Chocolate Banana Bread

This is what happens when there are too many overripe bananas in our house. It is adapted from a recipe I found on Food52.

1 1/4 c whole-wheat flour
1/4 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 c coconut oil, room temperature
1/2 c sugar
2 large eggs
3 – 4 mashed ripe banana
1/2 c plain Greek yogurt
1 tsp vanilla e
3/4 c chocolate chips
1 c grated zucchini

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 x 5 x 3-inch loaf pan and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking soda. 

In a large bowl, beat the oil and sugar for 2-3 minutes.  Add the eggs into the sugar and oil mixture, one at a time. Add the dry ingredients, beat to combine. Add the remaining ingredeints and beat to combine.

Pour into the pan and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour. When a toothpick comes out clean, the bread is ready.

Makes one loaf.

Crunchy Flourless Chocolate Cake

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This cake is oh so rich! The amazing Dorothy Greenspan came up with this one – she always nails it!

Ingredients:
14 TBSP butter, cut into small pieces
7 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
5 eggs at room temp
1 c brown sugar
2 tsp cornstarch
4 TBSP cocoa nibs

Preheat oven to 400. Spray a 9 inch glass pie dish.

Combine chocolate and butter in a glass container, microwave at 30% power in 40 sec intervals, stirring until smooth and shinny. Let cool slightly.

Whisk eggs in a stand mixer, add sugar and cornstarch, whisk until smooth. Stir in chocolate butter mixture and cocoa nibs until smooth. Pour into pan.

Bake 28 – 32 minutes until skewer comes out almost clean. Cool to room temp.

Makes 12 servings.

Beef Chili

IMG_9899.JPGSo the rain has finally come, and it’s chili time!! This was loosely inspired by a recipe from Food52. The secret to great chili is to let is simmer all day! The addition of coffee and chocolate make this one very unique and complex. Take a chance and try it you won’t regret it.

Ingredients:
1 lb ground beef
1 diced onion
2 diced bell peppers
4 cloves minced garlic
2 – 3 diced chipotle peppers in Adobo sauce
1 28 oz can tomatoes
1 16 oz can diced tomatoes with chiles
16 oz stout beer
2-3 dried bay leaves
1 TBSP ground cumin
2 TBSP chili powder
1 TBSP cayenne red pepper
1 TBSP salt
2 TBSP finely chopped dark chocolate (I use 70% cocoa)
2 TBSP instant coffee grounds

Garnish:
Sour cream
Chopped green onions
Shredded cheese

In a large pot, brown the beef over medium heat, remove. Add onions and peppers, cook 4 minutes until soft. Add garlic and chipolte peppers cook for an additional 30 seconds, add spices and cook 1 minute, stirring. Add remaining ingredients except garnish and stir to combine, stir in beef and cook partially covered over the lowest possible heat for several hours.

To serve top with with sour cream, cheese, green onions and what ever else you might fancy.

Serves 4 – 6.

Chocolate Caramel Mug Cake

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Sometimes you have to have cake and you have to have it now!! That’s where this recipe comes in… Cake in under 6 minutes!

Ingredients:
4 TBSP flour
3 TBSP sugar
3 TBSP cocoa powder
2 TBSP beaten egg or egg substitute
3 TBSP milk
2 TBSP vegetable oil
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 TBSP caramel sauce
Sea salt

Mix the flour, sugar, and cocoa powder in a mug. Add the egg, milk, oil, and vanilla and stir until well combined. Swirl in the caramel sauce or melted caramel and sprinkle the top with sea salt. Microwave on high for 1 minute or until the top is just dry.

Serves 1.

Fig, Almond, Chocolate and Honey Bites

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These little bites are amazing – and healthy. Another home run from my favorite cook book author, Patricia Wells.

Ingredients:
4 oz almonds, toasted and ground
2 oz bittersweet chocolate, broken
3 TBSP honey
2 TBSP water
Zest of one lemon
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
4 oz dried figs, finely chopped

In a small saucepan combine chocolate, water and honey over medium low heat until smooth. Stir in zest, salt, cinnamon, figs and ground almonds.

Spoon into a mini muffin pan lined with mini muffin wrappers. Chill for 30
Minutes. Store in fridge in an air tight container for up to 2 weeks.

Makes about 24.

Chocolate Custard with Cocoa Nibs

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This dessert is amazing and takes just a couple minutes to whip up.

Ingredients:
5 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
3/4 c half and half
2 TBSP butter
Salt
1 TBSP cocoa nibs

In a small pan heat cream and 1/4 c water until simmering. Add chocolate and butter and stir until melted. Pour into ramekins and chill.

When ready to serve sprinkle with cocoa nibs and salt.

Serves 4.

Dark Chocolate Macaroons

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This one is from one of my fav recipe blogs – Smitten kitchen. How can you go wrong with coconut and chocolate? These are so good – chewy, crunchy, coconut, chocolate goodness.

Ingredients:
4 ozs unsweetened chocolate, chopped small
14 oz. sweetened, flaked coconut
2/3 c coconut palm sugar
6 TBSP cocoa powder
3 large egg whites
1/4 tsp flaked sea salt
1/2 tsp vanilla

Heat oven to 325°F. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.

Melt chocolate in the microwave on 50% power and cook in 30 second intervals until melted.

In a food processor, blend the coconut for one full minute. Add sugar and cocoa powder, blend another full minute. Add egg whites, salt and vanilla and blend until combined, then the melted chocolate until smooth. With a tablespoon measure, scoop batter into 1-inch mounds. You can arrange the cookies fairly close together as they don’t spread, just puff a bit.

Bake cookies for 15 minutes, until the macaroons are shiny and just set. Let them rest on the tray for 10 minutes after baking.

Store in an airtight container.

Makes about 36.