When it comes to making desserts at home, I try to keep the recipe easy and elegant – and always with a twist! My Warm Chocolate Pots with Grand Marnier & Cherries is the perfect dessert for the finale of a casual weeknight meal, yet special enough for a weekend soirée with a glass of Port or Champagne!
The twist comes from (first) a generous “splash” of Grand Marnier, which is an orange liqueur that adds a bit of warmth and depth of flavor to chocolate, and (second) the dried cherries add some sweetness and give it fabulous texture. My Warm Chocolate Pots require zero (and I mean zero!) special kitchen equipment, and is easier than pie (I mean it!) to prepare. The recipe uses simple ingredients from your local grocery store (in fact, you probably already have everything on hand!), and from start to finish it takes less than 20 minutes – making this the ultimate dessert to easily have at the ready when entertaining!
Ingredients (serves 2)
Semi-Sweet Chocolate – 3 ½ ounces, roughly chopped
Butter – 4 tablespoons, unsalted, plus more for preparing ramekins
Grand Marnier® – 2 tablespoons
Sea Salt – ¼ teaspoon
Powdered Sugar – ½ cup
Cocoa Powder – 1 tablespoon, plus more for dusting
Vanilla – 1 teaspoon, pure extract
Eggs – 1 extra-large, AND 1 extra-large egg yolk
Dried Cherries – ½ cup
Flour – 3 tablespoons
Candied Orange Peel – for garnish (optional)
Start by pre-heating the oven to 425 degrees F.
Butter the interior of two ramekins (6 to 8 ounces each) and place on a baking dish. Set aside.
In a heat proof bowl, over barely simmering water, melt the chocolate and butter, stirring occasionally until just melted. Remove from heat.
Next, to the chocolate, add the Grand Mariner®, salt, powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and vanilla. Whisk until blended.
Slowly whisk in the eggs.
Toss the cherries with the flour, then stir into the chocolate mixture.
Lastly, evenly divide the batter into the prepared ramekins. Bake for exactly 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to stand for 2 minutes. Garnish with cocoa powder and candied orange peel. Serve warm.
Tip: You can actually make these ahead of time! Bake and allow to cool completely. Then, wrap each one tightly with foil and place in the refrigerator. When it's time to serve, remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes prior. Discard the foil and warm in a microwave for 45 seconds. Dust with cocoa powder and serve immediately.
Idea: You can also swap out the Grand Mariner for Cabernet Sauvignon. I like to add 1/8 teaspoon of cinnamon to give it a little extra zing!