Recipe Test Nest » 5 Star » February Hearts and Chocolate – Round 2
February Hearts and Chocolate – Round 2

On February 22, I was joined by 6 more wonderful testers (Rachel Hope, Ladd Morgan, David Caine, Meredith Higbee, Emily Kunz and Karlos Smith) to continue February’s celebration of chocolate and love.

Mocktail: Fresh Ginger Beer (3.5 Star)

If you like Ginger you’ll like this recipe. Each guest had a different opinion – some thought it was a 5 star, others a 3 or 4. Next time I make it I’d like to add crystallized ginger to it, which I think will help sweeten it but keep the bitter kick.

Appetizer: Melted Rosemary Brie with Apples (3 Star)

I knew the main course would be heavy so I wanted a light and simple appetizer. Slice a couple different types of apples, cut off the Brie rind and place sections of cheese over the apples. Sprinkle chopped rosemary over the apples. Bake or broil for a couple of minutes and serve warm (my two guests that were a little late and had it cold didn’t like it, so warm is the key).

Main Course: Chicken Enchilada Mole (4 Star) with Cuban Beans and Rice (3 Star)

I’ve wanted to make Mole for quite some time. The 1st time I remember having Enchiladas Mole was at an amazing restaurant in Ft. Lauderdale the night before sailing on my 1st cruise. The sauce melted in my mouth and I had to know what the ingredients were. Through broken English/Spanish I understood the sauce included chocolate and I’ve been addicted ever since. I order Enchilada Mole about 80% of the time at a Mexican Restaurant. I added an ounce more of chocolate than the recipe calls for.

I couldn’t find the exact recipe for the beans, but the link in almost identical. I made mine in a slow cooker. Make sure to soak your beans over night, then drain them and throw in the Crock Pot with all the other ingredients.

Dessert: Molten Chocolate Cakes (5 Star)

“Three times a charm” – a popular saying, and it rang true for my experience with Molten cakes. I’ve been unsuccessful in the past with getting a recipe/baking cycle to work for me. A bit paranoid, I kept opening the oven to check them so they would be perfect (so they took a little longer to bake), but…SUCCESS! I finally achieved a molten cake (the shape of a heart a special touch for February) that was perfectly done on the outside and warm melted chocolate on the inside.

Extra thanks to Rachel who brought me beautiful purple tulips – which add beauty and life to our apartment during these dreary weather days.


4 Comments (Leave a Reply)

  1. Karlos (February 24, 2010)

    Mole is notoriously difficult to do well. I was so impressed that Amber was even trying, I just had to attend. (Good thing I responded quickly, she booked up in about 15 minutes!)

    The mole was very good and certainly did not taste like a first attempt. My mouth waters to think what this will taste like once she's familiar enough with it to really make it her own.

  2. Ladd Morgan (February 26, 2010)

    Amber–I loved everything about the test nest experience. Great people, great food, great apartment. I heard Martha Stewart was cruising this site for ideas.

  3. Rae (March 1, 2010)

    Thanks so much for having us over Amber! It was so fun to catch up, meet new friends, and have a great meal. Everything was delicious!
    So glad you liked the tulips. :)

  4. Monster Mary (March 6, 2010)

    Ains, sounds like a success. Mole is one of my favorites but I've never had mole enchiladas sounds pretty good. I'm jealous that I can't be there to come these test nests. Love the flowers.



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