Saturday, September 24, 2016

Classic Chocolate Torte with Kahlua #recipe #giveaway #bookclub @abbottmysteries

By Victoria Abbott from Mary Jane Maffini's kitchen.

We hope you are enjoying our third book club week theme at Mystery Lovers Kitchen.   I love book club week because I love book clubs. In my experience as an author book clubs are often associated with food (and wine) as well as love of books.

My own book club has a rule: there must be chocolate. Of course, we usually have a book as well.  Ahem.  We are usually in a good mood:  here we are on a previous get together, looking forward to something chocolately.

Produce the chocolate or we'll stop smiling!

Book Club will meet here at my house on Tuesday. Therefore it has been necessary to do a dry run on a chocolate dessert to serve.  I chose Classic Chocolate Tart and decided to update it with a good dose of Kahlua, because I could.

Of course, I’ll have to try some other old favorites too:  maybe some that have already appeared on Mystery Lovers Kitchen!   Here are links to two recipes that I did from previous book club weeks and one that I should have (mini-souffles). You can check them out after!

Finally, here's how to make Classic Chocolate Tart with Kahlua


Pie crust:

¾ cup unbleached white flour, plus extra for board and rolling pin
2 tsp. good quality cocoa powder, plus extra for board and rolling pin
4 tsp. icing sugar
Pinch of salt
¼ cup chilled butter
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons ice water (or more if necessary)
Dried beans (to hold crust down while baking)

Ganache filling:

8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons Kahlua
White and dark chocolate curls or shreds to decorate
¾ cup whipping cream
4 tablespoons Kahlua
Directions for crust:
Grease a 9-inch fluted tart pan with removable bottom.
Cut a piece of parchment paper just slightly larger than bottom.
Sift flour, sugar, cocoa and salt into food processor.  Add chilled butter and pulse until it looks like bread crumbs. 

 Distribute egg yolk around mixture and add ice water. Pulse until it just holds together. Add a tiny bit more water if necessary.

Roll out on counter or board dusted with extra flour and cocoa until larger than pan. Lift into pan very carefully.  We used our pancake spatula and a regular spatula after a couple of failed attempts. Just sayin’.

Press into pan making sure it fits into the fluting. Trim the edges.  
Put parchment paper in and add the beans.

Chill for a half-hour.
Preheat oven to 375 F.
Bake for fifteen minutes. Lift out with care as bottom can dislodge (we know this the hard way).
Remove parchment paper and beans.  
Bake for five more minutes.
When the crust has cooled, make the ganache:
Chop the semi-sweet chocolate and put in a heat-proof bowl with the room temperature butter.

Bring the whipping cream just to a boil.

Pour cream over chocolate and butter and stir until melted.
Add Kahlua and stir to blend.
Pour into pie crust and chill for three hours.

Decorate with slivers of white and dark chocolate or chocolate curls.

Whip ¾ cup cream with the 4 tablespoons Kahlua.
To serve: remove from pie plate with great care and transfer to a serving plate if you want to show it off. 

  Serve plain or with dollops of whipped cream. You can also serve slices from the pie plate.

This tart is very rich and serves six large pieces or ten slimmer ones.  

By now you know that the shadowy body known as Victoria Abbott is actually us: Victoria and Mary Jane Maffini.   

We're really excited about the coming release of The Hammett Hex, our fifth book collector mystery. 

 We are having so much fun with the fedoras that we thought you might want a chance to win one.  How about it?  Just leave a comment here and YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS.  Then be prepared to open an email from Mary Jane Maffini if you're the winner.  Your spam filter may think that it's from Marijuana Muffins, but YOU have to find a way to check for it.   Good luck everyone! This comes with different colored bands!  

If you haven't already pre-ordered The Hammett Hex,  here's you chance:

 CLICK HERE or ask your favorite booksellter




  1. Delicious! I will be saving this recipe. Thank you for sharing it and thank you for the opportunity to win a fedora.

    1. Thanks, Barbara! Good luck in the draw. Hugs, MJ/VA

  2. Can't wait to try this out!! Thank you.

  3. Okay - chocolate, cream, Kahlua, more chocolate, more cream, and more Kahlua? I'm in! And the book sounds yummy, too! Thanks ;-) xoxo

    1. Yup, everything but the pug, but that's in the book, of course! Hugs. MJ/VA

  4. Got to try this recipe. Thank you for sharing! Looking forward to The Hammett Hex as well.

  5. Chocolate torte by itself sounds lovely but adding Kahlua to the recipe elevates it for me! Your book club is so lucky! Thanks for the recipe, and chance to win a classy fedora. grace dot koshida at gmail dot com

  6. Happy Saturday! Great recipe. What's not to like! I love the look of the choc on top! Thanks for the chance to win a spiffy fedora. Seems almost necessary to wear while reading the Hammett Hex! And lastly everyone looks so dressed up and nice for your book club. Is there ever a sweatpants day in book club?? Thanks!

    Rlewis11797 (at) yahoo (dot) com

    1. I had to laugh, Bec. We have an annual pool party and the girls had their fascinators on with their bathing suits. What can I say? They are hilarious. Hugs.

    2. Now it's my turn to laugh! I had to look up "fascinators" and when I did I sure had a chuckle. I could just imagine gals bobbing around in the pool in millinery. You are so very lucky to have a group of fun ladies who don't mind laughing at themselves. And we are lucky to have you to keep producing our beloved cozies! Thanks for the laugh!


  7. Whoo--rich! Looks gorgeous. (And I know what you mean about those pesky pie crusts!)

    1. Aw thanks, Sheila. We never truly trust a pie crust. Hugs. MJ/VA

  8. The torte looks and sounds delicious. I love the fedora. Thank you for this chance!

  9. Wonderful recipe. Thanks for this great feature and giveaway. Love the fedora from my era. Classic and smart. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

    1. Thank you. We are and love classics and vintage. Hugs. MJ/VA

  10. Delectable torte perfect for fall. I would adore this fedora and wear it proudly. Thanks for this great giveaway. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

  11. Oh my gosh this looks good enough to die for. Yummy!

  12. Chocolate and maybe a book? Sounds like the right priorities to me!
    Wow! Does this sound decadently wonderful.

    I made Julia Child's Triple Chocolate Bomb for my husband's birthday one year. It is so rich you really can only serve small slices and they need barely sweetened whipped cream to balance it all out. Friends were giving us a hard time about the size of the servings ...until they started eating. Then they understood!

    It would be a privilege to wear a hat matching you two.
    libbydodd@comcast dot net

  13. Chocolate sounds sooooo good right now.

  14. This sounds like my new birthday cake!!! You guys look so cute in the fedoras. I think I could rock one :)

  15. Delicious recipe and love The Hammett Hex cover!! Yay! A new Book Collector mystery. ~ Daryl

  16. Perfect for this chocoholic! You look great sporting those fedoras.

  17. That torte looks so delicious—it would go fabulously well with a great cup of coffee and a kitty by my side ... as I dazzle everyone with my beautiful new fedora!

    skkorman AT bellsouth DOT net

  18. Oh yum--chocolate *and* Kahlua, and a spiffy fedora! Count me in!