some desserts. For example, it’s wonderful in Kourabiedes!

If you’re not familiar with Ouzo, it has a unique flavor which I find pairs well with chocolate! It’s not intense, but it offers a very delicate aroma and taste. Together with the orange cake, it’s phenomenal! 

This ouzo-spiked chocolate orange cake is remarkably moist, but not too sweet or rich.

Ouzo-spiked chocolate orange cake

Why you’ll love this Ouzo-spiked Chocolate Orange Cake:

This cake is really easy to make with simple ingredients. It would also make a beautiful gift! 

You could also top the chocolate ganache with some extra orange zest or even chopped nuts! 

Orange + Chocolate + Ouzo = A DELICIOUS COMBINATION!

I really hope you enjoy this cake!

~Voula

Let me know how this Ouzo-spiked Chocolate Orange Cake turned out for you in the comments below! I’d love to hear from you!

ouzo-spiked chocolate orange cake

OUZO-SPIKED CHOCOLATE ORANGE CAKE

Prep Time15 mins
Course: Dessert
Keyword: chocolate orange cake, ganache, ouzo

Ingredients

  • 2 ½  cups (320 g / 11.2 oz) all purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (4 oz / 113 g) butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup (200g) sugar
  • Zest of 4 oranges, finely grated (use less if you don’t want an intense orange flavor)
  • Juice from 1 orange (about ¼ cup / 60 ml / 2 fl oz)
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ cup buttermilk (or regular milk plus 1 tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice)

Ouzo Chocolate Ganache

  • 100 gr (3.5 oz) good quality bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 100 ml (3.5 fl oz) heavy cream
  • ½ tablespoon Ouzo 

Optional Toppings

  • finely grated orange zest or chopped walnuts

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 175 °C / 350 °F
  • Grease and flour a (fluted) tube pan or Bundt pan. Set aside.

Make the cake

  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  • In another bowl, beat the butter with a hand mixer until creamy (about 1-2 minutes).
  • Add the orange zest and sugar and beat until fluffy (about 3 minutes), scraping the bowl frequently.
  • Add the eggs, one at a time, beating on medium speed for about a minute after each addition.
  • Add the flour mixture, the orange juice, and buttermilk alternately to the butter mixture, beating on high speed until thoroughly combined.
  • Pour into prepared pan and bake for 45-50 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. When it’s done, remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool in the pan for about 15 minutes.
  • Then invert the cake on a wire rack or a large serving plate and allow it to cool completely before adding the Ouzo Chocolate Ganache.

Make the Ouzo Chocolate Ganache

  • Heat the cream until very hot, but not boiling.
  • Pour the cream over the finely chopped chocolate and set aside for about 2 minutes. Stir the chocolate mixture until the chocolate has melted, and then stir in the ouzo.
  • Pour/Spoon the Ouzo Chocolate Ganache on the cooled cake. If you want, decorate with extra orange zest or chopped walnuts.
  • Enjoy!

Notes

If you don’t have buttermilk, just add a tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice to milk. Stir and let it sit for a few minutes.
© Pastry Wishes