Chocolate Cointreau Sauce

Remember all that lovely Cointreau that had strawberries soaking in it?  I have been trying a few things lately that have a bit of that lovely liqueur in them, but of course you could use your favourite liqueur as a substitute here.

This is quite a rich sauce but is extremely yummy on fruit, ice-cream, or you could even put a dash of it in a milkshake – just for the grownups of course!.  Just be wary, the alcohol is still active.

Chocolate Cointreau Sauce

 

I made this in a large pyrex jug, so instead of weighing the chocolate, I measured it in.  Using an eye measure with chocolate means that it isn’t precise – some of the buttons will stick up above the line, but you don’t have to be precise with this recipe.

1 & 1/2 cups good quality dark chocolate;

1/2 cup thickened cream;

1/4 cup cointreau (or substitute).

Place the chocolate and cream in a jug and place in the microwave for 30 seconds, shaking when done.  Repeat twice, then stir until the mixture is smooth.  Once smooth, add the liqueur.  If you are pouring this on a hot dessert, you can use it straight away, if using it on something like ice-cream wait until it cools a little.  You can store any leftovers in the fridge for a few days.

 

Boozy strawberries – just in time for Valentine’s Day!

These are easy to prepare, but a bit messy, as you can tell I got chocolate EVERYWHERE.

 

Boozy strawberries

 

500g strawberries

1 cup Cointreau

200g chocolate (white, milk or dark, your choice)

 

Put the strawberries into a dish so that they are in a single layer, but closely arranged, just not squished in.  Pour the Cointreau over, stir to coat and place in the fridge for two hours.

Take strawberries out, melt half the chocolate in a microwave safe jug – heat for 20 seconds, then take out and shake, heat for another 20 seconds and stir.  If the chocolate isn’t yet smooth, just heat in 10 second bursts, stirring between each.

Take a strawberry out of the dish and shake gently to get rid of the excess alcohol.  Dip in the chocolate, you may have to roll it around a little as the wet strawberries mean that the chocolate does tend to run off – to get a “neat” chocolate dip you need dry fruit.  Repeat with the other half of the chocolate.  Place each berry on a a tray which has been lined with baking paper and place in fridge to set.

When you eat them, have a napkin handy.  If you bite them from the chocolate dipped end, you can gently suck the alcohol out before continuing to eat the berry.

Now, you may have noticed you have a lot of Cointreau in your dish, that has been flavoured with strawberries.  Using a sieve to catch all those little bits of berry that are floating in it, drain into a jar or sealed jug and store in the fridge.  It will make a lovely flavouring later on – I will post some recipes later.

Jaffa brownies – gluten free

As I might have mentioned before 🙂 I love jaffa.  Of course, Jaffas and most commercial items like Smarties or M&Ms aren’t gluten free, so after searching high and low, I found some gluten free buttons and glitter balls.  Unfortunately, although they were orange coloured, they were not orange flavoured, so I solved the problem with my trusty cointreau.  (They were so yummy that I had to take the photo fast before they got stolen right off the plate!)  Thanks Adventurer Stacey for your stamp of approval!

Jaffa Brownies

Jaffa Brownies

200g orange coloured buttons (if you don’t need to be gluten free you can use chopped up Jaffas, but if you are only using buttons they don’t need to be cut up)

125g butter

250g dark chocolate melts

1/2 cup caster sugar

2 eggs

1 & 1/4 cups gluten free plain flour

2 tbsp cointreau

A handful of chocolate orange glitter balls to decorate

 

Preheat oven to 160 celcius fan forced (180 if not fan forced).  Prepare a square cake pan.

Melt the chocolate and butter in a large microwave safe bowl, cook on high for 30 seconds, shake and repeat.  Then quickly mix to combine the chocolate and butter, the hot butter will finish melting the chocolate.  Allow to cool slightly, then add the sugar and beat, then the eggs, flour, buttons and cointreau.  Pour into cake pan.  Bake approximately 35 minutes.  Although brownies should be gooey chewy in the middle, check with a cake skewer to make sure they aren’t still “liquid”.  Allow to cool completely in pan if using silicone (which you can just “peel” away when they are cool) or if using a metal pan, allow to cool a few minutes before

The first batch I made, I put the orange glitter balls in and baked them, but they lost their colour when baked, so when I made the second batch, I just pushed the balls into the top of the mix as soon as it came out of the oven, while it was still soft.  When completely cool, cut into small squares (it is too rich for big squares) and dust with icing sugar.

Alternative decoration for Jaffa Brownies

Alternative decoration for Jaffa Brownies