Fondue from Lorraine Wallace's Mr. and Mrs. Sunday's Suppers
Fondue from Lorraine Wallace's Mr. and Mrs. Sunday's Suppers

Tips from the pros for a stress-free Valentine's Day feast.  Fox News Radio's Lilian Huang Woo learns about wine pairings, rolling customized truffles and even what the hottest (ahem) aphrodisiac foods are.

 

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Chocolate Pistachio Tart W Fresh Raspberries Copyright © 2015 by Fritz Knipschildt
Chocolate Pistachio Tart W Fresh Raspberries
Copyright © 2015 by Fritz Knipschildt

 

Chocolate Pistachio Tart with Fresh Raspberries

Pistachios always make the list of everyone's favorite nuts. I know they are on mine! They are rich and buttery and used in both sweet and savory dishes. They shine in desserts such as this, where they add their body and flavor to the simple pastry crust, which cradles a classic dark chocolate ganache topped with rows of fresh raspberries.

Makes one 14 by 4-inch tart

Crust

2 1⁄4 ounces shelled whole pistachios, toasted (see page 210)

1 1⁄4 cups all-purpose flour

2⁄3 cup confectioners' sugar

1⁄2 teaspoon salt

1⁄2 cup (1 stick) plus 1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces

1 large egg yolk

Filling

9 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

1 1⁄4 cups heavy cream

3 tablespoons honey

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

1 1⁄2 cups fresh raspberries

To make the crust: In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, process the pistachios until finely ground. Add the flour, confectioners' sugar, and salt and process until well blended.

Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the egg yolk and blend just until the dough comes together in a cohesive mass, 5 to 8 seconds.

Gather the dough and form it into a disk. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Meanwhile, position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F.

Roll out the chilled dough on a lightly floured surface until it is about 1⁄4 inch thick and large enough to fit into a 14 by 4-inch tart pan. This is very thin and the dough is fragile, so work with a light hand. Lift the dough (roll it around the rolling pin, if that makes it easier) and drape it over the pan. Gently press the dough into the tart pan. Trim the overhanging dough.

Line the tart crust with parchment paper or waxed paper and fill it with pie weights, rice, or dried beans to weight it.

Bake the weighted tart crust until the dough looks dry when the parchment paper is lifted, 25 to 30 minutes.

Transfer the tart pan to a wire rack, remove the parchment paper and pie weights, and cool completely.

To make the filling: Put the chocolate in a heatproof bowl.

In a heavy saucepan, bring the cream and honey to a boil over medium-high heat. Once it's bubbling, pour the cream mixture over the chopped chocolate and stir until the chocolate melts and the mixture is smooth and evenly colored.

Whisk in the butter until incorporated and smooth. Pour the ganache into the cooled tart crust. Set aside at room temperature for at least 4 hours to cool and set. If not serving right away, refrigerate for up to 8 hours or overnight.

Just before serving, arrange the raspberries over the top of the tart.

Note: For an extra-special presentation, use a piping bag fitted with a small plain tip to dot the top of each raspberry with melted white chocolate.

Photography from CHOCOPOLOGIE by Fritz Knipschildt.
Photography from CHOCOPOLOGIE by Fritz Knipschildt.

 

Milk Chocolate-Peanut Butter Truffles

Is there a better flavor combination than chocolate and peanut butter? As I have said elsewhere, I didn't know much about peanut butter when I lived in Denmark, but almost as soon as I landed in the USA, I started to experiment with the luscious, buttery spread. Now I can't get enough of it!

Makes about 25 truffles

1 pound milk chocolate, coarsely chopped

1 cup heavy cream

1 cup smooth peanut butter

1⁄2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

4 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped, for coating

About 2 cups crushed salted roasted peanuts, for coating

Put the pound of chopped milk chocolate in a heatproof bowl.

In a heavy saucepan, heat the cream, peanut butter, and sugar over medium-high heat until boiling. As soon as the cream mixture boils, slowly pour it over the chopped chocolate, whisking to blend and encourage melting.

Add the butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, whisking until the butter is completely incorporated and emulsified into the ganache. Whisk until smooth and set aside until the ganache cools to warm room temperature (body temperature).

Cover the ganache and refrigerate for 1 to 4 hours.

Remove the ganache from the refrigerator. Pinch off pieces about the size of walnuts and roll them between your palms. They do not have to be perfect rounds but can look a little uneven, like actual truffles. Arrange the truffles on baking sheets and refrigerate for about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, melt the 4 ounces of bittersweet or semisweet chocolate according to the instructions on page 32. Let the chocolate cool slightly.

Spread the peanuts on a flat plate or shallow dish.

Wearing latex gloves, dip your fingers in the melted chocolate.

Lift a rolled truffle from the baking sheet and dip it in the melted chocolate to coat. Roll the coated truffle in the peanuts and set on a clean baking sheet or similar tray. When all the truffles are dipped and rolled, let them set for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

Copyright © 2015 by Fritz Knipschildt. Used by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

 

Chandon Pinkalicious
Chandon Pinkalicious

 

 

 

Classic Cheese Fondue

I think fondue never goes out of style, and indeed, it's popular once again. This recipe is one to enjoy with someone you love, and I promise it will be memorable. It is especially nice because you get to use your hands. Also, this is a last'minute experience, as you make everything on the spot and then sit down to eat it. Gruyere makes the cheese sauce sweet and nutty, while sharp cheddar adds zest. Serve the fondue with cubes of good bread, sliced apples, small boiled potatoes, thick cubes of ham, and lightly steamed broccoli and cauliflower for dipping, if you like.

 

Serves 2

 

1 garlic clove, halved

8 ounces Gruyere cheese, grated

4 ounces aged sharp cheddar cheese, grated

½ cup dry white wine

2 teaspoons cornstarch

1 teaspoon lemon juice

2 teaspoons kirsch, brandy, or cognac

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

 

Rub the inside of a cheese fondue pot or medium enameled cast'iron casserole dish with the garlic clove; discard the garlic. Combine the Gruyère and cheddar with the wine, cornstarch, and lemon juice in the fondue pot and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the cheeses begin to melt, about 5 minutes. Add the kirsch and a generous pinch each of salt and pepper and continue to cook, stirring gently, until creamy and smooth, about 10 minutes; don't overcook the fondue or it will get stringy. Serve immediately.

 

Excerpted from MR. & MRS. SUNDAY SUPPERS © 2015 by Lorraine Wallace. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.

 

 

 

Milk Chocolate-Peanut Butter Truffles

Is there a better flavor combination than chocolate and peanut butter? As I have said elsewhere, I didn't know much about peanut butter when I lived in Denmark, but almost as soon as I landed in the USA, I started to experiment with the luscious, buttery spread. Now I can't get enough of it!

Makes about 25 truffles

1 pound milk chocolate, coarsely chopped

1 cup heavy cream

1 cup smooth peanut butter

1⁄2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

4 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped, for coating

About 2 cups crushed salted roasted peanuts, for coating

Put the pound of chopped milk chocolate in a heatproof bowl.

In a heavy saucepan, heat the cream, peanut butter, and sugar over medium-high heat until boiling. As soon as the cream mixture boils, slowly pour it over the chopped chocolate, whisking to blend and encourage melting.

Add the butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, whisking until the butter is completely incorporated and emulsified into the ganache. Whisk until smooth and set aside until the ganache cools to warm room temperature (body temperature).

Cover the ganache and refrigerate for 1 to 4 hours.

Remove the ganache from the refrigerator. Pinch off pieces about the size of walnuts and roll them between your palms. They do not have to be perfect rounds but can look a little uneven, like actual truffles. Arrange the truffles on baking sheets and refrigerate for about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, melt the 4 ounces of bittersweet or semisweet chocolate according to the instructions on page 32. Let the chocolate cool slightly.

Spread the peanuts on a flat plate or shallow dish.

Wearing latex gloves, dip your fingers in the melted chocolate.

Lift a rolled truffle from the baking sheet and dip it in the melted chocolate to coat. Roll the coated truffle in the peanuts and set on a clean baking sheet or similar tray. When all the truffles are dipped and rolled, let them set for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

 

Copyright © 2015 by Fritz Knipschildt. Used by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.