Family Gatherings

by Cate on April 3, 2005

My sister and brother-in-law came over for dinner tonight. Nicholas is always happy to see his Uncle, and enjoys being silly with him. His Uncle easily transforms into a two-year-old when he’s hanging out with Nicholas, providing the perfect fodder and antics for hours of entertainment.

Simple menu planned … starter was a Sweet Onion Cheddar Dip with Crusty Bread for dipping. It was good, but if I made it again, I’d tweak it a bit. Wasn’t as creamy as a warm dip should be. Dinner was rice, Avocado and Tomato Salad and Lemon Parmigianno Chicken. Dessert was Mocha Truffle Cookies and individual Butterscotch Maple-Walnut Puddings. The highlight, for me anyway, was definitely the puddings. Smooth, creamy and sweet without being too rich, serving size was perfect for a little touch of individual guilt, without going overboard. The cookies I’ve made before, and are a definite WOW recipe for us. Very simple to make, they taste perfect warm out of the oven.

Do try either of the two desserts. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

Mocha Truffle Cookies
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1 tablespoon instant coffee granules
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup chocolate chips

Melt butter and 1/2 cup chocolate chips. Add instant coffee and blend well. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.

Add sugars, eggs, and vanilla to coffee mixture. Add dry ingredients. Stir in chocolate chips. Drop by tablespoon on greased cookie sheets.

Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. Do not overbake.

Yield: 3 dozen

Butterscotch Maple-Walnut Pudding
In a medium saucepan, bring 2 cups milk just to a boil. In a bowl, whisk 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar, 1/4 cup milk, 3 tablespoons cornstarch and 3 large egg yolks until smooth. Gradually whisk in half of the hot milk. Whisk mixture back into the saucepan. Cook over medium heat, whisking until mixture comes to a boil; reduce heat slightly and cook for 2 minutes, whisking frequently. Remove pan from heat; add 2 tablespoons unsalted butter and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, stirring until butter melts. Pour pudding into 4 glasses or dishes (I used 6 small ramekins). Refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight. In a bowl, combine 1/2 cup walnut pieces and 1/4 cup pure maple syrup; spoon over chilled puddings.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

T April 3, 2005 at 6:59 am

oooh the mocha truffle cookies sound AMAZING! ill be trying that out soon. i love the addition of coffee with chocolate recipes.

ps im drooling just thinking about the sweet onion cheddar dip-it also sounds delish!

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Cate April 4, 2005 at 12:07 am

Tanvi, you’ve got to try the cookies; they really are THAT GOOD. The key is to take them out at exactly 10 minutes, even if they don’t look done (they’re a bit soft in the center, hence the name “Truffle”). Let me know if you make them. :)

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