I used to bake a lot.
I was in the kitchen a lot with my grandma when I was little, but she didn’t make anything “fancy”. My mom has only recently become a good cook – the rest of my life she’s made perfectly fine food (except she was pretty terrible at cooking when I was young), so at some point in my ten years on my own and away from family I decided to learn to cook, and cook well.
I got a wild hair to make a ganache tart for my birthday this year, and I have a long history of making my own birthday dessert – usually a cheesecake. Ganache tart is quick and easy though, and I had some Girl Scout cookies to use!
I popped a box of Girl Scout shortbread cookies in a large Ziplock bag and beat them into crumbs with a meat tenderizer. You can use any shortbread or similar cookie. Or no cookie. Or toasted coconut. Graham crackers. Whatever floats your boat.
I put a bag of really good dark chocolate chips in a bowl, heated an even amount of heavy cream on the stove until it was scalding, them poured the cream over the chocolate chips and let it sit for a few minutes until I started stirring. I added 2 tbsp of home brewed vanilla that has almost aged to 6 months (one of my side projects) and stirred until shiny and smooth.
Somehow the cream wasn’t hot enough to melt the chocolate chips completely, so I popped the bowl in the microwave for 30 seconds and stirred again. That did the trick and didn’t mess up the chocolate. You can see the reflection of my phone in the ganache it was so shiny!
I filled the ramekins with the ganache and placed fresh raspberries around the edges. I placed them in the fridge to cool but they can just as well cool and set on the counter. In about three days the cookie crust will lose its crunch and absorb too much moisture, but they will keep nicely in the fridge for a couple of days. Voila!
Super rich, super dark, crunch from the crust – just my kind of thing!