This recipe came to be thanks to Foodie Fights! If you don’t know what Foodie Fights is all about I encourage you to visit their site, but the gist of it is this: food bloggers sign up, 2 ingredients are chosen, and they must cook one dish using those 2 ingredients. I wanted to sign up right away and am glad I did! Those of us doing this competition are working with goat cheese and chipotle. I have cooked with neither of these in the past. That is what makes this competition so great- it’s a learning experience. I have to admit, I did come up with quite a few ideas for what to make, but after much hemming and hawing I decided to do a dessert. Why? Because I LOVE chocolate and spice.
So off I went looking for these two ingredients. There was a lot more goat cheese variety to choose from than chipotle. I went with the dried chipotle because my other option was a can of chipotle peppers soaking in adobo and I wasn’t sure how that would go with the chocolate. Now, a little background on chipotle peppers courtesy of Wikipedia . . . The chipotle pepper is really just a jalapeno that has been smoked. Well, a little more than that but you can read about that if you are interested. At first I thought I would just make my own with the jalapenos I have in the garden but then I saw how many days that would take. Besides that none of my jalapenos are red yet. Maybe next year.
First I prepared a flourless chocolate cake adapted from Epicurious. This recipe is so easy I find myself making it more often than brownies or regular cake. It satisfies both the brownie and cake craving and is easier than both to make. You need:
- 4 ounces fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened)
- 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
Preheat oven to 375°F and spray pan(s)/mold(s).
Chop chocolate into small pieces. In a double boiler or metal bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water melt chocolate with butter, stirring, until smooth. Remove top of double boiler or bowl from heat and whisk sugar into chocolate mixture. Add eggs and whisk well. Sift 1/2 cup cocoa powder over chocolate mixture and whisk until just combined.
Next I added 1/2 of a finely chopped chipotle pepper that I had soaked in warm water for about 20 minutes.
I then used a teaspoon and filled each square of a Wilton bite-sized brownie mold about 3/4 full.
Next I made the cheese mixture.
My son Andrew thought he would just eat that right away and grabbed it from me. The kid has acquired tastes for a 2-year-old . . .
I think that honey and cinnamon go very well with chocolate and hot spice so I put a little of each in- probably 2 tablespoons of honey and 1/2 tsp. cinnamon to the 5 oz of goat cheese.
Next I swirled a bit of that mixture on top of the chocolate cake mixture. I used a baby spoon so probably about 1/2 teaspoon per square. When it came out of the oven it looked like this:
Notice one is missing. I couldn’t resist. Now at this point I probably should have stopped but I had all kinds of ideas for decorating. There is a variety of chipotle pepper known as morita which in Spanish translates to “blackberry” or “raspberry”. I had an idea to make a dessert using these cake bites decorated with a blackberry frosting and then calling them moritas but they didn’t turn out as cute as I would have liked and I couldn’t decide if the blackberry flavor added to the overall taste of the cake bite or made it much too complex, covering up other, more important flavors. So here are some variations:
With frosting and saffron flower for decoration. And let me just say that my son thought that saffron flower (not to be confused with the spice saffron) tasted like “icky hay bales”.
He had to wipe his tongue on his sleeve to get rid of the taste . . .
But one cake bite with frosting was a good enough cure.
And finally here is one variation with “the works”:
To be honest, I was a little disappointed with myself. I was on the right track but it just wasn’t “wowing” me so I decided to think backwards and just keep it simple. I used a large star tip and piped some plain white frosting on top. Next, because I felt it wasn’t spicy enough I added a slice of Thai pepper on top and then drizzled a little melted chocolate on top. This was a much better presentation in my opinion.
I have plenty of the dried chipotle left over. I can’t wait to marinate some chicken using the chipotle and make a homemade pizza (also with goat cheese???) or a goat cheese chipotle mac ‘n cheese or several other things. Thanks to Foodie Fights for introducing me to this delicious combination. I hope nobody is too afraid to try this dessert, it really is delicious!