Several days ago, I wanted to work this recipe for the really fun Royal Foodie Joust that Jenn organizes every month. Such an entertaining event - the whole idea of picking a trio of ingredients for each month. Some of the combinations are insanely imaginative and the results often sound fabulous - nothing like stretching the boundaries, huh? :)
So, I made this dessert over a week ago, but never got around to posting it and sending it to Jenn. But it turned out pretty good, so might as well talk about it, huh? The ingredients for December were pomegranate, pistachio and mint. They seemed like pretty good candidates for pandering to my sweet tooth.
I poked around an all-time favourite - The Ultimate Desserts Cookbook and stumbled upon this Chocolate Chestnut Pots recipe that I ended up reworking to suit my needs.
Deanna Troi in Star Trek: The Next Generation
Anyway, I think this whole recipe thing was just my excuse to work with chocolate. *drool* Chocolate makes me happy and excited and hyper and I often skip around town once I eat some. *so* good! And yes, I can be a bit of a chocolate snob - I definitely prefer dark or extra-dark or bittersweet, I check for fair trade logos on the chocolate, I check the cocoa butter content and I double-check the emulsifiers. Can't help it, I like cocoa :)
As I started working this recipe, I flipped out a bit about the butter and eggs that this recipe seemed to want. After all, I wanted to go on this mini detox kick for a while :) So, I ended up skipping the egg yolks and using Earth Balance instead of butter - so much for someone who craves "real" cocoa butter in her chocolate :)
I could drown in a pot of chocolate :)
10 oz dark chocolate (bar)
4 T Madeira or Muscat
Arils of 1 pomegranate
2 T earth balance (or butter)
2 eggs - whites only
Grind up the pomegranate arils and strain it to get the juice out (P.S.: Freshly squeezed pomegranate juice tastes awesome!) You will need about 1.25 cups of juice for this recipe.
Beat the egg whites till they form stiff peaks and set them aside.
In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, melt the chocolate on low.
Once it starts to soften, add the madeira by the spoon, stirring constantly.
Continue stirring till the chocolate has melted completely.
Take the chocolate mixture off the heat.
Now add the margarine or butter 1 T at a time till completely melted and blended into the chocolate mixture.
Now add the pomegranate juice, 1/4 cup at a time, stirring it in slowly.
Add the beaten egg whites, a spoonful at a time, folding it in gently.
Now pour the chocolate mixture into ramekins or small cups and let them cool before topping with the cream.
Pistachio Mint Cream
2 T whipping cream or creme fraiche
5-6 mint leaves
Grind up the pistachios and mint in a pestle.
Beat the cream till stiff and whipped.
Fold in the pistachio mixture gently till blended with the whipped cream.
The one mistake I made was here - I continued beating the cream after adding the pistachios and mint. This just made the cream clot up and get hard. Instead, I should've just folded the nuts and mint into the whipped cream and let it stay soft, yet fluffy.
Top the chocolate pots with the cream and set in the refrigerator for atleast 2 hours.
Remember to take the chocpots out of the fridge about 20 minutes before eating.
*drool*! The only thing that could've been better was the cream - I'll work on that next time :)
Am shipping this off to Deepa for Jihva for Ingredients (Indira's brainchild) - the current theme is chocolate.