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Apr 13, 2007 03:32 PM

Request for unusual dessert to impress

I'm spending a weekend in Sonoma with a bunch of serious foodies and am requested to bring a dessert. I'd like to bring something that is sweet and savory, herbaceous, possibly with chocolate. It also has to travel well (either baked, or as partially assembled to be baked there) I'd love for it to be weird, delicious, unexpected, and not too time intensive. Any suggestions?

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  1. What about cornbread pound cake with sugared rosemary and accompanying rosemary syrup? We made it for American Thanksgiving to rave reviews. You could do a chocolate drizzle or a rosemary-infused chocolate sauce instead of a syrup if you really want the chocolate element.

    2 Replies
    1. re: AmandaEd

      can you post either the recipe or a link to it? thanks

    2. How about sticky toffee pudding with caramel sauce? It's not beautiful, but everyone raves about it.

      1. The flourless brownies from Chefs of the Times (the chef, whose name I've forgotten, is French and was chef at Petrossian in NYC. They are very sophisticated ... with candied orange peel and cinnamon (I've also made a variation with candied lemon peel and cardamom).

        1 Reply
        1. re: Timowitz

          I have been looking for flourless brownies, would you please post the recipe. Thanks

        2. I posted this on a recent thread about bacon but this might fit your needs too - sounds great but i have yet to try it - it is from a recent food and wine:

          bacon baklava

          1 1/2 pounds sliced bacon
          1 cup whole blanched almonds, toasted and coarsely chopped
          3/4 cup coarsely chopped dates
          1 package phyllo dough
          10 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
          1 1/2 cups sugar
          1 cup pure maple syrup
          1/2 cup water
          2 tablespoons bourbon
          Finely grated zest of 1/2 orange

          Preheat the oven to 400°. In a skillet, fry the bacon in batches until crisp. Drain well and crumble. In a food processor, finely chop the bacon with the almonds and dates.
          Butter a 9-by-13-inch metal baking pan. Lay a sheet of phyllo in the pan; trim the edges to fit and brush with butter. Repeat with 4 more phyllo sheets and butter. Spread 1 cup of the filling evenly over the phyllo. Repeat this layering of 5 phyllo sheets and bacon filling two more times. Top with 5 buttered phyllo sheets, buttering the top well.
          With a small, sharp knife, cut the baklava into diamonds. Bake the baklava for 10 minutes. Turn the oven to 325° and bake for 1 hour longer, or until nicely browned.
          Meanwhile, combine the sugar, maple syrup, water, bourbon and orange zest in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Simmer for 5 minutes, then let cool to room temperature. Pour the cooled syrup over the hot baklava and let stand at room temperature uncovered overnight.

          1. "The Last Course," by Claudia Fleming is a wonderful dessert cookbook with many choices that would probably meet your criteria. Fleming was the pastry chef at Gramery Tavern in NYC. Just one example: she does a strawberry short cake that is essentially traditional...except that the strawberries are macerated with some fresh tarragon and tarragon goes into the whipped cream. Lots of stuff like that. The last chapter aggregates some of the recipes into Fleming's signature "trios." My word. Kind of like a dessert tasting plate, with three complementary sweets.