Inevitable happiness booster
Chocolate desserts with a traditional Indian twist are perfect for a quick snack, says Debasrita Chakraborty
Guilty pleasure, healthy dessert, happiness booster, take a pick – and the answer will be chocolate. No matter how old I grow, the answer to many of my problems can be solved by this brown block. I love chocolates – and there are no pre conditions attached to this relationship. I don’t discriminate between chocolates combined with ingredients like orange, strawberry, nuts or coconut, but my heart beats for Toblerone — always.
So cooking with chocolate is just up my alley and when Chef Ujjwal Dubey, central pastry chef, Foodhall, promised to hold a masterclass with it as an ingredient, I was raring to go, even though the kitchen in not my favourite room of the house. Chef Dubey too feels that chocolate has become one of the more popular ingredients. He says, “People are experimenting with chocolates, pairing it with cardamom, orange, strawberry and different varieties of nuts and other ingredients. A change which has been noticed is the shift towards higher amount of cocoa content these days which is darker and good for health, as people are more health conscious.” Intrestingly, 2017 marks 467 years since, chocolate was introduced to Europe.
He also adds that these chocolates with a higher content are good for health and act as a stress buster and help to reduce cholesterol as well as body ache. Chocolates are irreplaceable and I heartily agree with Jo Brand when he says, “Anything is good if it’s made of chocolate.”
In the masterclass chef Dubey demonstrated three easy and quick chocolate desserts for chocoholics being S’mores Trifle, Poha coconut chocolate fudge and Superfood millionaires.
Poha coconut chocolate fudge is a contemporary dessert with regular ingredients available at home. While poha might not feature as a much-loved ingredient on everyone’s list, but when combined with chocolate it cetainly gets elevated to another level. The recipe has four basic ingredients including 1¼ cup of flattened rice or poha, two cups freshly grated coconut, one cup grated jiggery and one cup melted white chocolate. The poha is dry, roasted until crispy and allowed to cool. Of this, crispy flattened rice, grind one cup and leave the ¼ cup aside to use later. Next, mix the grated coconut, the jaggery, while stirring it, occasionally. Let it cook. Then scatter the grounded poha in the pan and mix it. While the mixture is still hot, gently flatten the poha and jaggery mix on a plate. Dry roast rest of the freshly grated coconut in a pan until mild brown in colour. Mix rest of the crispy poha to it. Keep it aside to be sprinkled on top of the flattened poha and jaggery mix. Finally, pour the melted chocolate on top the flattened poha and jaggery mix and sprinkle the roasted coconut and crispy flattened rice mixture on top. Allow it to rest in the refrigerator for a few hours and once it is set, cut it into pieces and serve
From chocolate served with an Indian twist, we plunged straight into something which is a layered dessert and for me it has always served to be a mood lifter. Chef dubey demonstrated the process of making S’mores Trifle. Never had I imagined that preparing S’mores triffle would take a maximum of 20 minutes and it would be so easy until I attended the master class myself. The ingredients include crushed digestive biscuits, melted butter, and chopped dark chocolate, fresh as well as whipped cream and marshmallows for decoration.
The method for this quick delicious all-time favorite dessert is to heat the fresh cream and bring it to a slight boil in a saucepan set over medium heat, Then pour the hot cream over chopped dark chocolate. Let it rest for five minutes, mix well and refrigerate. In a separate bowl, mix crushed biscuits and melted butter. Transfer it into a large glass jar. Using a piping bag, make a layer of cooled chocolate ganache on the crushed biscuit layer. Top it with whipped cream. Repeat the layers, if required. Garnish with marshmallows on top. Toast them using a kitchen torch before serving on the table.
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