Cioccolata foresta nera (Black Forest Chocolate Trifle)

This is a layered dessert or you can assemble it as a round cake. I would translate it’s name in english as Black Forest Chocolate Trifle.

The layers from the top to the bottom

White chocolate mousse

Milk chocolate mousse

Dark chocolate mousse

Cherry filling

Italian sponge soaked in or brushed with chocolate sauce (it depends how soft or hard they are)

I try to make it like a tiramisu in a bigger flat glass container or dish.

The recipe

I will write how I make this dessert in step to step.

Take a dish in which you would like to serve the dessert.

First make the chocolate sauce.

50 g dark chocolate

50 ml double cream

150 ml milk

1 teaspoon almond liqueur or flavour as you like

Bring the double cream almost to boiling point then remove from the heat and add chocolate pieces. Stir until it melt and add the remaining ingredients like milk and almond flavours.Soak the sponge fingers in the sauce and make a layer from them in the dish you want to use. Open the can of the cherry filling, pour the content of it into a strainer to separate the fruit from the coulis. arrange the cherry over the sponge layer. Keep it refrigerated until you are ready with the dark chocolate mousse.

Dark chocolate mousse

100 g dark chocolate melted

200 g double cream

Beat the double cream until it forms peaks. Do not over beat, be careful, we don’t want it to be very stiff. Transfer the cream into a bigger bowl and fold the melted and room temperatured chocolate to the cream carefully. If the mixture becomes harder put the bowl over simmering water to make it softer.

Take the dish from the fridge and spread the mousse over the cherries, even the surface with a palette knife.

Return it back to the fridge until you make the milk chocolate mousse.

Milk chocolate mousse

100 g milk chocolate melted

200 ml double cream

Make the mousse by the same method you made the dark chocolate mousse. Spread over the dark chocolate mousse and again send back to the fridge.

White chocolate mousse

100 g white chocolate

200 g double cream

2 egg yolks

40 g granulated sugar

4 g gelatine

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a pot put the double cream and bring to the boil. Add the broken white chocolate and stir until the chocolate melts. Chill the mixture well minimum overnight.

Soak the gelatine in enough water.

Using the sugar and the water, make a hot syrup. Put the egg yolks into a bowl and with a hand held electric beater start beating while adding the hot syrup. Beat until it is tripled in volume. Add the vanilla extract.

Take out the white chocolate flavoured cream from the fridge and beat it with an electric beater until it forms peaks. Do not overbeat!

Squeeze the gelatine, add a tablespoon of hot water and stir until it dissolves.

Fold the egg mixture into the white chocolate mousse, add a little to the gelatine, mix well, then fold it into the chocolate mousse, fold well.

Spread over the milk chocolate layer. Now, your three-chocolate layered dessert is ready, keep it refrigerated for a few hours or overnight is better. The longer you keep it in the fridge, the better flavours you will have, but an overnight is enough.

When you want to serve your divine dessert, cut it in the dish and carefully with a cake spatula, remove the pieces from the dish and serve.

Garnish with miscellaneous dark, milk and white  chocolate shavings (simply shave a piece of chocolate with your vegetable peeler) scattered over the top.

Enjoy!

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Alcoholic beverages – fruit matches

Possible matches:

Rum – goes very well with most of the fruits.

White rum – pineapple, lime, mint, grapefruit/maraschino liqueur,

Sherry –

Cognac –

Damson – gin and rum

Southern Comfort liqueur – orange, lemon-lime

Red wine -fresh raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, or halved strawberries, lemon, lime

White wine – nectarine, green or red grapes, peach schnapps

Vodka -cranberry/apple juice with ginger ale, chocolate, sun dried tomato puree-horseradish-celery,

Kaffir – lime vodka – lemongrass syrup

Maraschino/Triple sec – watermelon, honeydew melon

Sparkling wine -cranberry/apple juice with ginger ale

Sparkling water – strawberry gelatin mix, which mixes with pineapple juice, orange juice, and fresh lemon juice.

Tequila – lime, orange, watermelon

white chocolate liqueur, Irish cream liqueur, crème de cacao, and plenty of vanilla ice cream.

Gin – strawberries, elderflower liqueur,

Non alcoholic matches

Pineapple juice and orange juice concentrate are stirred up with lemon-lime soda and then this concoction is placed in the freezer overnight. Let it thaw right before the party and this slushy drink is ready to serve.

2 1/2 cups white sugar, 6 cups water, 2 (3 ounce) packagesstrawberry flavored Jell-O® mix, 1 (46 fluid ounce) can pineapple juice, 2/3 cup lemon juice, 1 quart orange juice, 2 (2 liter) bottles lemon-lime flavored carbonated beverage

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10 Desserts That Brits Miss When They Leave the U.K.

I simply fond of discovering the world. If I had lived thousands or hundreds of years ago I might even have been Odyssey, Marco Polo or Kristoforo Columbus.

When one day I was busy with reading on the web, I found an article with the same header here.

The most popular 10 english (one of the commenters wrote) desserts

Trifle, Eton mess, Arctic roll, Jam roly-poly, Parkin, Banoffee pie, Bread and butter pudding with vanilla or bourbon sauce or creme anglaise, Knickerbocker glory, Sticky toffee pudding, Spotted dick

Commenters added a few more desserts to the main list: Treacle pudding,  Bakewell tart, Battenburg cake, Rhubarb crumble, Eccles cakes, Chorley cakes, 99 flakes, Pavlova.

I have heard already about a few of those desserts, but most of them like Knickerbocker glory, Battenburg cake, Chorley cakes and a few more were completely unknown to me.

I decided, that I will reproduce a few of them in my kitchen.

Before I started turning my kitchen into a production pastry kitchen let me memorise every dessert’s description for the future.

Trifle is made from yumminess like custard, whipped cream, sponge cake, jelly, and a selection of fruits such as strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries. Picture gallery

The more daring like to spike their trifle with alcoholic beverages like cognac or brandy, liqueurs and fortified wines like Sherry and Marsala, or even wine and champagne. You can hide the alcoholic beverages in various ingredients such as the custard, the whipped cream or the jelly. It is the most important to assure that the alcohol should match the flavours of the fruits.

Possible alcoholic beverages fruit matches

Eton mess is a dessert which consists of strawberries, cream, and pieces of meringue all mixed together in one big mess. Picture gallery

You can read my White Chocolate Eton Mess here

Artic roll consists a log of vanilla ice cream encased in a tube of sponge cake with a paper-thin layer of strawberry sauce in between.

Jam roly-poly is a flat-rolled suet pudding, which is then spread with jam and rolled up, similar to a Swiss roll, then steamed or baked. In days past, Jam Roly-Poly was also known as shirt-sleeve pudding, because it was often steamed and served in an old shirt-sleeve. Because of this, another nickname for the pudding was dead-man’s arm, or dead man’s leg. Picture gallery

Knickerbocker glory is an ice cream sundae made with fruit, cream and syrup. Picture gallery

Battenburg cake is a light sponge cake with the pieces covered in jam. The cake is covered in marzipan and, when cut in cross section, displays a distinctive two-by-two check pattern alternately coloured pink and yellow.

The cake is made by baking a yellow and a pink sponge cake separately, and then cutting and combining the pieces in a chequered pattern. The cake is held together by apricot jam and covered with marzipan. Picture gallery

Eccles cake, sometimes also called Squashed Fly cake is a small, round cake filled with currants and made from flaky pastry with butter, sometimes topped with demerara sugar.The Blackburn cake is similarly named for the city of Blackburn, using stewed apples in place of currants. Picture gallery

This is my eccles cake recipe

Parkin or Perkin is a gingerbread cake traditionally made with oatmeal and treacle which originated in northern England. Picture gallery

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Chicken Alfredo with zucchini spagetti

I liked the pasta a’la Chicken Alfredo at the Vapiano in Soho. but I have to be careful with pasta..

Because I have a diet, I have to eat  protein with vegetables. Forone meal minimum 50 g chicken breast

In order to make it a little healthier by decreasing the amount of carbohydrates, I modified the recipe and replaced the spaghetti with vegetable.

I shredded the green and yellow zucchini and used as spaghetti.

For 4 persons you need:

200 g chicken breast diced (if you like to use more meat no problem)

1 egg white

1 teaspoon corn flour

3-5 tablespoons vegetable oil

1-2 tablespoon chopped garlic

1/2 tablespoon chopped green chili

1/2 teaspoon chili flakes

1-1 green and yellow zucchini shredded

100-150 g grated grana padano or parmesan

Instructions

First mix the chicken breast cubes with one egg white and 1-2 teaspoon of corn flour, season with salt and coarse black pepper (I love the pungency of black pepper) and let it rest for a while. Heat the 4-5 tablespoons of oil in your wok.

When it is hot add the chicken breast cubes, a small amount at one time and stir fry until it gets white. Continue until you fried all the chicken. Put all the chicken back into the wok, and add the garlic and fry for a minute or more then add the chopped green chili and the chili flakes. Season with salt and black pepper.

Turn the heat on and add the zucchini spaghetti, and fold continuously until it gets warm through. Add half the cheese and continue folding.

Scatter with chopped parsley or chopped coriander, season with salt and black pepper if it is needed.

Serve on a big plate or on individual plates scattered generously with the remaining parmesan. Garnish with fresh parsley.

IMG_20150902_160632

Enjoy!

I scattered with chili flakes and course black pepper generously. I drank a glass of Gewurztraminer after it. Well, the wine was a very good choice! Do you know why? I tell you here

 

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Italian dinner in Vapiano, Soho, London

I work in an indian restaurant as a chef in London.

It has  a very good reputation and and an excellent kitchen.

We run every evening at full house.

But being an europen I was hungry for something that evokes my home.

My son recommended a place in Soho.

An Italian restaurant. It’s name is Vapiano

I said yes instantly, and got excited.

To be honest I prefer cooking home, because our home made dinners are more than a match to restaurant ones.

The whole family sits around the table served with  beautiful Herend chinaware.

But I am ready to enjoy new places and flavours.

The menu we were going to eat was:

Pasta a’la chicken Alfredo

The chef made the dish in front of my eyes.

He heated oil in his wok added 5-6 pieces of chicken breast and stir fried until it got pale, then added garlic. He fried for another minute then added chopped chili. He added a little white wine, seasoned with salt and black pepper.

In the meantime he took a small bag of linguinie from the fridge display behind him and put in a basket to warm up in warm water.

He separated one egg and added the yolk to the chicken. Stired gently to make a smooth sauce-like consistency rather than crambled egg, then added the pasta and tossed with the chicken.

He served in a stylish bowl, grated the parmesan cheese over it, garnished with parsley and I could go.

The pasta was perfectly seasoned but it was a little sticky to me, because of the egg yolk I think (I like it when the pasta runs and you have to be a little skilled to twist around your fork and place on your spoon). The salad was a perfect match to the pasta unlike the cyder I chose (Aspall Suffolk cyder). I should have chosen a glass of wine instead.

Overall it was good, but I have to control the amount of carbohydrates, so I modified the recepie and replaced the pasta with zucchini spaghetti.

Rate: 3 STAR

You can read the recipe below.

Chicken Alfredo with zucchini spaghetti

Insalate mista piccola

This was a simple green lettuce salad (cos, iceberg, gems, radicchio), cherry tomatos, little grated carrots.

It was served with ceasar  dressing.

It was a perfect match for the pasta.

Rate: 4 STAR

Cioccolata foresta nera

The dessert was a trifle served in a short glass and was made with white, milk and dark chocolate mousse, italian sponge. It was ready, the chef took from the fridge display behind him.

The top layer, the white chocolate mousse was a little dry, it should have been kept covered with cling film. The bottom layer was very hard, I couldn’t recognise what it was. The dark and milk chocolate mouuse was light, I liked them.

Overall I liked it although it was a big portion, it was a little heavy so I decided to make a light three choc mousse at home.

Rate: 3 STAR

Three chocolate mousse trifle with sponge

Cappuccino con panna

I closed the dinner with a coffee, I ordered a cappuccino with whipped cream (cappuccino con panna)

The barista was a bit puzzled with my order. Finally he made a cappuccino with milk froth and asked me how to serve the whipped cream.

He should have asked earlier, this way I had to mix the whipped cream and the milk froth.

Rate: 2 STAR

How to make cappuccino viennese

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