I understand the prevailing trend these days is to profess adoration for dark chocolate, the higher in cocoa mass and the more intensely bitter the better, preferably savoured by candlelight with a perfectly aged red wine. Me, I could take it or leave it. I love it for cooking - rarely use anything else - but in terms of eating, I am the fiendiest fiend for white chocolate. I know, it's not even "real" chocolate, and it's nothing but sugar, and doesn't even have any cocoa mass by which to measure its superiority against other chocolates...but I LOVE it. If I know there's some in the house I can barely concentrate, and find myself blindly standing by the cupboard, stolidly chewing away at whatever's left of my white chocolate resources. Whereas dark chocolate - well, it's pretty telling that I have four blocks of the stuff sitting in my wardrobe (because (a) I stock up if it's on sale and (b) we don't have a lot of cupboard space in the kitchen), and haven't touched the stuff.
But I'm only human. I see chocolate, unwrapped and vulnerable in front of me and I gotta take a bite. This particular stuff - Donovan's 80% cocoa dark chocolate, has its own cromulent gratification, in spite of not being my first choice. Smooth, sharp, with an uncannily refreshing, rather than rich finish, it was the perfect thing to embiggen my otherwise low-rent sorbet...
I got the idea for this from a Jill Dupleix recipe for "ice cream" made of only two ingredients - bananas and raspberries. Berries being expensive, I thought I could make another version using canned pears. I poshed it up by adding some shards of the aforementioned dark chocolate and changing the name...
Banana, Pear, and Bitter Dark Chocolate Sorbet (see, doesn't sound like something out of a can at all when you put it like that)
3 very ripe, large bananas
1 large or 2 regular sized cans of pears, well drained
45g dark chocolate, chopped roughly
Ideally you should do this in a food processor. But I was feeling lazy...or ecologically minded if you will...and used a fork. Mash the bananas and pears together till they are uniformly smooth. Fold in the chocolate. Freeze, stirring occasionally. This makes about 750mls...I think. If you want more, all you have to do is add more bananas or another can of pears. It could probably do with a blast in the food processor after a certain amount of freezing, but once again, I was being serenely carbon neutral with my fork. I'm sure it would be far superior made in the food processor, but it really depends on whether you want to serve it to people or just eat it by yourself.
It's so healthy you could practically have it for breakfast. Even with the chocolate because you know, antioxidants! If you want to serve it to polite company though you need to leave it on the bench for a while to soften. Because it has no added fat it freezes rock solid and you will get fissures in your teeth trying to eat it. I think I got elbow fissures trying to scrape up a spoonful for this photo. But when I left it out of the fridge (for ages actually, I'd forgotten about it but our kitchen is so arctic that it hadn't melted in the slightest) to soften, I was pleasantly greeted by a delicious flavour combination. The delicate flavour of the pears, the texture of the bananas, the occasional surprise of dark chocolate made for an excellent mouthful. Better yet it cost me diddly squat to make. Supermarkets will sell overripe bananas for a song, canned pears are always cheap, and okay, chocolate is expensive but if you can get it on special it's not too bad. Which is why, when Tim and I trekked to Pak'n'Save to do our groceries and I saw 250g blocks of chocolate for $2 compared to the usual $6, I stocked up.
When I was up home last weekend, my mother - ever the teacher - gently brought my attention to some misplaced apostrophes in my blog. As I want to be a sub-editor one day...and consider myself pretty au fait with grammatical concepts...I apologise sincerely. By the time I've written and edited these posts and grappled with the screen freezing up and photos uploading I tend to miss a few things. I'll think twice next time I sneer at someone else's poor punctuation. And indeed, feel free to tell me if there is an apostrophe out of place somewhere causing you offense.
Next time: I attempt to make Peanut Butter and Chocolate Popcorn from the Hot Garlic blog. With not a little trepidation I must admit, as I wasn't born with American tastebuds but the way everyone raved over it...and I do love my popcorn maker...well, my curiosity was piqued.
Your daily kitty cuteness update:
He's still doing it.