CHOCOLATE POT DE CRÈME

This recipe is from Mutsumi Takehara, Pastry Chef at San Francisco's nationally acclaimed Slanted Door restaurant at the Ferry Building Marketplace. Traditionally a simple, French "comfort food," Mutsumi's version of Pot de Crème is nothing short of outrageous. She makes this rich dessert with Collection Etienne 61% Cacao Semisweet Chocolate and serves it with an Espresso Granita.

Yield: Eight five-ounce ramekins

Ingredients

Pot de Creme:
1/4 cup milk
2 1/4 cups heavy cream
1/4 of one fresh vanilla bean
8 ounces (1 1/3 cups) Collection Etienne 61% Cacao Semisweet Chocolate
4 egg yolks
1/8cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Espresso Granita:
1 shot espresso
1 cup water
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon coffee liquor

Directions

Preheat oven: 325 degrees F

Boil milk, cream and vanilla bean together. Pour over chocolate and let steep for few minutes. Whisk until the liquid is smooth.

In another bowl, whisk yolks, sugar and vanilla extract. Add chocolate liquid to yolk mixture.

Strain, then pour into ramekins set in a deep baking pan. Pour hot water to half-way up sides of ramekins. Cover the baking sheet with foil.

Bake for 40 minutes. Serve chilled with dollops of whipped cream and espresso granita.

Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl and pour into an 8 or 9-inch metal pan. Freeze for 2-3 hours, scraping with a fork every 30 minutes until the granita resembles finely shaved ice.