Desserts and Sweets

Chocolate Pots de Creme (Vegan)

This is the dessert to make when you really want to make a positive impression.   Translated from French, the dessert in English would be called “Pots of Cream”.   Kind of humdrum when translated, so we much prefer the French version, pronounced “Poe-de-krem”

This is not only a truly exquisite dessert, it’s also very simple to make.   There’s nothing tricky.  These are a regular go-to because they are simple and exactly the right thing to finish off a nice meal.

You might look at the ingredients of balsamic reduction and orange juice and think ‘what’?   But don’t worry.   Both the orange juice and the balsamic are undetectably, yet they do add just the right amount of depth to the dessert and they are what make it truly special on top of it’s rich creamy texture.

 

Notes on Reducing and Reduction

When we say “reduce”, in regards to the orange juice, we are referring the a cooking term.  You have likely also heard of ‘reduction”.   When you reduce something, you boil it agressively without a lid.  During the boiling process, much of the liquid evaporates and the mixture gets thicker.  When I reduced the orange juice, I put 1/4 cup into the pot and put the burner on high.  It was boiling for about 4 minutes when it reduced to half.  It will depend, but start checking it at 3 minutes and just measure every minute or so until the orange juice becomes about half the amount it was.

If you don’t have any balsamic reduction, you can also use regular balsamic to reduce it.  Timing would be about the same as the orange juice and you want the balsamic to also reduce to about half of the amount it was.

Notes about a Double Boiler

With this recipe, it’s wise to either use a double boiler or use a makeshift one, which I always do.   Who needs more kitchen appliances cluttering up their cabinets and pantries?  All you need are 2 pots of different sizes.  In the smaller pot, you put your ingredients.  In the larger pot, you in water – enough that when the smaller pot is placed inside, it is sitting in an inch or two of water.  This prevents ingredients from burning and is wise when melting chocolate as we are doing in this recipe.

Below is what the dessert looks like right after it’s been poured into the “pots”.  I used ramekins in this particular photo.  It needs time to chill so make this about 4 hours before serving.

 

Once totally cooled and ready to serve, there are many options to make them pretty.   Dust with cookie crumbs or icing sugar and top with fruit or a cookie.   Our favorite so far, is blueberries and icing sugar.  Truly exquisite.

Chocolate Pots de Crème

1/4 cup orange juice  – reduce to 1/8 cup

1 tbsp refined coconut oil

2 ounces dark unsweetened chocolate

3 tbsp cashew butter

1 tbsp agave syrup

2 tbsp balsamic reduction

pinch of salt

2/3 cup cashew milk

 

Start by reducing your orange juice.   Measure the orange juice into a small pot without a lid boil away the liquid til is reduced to half.  (See notes on “Reducing and Reduction” above.)   Add coconut oil and dark, unsweetened chocolate to the small pot and place in a larger pot of water.   (See notes on “Double Boiler” above.)  Stir frequently until it’s all melted.  Add cashew butter, agave syrup, balsamic reduction and salt and stir again.   Add cashew milk and puree with an immersion blender until smooth.  Pour into serving dishes and place in the fridge for 4 hours or more.   Remove from fridge, garnish and serve.

 

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