17 Jul Special of the day: Keep Cool with Delicious Do-ahead Desserts
In the heat of the summer, why not keep it cool with delicious do-ahead desserts you pop in the freezer and have on hand to enjoy…anytime you like?
It’s always nice to have something prepared in advance and chilling to pull out and serve to guests, especially in the summer when the weather is hot and the last place you want to be is in front of a hot stove.
These height-of-the-summer hot temperatures might be leaving you not so hungry but hankering for a light summer supper followed by a bite or two of something cool, refreshing and enjoyable.
Why not serve up a simple supper followed by a slice of heavenly goodness?
Keep cool with this week’s Special of the day: Delicious Do-ahead Desserts and recipes for Grasshopper Mousse in Bittersweet Chocolate Cups, Mud Pie Babies and Lemon-Raspberry Ice Cream Terrine. Enjoy!
Recipes and food photography by Sydne George.
Grasshopper Mousse in Bittersweet Chocolate Cups
*Note: Not to be frozen.
Mousse will keep for a few days in the refrigerator.
Pipe into chocolate cups just before serving.
2 5.3-ounce bittersweet chocolate baking bars, divided
2 3.5-ounce white chocolate bars
1 pint heavy whipping cream, chilled, divided
1 tablespoon Creme de Menthe liqueur
1 cup fresh mint leaves
Make Chocolate Cups:
Chop one 5.3-ounce Bittersweet Chocolate Baking Bar.
Melt in the top of a double boiler over simmering water.
Using a pastry brush, paint the insides of 6 foil baking cups with melted chocolate.
Set on waxed paper-lined tray and freeze.
When chocolate is set on the baking cups, paint a second layer of melted chocolate over each of the baking cups.
Return to the freezer.
When set, carefully peel foil cups off chocolate cups.
Return chocolate cups to freezer until ready to serve.
Make Chocolate Curls:
Use the remaining whole 5.3-ounce bittersweet chocolate bar for chocolate curls.
For best results, allow the chocolate bar to warm slightly before making curls.
Using a vegetable peeler, shave curls from a long side of the chocolate bar. If the chocolate crumbles or falls off in small shavings, it needs to warm up.
Make the Grasshopper Mousse:
Chop 2 3.5-ounce White Chocolate Bars. In a heavy medium saucepan over low heat, combine chopped white chocolate and 2/3 cup of heavy whipping cream. Melt, stirring occasionally until smooth. Remove from heat and let cool. When cool, add 1 tablespoon Creme de Menthe liqueur to the white chocolate mixture. Beat the remaining 1 ½ cups of heavy whipping cream in a mixing bowl until stiff peaks form. Carefully fold white chocolate mixture into whipped cream until smooth. Chill until ready to serve.
Pipe chilled Grasshopper Mousse into chocolate cups.
Garnish with chocolate curls and fresh mint leaves.
Mud Pie Babies
(makes about 20)
Two 2.25 ounce packages sliced almonds
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
1 tsp. almond extract
½ gallon coffee ice cream
9-ounce box Famous chocolate wafers (cookie aisle)
Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
Spread almonds out in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast for about 4 minutes or until golden brown.
Make Chocolate Almond Ganache
Heat cream in a medium saucepan over medium heat until gently simmering.
Remove from heat. Add chocolate chips and almond extract and let sit briefly to allow chocolate chips to melt. Whisk until smooth. Set aside to cool.
Soften ice cream briefly.
Scoop 1 small scoop of ice cream on top of a single chocolate wafer.
Top with second chocolate wafer and press to spread ice cream out evenly. Use a table knife to remove excess ice cream and smooth the edges. Freeze briefly until firm. Repeat with additional chocolate wafers to use up wafers.
Dip one end of each frozen chocolate coffee ice cream sandwiches in Chocolate Almond Ganache and roll in toasted almonds. Set on tray and return to freezer. Repeat with remaining chocolate coffee ice cream sandwiches. Enjoy!
(Wrap tightly in plastic wrap if you plan to keep them in the freezer for awhile.)
Lemon-Raspberry Ice Cream Terrine
1.75 quart container French vanilla ice cream
8.2 ounce jar prepared lemon curd
1 pint fresh raspberries
Line large loaf pan with plastic wrap to cover bottom and sides of pan.
Scoop ½ of the ice cream into the bottom of the pan. Use table knife to spread evenly and smooth by pressing down on a sheet of plastic wrap laid over the top. Return to freezer to freeze until firm.
When firm, remove from freezer and spread lemon curd evenly over the ice cream layer.
Sprinkle raspberries in an even layer over lemon curd. Return to freezer to freeze until firm.
When firm, scoop the rest of the ice cream on top of the frozen rasperries. Use table knife to spread evenly and smooth by pressing down on a sheet of plastic wrap laid over the top.
Freeze for several hours, until firm.
When ready to serve, pull firmly on both sides of plastic wrap to remove terrine from pan.
Transfer to cutting board and slice into thin slices.
Garnish with lemon slices and fresh mint leaves.
(Wrap tightly in plastic wrap if you plan to keep in the freezer for awhile.)
Sydne George is a food journalist specializing in recipe development, food writing and food photography. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org . Sydne’s recipes from “Special of the day” are archived at http://sydnegeorge.com/blog/.