At Sonesta, we love to eat! With our #FoodisArt motto in mind, we make sure our food and drinks are just as beautiful as they are delicious.
Last month we asked our Executive Chefs for their favorite chocolate recipes and thought these were perfect to share as you prep for Easter and Mother’s Day.
Dessert lovers, read below to add these decadent delights to your menu.
Buckeyes – Sonesta Columbus Downtown 1 c. butter, softened 2 c. smooth peanut butter 6 c. confectioners’ sugar 1 tsp. Vanilla extract 12 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips 2 tsp. Shortening (Crisco)
Combine butter, peanut butter and vanilla in a large bowl. Add 2 cups of confectioners’ sugar, beating until blended. Blend in additional confectioner’s sugar until mixture is smooth and will stay on a toothpick when shaped into a ball. Shape into 1-inch calls. Refrigerate, or freeze. Place chocolate chips and shortening in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on medium for 30 seconds. Stir. Repeat until mixture is smooth. Reheat as needed while coating peanut butter balls.
You can also heat chocolate using a double boiler or small crockpot. Insert toothpick in peanut butter ball. Dip ¾ of the ball into chocolate, leaving the top uncovered to resemble a buckeye. Remove excess. Place on a wax paper-lined tray. Smooth over holes. Refrigerate until firm.
2. White Chocolate Panna Cotta
White Chocolate Panna Cotta – Royal Sonesta Chicago River North • 1 envelope .25 oz. unflavored powdered gelatin • 2 cups half-and-half or whole milk • 6 oz of white chocolate • 1 cup sweetened condensed milk • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Red Berry Coulis • 12 oz. fresh strawberries thawed • 6 oz. dried cranberries • 1/2 cup 100g granulated sugar • 2 cups of champagne or prosecco
Edible Soil • 8oz Oreo • 1 bar of Heath candy bar • ¼ cup Toasted Almonds • 1 tsp Coco Powder • 1 tsp Sea Salt
For the panna cotta: In a saucepan, sprinkle the gelatin over 1 cup of the half and half. Let stand 2 minutes. Place the saucepan over medium heat and cook stirring constantly until gelatin is melted. 2. Remove from the heat and add the white chocolate. Stir until melted. Whisk in the remaining 1 cup of half and half, condensed milk, and vanilla. 3. Pour 4 oz of the panna cotta into the glass until the liquid nearly reaches the top of the glass. Transfer to the refrigerator to set, about 4 hours or overnight. 4. For the coulis: In a saucepan, combine the strawberries, cranberries, sugar, and champagne. Set over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Stir until the sugar is melted and cook until the mixture thickens slightly. Remove from the heat and puree (¼ of mixture) using an emulsion blender or let cool 10 minutes before pureeing in a blender and combine. 5. Let cool completely at room temperature, 30-45 minutes. Stand panna cotta glasses upright and pour in the coulis. Refrigerate until ready. 6. Crush soil ingredients in a food processor; leave semi-coarse but still fine to serve with Panna Cotta and Coulis garnish with micro flowers.
3. Chocolate, Salted Caramel & Maple-Spiced Pecan Tart
Chocolate Ganache: 1 1/4 cups heavy cream 10 oz. chopped bittersweet chocolate Couverture
Bring the heavy cream to a boil over medium heat. Place the chocolate in a stainless-steel bowl and pour the hot cream over it. Let stand for 5 minutes and then stir to incorporate. Pour the filling into the prepared 9” tart crust and let it cool. Refrigerate
Caramel Topping: 1/3 cup heavy cream 1/2 cup sugar 1 tsp corn syrup 2 tbsp unsalted butter
Bring the heavy cream to a boil over medium heat. Remove the pan from the heat. Melt the sugar in a heavy pan and cook until it is a golden brown, stirring constantly so the sugar does not burn. Add the corn syrup and butter. Stir to combine until it is smooth. Remove the pan from the heat and slowly stir in the hot cream. The hot mixture will bubble up, so be careful. If the caramel mixture begins to harden, return it to the heat and continue to stir until smooth. Pour the caramel immediately over the chilled tart filling. Spread out the caramel until it coats the top evenly. Refrigerate the tart until the caramel is firm.
Maple Spiced Pecans: 6 oz Whole Shelled Pecans 2 oz Pure Maple Syrup ½ tsp Cayenne Pepper (adjust to taste) ½ tsp Cinnamon (Optional) 1 tsp flaked sea salt, adjust to taste)
Toss the pecans with the syrup and spices and place on a greased baking sheet. Sprinkle with the sea salt and bake in a very low oven (200 degrees) for 40 minutes until the pecans are dry.
Finish the Tart
Arrange the pecans on the tart and serve with whipped cream.
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