Tuesday, 25 December 2007

Chocolate-Ginger Graham Squares

I adapted this recipe from one I clipped from Canadian House and Home Magazine a few years back. Of course, I realized shortly after that that I should not be eating wheat, so this was the first time I have made them. I used my own graham crackers, which made them wheat-free. I also could not resist increasing considerably both the number and volume of other goodies in there with the crumbs. Why not, they are already pretty decadent! Might as well go all the way.

36 squares
45 minutes - not counting making the graham crackers, but allowing for crushing them. Also not counting the various cooling/chilling periods.

Chocolate Ginger Graham Squares3 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 cup finely chopped nuts (your choice)
1/2 cup unsweetened dessicated coconut
1/2 cup finely minced preserved ginger
1/2 cup finely chopped dried fruit (your choice)

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/3 cup sugar
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

6 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate
3 to 4 tablespoons butter

Prepare an 8" square pan by lining the bottom of it with parchment paper.

Mix the graham cracker crumbs with the chopped nuts, minced preserved ginger and dried fruits - as ever I am partial to dried cranberries or cherries, but nothing wrong with raisins, apricots, pears, etc. Set aside for the moment. In another bowl, whisk the eggs and the vanilla extract. Set aside.

In a large pot - it's all going in, sooner or later - slowly melt the 1/2 cup of butter. As it melts sift over the cocoa powder and sugar. Stir constantly. When the mixture is smooth and very hot, with the sugar and butter completely melted (but not boiling) remove the pot from the heat.

Beat in the eggs, then stir in the graham crumb mixture thoroughly. It will be quite stiff. Turn the mixture into the prepared pan, and press it down as flatly and evenly as possible. Let it cool.
Melt the chocolate gently with the remaining butter, stirring frequently. When it is melted, pour it over the mixture in the pan. Spread it out smoothly and shake the pan a little from side to side, in order to get a nice flat surface. Let cool, then wrap and chill for 2 hours, or up to 2 days.

To cut, set out for 15 minutes to warm slightly, then cut into squares. I think it is best to keep them in the fridge, bringing them out to warm gently just before being served.


Bellini Valli said...

Mmmm..these do sound delicious Ferdzy. What a great addition to the holidays treat tray. I hope you are having a wonderful holiday and that it is everything you hoped for and more!

Kevin said...

Chocolate, ginger, nuts and fruit... these sound really good.