Rosemary pralines.

Rosemary pralines. This experimento is so unusual, that I do not even know how to write proper intro to this kitchen adventure. A few days ago I asked my Instagram audience in a poll, if it was a good idea to go and try this in my own kitchen. 100% voted “let’s do this! You go girl!. So I went! Believe you me, purchasing fresh rosemary at the beggining of December it ain’t all that easy. So after visiting several supermarkets, I can call my mission a success, and so Ladies and Gentlemen- fresh rosemary pralines   Let me repeat myself – it was a big culinary experiment. I searched through the web and found no reasonable recipe to replicate. And so I had to make my own! The closest to an inspiration I got was this recipe here, but in the end the only common ingredient proved to be rosemary itself! At first I was a bit sceptical, after all I was experimenting with a really unusual ingredient. But my instincts proved me right! I have just finished preparing rosemary pralines and they blew me away! Sweet and sauer orange perfectly compliements bitterish rosemary. It’s a match made in heaven.   But what am I going to explain to you, go and try yourselves! So let me share with you my recent discovery. Ingredients for 10 pralines : 50 grams of milk chocolate 50 grams of dark chocolate 50 grams of mascarpone zest of half orange chocolate sprinkle or cocoa powder  for decoration Preparation : Melt  both kinds of chocolate in water bath Stir in mascarpone Add rosemary and...

Chocolate liqueur. Easy recipe.

I am not a very big fan of complicated dishes. Nor vodka to be precise. And when it comes to preparing complicatged dishes with vodka…man I’m out! That’s why I started studying liqueurs. Well actually recipes for liqueurs. Homemade liqueurs are fun and easy and spirit based, rather than vodka! Classic win-win situation. So to start off smoothly I bring you chocolate liqueur – the easy recipe. To be honest, it was quite a mental challenge for me to go to the liquor store and purchase 96% spirit (more on my mental issues regarding the subject can be found here). But once I bought that half a litre bottle, suddenly my head got full of culinary ideas.   I started releasing my creativity in a very old school manner – I went through all of my cookbooks to find the perfect recipe for chocolate liqueur. And guess what? I found nothing suitable. I tried preparing this liqueur several times before calling it a success. Why was that? Well, I followed the recipe which contained condensed milk and found the liqueur impossible to remove from the bottle! I had to break the thing with a hammer! Totally worth it act of violence! So, hbut aving learnt from that failure I enhanced the vintage recipe a bit. I confirm that after a week, it’s still in a drinkable state rather than edible.   Ingrdients : 100 g milk chocolate 200 ml spirit Tin of condensed milk (aha!! still there!!)  300 ml or a cup of full milk Pinch of cinnamon (optional but since it’s my singature spice I add it everywhere. If you...

Spread love- chocolate spread!

I am still sick! Yay hooray! And fever is giving me side effect of poetry (vide the title of this post). So instead of spreading viruses…I’m spreading chocolate! Or chocolate spread to be precise. Anywho, Netflix is still no fun and going outside is impossibile! So, the only way to cheer a gal like myself up is to do some fancy cooking (low cost though). I’ve been into spreads for a while now, because they are easy and quick to make and when done with love (ha!) can be part of a fancy table decor. Or a great gift. Non- alcoholic this time. The best part about it this babe is that it contains two main ingredients only. Hence it is very easy to prepare.  Since we are slowly entering Christmas/ Holiday period I prefer to make a batch and then share the jars with friends. So again, without further ado let’s get straight to business.   Ingredients: 100 g pistachios (if you’re feeling lazy use pistachio butter (it will save you roughly 1/2 hr of prepping) 200 g white chocolate (I used vegan but you can go for regular chocolate) pinch of salt 300 ml jar (Sherlock….) Preparation: peel pistachios grind the pistachios in a food processor or blender. Go for the texture you like the most, I prefer crunchy so I’m deliberately very clumsy about the grinding melt chocolate in water bath put away around 20g of chocolate add ground pistachios to 180 g of chocolate put it in a jar and let it cool down store away for up to a month For those of you...

How to upgrade chocolate spread

So it happened! I caught cold. I thought I’d been taking good care of myself but yeah….no…So I’m stuck at home miserable, sick and desperate. Suddenly Netflix is not so much fun anymore and I’ve been banned from exercising for a while. So what can I do? Well, chocolate obviously…duh I’ve been playing with various chocolate speard formulas for a while now, but this time I decided to make an upgrade. The below recipe is a true masterpiece of fusion cuisine so brace yourselves! Chocolate -mascarpone spread – upgraded version Why upgraded? Well, I don’t fool around these days. And there’s something sexy about cooking with spirits. It makes one….spiritual I guess?    Having said that I’d gone to my local store to purchase some spirit. Pretty heavy metal thing. Like I said…I don’t fool around these days in the kitchen. Most of the spirit has been used for lovely chocolate liquor (I will share the recipe soon). The remainings however have been used a base for this fab spread. So without further ado : Ingredients : Good, solid spoonful of spirit (96% alcohol in case you were planning on ghost hunting). Manipulate the dose until you find your sweet spot. The final product should be tangy*  200 g mascarpone cheese Caster sugar to taste  200 g dark chocolate Jar or any other container – wait is that an ingredient? Preparation : This is an easy part, I promise you that! Melt chocolate in water bath Add caster sugar while stirring Carefully stir in mascapone Add spirit Stir until smooth texture Store in a fridge for up to two weeks...

Why making chocolate?

I’m a typical polymath. My intertests are very wide and include everything  and anything ranging from protozoa, classical dance (theory as well as practice ), astrobiology to herbalism and unusual design. Why making chocolate then? So why on Earth have I turned into making chocolate? If anyone asked me (which never happened) why my choice fell on chocolate, I would have to answer in a slightly prententious tone, that it was actually chocolate, that chose me. But first thing’s first. I hate baking. I seem to be unable of producing a single piece of a decent cake of any type. Once dough is in the oven, the creative part of the process is complete. The results are not known and oftentimes cannot be predicted until  40-60 minutes later, once one gets to open the oven and face their (in my case not so much of a) masterpiece. Chocolate however is a completely different story. It can be played with almost indefinitely until the desired form is obtained.   It all started three years ago. My friend was having a birthday. I didn’t know what to get him, so I decided to make some rum balls. Since it was my first time ever, I was heavily improvising and – this will come to you as a shocker – I heavily screwed up. Being in a hurry for the party, I decided to dip my Frankenstein balls (pun intended!) in melted chocolate , and this is how my first ever chocolates were created. So fasten your seatbelts. Here’s my recipe for sweet success : 40% rum, 30% dark chocolate, 20% biscuits, 10%...

Chocolate tea-the ultimate recipe

We should be facing warm spring days right now, but it seems something went wrong.As a direct result of the low temperatures, I prefer to sip hot, rich drinks. The first idea anyone could have, would be naturally a cup of green tea or delicious coffee.  This spring I decided to bet on tea however in a very new  version. Chocolate tea – perfect drink to warm up from the inside out This drink not only will leave pleasant warmth inside of you but thanks to theobromine contained in cocoa will boost up your energy levels to get you going through another cold day. Chocolate tea is not only a feast for the senses. Well balanced components ensure a lot of minerals and antioxidants are delivered right to your body. It seems that the idea of chocolate tea evolved from cascara. Cascara (or coffee cherry tea) is a tea made from the fruit of the coffee tree (coffee made with tea?! whoah my mind is blown away!). And more specifically with the skins of  a coffee cherry (cascara in spanish means “peel”,”husk” or “skin”). The skins after being removed, are sun dried and then are ready to turn into a tea. The original chocolate tea is made with cocoa shells with  spices. Given that raw cocoa shells are pretty hard to get, I decided to make my own version based on more commonly available cocoa  nibs. Ingredients for a teapot (4 cups): black tea (I suggest  Earl Grey due to the oil of bergamot which will flavour nicely the brew) 2 cups hot water  2-3  tbsp cocoa nibs or dark chocolate 1 tablespoon cocoa powder cinnamon cardamom...

Dechox – a few words about detox from chocolate

During my recent research of the virtual world, I came across quite a specific campaign (pro).  Dechox or chocolate detox is a campaign designed by the British Health Foundation. As we can read on the project website, “dechox is a challenge, on which more than 16000 people in Britain in March decided to stop eating chocolate, supporting the research of heart disease”. But really is dechox or chocolate detox necessary? According to the initiators of the action chocolate has catastrophic affects the human body (see page with the popular myths about the chocolate). Let me present you just a handful of the popular beliefs.   According to the British Health Foundation the idea that dark chocolate is healthier than milk or white is nothnig more than a myth. I would like to hereby remind ya’ll that dark chocolate may be the most valuable component of both bulking and slimming diet (sic!) due to the beneficial ingredients in cocoa, which help keep insulin levels in check, as well as a number of micro-and macronutrients which have a beneficial effect on the human body. Another random myth  that is quoted on the website refers to the consumption of chocolate by diabetics. The authors of the campaign say that “If you have diabetes then you should be able to consume moderate amounts of chocolate. There is no need replace the usual chocolate products with products for diabetics.” And what is the reason for abandoning that idea? On the  very page we read: “products for diabetics are richer in fat and may nevertheless cause an increase in blood sugar levels.”     Superb! I  do understand that...

Chocolate as a part of a sports diet

Recently I dispappeared form the internets.  It turns out that livin la vida offline can be so absorbing that I’m not always able to collect thoughts and write down a couple of sentences.  Since gym is one of the places on my map which I visit quite  often, obviously diet and nutrition play huge role in my life. Not to be judged of  hypocrisy, I decided to take a deeper look at the chocolate and its part in a diet. Is chocolate diet or diet chocolate an oxymoron? These days everyone has to fit. Fit ain’t no myth. You know who  who eats chocolate these days? Those lil lazy fatties. Do you want to be one of those? I bet your a*se you do not. So no chocky for you, right? But is that really so…? So let’s start up with a really boring part -let’s look into what diet really is. So what is so different  about fitness gurus diet plans , can average couch potatoes apply some basics and turn their physiques virtually overnight into the ones that resemble crossfit champions? Well, in short, the difference is  lies mainly in the recommended supply of macronutrients. In the diet of an athlete by far the biggest role play proteins. Depending on the training objectives (reduction or mass gain), a person who is physically active should consume between 1.7 and 3.3 g of protein per kg of body weight. Chocolate is mainly carbs and fat …. So is it possibile to fit  chocolate into the lives of the fit? Whether chocolate truly makes you fat I discussed separately. Hardly anyone is a cyborg and hence almost everyone is...

Can chocolate mend a broken heart?

I was away for a while. I admit it. Renovation has taken over my life and my home. By some strange coincidence one meter of dust lying around my house did not help my writing ability (or willingness)  Those of you who follow  my Instagram (choca_loca_offical, ) could probably figure out that the last photos significantly deviate from the main- chocolate- theme. This is also to do with the fact hat I was deprived of my workplace , and chocolate tempering machine still does not work. In one word: armageddon. So being caught in the middle of this crisis I’m just sitting around hiding from the builders and wondering on some random stuff. Like the subject I wanted to address today So can chocolate mend a broken heart? The term “comfort food” is probably  familiar to all gluttons . In the consolation of all kinds of sorrows, many of us happen to be reaching for chocolate but why? Why don’t we find relief in horseradish or kale? Why in the state of lowered mood we’re after chocolate? Imagine a situation. Your BFF calls you and sobs on the phone “A guy dumped me today! I have a broken heart. Please meet me and comofort me  – some cauliflower or broccoli might come handy right now” It may seem that healing of  a soul can executed by one simple trick, all so hated by the nutritionists all over the globe. I am referring of course to  the mixture of sugar and fat.  However, these two components should be treatesd In order to understand the phenomenon of chocolate we  have to go back to its history. Yaawn I hated history when I was...