Dark Chocolate Hazelnut Cupcakes for Valentine

Chocolate Hazelnut Cupcakes 1If left to my own devices, I’d put chocolate at the top of the food pyramid, and not just any chocolate, a good dark one with 70 % or more cocoa. Chocoholics would probably agree with this reordering of the celebrated food chart, especially as February 14th approaches.

Each year I create a new chocolate treat to savor for Valentine’s Day, so for the past few days I’ve been working on a recipe for dark chocolate hazelnut cupcakes. Although baked in standard muffin tins, these rich cakes are petit, doming only slightly above their paper liners, but they are densely packed with intense chocolate flavor. Continue reading

Dark Chocolate Cashew Brownies

A fellow food writer recently asked me to name several items that are always on my holiday grocery list. Butter was at the top, followed by eggnog, beef tenderloin, and cranberries. Somehow I forgot to mention chocolate, nuts, Medjool dates, and champagne, other favorites that make frequent appearances in my grocery cart.This is the season of celebrations, so why not a few indulgences!?

Dark Chocolate Cashew Brownies are definitely a guilt-free pleasure: rich, decadent, and
addictive, these confections are made with a pound of semisweet chocolate, plenty of butter, and a touch of crème fraiche (France’s brilliant answer to sour cream). Oh, and did I mention that roasted cashews are stirred into the batter as well? Continue reading