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Beyond the Bar: 5 Must-Try Dishes that use Dark Chocolate

Are you a fan of dark chocolate? If yes, then you’re in for a treat! Dark chocolate is a versatile and indulgent ingredient that provides a rich depth of flavour to a wide range of sweet and savoury dishes. Dark chocolate, with its strong cocoa flavour and somewhat bitter overtones, may transform an ordinary meal into something special.

 

We’ve curated five delectable recipes that incorporate dark chocolate, perfect for those who love indulging in guilt-free, healthy, and delicious desserts. Let’s dive in!

 

1. Dark Chocolate Energy Balls

 

These energy balls are a perfect snack for those mid-day hunger pangs. Packed with nutrients and the goodness of dark chocolate, they’re easy to make and incredibly satisfying.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup dates
  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 2 cups of dark chocolate
  • Cocoa powder (optional)

Directions:

  1. Remove all pits from the dates.
  2. Blend all ingredients in a food processor until it forms a sticky mixture.
  3. Roll the mixture into small balls and dust with cocoa powder
  4. Refrigerate for an hour before serving.

2. Dark Chocolate Espresso Tapioca Pudding

 

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups water
  • 2/3 cup pearl tapioca
  • 1 carton (32 ounces) unsweetened almond milk
  • 4 large eggs, separated
  • 1-1/4 cups sugar, divided
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons instant espresso powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup dark baking cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Chopped chocolate-covered espresso beans, optional

Directions:

  1. In a large saucepan, combine water and tapioca; let stand 30 minutes. Whisk in almond milk, egg yolks, 1/2 cup sugar, espresso powder and salt. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, until slightly thickened, 10–15 minutes, stirring frequently. Combine 1/4 cup sugar and baking cocoa; stir into pan. Cook and stir 2 minutes longer.
  2. In a large bowl, beat egg whites on medium speed until foamy. Gradually add remaining 1/2 cup sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating on high after each addition until sugar is dissolved. Continue beating until soft, glossy peaks form.
  3. Gently fold a small amount of tapioca mixture into egg whites; return all to pan, whisking constantly. Cook and stir 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Cool 15 minutes; stir in vanilla. Transfer to dessert dishes. Press plastic wrap onto surface of pudding. Refrigerate until cold (pudding will thicken upon cooling). If desired, garnish with chopped espresso beans.

3. Salted Dark Chocolate Tart

 

Ingredients:

  • 1-1/2 cups crushed chocolate wafers (about 30 wafers)
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted

     caramel:

  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons butter, cubed
  • Dash of salt

     filling:

  • 2 cups dark chocolate, chopped
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon large-crystal sea salt

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, combine cookie crumbs and butter; press onto the bottom and up the side of a greased 9-in. fluted tart pan with removable bottom. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  2. For caramel, in a large heavy saucepan, spread sugar; cook, without stirring, over medium-low heat until it begins to melt. Gently drag melted sugar to center of pan so sugar melts evenly. Cook, without stirring, until melted sugar turns a medium-dark amber, 5–10 minutes. Immediately remove from heat, then slowly stir in cream, butter, and salt. Pour into the crust; refrigerate for 20 minutes.
  3. Place chocolate in a large bowl. In a small saucepan, bring cream just to a boil. Pour over chocolate; let stand 2 minutes. Stir until smooth. Stir in vanilla.
  4. Pour chocolate mixture over caramel. Sprinkle with sea salt. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Remove from the refrigerator about 30 minutes before serving.

4. Dark Chocolate Molten Cake

 

Ingredients:

  • 100g unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for the tins
  • cocoa powder, for dusting
  • 100g dark chocolate
  • 2 eggs, plus two egg yolks
  • 150g golden caster sugar
  • 50g plain flour
  • cream, ice cream or berries to serve

Directions:

  1. Heat the oven to 200 °C. Butter six metal pudding ramekins (about 150ml capacity), then add 1 tbsp of cocoa powder and shake around the inside of the ramekins to stick to the butter. Shake out the excess cocoa powder.
  2. Melt the 100g butter and chocolate together in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of boiling water or in a microwave in short blasts until melted and glossy. Leave it to cool a little.
  3. Put the eggs, egg yolks and sugar into a large bowl and beat with an electric whisk until pale and fluffy. The mixture should leave a trail on the surface for a few seconds when you remove the beaters.
  4. Fold the melted and cooled chocolate mixture into the eggs and sugar, then sift over the flour and gently fold this in, too, trying to keep as much air in the mixture as possible.
  5. Divide the mixture between the prepared moulds, filling them three-quarters full, and put on a baking tray. Transfer to the hot oven and cook for 12 mins until the mixture rises just above the moulds. Turn out onto serving plates and serve with cream, ice cream or berries.

5. Black Forest Gateau

 

Ingredients:

  • 250g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 150g butter, plus extra for the tin
  • 5 eggs, separated
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 30g ground almonds
  • 1 tbsp kirsch

     topping:

  • 250ml double cream
  • 2½ tbsp icing sugar
  • 1½ tbsp kirsch
  • ½ a jar berries of choice with Kirsch

Directions:

  1. Heat the oven to 160 °C. Butter and base-line a 23-cm-round springform cake tin with baking paper.
  2. Melt together the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl over (but not touching) a pan of gently simmering water (or melt in short bursts in the microwave).
  3. Put the egg yolks and whites in separate bowls. Beat the yolks until light and fluffy.
  4. Cool the chocolate mixture until lukewarm, then stir in 50g of sugar. Gradually stir in the egg yolks. Stir in the almonds and kirsch.
  5. Whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form, then whisk in the rest of the sugar, 2 tbsp at a time, until you have stiff, glossy meringue. Add a large spoonful of the egg whites to loosen the chocolate mixture, then gently fold in the rest of the meringue, keeping in as much air as possible.
  6. Spoon into the tin and bake for 30–35 minutes, then leave to cool completely in the tin. It will sink and crack a little, but you’ll cover it with decoration.
  7. To finish, whip together the cream, icing sugar and kirsch until soft peaks form. Dollop over the cake, then add berries and chocolate curls to finish.

These recipes are not only delicious but also showcase the versatility of dark chocolate and how it can be incorporated into various dishes. So go ahead, give these recipes a try and enjoy the rich flavours of dark chocolate in a healthier way!

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