Sunday, January 17, 2010

Chocolate: A Love Story by Max Brenner and illustrated by Yonatan Factor

Chocolate: A Love Story by Max Brenner and illustrated by Yonatan Factoris a sexy, avant garde chocolate desserts cookbook filled with over 65 quirkily titled recipes from the collection of the Bald Man himself, Max Brenner.

Max Brenner has spurred a Chocolate revolution and Chocolate: A Love Story is uniquely illustrated with revolutionary Art Deco-poster style! My husband is salivating over this book already and is excitedly planning our next chocolate feast. No longer is chocolate to be reserved for dessert, from twists to the conventional chocolate delights to the most unusual of delectable chocolate concoctions, chocolate is a culinary decadence for the young and old, the gourmet and the palate of the "average Joe".

I admit I do not tend to make such rich fabrications. Whole milk and cream don't grace our refrigerator regularly but I relented--all for the sake of this review--to adding such indulgent items to my shopping lists {alright my arm did not require twisting}!
A sampling of these deliriously lavish recipes:
*My Lost childhood chocolate birthday cake
*The Belgian Street Waffle
*Revolutionary Rice Pudding
*Meaningless Sweet Spaghetti
*The adult and child chocolate burger joint venture

I thought to share this excerpted recipe which I found both Delicious yet dependable:
Eco-friendly chocolate bread pudding
1 1/2 cups whole milk
2 cups heavy cream
9 ounces dark chocolate, chopped, plus 3 ounces
3 large eggs, plus 3 large egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
12 brioche buns or 1 loaf white bread, cubed
------------------------------

1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Bring the milk and cream to a boil and pour over three-quarters of the chocolate in a heatproof bowl. Cover and let sit until the chocolate begins to melt, about 1 minute. Stir until smooth.

2. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs, egg yolks, and sugar until well combined. Keep mixing and stir in the chocolate mixture.

3. Place the brioche cubes in a large bowl. Pour the chocolate custard mixture over the brioche. Add the remaining chopped chocolate and stir well to combine. Set aside to let the custard soak into the bread, about 10 minutes, then pour into two 8-inch loaf pans. Bake until golden brown and crusty and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 30 minutes.

4. Remove from the oven and let cool 20 minutes before unmolding. Cut into 1-inch slices and serve with the vanilla cream.


Vanilla Cream
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 1/2 cups milk, divided
1/2 cup sugar
2 large egg yolks
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
---------------------------

1. Sprinkle the cornstarch over 1/2 cup of the milk in a small bowl and whisk to dissolve. Add the sugar and egg yolks and whisk well.

2. Bring the remaining 2 cups milk and the vanilla bean just to a simmer in a heavy-bottomed medium saucepan over low heat. (If using vanilla extract, add it in step 3.) Remove the bean, scrape the vanilla seeds into the milk, and discard the bean. Gradually whisk the egg yolk mixture into the milk.

3. Cook, whisking often, until the sauce comes to a full boil, about 3 minutes. If using vanilla extract, stir it in now. Strain through a wire sieve into a bowl. Serve warm.
Yield: 16 servings

Rich and moist you will be amazed by this twist on the traditional!

Want to give a sweet and lasting Valentine's gift to that special someone? Chocolate: A Love Story is the perfect gift for the passionate chocolate lover in your life!

One Northern Mama reader will win a copy of this artistic hardcover volume filled with decadence, art, and romantic musings!

To Enter:
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Giveaway open to US and Canadian residents. Giveaway closes February 2, 2010 10:00pm CT. Read Giveaway Rules for details.

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