XXX Chocolate Bark with Toasted Pistachios
On Sunday we had this great dinner / get-together in Wine Country ... full of fabulous foodies and winemakers from all over the valley. The idea came about when Eric Ross, Owner of Eric Ross Winer said “lets have a potluck, I’m calling Robin”.
And so it began. I love parties with themes and since we are two weeks out from Thanksgiving, I thought let’s do a Thanksgiving Dress Rehearsal. The one thing about Wine Country is you never have to beg people to participate. Where there is good wine and food – there are fun people and laughter.
I made the turkey, stuffing, gravy and mashed potatoes. (I had the potatoes shipped from Wood Prairie Farms in Maine. Their Potato of the Month Club is amazing. You will never eat another potato unless it comes from there.) Everyone else had to make their families favorite side dish or dessert from that holiday. It was a big hit! There was tons of food and wine. We all rolled home after cleaning up, counting empty bottles and discussing our favorites.
Anyway, this recipe came about after the turkey was in the oven and I was bored. I looked around the pantry to see what little treat I could come up with. I spied 2-4 oz. bars of bittersweet chocolate and half used bag of pistachio’s and I knew the twist would come. As I melted the chocolate slowly over simmering water I saw in my cupboard a can of espresso salt I made about 6 months ago. There was the twist. So a new recipes was born, I tested it on some of the best palates in the valley to rave reviews! It’s ready for you and your friends. Easy as pie to make too!
8 oz dark or bittersweet chocolate, 70% cacao is best, 60% will pass, melted
1/4 cup pistachios, toasted in 350 degree oven, cooled and rough chopped 1/2 tsp espresso salt, *resource below vegetable cooking spray
Spray a light coat on a 8 inch pan with cooking spray, line with parchment paper and let some paper hang over the sides. After melting the chocolate carefully and slowly over simmering water, pour into pan and smooth with a offset spatula or knife. Sprinkle evenly with the toasted pistachios and espresso salt. Place the pan into the fridge until chilled and set, about 30 minutes or so. lift it out of pan by the parchment paper and break into desired size pieces.
Hide after you taste it, LOL!!!
You could also add some chopped dried cranberries as well. Try it the original way first and let your taste buds boogie into the night!
Go on over to A Taste of Olive – they will have your Espresso Salt for $7.50 a jar. They also have other exquisite salts that look amazing. Check it out!
Bone Warming Minestrone ...
It’s the right mix of texture and flavor that softens the impact of a cold midwestern night…
This soup has become the new household favorite now that the weather has turned a little colder her in Chicago. Though we miss Sonoma very much we have embraced our new surroundings by getting a more wintery mix of food going in the house. This is a favorite.
From the Daily Basics ...
Catch up to Chef Robin's recent posts on The Daily Basics where she guest blogs weekly:
- Rules for the PERFECT Romantic Valentine’s Dinner for Two
- Bone Warming Minestrone
- Unstressful, Easy-to-Make Appetizers for Christmas!
- Christmas Cocktail Party Hors d’oeuvre – Parsnip Soup Poppers
- Abigail Adams Pumpkin Pie Recipe
- The Perfect Fall Picnic Pie – Italian Vegetable Pie
- Dutch Apple Pie
- Fall Pie Season – Bisteeya
- Blue Hubbard Squash Pie – #Celebrating Pie Season!
- Baked Empañada – Celebrating #PieSeason
Pizza in Italy
In July, I visited Cortona to help launch the new Tuscan Sun Wines that France Mayes has created. While I was there, I met Ivan Italiani and in half a minute, we were family. Ivan is a great chef and master at pizza. He share some secrets with me and I am practicing all the time!
Ivan taught me about the "dough" and the "temperature" and the cheese, and helped me understand the precise moment to pull the pie from the fire.
My virtual dinners are so much fun! We pre-share recipes around the world and cooking together across time zones and countries all at the same social media time and place! People have joined from as many as