Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Wine, Chocolat, & Cheese Party!

Joe and I have been talking about throwing a wine, chocolate, and cheese party for about a year now - ever since we started enjoying varieties of all three! So, when Holly proposed Chocolat (Only 62% fresh? Seriously, rotten tomatoes...) for her movie night movie, we got really excited about the possibility of pairing the movie night with a tasting!

So, to prepare, first thing's first... a little kitchen update. We had to say goodbye to Santa's Bag. What's Santa's Bag?
Well, when Joe and I first moved into our place, we were a little limited on the furniture and thriving on the gifts. We had a brand new microwave, and nowhere to put it! So we took its box and styro packaging, sealed it up, and put a giant cloth target gift bag over it. We flipped it over, and wa-la, a microwave stand! (I call it the Santa bag since it is large and red enough to hold Santa's gifts!) Anyway, my mother was kind enough to recognize that this was probably not a good idea, and 2.5 years later, we gave our nuker its very own stand.
Okay, next duty - take a nice trip to Trader Joe's! If you're as big of a TJ's fan as we are, you must see this video. So cute. Everyone buys unnecessary items in cool packaging at TJ's. Having the privilege of picking out cheese and wine at TJ's... well, let's just say it was a little overwhelming. We ended up with a few reds (a cabernet and a merlot for sangria), a Riesling, a Champagne, and a few cheese (stinky, soft, and some weird cheddar from Ireland with porter in it!) Our friends were gracious and brought more wine, cheese, and chocolate! But before that, I had to make the truffles. I figured... with only a few ingredients, how hard could they be? Boy, was I wrong!

Ingredients for the inside of the truffles... easy enough, no? Chop the chocolate, melt some in a pot over the stove, mix in a little heavy cream to temper, and then pour it back over the remaining chocolate in the bowl and stir. Not so bad....
Next, I had to spread the stuff out and let it cool at room temperature for 4+ hours. Not so easy when your kitchen is a sauna! Then I had to scoop teaspoon-sized bits and let them sit for awhile in the fridge so I could roll them.

Finally, after rolling all 77(!) of those suckers, I had to coat them in a chocolate glaze (chocolate chips melted over boiling water and quickly cooled to whatever particular degree I couldn't measure because I don't own a candy thermometer... really, who does?) , then dip them in
toppings, and let it all sit some more!

Toppings: Pistacious, Coconut & Cocoa Powder

(Phew! Never doin that again!)

Okay, back to the party. We pulled out the ole' (well, new) wine glasses, delicately placed our chocolates on platters, made labels for each wine and cheese selection, popped the corks, and CUT THE CHEESE! Hah. Really. Here was our bountiful spread... Wine was drunk, Cheese was funk(y), and Chocolat(e) was... well... irresistible!


  1. That's one amazing hostess! Looks wonderfully delectable. Job well done. :) Sounds like a great night.

  2. i have to say, you guys are the most gifted host/hostess pair i've ever known. in all seriousness: i hope to be as gifted at hosting one day when i have my own place(and hopefully a hostess to partner with :D)

  3. Aww Eric, thanks so much for the wonderful compliment!! We really try and we enjoy it so the hope is that the energy is contagious ;-) I could totally see you being a very gracious host! :)