Friday, November 18, 2011

Another Chocolate Lovers Delight!

Those of you who bake know that Chili Powder brings out the real smooth wonderful flavor of chocolate.  I have made this tart a bunch of times and everyone always rants and raves about the flavor, especially Chocoholics.  It is a good extra dessert for the holidays or when you need to take dessert for a potluck. 

Important note:  Make sure your guest know it contains chili powder and cinnamon, some people have allergies to them. 

One more thing, good regular chocolate works well if you cannot find Mexican chocolate, just make sure it is a good brand.

Let me know how it comes out or if you have any questions.

Chile Chocolate Torte with Cinnamon Whipped Cream

Makes: 12 to 16 servings
Prep: 30 minutes Chill: 3 hours Bake: 35 minutes 325 degrees F Cool: 1 hour

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • All-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole blanched almonds
  • 2 Tbsp. granulated sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 1 lb. Mexican chocolate, such as Ibarra, or 1 lb. semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 3 oz. semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup butter
  • 6 egg yolks
  • ¼ cup strong brewed coffee, cooled
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp. almond extract
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. chipotle chili powder or 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon (divided use)
  • 6 egg whites
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • Whole blanched, unblanched or candied almonds
  • Crushed chipotle chile pepper (optional)


1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Lightly coat 9-inch springform pan with nonstick cooking spray; line bottom with parchment paper; coat with cooking spray. Sprinkle with flour; shake excess; set aside.

2. In food processor bowl combine the 1 cup almonds, sugar, and 2 tablespoons flour. Cover; process until ground, 1 to 2 minutes.

3. In a large heavy saucepan, combine Mexican chocolate, semisweet chocolate, and butter. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until chocolate and butter are melted; cool 5 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, in large bowl combine egg yolks, coffee, vanilla, almond extract, and salt. Stir in almond mixture, chocolate mixture, chili powder, and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon. In another large bowl beat egg whites with electric mixer on high speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add the 1/4 cup granulated sugar, beating until stiff peaks, 1 to 2 minutes. Fold whites into chocolate mixture. Pour into pan.

5. Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until just set. Transfer pan to rack; cool 1 hour. Center will sink as cake cools. Refrigerate at least 3 hours.

6. To unmold cake, use a small sharp knife to loosen cake from sides of pan; remove sides of pan. Invert cake onto plate and remove pan bottom and parchment paper. Invert cake again onto platter.

7. In chilled bowl combine whipping cream, sugar, and remaining cinnamon. Beat until soft peaks form. Top with whipped cream. Sprinkle almonds and crushed chipotle chile pepper. Makes 12 to 16 servings

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Holiday Dessert

Well, already it is that time of year when cooking becomes fun.  Trying new and exciting dessert is a challenge for all of us.  I hope the following Cheesecake will be on your list, since you can decorate it for any holiday. This one takes a little longer, but is is soooooo worth it.

Decorate Cheesecake depending on the holiday.  For Thanksgiving, use candied corn, pumpkins or candied fall leaves.  Use your imagination.  It is fun.

Prepare this cake a day ahead.  It definitely needs 24 hours to set before you decorate it.  I usually make whipped cream to serve with it.  Make a caramel sauce to dribble on the plates for a decorative way to serve it. 
Yield: Makes 12 servings or 16 if you serve small slices.  (This is so delicious, good luck on that one.)


1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (from about 5 ounces graham crackers)
1/2 cup toasted almonds, finely chopped
1/2 cup English toffee bits (such as Skor or Heath)
2 tablespoons (packed) dark brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

4 8-ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup (packed) dark brown sugar
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
8 ounces chocolate-covered English toffee (such as Skor or Heath bars), cut into 1/2-inch pieces.  (You can now buy them already chopped if you want.)

1 16-ounce container sour cream
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Assorted candies (such as gumdrops and holiday M&M’s)


For crust:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Mix first 5 ingredients in medium bowl. Add butter; stir until moist clumps form. Press mixture over bottom and 1 inch up sides of 10-inch-diameter springform pan. (Use a round bottom measuring cup to press crust into pan.)  Bake crust until just set, about 5 minutes. Set aside. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F.

For filling:
Beat cream cheese and dark brown sugar in large bowl until blended. Beat in eggs 1 at a time, blending well after each addition. Beat in both extracts. Pour half of mixture into prepared crust; sprinkle with toffee pieces. Pour remaining mixture over. Bake until edges are puffed but center is barely set, about 55 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare topping:
Mix sour cream, sugar and vanilla in medium bowl until smooth. Pour topping over hot cheesecake. Bake cake until topping is just set, about 5 minutes. Transfer to rack; cool 10 minutes. Run knife between cake and pan sides. Chill cake uncovered overnight.

Just before serving, remove pan sides and place cake on platter. Garnish top with candies.
I got this recipe from

Be sure to let me know how yours comes out.  Send me a picture on how you decorate it.  I am always looking for new ideas.