Thursday, March 1, 2012

Little Treats - 'Cause you are worth it

Because you are worth it
Everyone deserves a little treat now and then - after a long day at work, on a rainy day, after your favourite football team lost or simply because you are worth it. I started making chocolates years ago when I was really frustrated by the prices charged by chocolate shops and the quality of the manufactured ones. It happened that a friend who I was helping planning her wedding came to me and asked my opinion of chocolates she just purchased as samples for her wedding favours. We tasted them and they were all very good (after all, it was Belgian Chocolate and came from a 'proper' chocolate shop) but she would have been charged €0.50 each (she needed 600 chocolates and no discount was offered). I was furious that she wasn't even given a discount by the amount of chocolates she was going to order. So I put my thinking cap on and came up with my own recipes (a bit of online research on tempering chocolates etc was needed) and 2 days later I had a few samples ready for her. We decided on 2 flavours and I was able to make the chocolates for €80 - a big difference to the €300 she was going to be charged.

My own selection box
I have to thank this chocolate shop owner actually that he refused a discount - as I wouldn't have started otherwise to make my own chocolates and found that I absolute love making them. I have tried several mixtures and funny enough, the most liked ones are the very simple flavours. Hazelnut and Coconut with rum.

The other day, I was making chocolates as a gift for someone when I had hazelnut mixture left. As I also made mandarin tarts I decided to make little mini hazelnut tarts. What started as an idea for leftovers became a new item on my dessert treat menu. And it is almost embarrassing how easy it is. The recipe below is without measurements as I don't measure my chocolate ingredients. I do them by 'feel' - just as a guideline, half-half chocolate & hazelnut spread.

You will meed:
  • Sweet shortcrust pastry
  • Plain chocolate
  • Hazelnut spread (Nutella - told you it is easy)
  • Amaretto (optional)
Mini Hazelnut Tarts
Line a mini muffin tin with the pastry, prick with a fork and blind bake until golden brown (be careful, you don't want them to be too crispy). Set aside to cool.

In the meantime, melt chocolate over a bain marie (make sure that the water doesn't touch the bowl with the chocolate). Add the hazelnut spread and mix until nicely combined. Remove the bowl with the chocolate and keep stirring until the mixture starts to set again. Pour into the prepared pastry cases and leave to set.

Arrange the mini tarts on a plate and serve

Bon Appetit

No comments:

Post a Comment