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      Recipes — chocolate

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      Dark Chocolate Strawberry Tart

      Dark Chocolate Strawberry Tart

      Calling all chocolate lovers! I know you’re out there. This is the perfect dessert for you. Its that time of year when the strawberries are fresh and just waiting to be drizzled and snuggled into some rich dark chocolate.

      Ok, you need to remember two things before you begin…  First, the vanilla! You gotta try the Indonesian/rum vanilla extract. It’s the perfect companion to those dark rich almost smoky chocolate flavors. Second, you must have really good dark chocolate. Don’t even think of making this with a milk chocolate. It would be too sickening sweet. The tart looks like a fancy decadent dessert, but its really easy to make. And you can make it the day before and add the strawberries right before serving. Also, I sprinkled pistachios over the top for a little crunch.

      Happy baking!



      For the Crust

      • 1⅔ cups all purpose flour
      • ⅓ cup cocoa powder
      • ¼ teaspoon salt
      • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
      • ½ cup powdered sugar
      • 1 teaspoon VanillaPura Indonesian/rum vanilla extract

      For the Filling

      • 12 ounces high quality dark chocolate
      • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
      • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
      • approximately ½ pound fresh strawberries

      For the Glaze

      • 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
      • 1.75 ounces dark chocolate, finely chopped
      • 1 teaspoon corn syrup
      • 1 tablespoon warm water


      1. To prepare the crust, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder and salt in a bowl. In a separate bowl, using a standing mixer or electric hand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy. Mix in the vanilla. Beat in the flour mixture on low speed until just incorporated, being careful to not over mix. Use your hands to shape the dough into a ball. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
      2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and grease a 9 inch tart pan with removable bottom.
      3. Once the dough has chilled, press the dough into the tart pan and up the sides. Use a knife to score the edges and make them even at the top. Bake for 15 minutes. If it has puffed up a little during baking, just gently press it down when you remove from oven. Cool completely in pan.
      4. To prepare the filling, heat the cream and finely chopped chocolate in the top of a double boiler over simmering water (medium low heat), whisking until smooth. Remove from heat and whisk in the butter until smooth. Pour into cooled tart crust and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours. Top with fresh strawberries.
      5. To prepare the glaze (see notes), bring the cream to a low boil. Pour over the chopped chocolate and stir until smooth. Whisk in the corn syrup and water until smooth. Drizzle over tart and serve.


      Kudos to some the wiser for sharing:)




      Irish Creamy Chocolate Cheesecake

      Irish Creamy Chocolate Cheesecake

       Who doesn't love the rich and creamy special treat of Bailey's Irish cream? It's the perfect companion to your baking for St. Patty's day. The options are limitless! I had a difficult time deciding this one. But I kept going back to chocolate cheesecake with a little bit of Bailey's and some good vanilla.  It's the perfect sweet addition to your St. Patrick's festivities. Top it with chocolate curls or a little ganache  and fresh raspberries. Don't forget the green with a single sprig of mint.  

      While waiting for the cheesecake to bake, add a little Bailey's to your coffee and sip and enjoy your St Patrick's day. 



      • 1 1/2 cups Oreo crumbs, (2 rows)
      • 3 Tbsp butter, , melted


      • 4 (8 oz) packages cream cheese, room temperature
      • 1 cup sugar
      • 1 Tbsp flour
      • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
      • 3/4 cup sour cream
      • 5 Tbsp Baileys Irish Cream
      • 1 tsp of VanilllaPura Madagascar/rum vanilla extract
      • 4 eggs, room temperature


      • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
      • 6 Tbsp powdered sugar
      • 2 Tbsp Baileys Irish Cream
      • 2 Tbsp cocoa powder


      1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
      2. Combine Oreo cookie crumbs with butter and press into the bottom of a 9 inch spring form pan. Bake crust for 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.
      3. Reduce oven temperature to 300 degrees. Wrap the outside of the pan with foil, so water from the water bath does not get in.
      4. In a large bowl blend cream cheese, sugar, flour, and cocoa powder together on low speed until smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Add sour cream, Baileys and vanilla. Mix until well combined. Add the eggs, one at time, mixing to combine. Pour filling into the crust.
      5. Place the pan in a larger baking dish. Fill the outside pan with warm water, about 1/2 way up the sides of the spring form pan (do not go higher than your foil goes).
      6. Bake cheesecake for 1 hour.
      7. Turn off oven, but do not open the door. Leave in there for 30 minutes.
      1. Crack the oven door and leave in for another 20 minutes.
      2. Remove from the oven and let set on the counter (in the water bath) for 15 minutes. Remove from water bath, remove the foil, and chill for 6-7 hours.
      3. After the cheesecake has cooled make the chocolate curls and whipped cream.
      4. Melt chocolate chips and shortening together until smooth. Spread in a thin layer over the back of a sheet pan. Place in the fridge until set. Remove and let sit on the counter for 3-6 minutes. Use a metal bench scraper or spatula and starting at the edge, scrape the chocolate to make curls.
      5. To make the whipped cream beat together heavy cream, powdered sugar, Baileys, and cocoa powder using a whisk attachment until you have stiff peaks.
      6. Spread whipped cream over the top of the cheesecake. Sprinkle chocolate curls over the top of the whipped cream.
      7. Serve immediately, or store in fridge until ready to serve.

      Kudos to dinner dishes and desserts for sharing this recipe.








      fudgy festive brownies

      fudgy festive brownies

      Need to bring something to a Halloween party? Everyone likes brownies. Can I just say… please don’t ever bring brownies from a box! You know what brownies from a box says? It says…you’ve given up! There are so many super simple scratch brownie recipes out there.  Just turn on your computer and you’ll have a zillion in seconds. Pick one and it will be better than anything in a box!

       But these brownies, are special. They are dense, fudgy and rich. They are slightly chewy at the edges and incredibly moist and fudgy underneath. It’s made with a little less sugar and whole wheat flour, and you can’t taste the difference!!  Something you can’t get from a box. Can you tell I really dislike boxed brownies?!

      Use this as your standard go to brownie recipe. You won’t be disappointed.



      • 1 cup butter melted
      • 2 1/2 cups granulated sugar 500g
      • 1 tbsp VanillaPura Madagascar/rum vanilla extract.
      • 4 eggs
      • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour or sub all-purpose (about 195g)
      • 1 cup cocoa about 80g
      • 1/2 tsp salt
      • chocolate chips for sprinkling on top or to mix in, optional
      • basic white frosting
      • candied eyes from the baking isle at the grocery store.


      • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
      • In a large bowl, combine butter, sugar and vanilla with a whisk until smooth.
      • Whisk in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
      • Stir in flour, cocoa and salt until combined.
      • Line a 9x13" pan with tin foil and spray with non-stick spray. Spread batter in prepared pan. Bake for 26-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
      • Add the frosting and googley eyes for the mummy effect, or leave them plain, they are just as good.

      Thanks to the recipe rebel for sharing!

      Double Chocolate Berry Muffins

      Double Chocolate Berry Muffins
      My kids love (and I mean love) chocolate muffins! They are great with a variety of VanillaPura Extracts. Check out one of my favorite recipes.

      Read more