Freaking! Fudgesicles!

July 30, 2009

A Freaking Fudgesicle

Reason to Freak

You need to make these. Like, now. Or at least today. You will thank me. They’re close to being nutritious. This icy cold frozen scrumptious chocolate-y treat is just a freeze away. I’ve been meaning to make these for a while now, but I cannot find my super awesome Tupperware popsicle molds that my favourite sister* Colé gave to me. I gave up and used mini silicone muffin moulds, which were a gift from my charming and generous friend Ellis. Evidently, I’m always accepting gifts. The mini size is probably better. They are a perfect two-bite fudgesicle that will whip you back to your childhood, lickety-split. They have just the right chocolate flavour, a bit of creaminess and that sort of low-quality but desirable iciness that is usually only found in cheap fudgsicles made with crap ingredients. They are also a perfect pop-the-entire-puck-in-your-mouth-size, too. If you’re the childish and piggish sort.

Makes 24 mini fudgesicles

1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk

1/2 cup water

4 large egg yolks

3 tablespoons agave

3 tablespoons cocoa powder

teensy pinch of sea salt

Pour the almond milk and water into a small pot and bring to a simmer over medium-low heat. In a medium-sized bowl, set on top of a damp cloth to keep it from moving, whisk eggs yolks together with agave, cocoa and sea salt. Remove hot almond milk from heat and whisk a ladleful into the yolk mixture, whisk immediately and efficiently so that you don’t end up with bright yellow bits of cooked yolk. Then pour in the rest, whisking to combine. Turn custard back into the pot and place over low heat. Stir constantly, custard will thicken as it heats. It won’t take long. As soon as it’s thick, better to err on not-quite rather than scrambled, strain through a fine mesh strainer into a clean bowl, or a large-enough measuring cup. I should tell you to cool and chill overnight before freezing. Whatever. Cool slightly and then pour into whatever sort of mould that you want to use. If you use a flexible mould make sure you place it on a tray before filling. (Duh, but I’ve done it). Now into your freezer, don’t mind the wafts of steam that are coming from the fudgesicles-to-be. Be patient. If you haven’t used proper moulds you will need to insert some sort of stick into your fudgesicles when they’re semi-frozen – set enough to hold the stick upright but not so frozen solid that you need to chisel in a stick. Are they ready now? Have you tried one yet? Are you freaking?

Chocolate-y Cold

Chocolate-y Cold

* Colé is my husband Michael’s sister, Nicole. His other sister is Marina, or Meenie. She’s also my favourite sister. I have another favourite sister named Cheryl, she will love these because she loves ice cream more than anyone I’ve ever met.

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Black Bean Brownie

Black Bean Brownie

Wait – keep reading, these are so good. I swear. You should know this about me – I am extremely fussy about desserts and sweets, especially chocolate. Especially chocolate. When I started baking with alternative ingredients, I began to hear whisperings of cakes and brownies made with black beans. Of course, like you, I was skeptical. And then I became intrigued. And then I started to experiment. I have a number of guinea pigs friends who, I’m certain, would be willing to give sworn testimonials on the deliciousness of these brownies. But you can trust me, I’m a professional. These are even moister the next day, if stored in a tight-lidded container. If you would like to make these entirely refined sugar-free, then refrain from glazing with ganache.

Makes 24 bite-size brownies

Pre-heat oven to 350º. I bake these in a mini muffin silpat pan, so there’s no need to prep pan or line with papers. If you’re baking these in tins, line with mini paper baking cups.

1 cup cooked or canned black beans

2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted and slightly cooled

2 large eggs

2 tablespoons agave nectar

3 tablespoons cocoa

1 tablespoon almond flour

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

pinch of sea salt

Put black beans into the bowl of a food processor and whir for several seconds. Scrape down the bowl and add all remaining ingredients. Process for a few moments, scrape down the bowl again. Now, inspect your batter: you should see smaller-than-pea-sized bits of black bean. Are your black bean bits larger? Then pulse a few times, that should do it. Drop batter by teaspoonfuls into your pan, batter will almost fill the cup. Other than a slight rise from the eggs, there’s no other leavener in this batter, so they won’t puff too much. Slide onto the middle rack of your oven, and bake for 13 – 15 minutes, brownies will spring back when gently pressed. Allow to cool, or not. Try one now. Really good, right? If you would like to glaze with ganache, allow them to cool completely.

Ganache, optional

Yield: enough to glaze 24 mini brownies, plus some for taste-testing

2 tablespoons excellent quality dark chocolate*, finely chopped

2 tablespoons boiling water

Pour boiling water over dark chocolate. Let sit for about two minutes, the hot water water will thoroughly melt the chocolate. Stir minimally – too much enthusiasm will create bubbles or, worse, split your fine chocolate and cause it to curdle. Stir until the chocolate and water just come together into a shiny, sexy-sleek glaze. Set aside. You can taste it, if you wish, there’s more than enough. Just don’t get carried away – warm, melty ganache is irresistible. Once your ganache has cooled somewhat, gently pick up your brownie, turn it upside down, and dip the top in. Quickly flip it right side up and set it onto a cake plate. Serve to amazed guinea pigs friends.

* Excellent quality dark chocolate is easy to find. I use a number of different brands, and suggest a 60% to 70%. The darker, more bittersweet the chocolate, the less refined sugar it contains. Since this recipe requires very little chocolate, you can really treat yourself and others – seek out an organic, fair trade one.