December 1st, 2008

Chocolate Caramel Walnut Tart

I was in charge of the Brussels sprouts and dessert for Thanksgiving. I made a pumpkin bread, which is always great and I decided to try this tart from Cook's Illustrated. It goes without saying that it is a very involved, complicated and fussy recipe that includes pastry making, candy making, chilling and baking. You have to make the tart crust, and bake it, make the caramel layer, let it set, make the chocolate layer, and bake it again, you decorate it with the homemade candied walnuts you made back in step 2, and then it has to cool to room temperature and then chill in the fridge to set. It's a 6 hour process. All that said, it was rich, decadent and delicious once it was all done. If you have an extra 6-8 hours this holiday season, give it a try.

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Butterscotch Lollypops

During some recent Christmas shopping at the Burlington mall, I walked by a See's candy kiosk. For those who don't know, See's is a old time confectioner that started in 1921 on the West coast. My first encounter was in college when my roommate, Joanna, would bring them back from Oregon. She would always bemoan the fact she couldn't get them in New York. Luckily, See's is now available in stores on this side of the Mississippi. The salesperson offered a free sample of their butterscotch lollipops. It was a damn good lollipop. It was like a block of Werther's on a stick, but with a deeper and more complex caramel flavor. I loved it. They also come in vanilla, latte and chocolate. I definitely need to try the other flavors and get more of the butterscotch!