Your friends, but you also, will love these simple chocolates!
They are an ideal gift for dinner parties; wines and drinks are also fine but flowers are a pain for hosts, we think, as they force them to stop everything else and search for a vase…
As soon as the weather cools significantly, I prepare my first batch of rustic chocolates. We keep them in a jar and we eat one or two pieces after lunch, offer to friends who drop by, or give them as gifts. When the jar is almost empty, I make more, exactly as I do with my savory crunchy cookies that I keep in a similar jar.
I published the basic recipe for the chocolates in my Mediterranean Vegetarian Feasts, since my friend Vicki Snyder insists that every cookbook, no matter what its subject, should include a chocolate dessert. But I have the habit of changing and enriching my recipes even after I have published them, so here is my updated version of the very easy chocolates I make over and over again.
This time, as I knew I would have to prepare a few gift boxes, I doubled the recipe, melting 3 pounds of bitter-sweet chocolate, in two separate bowls, to make the melting process shorter. Costas and I spread the mixture in two pans and left them to solidify overnight. If we had cut them a bit earlier, say two hours after putting them in the pans, the pieces would be even and square; but this time a few pieces crumbled as we cut the hard mass of chocolate with a large bread knife.
I also add pistachios to my Chicken Liver Pâté which is flavored with thyme, orange and brandy. I am sure your friends will appreciate a jar of this homemade pâté, which is an ideal appetizer, so I suggest you double the recipe. (more…)