Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Malted Milk Chocolate Pots de Crème with Malted Dark Chocolate Ganache

by Darla

Words should come with little thought bubbles that have their pronunciations written in them. You know, so when you’re about to say something, and you’re not sure how to pronounce it, the little thought bubble floats up and shows you how to say it. And if you’re still unsure, you can ask for an audio clip in your head…just in case. But you know…somehow, only you can see it, so you don’t end up looking like you don’t know anything.

I mean, I know it doesn’t make me stupid, but seriously, I hate it when I don’t know how to pronounce something. I know I’m not stupid, but I feel like it when I don’t know. When I’m talking to someone I know really well, I always say something like, “blah, blah, blah, something I can’t pronounce…” Or I’ll say it in the most basic pronunciation possible and say, “or whatever…I have no idea how you say that.” I always feel the need to justify it. But when I’m with a stranger, I swear to you, my palms start sweating, my heart starts racing, and have to fight the urge to run in the opposite direction.

Yes, really.

I love words. I’m such a word loser…I think spelling is FUN. I think word games are the best. I ask the hubster and kiddo to test my spelling. That’s what we do for fun sometimes.

So…yeah. If you ever doubted my geekiness before, I think I can rest assured that you’re convinced now.

But look, I never took French, and I don’t speak Latin, except of the pig persuasion. I don’t know German or Russian or any other foreign (to me) language, except for some Spanish. Some. So my solution for a word that I don’t know? Throw a Spanish pronunciation on it and hope I’m right.

I’m usually wrong.

Of course, there’s the times that it’s obviously not Spanish, and my attempts to pretend I know something won’t succeed, even a little bit, and that’s when I need those damned thought bubbles.

For example, I’ve read the term “pots de crème” probably hundreds of times, but I’ve never heard it spoken aloud. Therefore, I really feel like I’m justified in thinking it’s pronounced just like it looks: Pots day creem. Actually, I pretty much assumed that “crème” was all schmancy and sounded more like krem. So I’m all Englishy with the first word, and the middle word has some of my I-don’t-know-how-to-say-this Spanish flair, while the third is actually correct, but only by accident. How was I supposed to know that “pots” is actually pronounced “po?” Yes, “po,” like the Kung Fu Panda.

Po. Duh. Krehm. Not Pots Day Creem.

Whatever. I thank The Pioneer Woman for today’s grammar lesson.

I think I need to either invent the Thought Bubble Pronunciation Helper, or I’m going to have to become multilingual, so that I always know how to say complicated, foreign, fancy words. Or maybe I can hire some pretentious person who takes the time to learn how to pronounce all of this stuff.

Oh well, at least now, when I go to order pots de crème at a restaurant for the first time, I’ll know how to say it. Just don’t ask me about plural versus singular. I’m not going there. I’ll just have to order more than one every time. Just in case.

Fortunately, pots de crème are delicious; delicious and easy and gorgeous, so having to eat more than one isn’t a hardship at all. Especially when they’re all malted milk chocolate and ganache and crunchy malted milk ball candy.

I always had this mistaken idea that pots de crème were difficult to make. Nothing could be further from the truth. They’re simple and easy, and they only require a few ingredients, in this case: milk chocolate (preferable high quality), malt powder, granulated sugar, egg yolks, a whole egg, milk, and heavy cream.

For the malt powder, regular malted milk (such as Carnation) works beautifully, so don’t stress out about trying to find pure malt powder.

Once the custard is mixed up and divided into ramekins, they’re placed in a roasting pan int he center of the oven. The pan is then carefully filled with enough water to reach halfway up the sides of the ramekins, being cautious not to splash or spill water on top of the custard.

Place a piece of foil over the tops of the custard cups. You may need to cut it to fit inside the pan to lay on top of the ramekins.

Once they come out of the oven, they need to cool on a cooling rack for about 45 minutes before chilling them. Mine turned out pretty and smooth this time, but if you have some small bubbles on top, that’s normal…don’t be discouraged by it. You won’t see them anyway, since we’re covering them with lovely, dark ganache.

Once the pots de crème are chilled (after four hours in the refrigerator), you can make the ganache. There’s only three ingredients: heavy cream, bitter or semi-sweet chocolate, and malt powder. You’ll need a scant half cup of heavy cream, and I never used to be sure how much that was…so I took a picture for you guys…just in case you weren’t sure either. This is what a scant half cup looks like. Hope this helps. :)

Once the ganache is done, place one to two tablespoons on each of the pots de crème, swirling the ramekin around to spread the ganache to the edges.

The ganache should easily spread to the edges. I prefer a little more ganache, so I always use two tablespoons.

Next, I topped these with chopped malted milk balls. I love the flavor that these add, but I especially love the texture.

The perfect final touch for these is some softly whipped cream. And, of course, if you’re going to be serving these up for your sweetie on Valentine’s Day, then you can’t go wrong with some lovely little heart sprinkles.

These were so fun and easy to make, and they’re beautiful and delicious. I always forget how easy pots de crème are, then I make them, and I promise to make them more often. This particular recipe is one that I think I’ll always remember to make.

The dark chocolate ganache is perfectly complimented by the creamy milk chocolate custard underneath, and the malt flavor is sweet and subtle, punctuated by the crunchy malted milk balls on top. I also love how gorgeous the dark chocolate is on top of the light colored milk chocolate ganache. If you want an easy, fast, elegant, and scrumptious dessert this Valentine’s Day, you can’t go wrong with these. Everyone will love them, and you can make them the day before to save time. Not that it matters…aside from the long chilling time, these only take about 20 minutes of actual work to make.

Plus, you get sound all extravagant saying that dessert for the evening will be “po duh krehm.” Enjoy!

Malted Milk Chocolate Pots de Crème [Printable Version]
Make 6 6-ounce custards

Ingredients

7 ounces (200 grams) milk chocolate, chopped
1 egg
4 egg yolks
1 1/2 cups (375 ml) heavy cream
1 cup (250 ml) milk
1/2 cup (2.5 ounces or 70 grams) malt powder (omit for gluten free)
1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar

about 2 ounces malted milk balls, chopped (omit for gluten free)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees (165 C), place an oven rack in the canter of the oven.

Place the chocolate in a large bowl, set a fine mesh sieve over the top, and set aside.

In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and egg yolks; set aside.

In a medium saucepan, combine the heavy cream, milk, malt powder, and sugar together. Bring the mixture to a gentle bowl, whisking to dissolve all of the malt powder is dissolved. Remove from heat.

In a very slow, steady stream, whisk half of the cream mixture into the eggs. Be sure to whisk constantly to prevent the eggs from cooking. Once combined, whisk in the remaining cream mixture. Pour the mixture through the mesh sieve, over the chocolate. Let sit for 3 to 4 minutes, then gently whisk until smooth and thoroughly combined. If all of the chocolate isn’t melted properly, heat in the microwave for 15 seconds, then whisk to combine.

Divide the custard between six 6-ounce ramekins. Place the ramekins in a roasting pan. Pull out the oven rack and place the pan in the center of the rack. Carefully fill the pan with enough water to reach halfway up the sides of the ramekins, being cautious not to splash or spill water on top of the custard. Place a piece of foil over the tops of the custard cups. You may need to cut it to fit inside the pan to lay on top of the ramekins.

Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, or until only a small circle int he center is still liquid.

Carefully remove the ramekins from the roasting pan and place on a cooling rack. Allow to cool for about 45 minutes, then transfer to the refrigerator and chill for 4 hours.

Once cooled, top each with 2 tablespoons of ganache and chopped malted milk balls, and serve with softly whipped cream.

Recipe adapted from The Art and Soul of Baking

Malted Dark Chocolate Ganache [Printable Version]

Ingredients

4.5 ounces (128 grams) bitter or semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
scant 1/2 cup (about 218 ml) heavy cream
3 tablespoons malt powder (omit for gluten free)

Place the chocolate in a medium bowl.

In a small saucepan, whisk the heavy cream and malt powder together. Bring the mixture to a gentle boil, whisking to make sure the malt powder dissolves completely. Pour the hot malted cream over the chocolate, and allow to sit for 5 minutes. Whisk the cream and (now melted) chocolate together into smooth and glossy.

Recipe by Darla

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{ 38 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Ashley January 31, 2012 at 12:31 pm

I know what you mean. My husband and I argue about this all the time. He’s fluent in Spanish, and I have a decent background in French, so neither of us can pronounce anything that the other person can. I LOVE making him read French. It sounds ridiculous and Spanish. And here’s your thought bubble for the plural and singular. It sounds exactly the same. So you’re good no matter what!! That’s the beauty of French. Most of the letters aren’t pronounced at all. :)
Also, these pots de creme look heavenly. Maybe I’ve got V day figured out.

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2 Heather S. January 31, 2012 at 12:32 pm

And I thought I was the only person in the world who loves spelling and word games! ;) I’m also one of those people who tends to not know how something is pronounced! I knew pots de creme, but only because I’m a Food Network addict! haha! These look delicious! I think I mght have to run out to the store to get the ingredients right now so thatI can make these today!

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3 Cecily January 31, 2012 at 12:39 pm

I think I’m in love with a dessert. I also wish there were thought bubbles for how to say words, and how to spell them. Thanks for the great recipe and site.

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4 Paula January 31, 2012 at 12:57 pm

Nice recipe!! I love malted milk as my boyf loves pots de crème, so I will try your recipe soon!!

It has to be funny if you use the spanish for german and french pronunciation!!
I think it’s a great idea!!
And, if I can come here and I dare to comment with my wrong english, I’m sure you can speak the best french with your personal touch!

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5 Caroline @ chocolate & carrots January 31, 2012 at 12:58 pm

I had no idea that was the correct pronunciation. I had always said it in my head as pots day creme. Thank you for teaching me something new Darla! They look beautiful! :-D

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6 Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar January 31, 2012 at 1:36 pm

This sounds so fabulous!

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7 christina @ ovenadventures January 31, 2012 at 1:52 pm

i love the reference to kung fu panda! I won’t forget how to say pots de creme now.

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8 Kim January 31, 2012 at 2:04 pm

The correct French pronunciation is “po”, but most people just say pots. And in French, that backwards accent (accent grave) over the e in creme makes an eh sound (which is represented by a schwa in the phonetic alphabet (which is the coolest word ever. Schwa.)). I once took an etymologies course when I was 16. For funsies. At summer camp. I am a word nerd and proud of it.

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9 Cookbook Queen January 31, 2012 at 2:13 pm

Swoon.

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10 Choc Chip Uru January 31, 2012 at 2:22 pm

Have also currently been on a malted powder much! I love the flavour combinations it offers :D
What a stunning recipe!

Cheers
Choc Chip Uru

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11 Heather January 31, 2012 at 5:27 pm

This looks truly spectacular. I love malted powder. What a wonderful idea.

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12 Sam January 31, 2012 at 5:40 pm

These look delcious, but I feel like I’m more in love with the pots. Where did you get these?

I feel like I’ve learned something new, and that you’ve saved me from a future embarrassing moment of asking for pots de creme.

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13 Darla February 1, 2012 at 10:42 pm

The pots are from Pier 1 Imports…I adore them! I got them on clearance, and the best part? They have little lids! So cute! :)

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14 Krissy @ Krissy's Creations January 31, 2012 at 6:30 pm

All of your desserts are stunning! Love Malted Milk, so I’ve got to try this :)

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15 Becca-cookie jar treats January 31, 2012 at 7:20 pm

I am nutorius for butchering words. It’s awful, really. But my intentions are good. The only part of pots de creme I didn’t know how to say was pots I thought it was like pots and pans. Actually, I still slip up and say the ugly way instead of po and when I read it I say pots :/. Oh well. But speaking of pots de creme yours look do decadent and beautiful. Simply marvelous!

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16 Angela Willis January 31, 2012 at 9:41 pm

My husband and boys will LOVE this… this IS what Valentine’s Dinner Desert will be! Yum! Thanks Darla!

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17 buttercream bakehouse January 31, 2012 at 9:45 pm

your treats look delicious and your photography is stunning. What setting do you use on your camera or these amazing indoor shots? I have trouble finding the right light in my kitchen and what setting to use so I take my treats outside for natural light but that is not always easy to do.

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18 Darla February 1, 2012 at 10:52 pm

I give a lot of information about my photograph here: http://bakingdom.com/2011/01/photography-fyi.html, but about this post specifically, my camera settings vary, depending on lighting, etc., but I always shoot on Aperture setting. I try to use natural lighting whenever possible (all of the photos in this post are 100% natural lighting), but the Lowel Ego light is an excellent stand-in when you need it, or when you need more light. Also, I don’t always shoot in my kitchen. Right now, I do, because it actually has the best light, but in previous houses, the best light was always elsewhere, like the dining room, or even a spare bedroom once. Whenever we move, I establish which non-private room in the house has the best light, and I set up my “studio” there…then I just carry the food to it…sometimes very carefully. :) So, if you need to and if you can, go to where the light is (like you do when you go outside). :)

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19 Simone February 1, 2012 at 12:37 am

Where oh, where did you get those super cute ramekins???

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20 Darla February 1, 2012 at 10:41 pm

I got them on clearance at Pier 1 Imports…I adore them! And the best part is…they have little lids, too! So cute! :)

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21 sweetsugarbelle February 1, 2012 at 11:50 am

The last picture made me smile!

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22 Sydney L. February 1, 2012 at 2:05 pm

Mmmmmmmm!
Those look tasty!!

My dad adores chocolate malts! I always thought malts were a fancier way of saying milk shakes! Apparently, not, they must have malted milk in them! Learn something new everyday, I guess!

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23 Lior February 1, 2012 at 3:24 pm

you made me laugh! come to visit here and i will teach you some more “strange” words…..
this looks delicious!
but…. what does “malt powder” mean? can you explain me?
Lior
my blog:
http://www.tapuz.co.il/blog/net/viewentry.aspx?EntryId=2252081

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24 Darla April 2, 2012 at 11:22 am

I’m hoping this link is helpful: http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-malted-milk.htm :)

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25 Nicole February 1, 2012 at 6:40 pm

Question: How do you take such great photos? Do you used artificial lighting? There so bright, close, and detailed? What lens and camera do you use? Please any suggestions would be appreciated! We love your stuff! Thank you! We are event planners desperately trying to get great photos of our hard work!

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26 Darla February 1, 2012 at 10:44 pm

Hi Nicole, I wrote this post: http://bakingdom.com/2011/01/photography-fyi.html several months ago that answers most of your questions all in one go. :) You’ll find my camera and lens preferences, as well as which artificial light I like the most. I prefer natural lighting whenever possible, though, so a big beautiful window is always good to have nearby. If you have any other questions after reading the post, let me know!

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27 Maria February 1, 2012 at 11:33 pm

What a cute little dessert! Love those little red dishes!

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28 Val February 2, 2012 at 12:52 am

Hi Darla! This is too tempting! haha.. I continue to be amazed by how wonderful your creations are. I recently blogged about you and hopefully more people find and visit Bakingdom. My blog is very new but you’ll serve as one of my inspirations. Keep it up and more power!

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29 Val February 2, 2012 at 12:54 am

Hi Darla! This is too tempting! haha.. I continue to be amazed by how wonderful your creations are. I recently blogged about you and hopefully more people find and visit Bakingdom. My blog is very new but you’ll serve as one of my inspirations. Keep it up and more power!

Val (foodscrapbook.wordpress.com)

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30 Glory/ Glorious Treats February 2, 2012 at 3:42 am

These are just so beautiful!! I love the little dishes, and how can you go wrong with a gorgeous dessert of pure chocolate!

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31 Karyn February 2, 2012 at 11:48 am

Two words you can pronounce : Yum, Yum!
I want some NOW! I love Whoppers and anything malted!

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32 Jess February 3, 2012 at 1:16 am

I always feel ridiculous pronouncing foreign words, even though I speak Russian, some Spanish, and a little French. I kid you not, I usually don’t order food with fancy names because I get embarrassed. On a date once, I ordered “Chicken Balsamico,” but I was so nervous (about the date and the pronunciation) that I just changed the name and ordered “the balsamic chicken.” Hah!

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33 Jackie February 6, 2012 at 3:37 am

My default pronunciation guideline for anything French is, just ignore the last few consonants; they’re just there for decoration.

These look really adorable! I’m tempted to try making them sometime. Debating whether to modify my Valentine’s Day dessert plans…

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34 Anna @ the shady pine February 27, 2012 at 5:34 am

What a drool worthy dessert….looks so delicious!

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35 Lisa May 15, 2012 at 2:54 pm

That certainly looks wonderful! However, malted milk is not gluten free so you might consider removing that tag.

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36 Michelle July 8, 2012 at 7:56 pm

I was thinking the same thing Lisa…malted milk powder and the malted milk balls both are not gluten free. I guess you could omit them and the recipe would just be Milk Chocolate Pots de Crème with Dark Chocolate Ganache :)

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37 Darla July 8, 2012 at 9:12 pm

Thanks, the recipe already specifies to omit them for gluten free treats. :)

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38 Nancy Levy November 3, 2012 at 9:10 pm

I made this for my husbands birthday this Halloween. He loves malted milk balls so this was the perfect recipe! It was easy to make but took the better part of the day with all of the baking, cooling, and chilling times. It was so rich, I passed the left overs out to our neighbors!

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