A perfect dessert for a special occasion (like Valentine’s day or a dinner party) you’ll look like a genius when you make Chocolate Pots de Crème, even if you don’t have a clue about baking. These rich, little pudding like concoctions are silky, smooth and supremely delicious.
Blend them in minutes, pour into demitasse cups, fancy little cordial or wine glasses, top with a little whipped cream or crème fraiche, and they are absolutely charming.
They’re super easy to throw together for a family meal, too – Pots de Crème can be made with ingredients often on hand.
Danger: I often use chocolate chips for Pots de Crème and noticed that Nestle just reduced the number of ounces in their bags…if you’re searching around for other recipes (and hopefully you’re not because these are amazing) be aware that if a bag of chocolate chips is called for as a measurement, you’ll need to buy more or scale the recipe.
Chocolate Pots de Creme
(2 1/2 cups total)
Recipe can be halved or doubled. Keep in mind that this is incredibly rich – it’s almost like eating the inside of a chocolate truffle. Even for a die-hard chocolate fanatic, small servings are best.
- 12 ounces of chocolate pieces (a sweet dark is wonderful but almost any chocolate will work here.) broken into small pieces. Chocolate chips work well.
- 2 egg yolks
- 6 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/4 cups milk or half and half (see note)
- Whipped cream or Creme Fresh for garnish, if desired
Scald milk or 1/2 and 1/2 (bring up to just below boiling point – small bubbles should form around the side of the pan. This can be done very carefully in the microwave, checking often after a minute or so.)
In the meantime, place other ingredients in blender. Add the scalded milk, cover tightly (always place a towel over the blender lid and press down with your hand when blending hot liquids) and blend on low for one minute.
For the absolutely smoothest Pots de Crème, pour liquid through a sieve. (If you are using very fresh eggs, you probably won’t need to do this.) Pouring into a container with a spout makes for easier dividing. Divide into six to 12 serving dishes, cover the top of each with plastic wrap and refrigerate for two hours until firm.
To avoid any condensation, cover after they have started to chill.
Garnish as you wish. Whipped cream or Crème Fraiche is wonderful; a very light sprinkling of cocoa, grated chocolate or chocolate curls on top makes a lovely presentation.
Notes: Heating the dairy should bring the egg up to a safe temperature, but if you’re serving anyone with immune deficiencies it might be wise to use a pasteurized egg just to be on the safe side.
Since I often buy Whipping Cream for the garnish, if a want a richer Pots de Crème, I sometimes combine a little unwhipped cream with the milk instead of buying 1/2 and 1/2. 1/2 and 1/2 is half milk, half cream.
Let’s talk about how to save money/time on this recipe:
- Use a coupon matching site! One of my favorites in my area is Pocket Your Dollars, but every store has a group of enthusiastic Coupon Matchers. Do not discount the savings! I check their site every week, even if I don’t “need” to go to the store and often find bargains I can’t pass up.
- Follow my 12 Strategies – You’ll see them on the upper drop down menu of every page and how I apply them, below.
- Don’t get discouraged if your prices don’t match mine! Keep shopping at the best prices and your fridge/freezer and pantry will be stocked with sales priced ingredients.
- Read below for additional tips as well as throughout the recipe, for saving time and managing food.
- Chocolate: Of course any chocolate would be good in this, but on a budget chocolate chips work just fine. Buy them on special (especially around a holiday) and with a coupon and you’ll pay a lot less. $1.99 for a 10 ounce package (yes, the sizes have reduced again) for this recipe is $2.38.
- Eggs: I almost always buy my eggs just before a holiday – they go on sale then and last several weeks in the fridge. Often there are store coupons and specials to lure customers in. $.89 cents for a dozen, 14 cents.
- Dairy: I try to buy milk on sale; it’s often on sale with a grocery coupon in my area, $2.50 each if you buy 2 gallons. Buy toward the beginning of the week, then pick it up again on Saturday for the following week. Store brands are much less than name brands, although some name brands have coupons. 1/2 & 1/2 and Cream are often on sale during holiday weeks and keep for quite awhile unopened. Cost for milk (on sale $2.40 a gallon) about 16 cents, more for 1/2 and 1/2. Cost for about 1 cup (this is a generous amounts – my family often adds a bit more) of whipping cream (store brand $2.50 for 2 cups) about $1.35.
- Vanilla: I often buy grocery store vanilla (McCormicks) at no cost with coupons, catalinas (cash back) and store specials. Really watch your coupon matching sites and they’ll notify you of the specials that aren’t advertised. Cost for a teaspoon is so little I don’t have an estimate. Pick it up whether you need it or not as vanilla lasts forever and these specials are sporadic.
- Sugar: Another item I buy during Holidays – any holiday it is often on sale. 6 tablespoons is about 14 cents.
Nutrition per serving:
360 calories, 20 grams of fat (45.9%), 6g Protein, 48g Carbohydrate; 4g dietary fiber; 70 mg cholesterol; 114mg sodium.
Put Your own Spin on It:
- Espresso Pots de Creme: try adding a touch of espresso powder to the blender mix.
- Coffee may replace a little of the milk or 1/2 and 1/2 or all of it.
- Versions with Alcohol
- Try replacing the vanilla with Grand Marnier, Rum, Whiskey, Frangelica or anything that you think tastes great with Chocolate. If you wish to increase the amount slightly, say to a tablespoon, these will still set up fine.