What is a girl to do?

July 29th, 2009

Recently I had the remarkable pleasure to discover chocolate extract. I was excited as I looked at the delicious smelling thick chocolaty elixir. I had to have it and discover all that it has to offer…

Well, I’m having trouble figuring out exactly what to do with it. If you google chocolate extract, you will find that I am not the only one. Essentially, you can put it in baked goods to make it a little chocolateier or you can make a chocolate liqueur… well, I’m not one for fancy chocolate cocktails (I know, shocking isn’t it but I just don’t like sweet drinks), so I have started slowly doing the former… emphasis on the slowly because as Juan said the other day “you are never going to use that, are you?”

I am! I’m just very unsure of when to use it and when not too. A few weeks ago, I did an experiment. I made the family brownie recipe. I added chocolate extract to one batch but not the other. Then I had my friends and co-workers see if they could taste a difference. It was subtle but definitely there.

This past weekend, I helped host a bridal shower and made 72 little mini cupcakes (half chocolate and half vanilla!)… sometimes, I’m a bit insane! I had leftover vanilla buttercream (made with vanilla bean paste), so tonight I made some brownies and used the leftover icing. I tried the Best Cocoa Brownies adding a teaspoon of chocolate extract. Delicious!

Vanilla Buttercream
(from Ginny’s mom)

1 stick butter, softened
1 box confectioner’s sugar
2 teaspoon vanilla (paste)
1/2 cup milk

Cream the butter and sugar together.  Add the vanilla and the milk a little at a time until it of spreding consistency.  Enough for two layers, a 9 x13, or 24 cupcakes.