Advent Calendar 2015

22 November 2015

aventDecember 1st is approaching and you may have not decided yet which advent calendar you’d like to purchase.

At Cosmic Tomatoes we do not have this kind of dilemma, because this year we decided to make our own advent calendar! With, of course, our homemade chocolates and sweets. We would also like you to come along with us on this 25 days adventure!

That being said, Christmas is not only about eating all day. It’s also the season of sharing and gifts. And that is why we decided to offer our calendar to anyone interested. A contest was held, but unfortunenly (due to food shipping policies) it could not be open to readers outside Alsace.

Last week our dear reader Ségolène won the calendar in time for the first day of Advent.

Here we go for an intensive preparation of 25 festive and delicious Confectioneries!

December 1 : Chocolate covered milk fudges

avent

We’ll start the advent with one of my favorite recipes, taste wise (slightly less for the healthy side), with the most important ingredients of a traditional advent calendar: butter, sugar and chocolate.

Ingredients :

. 115g Butter

. 165g Brown sugar

. 1 Tsp Vanilla Extract

. 280g Flour

. 1 can of condensed milk

. A handful of chocolate chips

. A handful of smashed walnuts

. 450g Dark chocolate

In a bowl, mix butter and sugar.

6-1

Once it becomes creamy, add the condensed milk and the flour.

6-2

Add the vanilla extract, the chocolate chips and the walnuts and mix gently.

6-3

Make small balls with your mixture. It is possible that, due to the heat your kitchen, the butter becomes so soft that you cannot handle the dough. If that is the case, refrigidate the dough for a while before you start working on it.

6-4

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler.

6-5

Dip the condensed milk balls in the chocolate and let them cool on a clean suface for about an hour.

Decorate with crushed walnuts or coconut flakes if you wish.

 

December 2 : Salted Caramels

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You might notice as we go on that we alternated our recipes between chocolate and not chocolate, so you can continue loving chocolate without having an overdose. Today is not chocolate; but something nearly as good: Caramel. This wonder of pastry will also come in many version in our advent calendar.

Ingredients:

. 110g Sugar

. 12 Cs Maple syrup or honey

. 350g Heavy cream

. 120 ml Water

. 50g Butter

. 1/2 Cc Salt or Fleur de Sel

. 1/2 Cc Vanilla extract

Prepare your mold: Cover it with a baking sheet, and spread some oil on the surface.

1-1

In a saucepan, mix sugar, water and syrup/honey. Heat for about 5-10 minutes until you get a caramel color. Be careful not to use a fork or whip to dilute the sugar. You must simply swirl the pan to mix the ingredients.

1-2

Meanwhile, over low heat, mix cream, butter and salt.

1-3

Let the cream cool slightly and then mix it with caramel. Add also the vanilla.

1-4

Boil until the mixture reaches 120°C.

1-5

Pour the caramel into the mold and let it set in the refrigerator before cutting it into shapes of your choice.

1-6

 

December 3 : Chocolate and Honey Toffees

toffee_choco_miel

Today’s recipe is an attempt to reproduce Tootsie Rolls, the Toffee of my childhood that I unfortunenly no longer have access to, since I don’t live in the US (Already talked about it here). However I allowed myself to reduce enormously the amount of sugar. Indeed this Toffee is sweetened only by Honey.

Ingredients:

. 170 g Honey
. 6 Tbsp cocoa powder
. Vanilla extract
. 1 Tbsp butter
. 150g (or more) milk powder

 

Mix cocoa powder, honey and a few drops of vanilla extract.

2-1

Melt the butter.

2-2

Pour the butter over the cocoa mixture and mix.

2-3

Start adding the milk powder and mix.

2-4

While kneading the dough, continue adding powdered milk until the dough stops sticking to your hands.

2-5

Let the dough rest about 1 hour before cutting into pieces.

2-6

 

December 4 : Peanut butter fudge

peanut-butter-fudge

Ingredients :

. 220g Sugar

. 120 ml Milk

. 200g Unsweetened peanut butter

. Vanilla extract

 

Prepare your mold: Cover it with a baking sheet, and spread some oil on the surface.

1-1

 

On medium heat, mix the milk and the sugar while whisking.

13-2

 

Remove from heat and add the peanut butter and a few drops of the vanilla extract

13-3

 

Pour the mixture into the mold and let it set for a few hours before cutting it into shapes of your choice.

13-4
December 5 : Lime and meringue chocolate truffles

truffe-citron-meringue

Ingredients :

. 2 Egg whites
. 100 g Icing sugar
. 325 g Whipping cream
. Zest of one lime
. The juice of one lime
. 440g Dark chocolate, grated
. 100 g Butter
. Cocoa powder

Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form.

4-1

Pour sugar while still Whisking. Continue for about 5 minutes.

4-2

Place spoonfuls of meringues on a baking sheet placed on an oven plate (the form does not matter because you will crush the afterwards). Bake in a preheated oven at 120 ° C for 30 min. And then for one hour at 100 ° C.

4-3

Boil the cream. Lower the heat and let the lime zest infuse in it. Remove the zest after fifteen minutes.

4-4

Add the grated chocolate and lime juice and stir with a wooden spatula.

4-5

Add butter. Once melted and mixed. Remove from heat and let it cool for half an hour.

4-6

Crumble the meringues and add to the chocolate.

4-7

Pour the mixture into a piping bag and make little balls on a baking sheet. Let them rest in a refrigerate for about 3 hours.

4-8

Cut the rest of the zest into tiny pieces and roll the ganaches in it…

4-9

…and them roll them in the cacao powder.

4-10
December 6 : Chocolate coated almonds

amande-chocolat-noel

I had tasted chocolate coated almonds every year during the christmas holidays, imagining they were simply almonds dipped in chocolate. When I finally tried to make some myself, I felt kind of stupid. For indeed there are five different layers over these almonds.

But fear not! For that the realization is simple. By the way I recommend these almonds more than all of our other recipes. Aside from being delicious, they are the most preservable and therefore perfect for being wrapped in little gift bags for your friends and family.

 

Ingredients:
. 150g Dark chocolate
. 80g Milk chocolate
. 150g Sugar
. 130g Almonds
. 50g Cocoa powder
. A little bit of rum (optional)

 

Melt in a double boiler the two chocolates separately and then set aside.

8-1

 

Make caramel with 100 g of your sugar, heating it to 120 ° C with 5 ml of water.

8-2

Mix the almonds with the caramel (off the heat) with a wooden spoon (to avoid damaging the almonds). The caramel will quickly solidify, to the point that you will no longer be able to turn de spoon. Put back on the heat and let the caramel remelt. Remove the almonds and separate the from one another.

8-3

Keep the caramel on the stove and add the remaining sugar and 5 ml of water. Once the caramel is completely melted repeat step 3: put another coat of caramel on the almonds, remove them and let them cool.

8-4

Coat the almonds a the milk chocolate : Mix spoonfuls of chocolate at a time while mixing with a wooden spoon. Do this in a cool place so that the chocolate dries faster.

8-5

Repeat this last step with the melted dark chocolate and finish by sprinkling it all with the cocoa powder. You can, before this last step, pour a little bit of rum on the almonds to facilitate the absorption of the cocoa.

8-6
December 7 : Chocolate and Peanut butter cups

hommade_reese

Ingredients: 
.100 g Butter
. 250 g Unsweetened peanut butter
. 200g Sugar
. 230g Milk Chocolate

Melt the butter.

3-1

Mix sugar and peanut butter.

3-2

Once the mixture became creamy, add the melted butter.

3-3

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler.

3-4

Arm yourself with cupcake molds. Fill 1/4 of the molds with melted chocolate. Turn them around while the chocolate hardens, so that it sticks to the edges.

3-5

Fill the hole in the middle of the chocolate with peanut butter, leaving a little space for a second layer of chocolate.

3-6
December 8 : Pecan-caramel candies

caramel-pecan

Ingredients :

. 300g Brown sugar

. 155g Heavy cream

. 3Cs Butter

. A pinch of salt

. 160g Pecans

. A few drops of Vanilla extract

Mix sugar, cream, butter and salt over medium heat.

16-1

Once everything has melted add the pecans.

16-2

Let the mixture boil until the temperature reaches 120°C.

16-3

Remove from heat and add the vanilla extract.

16-4

Place spoonfuls of the mixture over a baking sheet and let them cool. If, like us, you wish to give different shapes to your candies with a pastry cutter, do this about 30 secondes later, because the caramel hardens very quickly.

16-5
December 9 : Chocolate cups with citrus zest

chocolat-agrume

Ingredients :

. 1 Orange
. 1 Lemon
. 200g Dark chocolate
. 200 g Sugar
. 10ml Water

 

Cut the orange and lemon zestes into stripes.

12-1

Boil the zest strips with water and 180g of the sugar until the near disappearance of the water.

12-2

Roll the strips in the remaining sugar on a board.

12-3

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler.

12-4

Take out cupcake molds. Pour the melted chocolate and top with a layer of zest: form a spiral with zests strips; or cut them into cubes and sprinkle the chocolate with them.

12-5

 

December 10: Polish milk caramel

cramel-lait-polonais copie

Ingredients:


. 150g butter
. 200 ml Heavy cream
. 200g sugar
. 1 Tsp vanilla extract

 

Prepare your mold: Cover it with a baking sheet, and spread some oil on the surface.

1-1

Melt the butter and sugar over medium heat until dissolved. Stir regulary.

 

10-2

Melt the butter and sugar over medium heat until dissolved. Stir regulary.


10-3

Pour the mixture into the mold and let it set for a few hours before cutting it into shapes of your choice.

10-4

December 11: Candied ginger coated with chocolate

gingembre-confit-chocolat

Ingredients:
. 150g fresh ginger
. 300 g Sugar
. 300g Chocolate
. Cocoa powder

 

Peel and slice the ginger into dices and soak them it in cold water for an hour.

11-1

Drain the ginger and put back in cold water.

11-2

Bring water to the boil. Let it boil for 5 minutes. Drain the ginger and repeat this procedure two more times.

11-3

Boil the sugar with a little bit of water, until you get a caramel color.

11-4

Versez le sirop sur les gingembres et laissez reposer pendent 12 heurs.

11-5

Pour the syrup over the ginger and let it rest for 12 hours.
Drain the ginger while keeping the syrup. Boil the syrup for 10 minutes and pour it again over the gingers. Let it rest for two days again and finish by draining one last time.

11-6

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler.

11-7

Cover the gingers (dried) in chocolate.

11-8

Roll the chocolate covered ginger dices in cocoa powder.

11-9
December 12: Coco-Chia cu

coco-chia

Ingredients :

. 80g Chia grain

. 1Tbsp Honey

. 200g Coconut butter

. 1Tsp Vanilla extract

Mix all the ingredients.

15-1

Pour them in small molds.

15-2

Freeze them for an hour before unmolding. Voila! the easiest recipe ever.

15-3

 

December 13: Maple syrup candy

erable-bonbon

Ingredient :
. Maple syrup (the only ingredient, so take as much as you want)

Boil the maple syrup until it reaches 115 ° C.

erable-1

Remove from heat and let it cool down to 80 ° C then begin whipping for 5 minutes. Pour into molds and let them take for several hours.

erable-2

Pour into molds and let them harden for several hours.

erable-3

 

December 14: Chocolate coated Avocado cream

avocat-chocolat

Ingredients:
. 1 Avocado
. 3 Cs Maple Syrup
. Some drops of vanilla extract
. A pinch of salt
. 6 Cs Coconut Oil
. 200g Chocolate

 

Mash avocado while mixing it with all the other ingredients except for the chocolate.

fudgeavocat-1

Let the mixture in the freezer for 1 hour or until you can hadle it.

fudgeavocat-2

Make small balls with the mixture and return to freezer.

avocat-3

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler.

3-4

Dip avocado balls in chocolate and let them rest in the fridge.

avocat-5

 

December 15: Matcha-white chocolate

matcha-chocolat-blanc

Ingredients:
. 70g sugar
. 3ml Water
. Cream 115g
. 1Tbsp Matcha tea powder
. 200g white chocolate

 

Place the sugar and water in a saucepan over medium heat until it begins to get a caramel color.

matcha-1

Add the cream gradually. When the cream is incorporated, remove from heat and let it cool.

matcha-2

Melt the white chocolate in a double boiler while incorporating the matcha powder.

matcha-3

Fill molds with a small amount of white chocolate matcha. Swirl the mold and make sure that the sides of each mold are well coated. Refrigerate and let the shells harden.

matcha-4

Pour a small amount of cream in each shell and pour white chocolate-matcha over it . Unmold once the chocolate is hardened.

matcha-5

 

December 16: Tahini Chocolate truffles

truffe-chocolat-tahini

Ingredients:

. 250g dark chocolate
. 100g butter
. 2 egg yolks
. 80g icing sugar
. A few drops of vanilla extract
. 3Tbsp Tahini
. A handful of sesame seeds

 

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler and gradually add the butter.

tahini-1

Remove from the heat and add in the egg yolks, icing sugar, vanilla and tahini.

tahini-2

Put the chocolate in the fridge for one hour.

tahini-3

When chocolate is solid enough to be handled, form small balls with it.

tahini-4

Roll the chocolate balls in the sesame seeds.

tahini-5

 

December 17: White chocolate-lemon fudge

lemon-white-chocolate-fudge

Ingredients:

. 400g Condensed Milk
. 1 Tbsp Oil
. 3 Tbsp Lemon juice
. 500g White chocolate
. 3 Handfuls of meringues (recipe above: December 5)
. yellow color additif

 

Prepare your mold: Cover it with a baking sheet, and spread some oil on the surface.

1-1

Mix, condensed milk, oil and lemon.

meringue-fudge-2

Melt white chocolate in a double boiler.

meringue-fudge-3

Mix the white chocolate with condensed milk. Pour the meringue which you have reduced to crumbs. Add the color additif so that the appearance of your chocolate goes with its lemony taste.

meringue-fudge-4

Pour into the mold and let it solidify in the fridge for several hours before unmolding.

meringue-fudge-5

 

December 18: Chocolate truffles with persian black lemons

chocolat-citron-noir-iran

Black lemons are not very Christmasy! I know … but ever since the famous pastry shop in our city, Christian, used in its icecreams, i’ve been dying to try it myself in pastries. If you are not familiar with black lemon, just know that they are not as exotic as they might see. These are simply sun-dried lemons. However, they get a special flavor, incomparable with that of fresh lemons.

 

Ingredients :

. 200g Milk Chocolate

. 3 Cs Cocoa Powder

. 60g butter

. 2 Tbsp Heavy cream

. 5 Black lemons

. Caramel crystal crumbs (if you have remainings from some of the previous recipes)

 

Mix butter, cream, cocoa, with melted chocolate in a double boiler.

5-1

finely grind the black lemons.

5-2

Mix lemon black powder with chocolate.

5-3

Using a pastry bag form small balls with your chocolate and let them harden in the fridge.

5-4

Roll the chocolate balls in caramel crystals.

5-5

 

December 19 : Beet fudge

red-velvet-fudge

Ingredients :

. 1 Large beet

. 220g Coconut butter

. 4 Cs Maple syrup

. 2 Cs Cacao powder

. A few drops of vanilla extract

 

Prepare your mold: Cover it with a baking sheet, and spread some oil on the surface.

1-1

Run the beets in a juicer.

beet-2

In a saucepan over low heat, add coconut butter, beet juice, maple syrup, cocoa powder and vanilla extract.

beet-3

Pour the mixture into the mold and refrigerate for few hours before unmolding.

beet-4

 

December 20: Spicy cranberry-almond chocolate truffles

chocolat-amande-cranberry

 

Ingredients: 

. 200g Milk Chocolate

. 6 Tbsp Cocoa powder

. 60g butter

. 2 Tbsp Heavy cream

. A handful of cranberries

. A handful of almonds

. 2 Tbsp icing sugar

. 2 Tsp Pumpkin pie spice

 

Mix butter, cream, half of the cocoa powder with the chocolate melted in a double boiler.

5-1

Stir in cranberries and almonds.

5-2

Pour the chocolate into small molds and let them cool for an hour.

5-3

Mix together, the rest of the cacao powder, the spice and the icing sugar.

5-4

Once unmolded, roll chocolates in the caco-spice mixture.

5-4

Incorporez les cranberries et amandes.

5-2

Versez le chocolat dans de petits moules, et laissez au frais.

5-3

Une fois démoulé, faites rouler les chocolats dans le reste du cacao en poudre.

5-4

Une fois démoulé, faites rouler les chocolats dans le reste du cacao en poudre.

5-4

 

 

December 21: Sweet potato fudge

 sweet-potatoe-fudge

 

Ingredients:

. 175g butter
. 165 g Evaporated milk
. 500g sugar
. 200g sweet potato
. 2 Tsp Cinnamon
. 50g white chocolate chips
. 5 Tbsp Marshmallow Cream (recipe here)
. 2 handfuls of roughly chopped walnuts

Cook the sweet potato (peeled) in water until the flesh is tender.

 potatoe-1

Mash sweet potatoes.

5-2

In a large saucepan, combine butter, evaporated milk, sugar and mashed sweet potato.

potatoe-3

Cook over high heat, stirring constantly until the mixture reaches 120 ° C. Then remove from heat .

 potatoe -4

Stir in cinnamon and white chocolate until completely melted.

 potatoe -5

Add marshmallow cream and nuts and mix well.

 potatoe-6

Pour into a buttered pan and let it harden in the fridge overnight before unmolding and cutting into pieces.

 potatoe-7

 

December 22: Oatmeal Chocolate Wafers

chocolat-avoin

 

 

Ingredients:

. 2 tablespoons peanut butter
. 3 ml Milk
. 200g Chocolate Chips
. 70g Oatmeal

Heat the peanut butter, milk and chocolate in a saucepan over low heat for 3 minutes or until chocolate melts.

oat-1

Add the oats and let it stir in for 3 more miinutes over the heat.

oat-2

With a large spoon place portions of the mixture on a baking sheet. Let set in the refrigerator for half an hour.

oat-3

 

December 23: lemon-saffron chocolate balls

chocolat-coeur-citron

 

Ingredients:

. 200g Sugar
. 70g Butter
. Half of a lemon’s juice
. 150g Marshmallow fluff (recipe here)
. A few drops of vanilla extract
. A pinch of saffron

Mix the sugar, butter, lemon juice, marshmallow fluff, vanilla extract and saffron in a large bowl until it becomes smooth and sugar is concealed.

14-1

Put the bowl in the freezer in one hour so that you can shape the mixture.

14-2

Form small balls with the lemon cream.

14-3

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler.

3-4

Dip the balls in chocolate and place them on baking sheet in the fridge until the chocolate hardens.

14-5

 

December 24: Apple Cider Caramels

pommes sapin noel caramel cidre recette blog cuisine strasbourg

 

Here we are on the last day of Advent for one last recipe!

Since the 24th is traditionally the day when one sets up their christmas tree (something a bit unrealistic, because it gives us very little time to enjoy our beautiful Christmas tree), I decided to honor this lost tradition by creating tiny additional christmas trees (to eat).

Ingredients:

. 480 ml Apple cider
. 135g Heavy cream
. 1 1/2 Tsp Five-spice powder
. 300g Sugar
. 80 ml Maple syrup
. 4 ml Water
. 115g Butter
. Green food coloring

Prepare your mold: Cover it with a baking sheet, and spread some oil on the surface.

1-1

In a saucepan over high heat, let the cider simmer until 2/3 of the amount has been reduced. It will last about 25 minutes.

blog cuisine animé illustration feu casserole

Whisk together the spices, 155 g of cream and reduced cider.

illustrated food blo animated gif mix ingredients

Separately, mix the sugar, the remaining cream, syrup and water.

mix ingredients pastry illustration food blog france

Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until the sugar dissolves, then until the mixture reaches 112 ° C.

llustration animated recipe thermometre

Remove from heat and slowly stir in cream-cider mixture, butter and food coloring.

mix ingredients animated recipe green vert

Return the saucepan over medium heat and cook, stirring occasionally until the mixture reaches 120 ° C.

thermometer illustration animated recipe

Gently pour the caramel into the mold. Let it rest at room temperature or in the refrigerator before cutting into shapes of your choice.

illustration animation caramel cidre pomme

 

Merry Christmas

avent

 

 

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