Brewster House Bed & Breakfast (Freeport, Maine Coast)

Category Archives: chocolate

Recipe: Nanaimo Bars

April 1, 2011 by Scott Gile

This year for Flavors of Freeport, Ruth made Nanaimo Bars – a no-bake, layered cookie, with chocolate (how can you not love a no-bake bar with chocolate?). It was a huge hit – with one lady coming back five (we counted!) times for more!

Without further ado, here they are

Nanaimo Bars

Bottom layer:

1/2 C unsalted butter
1/4 C granulated sugar
5 T cocoa powder
1 egg, beaten
1 3/4 C graham-cracker crumbs
1 C coconut flakes (can use reg. coconut)
1/2 C finely chopped almonds

Middle layer:

1/2 C unsalted butter, room temp.
3 T whipping cream
2 T vanilla custard powder or instant vanilla pudding mix
2 C powdered sugar

Top layer:

4 squares (1 oz each) semisweet chocolate (or 4 oz choc. chips)
2 T unsalted butter

1. For bottom layer: Melt butter, granulated sugar and cocoa powder together
in the top of a double boiler over simmering water. Add the egg and stir
constantly until thickened, about 2-3 min. Remove from heat. Stir in graham
cracker crumbs, coconut and almonds. Press firmly into an ungreased 8×8 pan.
Refrigerate while making next layer.

2. For middle layer: Cream together butter, cream, vanilla custard powder
and powdered sugar. Beat until light. Spread over bottom layer. Refrigerate
while making next layer.

3. For top layer: Melt chocolate and butter over low heat. Cool. When
cool, but still liquid, pour over second layer and use offset spatula to spread
over entire surface. Chill in refrigerator about 15-20 min., then carefully
cut into bars.

Will stay for several days in airtight container in refrigerator (I put wax
paper between layers)

Chocolate on the Menu (of course!)

February 1, 2011 by Scott Gile

Our Valentine’s Day special has grown over the years from weekend special into a month-long package – so much so that this year our February is for Romance package was named one of the Top Ten Romantic Getaways.

As most of our guests know, our daily breakfast menu, as well as our afternoon refreshment menu, changes from moment-to-moment, so who knows what we’ll be serving while you’re here (reasonable requests may be possible, if received in time). However, it is very likely that, especially in February, we’ll have some chocolate on the menu!

Last year, for our Flavors of Freeport dessert, all the local B&Bs had agreed to serve a Julia Child dessert, in honor of the (then) recently released film, Julie and Julia. As our contribution, Ruth prepared a wonderful Chocolate Almond Cake (yes, that is the cake from the film) from Mastering the Art of French Cooking. For the event, we cut the cake into bite-sized pieces as shown in the photo, but of course you can serve it however you like it!

For all who were not able to be here for the 2010 Flavors of Freeport (by the way, did we mention that the 2011 Flavors of Freeport is March 25-26? It’s not too late to make plans to be here!), below is the recipe from Julia Child, with some minor alterations by Ruth!

Chocolate Almond Cake

Ingredients

Cake:

  • 4 ounces or squares semisweet chocolate , melted with 2 Tbsp. rum or coffee
  • 1/4 pound or 1 stick softened butter
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar to mix with butter
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 3 egg whites
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 Tb granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup pulverized almonds
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • 1/2 cup cake flour (scooped and leveled) turned into a sifter

Icing

  • 2 ounces (2 squares) semisweet baking chocolate
  • 2 Tb rum or coffee
  • 5 to 6 Tb unsalted butter

Directions:

Cake

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Butter and flour cake pan (pan should be 8 inches in diameter and 1 1/2 inches deep). Set the chocolate and rum or coffee in a small pan, cover, and place (off heat) in a larger pan of almost simmering water; let melt while you proceed with the recipe. Measure out the rest of the ingredients.
  3. Cream the butter and (the 2/3 cup of) sugar together for several minutes until they form a pale yellow, fluffy mixture.
  4. Beat in the egg yolks until well blended.
  5. Beat the egg whites and salt in a separate bowl until soft peaks are formed; sprinkle on the 1 Tbsp. sugar and beat until stiff peaks are formed.
  6. With a rubber spatula, blend the melted chocolate into the butter and sugar mixture, then stir in the almonds, and almond extract. Immediately stir in one fourth of the beaten egg whites to lighten the batter. Delicately fold in a third of the remaining whites and when partially blended, sift on one third of the flour and continue folding. Alternate rapidly with more egg whites and more flour until all egg whites and flour are incorporated.
  7. Turn the batter into the cake pan, pushing the batter up to its rim with a rubber spatula. Bake in middle level of preheated oven for about 25 minutes. Cake is done when it has puffed, and 2 1/2 to 3 inches around the circumference are set so that a needle plunged into that area comes out clean; the center should move slightly if the pan is shaken, and a needle comes out oily.
  8. Allow cake to cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pan, and reverse cake on the rack. Allow it to cool for an hour or two; it must be thoroughly cold if it is to be iced.

Icing

Place the chocolate and rum or coffee in the small pan, cover and set in the larger pan of almost simmering water. Remove pans from heat and let chocolate melt for 5 minutes or so, until perfectly smooth. Lift chocolate pan out of the hot water, and beat in the butter a tablespoon at a time. Then beat over the ice and water until chocolate mixture has cooled to spreading consistency. At once spread it over your cake with spatula or knife, and press a design of almonds over the icing.

Bon appétit!

Letting the Cat Out of the Bag – Flavors of Freeport!

January 14, 2010 by Scott Gile

Chocolate Raspberry Clouds, from Flavors of Freeport, 2009As previous Flavors of Freeport visitors will recall, the first two Flavors events took place in February, which is heart month, and were to benefit the American Heart Association.

While the Flavors organizers (the members of Destination Freeport) were very pleased with that relationship, the decision was made a year ago to move the event to April, and broaden the areas of support, by involving United Way and Freeport Community Services. To that end, the planning committee has been busily working to pull together the 2010 Flavors of Freeport event, now being held April 9-11.

The new website and detailed schedule of events have not yet been disclosed (the new website should be up and running in about a week or two), there are some exciting changes in the works, so we decided to “let the cat out of the bag” on a few of them.

The major events will be, as previously, the Chef’s Signature Series and Libations Sensations event, from 6-9 p.m. on Friday, April 9. with 20 restaurants, purveyors of spirits, and local chefs providing samplings of their culinary skill. On Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. will be Lifestyle Demonstrations, cooking, decorating and setting demonstrations from local experts and professionals. The third major event will be the new for 2010 Block Party at Freeport Village Station. The Block Party will include free entertainment, exhibits, and a celebration for all ages.

Last year the Historic Freeport Bed and Breakfasts provided a Chocolate Challenge at the Chef’s Signature Series, which was extremely well-received (hard to go wrong with chocolate desserts!). For 2010 the B&B’s have again prepared a special event – basing the idea on the recent film, Julia and Julia, each B&B will prepare a dessert for sampling from a Julia Child recipe. Doesn’t that sound tempting??

Tickets will be available for advance purchase online, and some participants (especially lodging properties) will offer packages that include tickets to the events. Tickets will also be available at the door.

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