Monday, January 24, 2011

Book Seven: Gifts from the Kitchen by Williams-Sonoma Kitchen Library

Recipe: Espresso, White Chocolate and Macadamia Nut Bark

You could not ask for an easier recipe. Only four ingredients: white chocolate, dark chocolate, macadamia nuts and ground coffee; and it's so elegant looking!

I wanted to make something different for our shuttle driver Sid as a thank you for washing my car for me last week. We often get brownies, breads, cookies and donuts at the shop from customers and vendors. So when I came across this recipe I thought it would be perfect.

This is good, but I was a bit disappointed that I could not detect the coffee flavor. The recipe called for fresh, finely ground coffee, not instant. I have always (as other recipes call for) used instant espresso powder and had this on hand. I wonder if regular coffee would have been stronger? As to the macadamia nuts, my grocer did not carry unsalted nuts as the recipe asked for. I did not stress over this due to the fact that not so long ago the whole sweet and salty taste was the way to go. No worries, I'm sure Sid will be happy with any kind of sweets.

Success meter (1-3): 2

Makes about 1 1/3 lb
10 oz European white chocolate, finely chopped
8 oz bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 ¾ cups (9oz) unsalted macadamia nuts, toasted and halved
2 teaspoons freshly ground (fine-grind) coffee (not instant)
Butter a 15x10 inch jelly-roll pan. Line with waxed paper.
Place the white chocolate in the top pan of a double boiler or in a heatproof bowl. Set over (but not touching) barely simmering water. Place the bittersweet or semisweet chocolate in the top pan of another double boiler or in a heatproof bowl set over (but not touching) barely simmering water. Stir both frequently until melted and smooth.
Stir ¾ cup of the nuts into the white chocolate. Pour the white chocolate onto the prepared jelly-roll pan to form 3 stripes the full length of the pan, one down each side and one down the center. Mix ½ cup of the nuts and the coffee into the bittersweet or semisweet chocolate. Pour this chocolate onto the prepared pan,  forming 2 stripes the length of the pan, between the white chocolate stripes. Draw the tip of a small knife back and forth across both chocolate to form a marble pattern. Tilt the pan to swirl the chocolates together. Sprinkle with the remaining ½ cup nuts. Refrigerate uncovered until firm, at least 1 hour.
Gently peel the candy from the waxed paper. Holding the candy with the waxed paper (to prevent fingerprints on the chocolate), break into large irregular pieces. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

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