just a smidgen

Pots de Créme ‘n Brandied Black Cherry Compote with Whipped Dulce de Leche

Blue Willow 8I love the bright and clear contrast of Blue Willow china, did you know Blue and White is a big trend this year?

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This pattern has been in our family for generations and I was so pleased to borrow them from my mom to make this pretty winter vignette. Growing up, these were the dishes I saw at my grandfather’s round dining room table in Edmonton and that later graced our holiday tables year round on Birthdays, Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Polishing the silverware was the kids’ job and every summer outside on the back picnic table, Mike, Jack, Rich and I would do the task. I will admit that this was one chore I loved. There is something so magical about rubbing until the silver sparkled through the tarnish. I know.. I’m weird!

Traditions have changed, some families don’t celebrate with special dishes at all because they don’t go in the dishwasher. Others have decided that these “special” dishes should be used more often and I have to agree with them. We should celebrate each day that we are blessed with the company of our loved ones, or at least try to…

{ light candles, set out special dishes, pour a glass of wine.. and chat }

No matter what, we still try to sit down and eat dinner together most nights.

A table like this one is only usually set when we have company..
I love real linen napkins and they’re easy to wash for next time.

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You might recognize these homemade soy candles that I made last year with

Flow Blue Transferware Chippy Teacups.

I planted a few paperwhite bulbs in a blue and white glass vase also gifted to me from my mom a few years ago.

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I love these pink amaryllis and the tulips hint at spring..

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You asked me for the recipe for the Pots de Créme we had this past Christmas season.

I don’t have the caterer’s recipe but made my own for our company this weekend..

with warm brandied cherry compote spooned over top

and finished with dulce de leche whipped cream.

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These can be made ahead but make sure you take them out early enough to warm into silken chocolate spoonfuls. Then finish them at the last minute with the cherry compote and whipped cream.

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Tips:

These are the same frozen large sweet dark cherries I used in the Crunchy Cherry Bomb Muffins and they were purchased at Safeway.

Dulce de Leche can be made by slow baking a can of condensed milk.. but for convenience I picked up a jar at the Cookbook Company.

Pots de Créme

Pots de Créme ‘n Brandied Black Cherry Compote with Whipped Dulce de Leche
 
Ingredients
Pots de Créme
  • 1 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup 1% milk
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 10 ounces Callebaut milk chocolate, chopped
  • 3 ounces Callebaut dark semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 6 small ramekins or teacups
Dulce de Leche
  • 250-500 ml full fat whipping cream
  • 1 jar Dulce de Leche cream
Instructions
  1. Add milk, sugar and salt to a saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Heat and stir occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Do not let the milk mixture boil.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk the egg yolks in a heatproof bowl.
  3. Scoop one cup of the hot milk mixture and slowly pour and whisk into the yolk mixture. Whisk to completely blend together then whisk the yolk and milk mixture back into the pot of the remaining heated milk.
  4. Continue to cook on medium heat until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a wooden spoon.
  5. Meanwhile, put the chopped milk and semi-sweet chocolate into a large heatproof bowl or large 4 cup glass measuring bowl.
  6. Pour the hot, thickened milk mixture over the chocolate and stir until the chocolate has melted.
  7. Stir in the vanilla extract.
  8. Set the ramekins on a small baking sheet then pour the chocolate mixture evenly into them.
  9. Set the tray into the fridge to cool and set.
  10. When serving, remove from the fridge a few hours in advance to soften.
  11. Spoon over the brandy compote and Dulce de Leche Whipped Cream (recipe below).
Dulce de Leche Whipping Cream
  1. In a mixer fitted with a whisk, beat the cream until stiff. Add two heaping tablespoons of Dulce de Leche or to taste and whisk to blend.

 Brandied Cherries Compote

Brandied Cherry Compote
 
Ingredients
  • 1 600g bag frozen Dark Sweet Cherries, defrosted
  • 1 cup Brandy
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
Instructions
  1. Mix together defrosted cherries, brandy and sugar. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce to simmer. Once the cherries have softened, remove them and set aside in a bowl. Simmer the juice until the syrup has begun to thicken. Whisk in two teaspoons of cornstarch. Remove from heat when the sauce coats the back of a spoon. Add the cherries back, warm and taste. Add a splash of brandy if needed.

 

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