Foodie Blog

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Chocolate Pots de Creme

You know, when I was younger, back when my cooking and baking fascination was in its infancy, my mom had this big fancy cookbook with these creations that I really haven't seen created anywhere.  Now, I knew that there was no way I could re-create any of these things since I didn't even know where to find some of the ingredients.  But there was one recipe I knew was simple enough for me to make:  Chocolate pots de creme.  I remember it called for milk, sugar, and chocolate.  I'm not sure what else was required since that huge cookbook was sold many garage sales ago.

I do remember how incredibly frustrating that recipe was because I ALWAYS followed it exactly and it never ever came out how it should have.  It would end up more like chocolate soup, never firming up in the fridge like the pictures showed.  I just thought maybe I was doing something wrong.  Now that I'm older, I know that there are a million imperfect cookbooks out there which might leave out some small step or include an incorrect measurement.  Now, when I come across something that doesn't seem right, I know how to correct it.  But I do feel bad for those out there who follow these horrible things just to end up with disaster.
I know, this isn't a chocolate pot de creme, but it is a sneak peak of something I will make again in the future.

Anyway, Cooks Illustrated has never led me astray.  Neither has Alton Brown.  When it comes to baking, you really can't just throw together any combination of things.  It's kind of like chemistry.  Martha Stewart is someone that can kind of be trusted.  I know enough about making creme brulee and other custard like creations to know that some combination of cream, eggs, and sugar, baked in a water bath will produce a very creamy creation.  And also make you feel really guilty afterward.  But this recipe is worth it!  Plus, it's not really hard at all.

Chocolate Pots de Creme
Adapted from Martha Stewart

I didn't follow this recipe exactly since I didn't have whole milk on hand and was too lazy to go out and get some.  I also only had bittersweet chocolate on hand and was too lazy to get milk chocolate.  Besides, in my book, there is no such thing as too chocolatey.  It still came out good, I would probably just start checking on them when there is 5 minutes left of cooking time since the tops ended up a bit firmer than the inside.  But I wouldn't shove it off the dessert tray at all.  Oh, and I would say Picky, and his parents really, really enjoyed them.  Definitely add some fresh whipped cream to even out the chocolate.
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 5 large egg yolks
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • Boiling water
  • Whipped cream, for serving 
  • 1 tablespoon of powdered sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees with a rack in the lower third. Place a small kitchen towel in the bottom of a medium roasting pan.  Then place eight 4-ounce pots de creme pots or 4 ramekins in the pan; set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepan, combine cream, milk, and chocolates over medium heat. Bring almost to a simmer; remove from the heat. Set aside, stirring occasionally, until chocolate is melted.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together egg yolks, sugar, and salt. While whisking, add a little of the hot milk mixture to the egg mixture to combine. Add the remaining milk mixture, and whisk to combine. Whisk in vanilla. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a large liquid measure.
  4. Pour approximately 1/2 cup of the egg mixture into each pots de creme pot. Transfer the roasting pan to the oven. Fill pan with enough boiling water to come halfway up the sides of the pots de creme pots. At the 30 minute mark, check to see if the center is set.  If still a little jiggly, bake until the custards are just set in the center, about 35 minutes.
  5. Remove the roasting pan from oven. Remove the pots de creme pots from the water, and place on a wire rack to cool. When completely cooled, cover, and transfer to refrigerator. Chill for at least 4 hours and up to overnight.

    In a large bowl, pour in about 1/2 to 3/4 cup of heavy cream, then whip at high speed with an electric mixer.  When it starts to form soft peaks, add a tablespoon of powdered sugar and continue to whip until it reaches a whipped cream consistency.  Spoon on top of chocolate and serve.  You might want to eat half and save the other half for later.  


winray said...

you will be my personal chef when I make $$$

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