Last week it was 70 degrees. Yesterday it snowed. Basically what I am saying here is: I NEED CHOCOLATE.
These fancied-up little pudding cups known as pots de crême (say it in your Frenchiest voice) are just the ticket. They're small but mighty, packing plenty of chocolate flavor in one tiny unit. A touch of espresso powder really adds a deep, dark element to the flavor, making it rich and indulgent-tasting.
It's a good idea to make these. Happy Monday!
Mini Chocolate Pots de Creme
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 bars (3.5 ounces each) 85% Cacao Extra Dark Chocolate
- 2 eggs plus one egg yolk
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- pinch salt
- 1/8 teaspoon instant espresso powder (optional but suggested)
- 1 cup prepared whipped cream (more or less, to taste)
- 2-3 chopped chocolate candies such as Baci, for garnish
- 6-8 small, heatproof jars
Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F. Have at the ready your ramekins or jars, and a 9×13-inch baking pan (or a baking pan with walls that will accommodate all of your ramekins or jars). In a medium saucepan, bring the milk, vanilla extract, chocolate, and espresso powder to a low boil. Remove from heat and set to the side for the moment.
In a separate large bowl, whisk the eggs and egg yolk with the sugar and salt until lightened in color and slightly thickened in texture.
Pour the milk mixture to the egg mixture slowly, whisking all the while as you pour.
Divide the chocolate,chocolate mixture evenly between your ramekins or jars. The jars don’t need to be filled; in fact, a little room at the top ensures that you have room to add whipped cream later.
Fill the baking pan with about 1 inch of water, and place the ramekins or jars in the pan. The water should reach about halfway up the chocolate mixture in each vessel.
Gently place the pan in the oven (take care not to slosh water into the chocolate!). Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the chocolate appears set on the edges but still has a slight jiggle in the center. If the tops form cracks at all, this is normal; they will sink once you remove them from the oven.
Remove from the oven and let cool to room temperature. Cover in plastic, then refrigerate for several hours, so that the texture can “set” and the flavor can develop. Before serving, spoon a dollop on top of each of the pots de creme. Garnish with pieces of candy for a pretty finish.
Store leftovers covered with plastic in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.