Chocolate fondue is a fabulous party food and with February upon us, it makes a romantic dessert. Here are a few ideas to put together one effortlessly and some of the best dippers that go perfect with it.
Melting chocolate can be slightly tricky but here are a few tips that make it easy.
Use a double boiler or place a bowl over a pan of simmering water.
When microwaving, stop every 20-30 seconds and give the chocolate a stir.
If using a fondue pot, use the lowest setting.
Adding a tablespoon of butter or coconut oil at the very end will add a beautiful sheen to the chocolate.
Some of the best dippers include:
Peanut Butter Balls (Mix together 1 1/2 cups sifted powdered sugar, 1/2 cup peanut butter, 3 tablespoons of softened butter and shape into balls. Chill a few hours before setting out to be dipped)
Filet mignon is delicious and also a little romantic, don’t you think? This recipe for rosemary and garlic crusted filet mignon is the perfect dish when preparing a date night meal at home and will impress your significant other.
This months Whole Foods Market Ambassador theme is all about their dry aged steaks. With Valentines Day just around the corner, avoid the long wait and crowded restaurant by celebrating at home with this delicious steak dinner.
Whole Foods Market’s steaks are aged for 14-21 days in-house. Humidity and temperature are controlled during this process. You can see it in person if you drop by your local store, many of them have cases with glass on the sales floor.
The aging process concentrates the steak’s natural flavor while also reducing the moisture content. Enzymes also break down the fibers on a microscopic level, which imparts a tender character. Dry aged steaks cook slightly faster, so make sure you’re monitoring the internal cooking temperature; 130-135 degrees for medium rare, and 140-145 for medium.
I wish to thank Whole Foods Market for supplying me with a gift card to purchase the ingredients for this recipe.
Rosemary and Garlic Crusted Filet Mignon
2 Beef Filet Mignon
2 Sprigs Fresh Rosemary, chopped
2 Cloves Fresh Garlic, chopped
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
Dash of Salt and Pepper
Heat grill or desired pan of choice for cooking. Drizzle both sides of steak with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Combine chopped rosemary and garlic together.
Rub garlic and rosemary mixture around steak and place on grill.
You will want to make sure your grill is hot enough to get a good sear on the steak when placed in your pan or on the grill.
Let your steak develop a seared crust on the grill before moving or flipping it. If you try to lift the meat before it is ready, it will stick to the grates or pan and tear when trying to move it.
Cook steak to desired temperature of doneness as listed above.
Add whatever side dishes you like to complete the meal.
I recommend a classic baked potato and Whole Foods Market asparagus which comes ready to cook.
Just toss with some olive oil and place on roasting pan. Roast at 425 for 15 minutes or until tender.
If you love a little surf and turf try this recipe for Herb Roasted Lobster and Steak from Whole Foods Market.
With Valentine ’s Day just around the corner, I have compiled a list of a few goodies you can find around town to make you day a sweet as can be.
I would say he first thing that to come to mind when most people think about Valentine’s Day s is chocolate. Kansas City has quite a few choices when it comes to that cocoa confection starting with the ever-popular Christopher Elbow.
Food and Wine magazine gave the #1 ranking of their top 10 Chocolates to Christopher Elbow for the No. 6 Dark. It features 61% dark chocolate blended with popping candy to create a unique, irresistible chocolate bar. I had the chance to tour his shop a while back and had no idea the detail that went into making these exquisite chocolates! Now I know why they taste so good. Some take 2, 3 or even more days to make.
You can read more about the tour here
Elbows chocolates are of course available at his shop on McGee Street but some other locations around the metro include the Roasterie Café, Brookside Market, Foo’s Frozen Custard, Halls Department Store, Dean and Deluca and Cosentino’s Market. Elbow’s Chocolates are also available nationwide including his store in San Francisco. Here is a link to find all the locations his chocolates are available.
Christopher Elbow Chocolates
1819 McGee Street
Kansas City, MO 64108
Tues – Sat 10a.m. – 6p.m.
Next is Amore Chocolate Pizza Company. Christopher and Annette Cook run this local shop. Annette is a former theater buff and would make these “break a leg” chocolate pizzas as gifts. As popularity of them grew, Annette found herself taking orders for them and Amore Chocolate Pizza Company was born.
Located in Leawood in the Town Center shopping center, Amore Chocolate Pizza Company is also a dessert café and bakery offering a variety of chocolates, desserts, coffees and more. Certain nights feature live music and a fondue bar.
Patric Chocolates have a variety of bars available to purchase including a bar he collaborated with Kansas City’s own Christopher Elbow. His bars are available at the Better Cheddar in Kansas City, various stores throughout St. Louis and online. Visit Patric Chocolates.com for more information.
If it is cakes or cookies you are looking for Kansas City has that covered too. Jude’s Rum Cakes are the creation of Chef and Caterer Craig Adcock who owns Belly Up BBQ. Named after his mother-in-law, Jude’s Rum Cakes are made with only the best quality ingredients. Whole eggs, real butter, Barbancourt Rum from Haiti, a local Rum from Tennessee and locally grown pecans from Missouri Northern Pecan Growers. Once the cakes are made, they are soaked in the rum for 24 hours in order for it to saturate through the cake. The result is a rich, moist, and fragrant cake.
Jude’s Rum Cakes come in three sizes. The large 4-pound version ($50) yields 16 large slices and the smaller size 2-pound ($30) will yield 8 slices. They also bake and sell mini muffin-size and two-bite teaser rum cakes. ($12 – $15)
Order online or arrangements can be made for pick up and by calling 913.526.6708.
If Cheesecakes are your passion check out Cowtown Cheesecakes. Owner Chef Terry Mille has created a variety of flavors and uses local and seasonal ingredients when available. Some flavors include: Strawberry Shortcake, Pineapple Upside Down Cake, Key Lime, Lemon, Lemon Blueberry, Strawberry, Pumpkin, Fudge Swirl, Devils Food Cake, White Chocolate Raspberry and Kansas Cream.
Visit CowTown Cheesecake’s website or contact Chef Terry at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on pricing and ordering. You can also find CowTown Cheesecake company on Facebook.
For cookies and other treats such as handmade marshmallows,cake pops and more check out Everyday Organic Cookery. Owner Jamie Milks believes that eating healthy, organic food is something you can do everyday and that is why every thing she makes uses local and organic ingredients. Jamie is a genius when it comes to creating these treats and has spent hours testing and perfecting the recipes. Her cookie dough flavors include: chocolate chip, salted caramel, honey lemon ginger and more. All items are gluten free and are absolutely delicious.
Just for Valentines Day, Farm to Market Bread Company has created a Chocolate Cherry Bread. This Kansas City tradition is available for a limited time only, Feb. 8 through Valentine’s Day. This bread is made with semi-sweet chocolate, Michigan-grown red tart dried cherries and 100 percent cocoa. Like all Farm to Market artisan breads, Chocolate Cherry is made with all-natural ingredients. This year, the recipe is being crafted into 14-ounce round loaves that make perfect gifts or treats for the office.
Farm to Market Chocolate Cherry Bread retails at $5.99 per loaf and will be offered in select Kansas City-area stores from Feb. 8-14 including Cosentino’s Price Chopper’s, Marsh’s Sun Fresh, Westport, HyVee (77th &State Line Rd) Hen House (87th and Lackman), Corinth Hen House, Camelot Hen House, Prairie Village Hen House, Deer Creek Hen House (135th and Metcalf) and Fairway Hen House. Lawrence residents can find Chocolate Cherry Bread at Community Mercantile.
If you are a wine lover, Somerset Ridge Winery will quench your thirst. Somerset Ridge wines are served in some great local restaurants around KC including Bonefish Grill, Taste, Gaslight Grill, Blue Bird Bistro and Jasper’s just to name a few. They are also available at several retail locations around the city. Visit their website for more information on locations. www.somersetridge.com/retail.html
Enjoy Valentines Day with your sweetie with one of these sweets! For a list of more local products savory and sweet check out the local products page.
In Good Taste,