Since I’ve been on vacation, I’ve definitely been a hermit – staying at home, cleaning up around the house, cooking, and spending time with Charlie and the cat. But last night I finally got to go out with some of my friends! We went to this new place called Drink.Well pretty close to where I live, and there were such eclectic cocktails there, for a pretty good price! Hopefully I can check out some more places while I’m living in Austin 🙂
This peppermint stick torte is incredible – sweet, creamy, but definitely has the taste of peppermint. It’s more of an icebox torte with a delicious chocolate crust. I did have some issues when making it, though, and I will probably give this a second try sometime with these ideas in mind:
- The original recipe says you can freeze it for 6 hours or more – I would argue absolutely overnight or longer. I froze the torte for 6 hours, and it did not come apart from my springform pan. So when I served it, it basically looked like a pile of mush 😦 It was completely devoured by my studio and I got several positive comments on the torte, but I was sad it didn’t look as pretty.
- I ended up not having enough chocolate cookies for the crust (certainly didn’t look like the picture on the original recipe), so I’d recommend doubling the crust so it is thick enough.
Other than these two items, I really enjoyed the taste of the torte. It wasn’t REALLY pepperminty, but probably the best part of this torte was that it’s so light and creamy! I hope you guys end up trying this, even though we’re out of the Christmas season!
YIELD: 12 servings
TIME: 12 hours
9-ounce box of chocolate wafers (I use Nabisco’s Famous)
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup (4 oz) unsalted butter, melted
7 1/2 oz hard peppermint candies, about 45 small round pieces or 14 standard size candy canes
6 extra large egg yolks
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup water
1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
3 cups chilled whipping cream
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I use Dutch-processed)
2/3 cup heavy cream
1 cup light corn syrup
1 lb (16 oz) semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
5 tablespoons (2 1/2 oz ) unsalted butter
pinch of kosher salt
1/2 cup chilled heavy cream
1 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
12 round peppermint candies for garnish
In a food processor, finely grind the chocolate wafers and sugar. Add the melted butter and blend until the mixture resembles wet sand. Place the crumbs in a 9 x 2 3/4-inch springform pan and press them firmly onto the bottom and up the sides. Let sit in the freezer while preparing the filling.
Place the candies in a heavy-duty ziploc bag and crush into small pieces using a food processor. In a medium bowl, whisk together the yolks, sugar, and water. Place the bowl over a saucepan of rapidly simmering water (do not let the bottom of the bowl touch the water). Whisk constantly until a candy thermometer inserted into the mixture registers 170º F, about 6 minutes. Remove the bowl from over the water and add half the crushed candies, whisking until melted. Let the mixture rest for 5 minutes, whisking occasionally. Mix in the remaining crushed candy and peppermint extract. Cool for 5 more minutes, whisking occasionally. [NOTE: Don’t stress out of the mints do not melt completely – the peppermint pieces really add to the flavor of the torte!]
In a large medium bowl, beat the cold cream to soft peaks. Fold the cream into the yolk mixture. Pour the parfait mixture into the frozen crust, smoothing the top. Cover with aluminum foil (take care not to touch the filling). Freeze until firm, at least 6 hours or overnight.
For the sauce, place the cocoa in a heavy-based saucepan. Slowly pour in the cream and whisk until smooth. Add the corn syrup, chopped chocolate, butter, and salt. Set the pan over medium heat, stirring occasionally to combine. When the chocolate has melted, allow the mixture to come to a boil, reduce the heat and let it boil gently until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Let the sauce cool until it’s just warm (steam should no longer rise from the sauce when it’s stirred).
To serve, in a small bowl, beat the 1/2 cup of cream and sugar until soft peaks. Spoon into a pastry bag fitted with a star tip and pipe rosettes of cream around the top edge of the torte. Place the peppermint candies between the rosettes. Slice and serve with the warm sauce.
Hope y’all enjoy!