It's funny how inspiration comes in different forms. As a composer, I see inspiration all around me -- in colors, textures, emotions and other elements of our everyday existence. For instance, I can hear a certain rhythm in the sound of children playing or traffic passing by me. I can hear a melody when an elderly person tells me a story. I can hear chords strummed on a guitar while the dogs sleep peacefully by the edge of my bed. Music never seems to leave my side.
The same can be said for new recipes. I can visualize the taste of something crunchy and sweet while strangled in a yoga pose. Or I can dream of something salty and smooth while cruising down the open road on my motorcycle.
But this time inspiration came from a precise call to create. Sheryl, at Lady Behind the Curtain, invited us to join her Behind the Curtain Dessert Challenge. Each month, she has picked 2 ingredients (such as coconut and lime or caramel and pretzels) that we are supposed to develop into a dessert. Sound like fun? If so, join us next month, when the chosen ingredients are almond paste and pastry dough. My goodness, I feel my wheels turing already, how about you? The complete list can be found here: Behind the Curtain Dessert Challenge ingredient list.
So in this, our premiere Dessert Challenge, Sheryl has chosen cherries and chocolate--a marriage made in heaven, eh? And my entry is Cherry Lime Truffle Cups: crunchy phyllo cups filled with creamy chocolate ganache and a dollop of cherry lime topping and toasted almond slivers. It's kind of like a cherry lime drink, mixed with chocolate truffles and turned into a strudel! —Sherry K-Jazzy Gourmet
- Makes 24
bittersweet chocolate, chopped into pieces
sheets frozen phyllo dough, thawed
sweet cherry halves, pitted
freshly squeezed lime juice
slivered almonds, toasted
- Place the chocolate in a medium sized heatproof bowl and set aside. Heat the milk and 2 tablespoons butter in a medium sauce pan (or microwave) until boiling. Remove from heat and pour over chocolate. Allow to stand for a few minutes without stirring. Stir gently (to prevent air from getting into the ganache) with a spoon or whisk until smooth. Mix in lime zest. Chill for 1 hour, until thick.
- Preheat oven to 350?F. Grease a 24-cup mini muffin pan. Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Lay one sheet of phyllo dough out onto a clean work surface. Brush with 1/2 tablespoon of the butter. Lay a second sheet of phyllo dough over the top and brush with another 1/2 tablespoon butter. Cut into 24 pieces . Place into the prepared muffin pan. Repeat procedure with remaining phyllo sheets, placing the 2nd layer with alternating corner points in the pan. Bake in a 350? F. until phyllo dough is golden, about 4-6 minutes.
- In a small saucepan, combine cherries, cornstarch, honey and lime juice. Combine well. Bring mixture to a boil and cook a few minutes, stirring occasionally, until thickened. Remove from heat and set aside to cool (mixture will thicken more as it cools).
- Let phyllo cups cool to room temperature. Pipe or spoon chocolate filling into each cup. Top with cherries and toasted almond slivers. Serve immediately.