brownie crinkle cookie

We often get inspired by what we come across on social media. This is one such recipe we and really suggest you give it a try.

Makes 10 cookies

200g dark chocolate (around 65-70% cocoa solids), finely chopped
125g unsalted butter, diced
150g caster sugar
100g light brown sugar
2 large eggs
130g  flour
3 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt (plus flaked sea salt for sprinkling)

Temperature and timing is very important with this recipe so before you start get all the ingredients weighed out, two baking trays lined with baking paper and the oven preheated to 180C (160C fan).

Place the butter and chocolate into a heatproof bowl and set over a pan and gently simmering water. Allow to melt, stirring occasionally until fully melted. Remove the bowl from the heat and set aside for the moment. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, or using an electric hand mixer, whisk together the eggs and sugars for exactly 5 minutes. Once the eggs have been mixing for exactly 5 minutes pour in the chocolate mixture and mix for a minute or so to combine. Meanwhile mix together the dry ingredients, sieving the cocoa powder if it has lots of lumps. Add the dry ingredients and mix very briefly just until combined. Use your spatula to give one last mix, scraping the bottom of the bowl to make sure everything is evenly combined. Use a ice cream scoop to form the cookies. The batter will be a little on the wet side, so invert the cookie scoop just above the baking tray to avoid spills. Make sure to leave plenty of space between each cookie as they will spread. Sprinkle each cookie with a little flaked sea salt before placing into the oven and baking for 12 minutes. The cookies will come out of the oven with that wonderful crinkled look and slightly domed. They will collapse a little as they cool but this helps form that perfect fudgy centre. The cookies will be very soft so allow them to cool on the baking trays for at least 20-30 minutes before removing from the tray to cool completley.

These cookies will keep for 4-5 days but will be best within the first 3 days.

Amsterdam Chocolate Festival

This past weekend we paid a visit to The Amsterdam Chocolate Festival.  The festival documented an array of chocolates made using cocoa from around the world.

Products, for example soaps, made using cocoa butter, were also on show. There are so many different chocolates available at the moment and this gives one the opportunity to be able taste and understand the differences and nuances that can be found in chocolates from different countries.

What is chocolate and how is it made? 

Chocolate is a typically sweet, usually brown, food preparation of Theobroma cacao seeds, roasted and ground, often flavored, as with vanilla. It is made in the form of a liquid, paste or in a block or used as a flavouring ingredient in other sweet foods. Cacao has been cultivated by many cultures for at least three millennia in Mesoamerica. The earliest evidence of use traces to the Mokaya (Mexico and Guatemala), with evidence of chocolate beverages dating back to 1900 BC. In fact, the majority of Mesoamerican people made chocolate beverages, including the Maya and Aztecs, who made it into a beverage known as xocolātl, a Nahuatl word meaning "bitter water". The seeds of the cacao tree have an intense bitter taste and must be fermented to develop the flavour.

After fermentation, the beans are dried, cleaned, and roasted. The shell is removed to produce cacao nibs, which are then ground to cocoa mass, pure chocolate in rough form. Because the cocoa mass is usually liquefied before being molded with or without other ingredients, it is called chocolate liquor. The liquor also may be processed into two components: cocoa solids and cocoa butter. Unsweetened baking chocolate (bitter chocolate) contains primarily cocoa solids and cocoa butter in varying proportions. Much of the chocolate consumed today is in the form of sweet chocolate, a combination of cocoa solids, cocoa butter or other fat, and sugar. Milk chocolate is sweet chocolate that additionally contains milk powder or condensed milk. White chocolate contains cocoa butter, sugar, and milk but no cocoa solids.

For more information on the festival visit Amsterdam Chocolate Festival.

A great magazine available for the coffee and chocolate industry is Koffietcoao.

Chocolate Mousse

There are certain recipes one needs to have in their repertoire and a good chocolate mousse is one of them. Here is our recipe that we have been making for years.

Serves 4

175 g dark chocolate (minimum 50% cocoa solids), chopped
60 ml strong black coffee
4 eggs, separated
15 g butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract or 15 ml liqueur of your choice
45 g castor sugar

Heat the chocolate in the coffee over a low heat, stirring until the chocolate has melted. Simmer until slightly thickened but still falling easily from the spoon. Remove from the heat and beat in the egg yolks, one by one, in to the hot mixture so that they thicken slightly. Beat in the butter and vanilla or liqueur. Let the mixture cool until just warm.

Whip the egg whites to stiff peaks. Add the sugar and continue whisking for 30 seconds to make a light meringue. Fold into the warm chocolate mixture. Pour into pots or glasses and chill in the refrigerator for at least a couple of hours. Serve lightly dusted with cocoa powder of with whipped cream.

We, the Amsterdam Flavours chefs, hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do. If you have any questions on how to prepare it or just want to send us your feedback, you can reach us here Contact Amsterdam Flavours


Chocolate Chip Cookies

Everybody loves a good chocolate chip cookie. Here is our recipe - it's simple to make but always gives great results. A great way to get the kids in the kitchen.

125 g butter, softened
1 1/4 cups brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg, beaten
1 1/2 cups plain flour, sifted
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 180°C and grease a baking tray or line with baking paper.

Cream the butter and sugar. Beat in the vanilla extract and egg. Stir in the sifted flour and baking powder until just combined. Stir through chocolate chips. (At this point you can form the mixture into a log and freeze for later. Just slice into 1 cm thick rounds and bake.)

Place spoonfuls of the mixture onto baking tray, allowing room for spreading. Bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until golden. Allow to cool on a wire rack before diving in!

We, the Amsterdam Flavours chefs, hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do. If you have any questions on how to prepare it or just want to send us your feedback, you can reach us here Contact Amsterdam Flavours

Dutch Homemade

For anybody like us with a sweet tooth, this store is chocolate heaven.

From the moment your walk in, your attention is grabbed by the brightly coloured macaroons, lined up neatly in rows like marching soldiers.

The beautifully sculptured chocolate bonbons, we're told, are all made using single origin chocolate, which is more difficult to work with than a more generic brand. Single origin is an important theme running through the selection of chocolates. Because the cocoa beans come from a single plantation in a specific country, each has their own characteristics, comparable to a good wine or coffee.

You'll find unusual varieties from as far away as Vietnam, Brazil and the Caribbean.

For more information, please visit Dutch Homemade.

Chocolate Guinness Cake

Nigella Lawson is famously known as The Domestic Goddess. Her cakes and dispelling baking myths have made her a household name. Recently someone told us we had to make her Chocolate Guinness cake. So we did. The combination of chocolate and Guinness makes a deep, dark cake, which is moist and delicious. And now we're sharing the recipe with you.

250 ml Guinness
250 g unsalted butter
75 g cocoa powder
400 g castor sugar
142 ml sour cream
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
275 g plain flour
2 ½ teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
for the topping
300 g cream cheese
150 g icing sugar
125 ml cream

Preheat the oven to gas mark 180°C and butter and line a 24cm springform tin with baking paper.

Pour the Guinness into a large wide saucepan, add the butter and heat until the butter has melted. Whisk in the cocoa and sugar. Beat the sour cream with the eggs and vanilla and then pour into the buttery Guinness pan and finally whisk in the flour and bicarb.

Pour the cake batter into the greased and lined tin and bake for 45 minutes to an hour until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Leave to cool completely in the tin on a cooling rack, as it is quite a damp cake.

When the cake's cold, place it on a flat platter or cake stand and start with the icing. Lightly whip the cream cheese until smooth, sieve over the icing sugar and then beat them both together. This can also be done in a processor, putting the unsieved icing sugar in first and blitz to remove lumps before adding the cheese. Add the cream and beat again until it makes a spreadable consistency.

Ice the top of the cake and serve.

We, the Amsterdam Flavours chefs, hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do. If you have any questions on how to prepare it or just want to send us your feedback, you can reach us here Contact Amsterdam Flavours

Urban Cacao

Urban Cocoa was founded in Amsterdam on 1st November 2013 where they produce chocolate in the center of Amsterdam. Under the inspired leadership of chocolatier, patissier and glacier Hans Mekking, they produce a varied assortment of patisserie in an open workshop of over 400m2 .

Besides chocolate, they also create macarons and contemporary pastry work. You are always welcome to go and taste. Their workshop has room for you to enjoy a coffee and ice cream in the summer. Always fresh and transparent,  their products are made of natural ingredients with an eye for quality and a sound source.

We love the brownies and blondies - do go and try them for yourselves!

Rozengracht 200, Amsterdam
For more information please visit urbancacao

Salted Caramel Brownies

butter, for greasing
350g dark chocolate, broken in small pieces
250g unsalted butter
3 eggs
250g dark brown sugar
100g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
4 tablespoons salted caramel

Heat the oven to 170°C. Lightly grease a 22cm square cake tin.

Melt the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Whisk the eggs and sugar together for about 2-3 minutes until smooth and fluffy.

Fold the chocolate mixture into the egg mixture.

Sieve the flour and baking powder into the mixture and stir to combine. Pour the mixture into the cake tin. Dot the top with dollops of salted caramel.

Place on the middle shelf of the oven and bake for about 35 minutes until the surface is set. It is cooked when it just starts to crack on the top. Remove from the oven. Allow to cool completely in the tin.

Slice the brownie into squares and serve with vanilla ice cream.

We, the Amsterdam Flavours chefs, hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do. If you have any questions on how to prepare it or just want to send us your feedback, you can reach us here Contact Amsterdam Flavours

Van Stapele

Listen up dear friends. What we are about to tell you is going to CHANGE. YOUR. LIFE! The search for Amsterdam's best chocolate chip cookie is over. And we're going to tell you where to find it.

In a small side street in the centre of Amsterdam, you'll find a little gem of a shop called Van Stapele. As you walk in, you're immediately intoxicated by the aroma of chocolate and freshly baked cookies. As you inhale the sugary air, you can watch the whole cookie making process right in front you.

And here's the genius part: because they are so confident in their recipe and we can vouch that their cookies are soooo good, there is only one type to choose from. So no mulling over which one it will be.

Do yourself a favour and get some today. You won't regret it!

For more information please visit Van Stapele


Gelato Festival

A short impression of The Amsterdam Gelato Festival on the Museum Plein 8 to 10th of August 2014

Sorts of ice creams:

Bottargadi marcedi and candied celery, dark chocolate orange variegated, ricotta orange and pistaches, hazelnut varied with hazelnut praline

For more information please visit Gelato Festival.