Chocolate & Stout Shepherd’s Pie with Alsation Tarte Flambe and Simple Salad
This was a very interesting TD. I don’t cook with chocolate much, and I can’t bake my way out of a paper bag so I was stumped thinking up ideas. Figured many of you guys would go mole/latin type flavors, so I wanted to do something different. Finally settled on a hybrid steak and ale shepherd's pie for some warm comfort here in the cold and then matched it with a classic French flatbread with a twist and a quick romaine salad dressed with a chocolate cherry chile vinaigrette.
For the Shepherd’s Pie
Take 2lbs of chuck roast, trim the fat and cut it into 1 inch chunks. Toss the meat in ½ cup of flour and brown it in batches in a big pot over medium heat in 3 tbsp of olive oil. When each batch finishes remove to a plate and reserve.
When the meat is finished add a chopped onion, a chopped carrot and 1 pound of mushrooms, halved. Let cook for about 5-7 minutes until the onions are getting soft.
Then add 2 cloves of minced garlic, 2 dried chile pullas, 1 tbsp dried parsley, 1 tsp dried rosemary, 1 tsp dried thyme, 1 tsp ancho powder and 1 tsp hot salt. Stir well and cook all that for another 2 minutes. Then add one bottle of Guinness extra stout and 12 ounces of water. Stir well and allow this to come to a simmer, about 20 minutes or so. Once a simmer is reached add 2 ounces of 85% cocoa chocolate and turn the heat down very low.
Cover and cook 2-6 hours. I cooked mine overnight on our low heat burner. Love that thing for braising! When you’re happy with the tenderness and taste (I added 1 tsp kosher salt and a touch of honey) add 1 cup frozen peas and about 2 tsp of corn starch mixed with a couple tbsp of half and half to the pot. Turn your heat up to medium and stir well. It will thicken as is comes to a simmer. Once you’re happy with the thickness, remove from heat and ladle into your bowls.
Top the bowls with your mashed potatoes* and pop them into an oven preheated to 425 degrees. In about 15-20 minutes the tops will be starting to get golden. Remove and serve immediately.
For the Tarte Flambe
Take 1 cup of warm water, add 1 tsp of sugar and whisk well. Make sure the water isn’t too hot and then add one packet of yeast. Allow this mix to sit for 10 minutes so the yeast can bloom. Then add 2 cups of flour to the bowl and mix well. Once it’s come together and formed a dough, turn it out into a well oiled bowl and cover to rise in a warm place for an hour.
This dough went into the fridge overnight. Remove and allow to come to room temp, then roll it out to about ¼” thickness. For the sauce I made a quick glaze using 2 ounces of 74% cacao chocolate, 2 tbsp butter, ½ cup of cream sherry and a tsp of vanilla. I put them all in the pot over low heat, added the chocolate to melt, tasted and added ½ tsp of salt and 1 tsp of turbinado sugar.
Drizzle the glaze over the dough, then top with fresh goat cheese, slivered onions, bacon and then sprinkle on some allepo & jobito flakes. Bake it off on a stone in a 450 degree oven for about 10-12 minutes. You can garnish with a bit more of the glaze if you like, it sure looks pretty.
Last but not least a nice simple salad dressed with a chocolate and cherry vinaigrette. One of the chocolates I bought was 55% cacao and had chiles and cherries in it, so it was easy to drum up a dressing with. I took ⅓ cup balsamic vinegar, added a few diced dried cherries we picked in door county and then melted a little over 1 ounce of the chocolate into it. Sprinkled in some dried aleppo flakes and then I whisked in about ½ cup of olive oil. It needed a bit of salt and that was it.
Thanks for looking! Lots of great and unique entries, THPers taking chocolate to new levels around here!
*Take 1lb yukon gold potatoes, peel and boil them in hot salted water until fork tender. Drain and add back to the pot. Mix in 1 tbsp butter, 1 tbsp cream cheese, 1/2 cup sour cream and just enough milk to mix everything up. Add salt and pepper flake to taste.