I found this interesting cookie recipe from The Kitchn which I had never come across before. Searching around, these cookies are usually made with Hershey’s Kisses instead of making your own chocolates but if you know me, I like to try and make most of everything from scratch at least once. I like the softness of the cookies but the chocolate coffee truffle with peanut butter is an unusual pairing to me. If you’re not a big fan of coffee, you can just leave the Kahlua and coffee out.
Peanut Butter & Coffee Truffle Blossoms (The Kitchn)
Makes: 48 small cookies
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 45 minutes
Passive Time: 2 hours
1/2 cup double cream
280g dark chocolate chips
2 tbsp Kahlua liqueur (30ml)
1 1/2tsp coffee powder
Peanut Butter Cookies
240g plain flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
110g unsalted butter, softened
220g peanut butter, creamy
50g caster sugar
50g brown sugar
1 egg, large
2 tbsp milk (30ml)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1. Place the chocolate chips, cream, Kahlua and coffee powder into a heat proof bowl. Then, pour some water into a small saucespan, making sure the bottom of the heat proof bowl won’t touch the water. Heat the water on medium-high heat until simmering. Reduce the heat to medium-low and place the bowl onto the saucepan. Continually mix.
Note: Alternatively, you can just heat the cream over medium heat until simmering and pour over the chocolate, Kahlua and coffee and whisk until smooth. This should reduce the cooling time to around 10 to 15 minutes for the truffles. You may also find it easier to chop up the chocolate into smaller pieces so it can melt more quickly.
2. Once all the ingredients have been combined, take off the heat and allow to cool and the chocolate mixture is glossy and just pipe-able. This may take around 40 mins to 1 hour.
3. Place a baking sheet onto the table and then spoon the chocolate mix into a piping bag with a large round tip. Gently squeeze out and once there is a small chocolate drop, lift the piping bag up, leaving a small tail on the top. Allow the truffles to sit at room temperature until set for around 1 to 2 hours.
Peanut Butter Cookies
1. Preheat oven to 180°C. In a small bowl, sift the flour, baking soda, and salt and set aside.
2. Beat the butter and peanut butter until blended.
3. Add in the brown and caster sugar to the butter mix and continue to beat until light and fluffy.
4. Add the egg, milk, and vanilla and beat until thoroughly mixed.
5. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix on low speed until just combined.
6. Line a baking tray with baking paper and then shape the dough into balls. Press down gently in the middle to create a small indent into the dough.
7. Bake the cookies for 10 minutes or until slightly golden in colour.
8. Take out from the oven and immediately take a chocolate truffle and place into the indent in the cookie. Allow the cookies to cool completely.
I found this lovely baked Peanut Butter Cheesecake topped with a meringue topping that is like fluffy marshmallows from How Sweet It Is (Howsweeteats.com). It has an aromatic peanut flavour in the cheesecake as well as the biscuit base. The frosting complements the slightly dense nutty cheesecake filling, it really is a delicious treat!
Makes: 9-inch Cheesecake
Total Time: 2 hours + overnight fridge chilling
220g Marie cookies, crushed
1/2 cup roasted peanuts, ground
85g unsalted butter, melted
680g cream cheese, softened
1 cup peanut butter, smooth and unsweetened
1/2 cup sugar
2 tbsp condensed milk
2 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
4 large egg whites
3/4 cup caster sugar
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp vanilla extract (If frosted and served within a few hours)
1. Preheat the oven to 170° C (350° F).
2. Stir together the crushed Marie cookies, ground peanuts and melted butter until combined, then press it into a 9-inch springform pan.
1. In the bowl of your electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until smooth and creamy.
3. Beat in the vanilla extract, then beat in the eggs one at a time until just combined.
4. Pour the cheesecake mixture into the crust, smoothing out the top. Place the pan on a baking sheet.
5. Bake the cheesecake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until the center is almost set. Remove and let cool completely. Refrigerate overnight.
1. Combine the egg whites, sugar and cream of tartar in a heat-proof bowl, preferably the bowl of your electric stand mixer.
2. Place the bowl over top of a double-boiler that contains simmering water, and whisk constantly for 3-4 minutes until the sugar has dissolved and the egg whites are slightly warm.
3. Immediately remove the bowl and place it on your stand mixer with the whisk attachment, beating slow at first and gradually increasing the speed to high. Beat for 6-7 minutes until glossy and thick, then beat in vanilla extract for another minute until combined.
4.Pile the frosting on top of the cheesecake before serving (an hour or two ahead of time is okay).
Prairie Girl Bakery in Toronto is quite well known. Famous for their beautiful cupcakes in either Buttermilk or Dark Cocoa as their base and also speciality cupcakes for an special occasions or events. Choices are varied and you won’t be satisfied until you haven eaten an entire cupcake. Prairie Girl Bakery was recommended by my now Toronto based (ex-Melburnian) sister, and these cupcakes do indeed live up to her recommendation. Delightful in its flavour and sweetness and their Peanut Butter iced cupcakes are something you would hardly ever find in Melbourne.
Their array of cupcakes knows no bounds, and honourable mentions to the Lemon Icing Buttermilk Cupcake, Peanut Butter Dark Cocoa Cupcake, Red Velvet Cupcake with Cream Cheese Icing and the Banana Cupcake with a Peanut Butter Icing. Those were the clear stand outs at Prairie Girl, and I found the Dark Cocoa cupcake base to be exceptionally moist compared with the Buttermilk Cupcakes but both were great cupcake “cakes”, if you know what I mean.
I really did love the Peanut Butter icing, it tasted rich but not overly sugary sweet so the peanut butter flavour didn’t seem in any way artificial, paired with the moist dark cocoa cupcakes and ding ding ding, Prairie Girl, you have a winner.
Prairie Girl earns its self proclaimed name as Toronto’s best, and it’s a must for those travelling to Toronto and in need for something a little bit sweet.
Prairie Girl Bakery
18 King Street East
Toronto Ontario M5C
Mon – Sat: 10 am to 6 pm
Closed Sundays and all statutory holidays
First Canadian Place
Marketplace, Concourse level
100 King Street West
Mon – Fri: 8 am to 6 pm
Closed Sat, Sun and all statutory holidays
On our last day to Montreal, we didn’t really know where to go so we just walked around. After a couple of hours exploring, we found Juliette & Chocolat. It wasn’t even near lunch time, but this place seemed so inviting for morning
tea cocoa. Juliette et Chocolat specialises in all things chocolate, and they certainly do it well and with flair.
Being Montreal, we had to try some crepes, and with chocolate, bananas and peanut butter, this sounded like a dream come true.
The crepes were very thin and light, with the creaminess of the peanut butter and rich chocolate. It was simply fantastic. The slightly sweet bananas gave it a freshness and well it doesn’t cut through the richness, but it certainly doesn’t make you feel overwhelmed by the sweetness. I loved it.
I had to order the Passionfruit petit pot, I was thinking about the Hazelnut pot but I really do love the blend of passionfruit and chocolate. It’s simply amazing. As you can see it’s multi layered, with the passionfruit layer on top, then a layer of cocoa ganache, and at the bottom a dark chocolate and passionfruit mousse. It’s so light and just melts in your mouth. Fantastic mousse. The passionfruit coulis was sweet as expected but the flavour of it just works so well with the mousse and ganache. Ah, it was chocolate heaven.
As a drink, we ordered one of the warm hot chocolates with whipped cream. It was definitely creamy and rich but oh so chocolately. I think after this we had an overdose of chocolate but very satisfied in the end.
Juliette et Chocolat was definitely a highlight for places to try in Montreal. It does chocolate very well, their crepes, desserts and drinks. It really is fantastic for chocolate lovers. I’d definitely make time to try other things on the menu if I ever go back to Montreal.
3600 Boulevard Saint Laurent
Montreal QC H2X2V4
I found this recipe in one of Coles free food magazines. It looked like a really nice mousse and I guess that’s how they get you! By having attractive and delicious looking pictures. I commend their photographer for making it look delectable.
I made a couple of alterations to the recipe. I substituted the Oreo cookies with just a packet of Arnott’s Chocolate cookies and 250g of Dark Chocolate. I also reduced the sugar to around half as well, and with the top layer I reduced the butter by just half and I used Crunchy Peanut Butter.
Here is the recipe below;
Chocolate Mousse Torte
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
150 g Oreo Cookies
40 g butter melted
250 g Coles Milk Chocolate chopped
50 g dark chocolate chopped
½ cup thickened cream
4 Coles Free Range Eggs separated
10 g sachet powdered gelatine
¼ cup boiling water
¾ cup caster sugar
small Easter eggs and white chocolate curls to decorate
¾ cup dark chocolate melts
½ cup Coles Smooth Peanut Butter (see tip)
40 g butter chopped
1. Line base of 20cm springform pan with plastic wrap. Spray sides of pan with cooking oil and line with baking paper.
2. Place cookies in a food processor. Process until crushed. Add butter and process until combined. Press into base of prepared pan and refrigerate while preparing filling.
3. Melt milk and dark chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of gently simmering water until smooth. Remove from heat and stir in cream. Whisk in egg yolks. Whisk together gelatine and boiling water until gelatine dissolves. Add to chocolate mixture and mix to combine.
4. Using an electric mixer, beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Add sugar, 1 tbsp at a time, beating constantly until thick and glossy. Carefully fold into chocolate mixture until just combined. Pour over biscuit base. Refrigerate overnight until firm.
5. To make ganache topping, combine chocolate, peanut butter, butter and ½ cup of water in a small saucepan. Stir on low heat until chocolate has melted and mixture is smooth. Set aside to cool completely.
6. Pour ganache evenly over top of mousse and refrigerate for 2 hrs, or until ganache is firm. Unmould cake and place on a serving plate. Decorate with Easter eggs and choc curls.
Tip: You can replace the peanut butter in the Ganache ingredients with ½ cup cream and then omit the water added in the method.
While the torte was pretty easy to make, I wasn’t too fond of the top layer. Either I over heated the chocolate or I probably should have used the correct amount of butter because it wasn’t as smooth as I would have liked. Also the nuts probably may have made a slight impact on the texture too.
The bottom layer wasn’t as rich and tasty as a Oreo base would have been, it didn’t taste like those cookies you find in a Cookies & Cream ice-cream or the bottom of ice-cream cakes. I was just confused on whether the filling of those Oreos were to be processed too so I opted for a different brand.
The mousse of the other hand, was light and fluffy. It was moist and smooth, and nicely aerated. So I deemed the whole cake a success because the mousse was just how I wanted it. Maybe my cake base was too big for the mixture, but I’d also prefer a higher mousse filling so maybe If were to make it another time, I’d use a smaller base.