The holidays would not be complete without chocolate bark, am I right? Here’s our twist on this classic dessert with an Asian holiday chocolate bark featuring the key ingredient, Japanese matcha (green tea) powder. This recipe was inspired by a recent post on FoodandWine.com, but we added a surprise kick to our bark with a “smidge” of cayenne pepper! For an extra crunch, add chopped, roasted almonds to the matcha mixture. Make this in advance, store it in the fridge or freezer, and pull it out for your party guests!
Swirl the chocolate with a skewer or toothpick to make a decorative design. Sprinkle with black sesame seeds.
- Canola cooking spray
- 1 ½ teaspoons canola oil
- 2 cups bittersweet chocolate chips
- 1 tablespoon (Japanese) matcha powder
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 4 cups white chocolate chips
- ½ teaspoon black sesame seeds
- Spray a 9x13 inch cookie sheet with cooking spray. Line the cookie sheet with parchment paper, with overlap.
- In a medium glass mixing bowl, microwave 1 ½ cups of the bittersweet chocolate chips in 30-second increments until melted. Remove bowl from microwave and add in remaining ½ cup chocolate chips. Stir until completely melted. Spread the melted chocolate into the sheet pan in an even layer. Set aside.
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the canola oil, matcha powder, and cayenne powder. Set aside.
- In a large glass mixing bowl, microwave 3½ cups of the white chocolate chips in 30-second increments until melted. Remove bowl from microwave and add in the remaining ½ cup of white chocolate chips. Stir until completely melted. Pour the matcha powder mixture into ½ cup of the melted white chocolate chips and mix well. Using a large spoon, spread large spoonfuls of the matcha chocolate and white chocolate over dark chocolate layer in the pan. Use the tip of a skewer to decoratively make swirls in the chocolate. Sprinkle black sesame seeds on top. Break off into uneven bite-sized pieces when ready to serve.
- Let sit at room temperature about 2 hours, until firm. Can be stored in the refrigerator in a container for 2 weeks.
Adapted from Food and Wine, December 2016.
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Came across this seasonal recipe on Food & Wine’s website recently and knew I had to transform it into an Asian-style wonton for the holidays! It’s our twist on a butternut squash ravioli, combining the sweetness of the roasted butternut squash and garlic with the delicate heat from Asian spices. Fresh wontons sure beat the frozen-in-the-bag version! I served this up at Thanksgiving for a truly unique appetizer and they were “gobbled” up in minutes (no pun intended!). Dazzle your party guests and make this at home for your upcoming holiday party!
Place the stuffed wonton wrappers on a baking sheet before steaming.
Steam the wontons in a bamboo steamer or stove-top steaming insert.
Fry the wontons in a skillet after steaming, and serve warm!
- 1 medium butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed
- 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
- Salt and pepper
- 1 whole bulb of garlic
- 1 medium shallot, minced
- ¼ teaspoon Chinese Five Spice
- ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ¼ cup fresh basil, chopped (extra for garnish)
- 14 wonton wrappers
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 tablespoon grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place butternut squash on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle salt and pepper over top. Toss together and rearrange to a single layer on the pan.
- Cut off the tip of the garlic bulb and place in the middle of a sheet of aluminum foil. Fold the sides around the garlic bulb sealing at the top. Place both the baking sheet and garlic in the oven. Roast the butternut squash for about 25 minutes or until nicely browned but not burned. Roast the garlic for 45 minutes. Remove both from oven and let cool.
- In a medium nonstick skillet, add teaspoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. Sauté the shallots about 3 minutes until softened. Set aside to cool. Wipe out the skillet.
- To make the filling: Squeeze out the roasted garlic from the skin into a medium mixing bowl. Add in the butternut squash, shallots, Chinese Five Spice, cayenne pepper, and basil. Mash together with a fork.
- To make the wontons: Using one wonton wrapper at a time, place a teaspoonful of butternut mixture into the middle of the wrapper. Using your fingertip, brush the two top sides with water and fold up to meet the top, forming a triangle. Brush the two pointed ends with water and fold the ends over each other to seal, forming a pocket. Place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Repeat with other wonton wrappers.
- Place the wontons in a single layer in a bamboo steamer or other stove-top steamer sprayed with cooking spray. Steam for about 10 minutes. Heat the non-stick skillet with canola oil over medium-high heat. Brown the wontons for about 2 minutes on each side. Transfer the wontons to a serving platter. Sprinkle with cheese and garnish with extra basil. Serve immediately.
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