Espresso Nanaimo Bars

Espresso Nanaimo Bars

Hello everyone!

It’s been a while! I hope you’re doing fine and  that your Christmas baking is going well! Great news, I’m now an official Ph.D. candidate! My thesis project was approved and I’m moving forward with it

:D
This explains the long hiatus in posting
;)

If your holiday baking is over, I’m very sorry, because you’ll certainly want to add this dessert to your table! In my family, no Christmas would be complete without delicious Nanaimo Bars. As far as I can remember, my mom brought them to every holiday party we had. Normally, we go with the classic custard-cream filling. But this year it was time to try something new: espresso filling. Let me tell you that I have no regrets at all! Anyway, it’s hard to go wrong when you mix chocolate and coffee!

Espresso Nanaimo Bars

Don’t hesitate to do the bars in advance. They freeze well and the flavor gets better over time!

I wish you a merry Christmas. I hope it’s filled with joy, laughter, love and good food

:D

Marjorie

Espresso Nanaimo Bars
Adapted from Kitchen Simplicity
Yield: about 40 small squares

Ingredients
Base

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup chocolate cookie crumbs
  • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 cup sweetened shredded coconut

Filling

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 5 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla pudding powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons espresso powder
  • 2 cups icing sugar

Topping

  • 4 oz. semisweet chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Preparation
Base

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Grease an 8 inch square pan and line with parchment paper leaving an overhang on two opposite sides.
  3. Beat the butter and the sugar until creamy. Sift in the cacao and mix well.
  4. Beat in the egg and the vanilla.
  5. Add the graham and chocolate cookie crumbs and the coconut. Mix well.
  6. Press into the pan and bake for 10 minutes.
  7. Let cool for about 10 minutes then refrigerate for about 20 minutes.

Filling

  1. Beat all ingredients together until well combined and smooth.
  2. Spread over base. Refrigerate.

Topping

  1. Melt chocolate and butter together over low heat. Cool. Spread on top of filling.
  2. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 min.

To serve

Remove the bars from the pan using the parchment paper overhang. To cut the bars without cracking the top layer of chocolate, run your knife under hot water before cutting. Using a very thin knife is helpful too. Clean the knife with paper towel after each cut to get clean squares.

Double Espresso Brownies

Double Espresso Brownies

Hello everybody!

An “almost silent” post today!

Espresso brownies

Wow… these brownies. Well, I’m biased because I just love the combo chocolate/coffee. And I’m not even a coffee drinker! Anyway, they are totally delicious! And I also have a special place in my heart for swiss meringue buttercream. I hope you enjoy them! I think the photos turned out great too!

Espresso browniesBrownies
Recipe from A Farmgirl’s Dabbles 

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into cubes
  • 3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 1-1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup Walnuts (optional)
  • 2 ounces semi sweet chocolate chopped or chocolate chunks (optional)

Espresso Swiss Meringue Buttercream (SMB)
Recipe from Sweetapolita 

  • 5 large egg whites
  • 1-1/4 cups sugar
  • 1-1/2 cups unsalted butter, cut into cubes, room temperature
  • 1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons espresso powder
  • 2 teaspoons boiling water
  • Pinch of salt

Espresso brownies

For the brownies:

  1. Preheat oven to 325° F. Butter and line a 8×8-inch baking tin with parchment paper, leaving a 1-inch overhang on the two longer sides.
  2. Melt the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water at low heat until the chocolate is melted. Remove from heat and whisk in sugar.
  3. Add the eggs, one at-a-time, stirring until smooth after each addition.
  4. Whisk in the espresso powder, vanilla and salt.
  5. Sift flour over the chocolate mixture and stir gently to blend well.
  6. Add the walnuts and chopped chocolate.
  7. Pour the batter into the prepared baking tin.
  8. Bake brownies until puffed and dry-looking and until a cake tester inserted in the centre comes out with a few moist crumbs attached, about 30 to 35 minutes. Remove from oven and transfer to a wire rack. Cool completely in the tin.
  9. Using the paper overhang, carefully lift the brownies out of the pan. Cut in squares.

For the SMB

  1. In a small bowl, mix the espresso powder with the boiling water. Reserve.
  2. Make sure there is no grease in the bowl and on the utensils you’ll be using for the buttercream.
  3. Add egg whites and sugar to a heatproof bowl (or bowl of standmixer) set over a saucepan of simmering water at low heat, whisking constantly until temperature reaches 160°F.
  4. Whisk with a stand mixer until the meringue is thick and glossy and the bowl doesn’t feel warm to the touch.
  5. With mixer on low speed, add the butter a cube at a time. Mix until it has a silky texture. If it looks curdles, continue beating until smooth. You can’t overbeat the buttercream.
  6. Add vanilla, salt and espresso, beat until combined.
  7. Transfer the buttercream to a piping bag fit with the tip of your choice (I used the 1M). Pipe a small amount of buttercream on top of each brownie square. Add shredded chocolate and a coffee bean if desired.

Espresso brownies

One-bite Triple Espresso Brownies

One-bite triple espresso brownies

Hello everyone!

I’m so glad to be back! I finished the biggest part of my “doctoral research project” (This is the presentation of your research for approval by a committee; what I had to deliver). I’ll do the other part soon enough, but as a reward I did a dessert and this post

:D

So about the dessert, strangely enough I don’t drink coffee but love, love, love, everything with coffee in it, especially when it’s chocolaty! So I really had to try these espresso brownies!

The coffee and the cocoa I used are from Dominican Republic! It does sent me back there when I eat/smell them

;)

Have a good day

:D

P.S. Have you heard about what’s going on in Quebec right now? The strike against the tuitions hikes turned into a social crisis? Yep that’s us! I know there are some demonstrations around the world in support of the students so you might have heard about it. Some things that happened are really upsetting. If you want a Quebecer’s view on the crisis, you can ask me

;)

One-bite triple espresso brownies

One-bite Triple Espresso Brownies

Chocolate Espresso Brownies 
Adapted from Pink Parsley
Yield about 44 mini brownies

  • 7 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped (I used 77% cocoa chocolate)
  • 8 Tbs unsalted butter, cut into quarters
  • 3 Tbs cocoa powder
  • 3 Tbs prepared espresso
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • Walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a mini-muffin pan with cooking spray.

On a double boiler, melt the chopped chocolates and the butter. Whisk in the cocoa.  Set aside to cool slightly.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, vanilla, espresso, and salt until well-combined.  4walnuts. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.

Bake 10 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with just a few crumbs attached.  Cool on a wire rack to room temperature.

One-bite triple espresso brownies


Espresso Frosting
Adapted from Better Homes and Garden

  • 3 cups sifted powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 4 tablespoons prepared espresso (or 2 tablespoons boiling water with 2 tablespoons instant espresso powder)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Meanwhile, for the frosting, place powdered sugar in a large mixing bowl. Add the 1/4 cup butter, 2 tablespoons boiling water, espresso and the 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed until combined. Beat for 1 minute on medium speed. Pipe a little frosting on each brownie.


Chocolate Glaze
Adapted from Pink Parsley

  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 2 Tbs butter or vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp prepared espresso

Melt the chocolate chips and butter on a double boiler.  Stir in the prepared espresso. Drizzle over brownies. Enjoy!

One-bite triple espresso brownies

Mocha Cake, Espresso Swiss Meringue Buttercream with Chocolate Ganache

Mocha Cake, Espresso Swiss Meringue Buttercream with Chocolate Ganache

Hey everyone!

Hope you are all doing well! I’ve been in cupcake-making mode for the last 2 weeks. We had the Cupcake Training Camp in Montreal and then my sister wanted cupcakes for her friend’s birthday. I’ll be posting on these different cupcakes, but first here is a delicious mocha cake you definitely want to try at home

;)

I saw this cake at a grocery store (looks a lot like this Sweetapolita’s cake) and wanted to try it ASAP! I’m a huge fan of coffee desserts even if I don’t drink coffee.

I wanted to find a cake recipe calling for sour cream because I had some left in the fridge. This cake was heaven : very moist and great texture for a layer cake. I’m giving you the recipes I used as well as 2 techniques/tutorial I followed to achieve it. My first layer cake didn’t look that great, this one is much much better!

Enjoy!

mocha-cake2

Chocolate Sour Cream Pound Cake
Adapted from How to cook a wolf

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
Dash of salt
1/2 pound unsalted butter, softened
1 1/3 cups sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
One 8-ounce container (about 1 cup) sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon prepared coffee

Preheat to 350 degrees.  Spray or grease a bread pan.

In a bowl, stir together the flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar together at medium speed. Beat in the eggs one at a time, beating until smooth after each addition. Reduce the mixer speed to low and beat in half the dry ingredients. Scrape. Beat in the sour cream, the vanilla and the coffee, scrape again, and then beat in the remainder of the dry ingredients.

Scrape the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 1 hour, or until well risen and a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake emerges clean.

Cool the cake in the pan on a rack for 5 minutes and remove from pan. Let cool completely.

Espresso Swiss Meringue Buttercream

For the Swiss Meringue Buttercream I always use Sweetapolita’s recipe and I added about 6 tablespoon of cold espresso.


Chocolate Glaze
From Pastry Studio

3 oz bittersweet chocolate
1/2 C heavy cream
1/2 t vanilla

I took this recipe for the glaze but it turned out to be way too runny so I ended up adding a lot of chocolate chips. You may use this recipe instead : http://allrecipes.com//Recipe/chocolate-ganache/Detail.aspx

Once your cake is frosted, you can drizzle the glaze/ganache.


Techniques I used for the frosting

Crisp corners: http://cakecentral.com/tutorial/how-to-frost-a-square-cake

It worked amazingly well, may take longer if you have a little OCD, but anyway the result is very satisfying!

Frost the layers : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MjPPrBwj9YI piping the icing on the layers is way easier!

Good to know

  • You can cut the cake in as many layers as you want.
  • I did a crumb coating : a very thin layer of frosting which prevents the crumbs from getting in the frosting. Then, freeze the cake for about 10 minutes before frosting.

mocha-cake