bittersweetbaker

Archive for the ‘Chocolate’ Category

Chartreuse Panna Cotta with Chocolate Mousse

In Chocolate, Uncategorized on November 27, 2013 at 5:16 pm

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I’m honored to be guest posting at Jana’s blog Zuckerbaeckerei once again this year as part of her blog’s advent calendar. My post will be available at her blog, in German, on December 10th.

After some deliberation about what to make for this post, I decided on Chartreuse Panna Cottas with a chocolate mousse. It is a dessert that has already graced our dinner table numerous times this year, and though it may sound deceivingly elaborate, it is actually quite simple to make.

Chartreuse has a unique flavor. It is a slightly spicy liqueur with herbal undertones, and upon tasting it, no obvious flavor combinations come to mind. It was my father who discovered, at the start of this year, how harmoniously its flavor melds with chocolate. When paired together, each flavor is no longer distinct —the warm roundness of the chocolate flavor blends with the savory element of the Chartreuse to form a base over which the liqueur’s herbal tinges dance. It’s an exotic-tasting combination. Read the rest of this entry »

Double Chocolate Loaf

In Cakes, Chocolate on May 19, 2011 at 5:51 pm
From Adriana Baking

Much has happened these past months, from celebrating my fifteenth birthday to reacquainting myself with the familiar process of spending time baking each day.  Seemingly, I’ve put my blog on hold, left it to rest on the back-burner for almost two months. But sitting patiently behind the backdrop of my blog, this post has been in the works for weeks.  I visited it time and again, trying in vain to put my thoughts into words. With its stitched up sentences and half-formed ideas, it was a constant source of despair to me, a reminder of how long it had been since I last posted. I got caught up in believing that it was too late to write, and the thought dragged me in, a vacuum growing with each week that flew by.

I’ve returned in hopes of waking my dormant blog and fueling it with my words and thoughts once again. I’d like to tell you that the reason to my absence is due to a lack of time, and that I’m squeezing this post in between piles of unfinished work waiting to be completed, but that would be inaccurate: as time wore on and my work load receded, I feared that my will to write had as well. Because the truth is, I was just feeling lost. I tried getting to the heart of the matter to understand why I’ve kept my distance, but even now, back and typing out a post, the true reason eludes me. Read the rest of this entry »

Giant Chocolate Chip Cookie and a Belated Blogoversary

In Chocolate, Cookies on March 24, 2011 at 12:38 pm
From Adriana Baking

Amidst the chaos of the past month, days melded into weeks as my blog posts petered out. It wasn’t until a few days before February 20th that I realized that that day marked the beginning of my blog and unleashed my passion for both writing and baking.

Like a sailor quenching his thirst with swallows of crystal pure water, soothing his dry, cracked throat, I have been quelling my desire for the written word by reading. With every free ounce of time granted to me, I buried myself in the earth of faraway times, convincing myself, like every captivated reader come upon great historical fiction, that I was born a couple of centuries too late. It was recently that I discovered my love for historical fiction. Around the time of my last post, I started reading a book about World War I, and ever since, I’ve been transported further and further back in time by way of books to the fourteenth century. Instead of writing, I’ve been reading for hours on end, a pleasure I haven’t indulged in since winter vacation. Read the rest of this entry »

Chocolate Pepper Cookies with Matcha Frosting

In Chocolate, Cookies, Frostings and Icings on January 6, 2011 at 1:53 pm
From Adriana Baking

It’s good to be back at school. Though every second upon waking up this morning seemed to pass by much too quickly, school was nothing to dread. Kicking off my warm covers and jumping out of bed at six forty-five was a dive back into the deep waters of familiarity. Walking to school in the early morning with a heavy bag and my clarinet case in hand is what I’ve known for the past five months, and it felt right to be reacquainted with routine.

As much as I love to spend time alone reading books or toting a camera around and capturing moments of life, I do enjoy the company of others. I walked into school today and greeted my friends with a shining smile – I’d missed them. Throughout winter vacation I’d spent most of my time at home with family, with the exception of a couple of days. Read the rest of this entry »

Chocolate Whoopie Pies with Peppermint Frosting

In Chocolate, Cookies, Frostings and Icings on December 21, 2010 at 8:40 pm
From Adriana Baking

I’m sitting on the black woven chair by the computer, glowing and alert after a good night’s sleep. The past few days of vacation I have spent at home, learning how to relax again. I never expected high school to be easy, a few years that I could live through without putting in effort. The last week of school before vacation drained the energy from my body until I was waking tired and cranky, and struggling to keep my heavy lids from drooping down during biology class. I couldn’t even manage to fall asleep when I crawled into bed. Often, it would be hours before I floated into a land of unconsciousness – I couldn’t keep my mind off schoolwork. Teachers always seem to load us with homework, deadlines, and upcoming tests just before a break, leading us to crash into Christmas vacation exhausted. Read the rest of this entry »

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

In Chocolate, Cookies on October 24, 2010 at 2:41 pm
From Adriana Baking

It first hit me three weeks ago.  My high school held a college fair that memorable afternoon in September, hosting colleges from all over the United States. It was intended for juniors and graduating seniors, though freshmen were invited to participate. As I watched the representatives set up their booths, draping tablecloths over their stands and slowly transforming the field into a rainbow of school colors, my classmates started to talk. The buzz of anticipation and the hubbub of their impressionable chatter enveloped me, surrounded me, left me out. I realized with slow certainty that  each one of my friends had their lives planned out, theirs careers set. I- wants to study architecture and S- dreams of becoming a nurse, while T-‘s mind is set along the lines of psychology. Or was it medicine? And each one of them had an answer to the questions posed – what field are you interested in? What do you want to study? Not only can they answer without doubt masking their words, they know exactly which career they want to pursue. As for me, I don’t even know what I’m not interested in studying. I am completely undecided. Read the rest of this entry »

Devil’s Food Cupcakes

In Chocolate, Frostings and Icings, Muffins and Cupcakes on August 22, 2010 at 7:59 am
From Adriana Baking

It’s humid, hot, and the weather is practically unbearable. It’s summer!

For about a week now, I’ve been pet-sitting our neighbors’ two German Shepherd Labrador mixes . When I get up in the morning, the sky is a cloudless stretch of bright baby blue, and the trees just outside my bedroom are awake with the music of songbirds and the gentle swaying of the wind, weaving in and out of their deep emerald-green leaves.  Seemingly, the weather is perfect. But once outside, I’ll be drenched in sweat without so much of a light breeze to cool me down.  The dogs will be pulling on their leashes one minute, then suddenly jerking to a stop the next in hope of finding a morsel of food left behind on the dark gray pavement.  And by the time the sun sets and it’s time for another walk, the weather will be no less hot than before. Read the rest of this entry »

Yeast-Raised Doughnuts

In Chocolate, Frostings and Icings, Yeast Breads on August 12, 2010 at 5:35 pm
From Adriana Baking

I haven’t lived nearly long enough to write of childhood, but in this case, I write with experience.

Since I was young, I’ve loved animals. My sister would volunteer to take the the nursery school’s rabbits home for Christmas vacation, then watch the teachers lock up her nursery classroom, leaving it too cold and lonely for two little bunnies to stay in.  Once we took them home, I loved feeding them carrots through the wire bars of their enclosure, watching them nibble at them until only a few orange shreds were left. They liked mint leaves too, and I would give them each a few sprigs for a post-dinner snack.

When I was in elementary school, I harbored a scrawny, blind kitten, who was abandoned by its mother, and desperately hoped to revive it from its near state of death.  I could not keep him inside, for our house cat, Snowball, disliked- no, abhorred, all other cats with such a strong passion she could probably set fire to a whole forest of trees. The kitten eventually died, to my great dismay, and I didn’t get over it very easily. Read the rest of this entry »

Chocolate Chip Cookies – The Big, Fat, Chewy Kind

In Chocolate, Cookies on July 15, 2010 at 10:47 pm
From 2010-07

I waited eagerly for the 4th batch of chocolate chip cookies to bake, not daring to look into the oven window to make sure they were developing the faint cracks that were a hallmark of that particular recipe. When the timer went off a few minutes later and I opened the oven door, all hopes of perfecting the recipe were lost. They were still the round balls of dough I had put in the oven 10 minutes earlier, now baked. Puffy, browned, and crackless, the cookies were the ugliest ones I had ever made. I couldn’t understand why they weren’t spreading and cracking like the ones I made a couple of weeks earlier.  I had used the same recipe after all.  Frustrated, I set them on the wire rack to cool, because their dark butterscotch-y flavor remained unchanged. Read the rest of this entry »

The Daring Bakers Make Pavlovas

In Chocolate, Daring Bakers on June 27, 2010 at 11:57 pm
From 2010-06-26

Before I started blogging, I would always turn to the same recipes when I was asked to bake something. The same chocolate cookies, the same lemon bars, and the same chocolate cupcakes. There was no doubt that theses recipes got worn out after some time, but they were “tried-and-true”, so I stuck with them. I hadn’t yet been exposed to the wonderful world of food blogs, bursting with recipes and creativity, so it was no surprise that the said recipes made a frequent appearance at our house. Eventually, I did tire of them, and I decided that it was time to thoroughly explore the “blogosphere” in hope that I would find new recipes to keep me busy.
Read the rest of this entry »

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