This month Beanilla will guest judge the competition so that means Vanilla Beans! The first 15 contestants received a set of three magical vanilla beans from Beanilla for their creations. The idea is to use vanilla in three different ways for your dessert. So vanilla it is!
I love Spring time and Easter! One of my husband's all time favorites is vanilla and since his birthday happens in Spring I always bake him a vegan apple pie with homemade vanilla gelato, and this year was no exception! And, along with that apple pie, I made another SPECIAL dessert. A dessert with Dessert Wars written all over it.
But before I discuss dessert more, here is the prize package for this month's winner:
One sweet we love around here are brownies, and vegan brownies really rock my boat. The brownie is the perfect vehicle for gelato as a matter of fact. But these are not ordinary vegan brownies, they have a punch -- I added Burgundy wine to the batter to pair with the Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla...and what depth of sweetness transported me to a even higher plateau when I added fresh raspberries as well!
Next I made a Tahitian Vanilla Bean gelato and froze it in the same brownie pan. I unmolded the gelato and latered it on top on the brownie.
I took a good semi sweet chocolate and melted it with a scraped South Sea Island Vanilla Bean my dear friend Joy sent me from Austrailia...a infusion , so pleasant , as it wafted through the kitchen...vanilla bean euphoria.
I choose to drizzle the chocolate over the top rather than dip and cover the entire brownie. More enjoyable vanilla pleasure for my palate. Of course, if you wish to cover your brownies, be my guest... I topped each with a couple more fresh raspberries.
Sheer ecstacy. Better than Chocolate Easter Eggs! Wanna make your own?
Triple Vanilla Dream Brownie
First, the brownie: Cocoa Raspberry Burgundy Brownie with Bourbon Vanilla Essence
3 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons flax seed
1¾ cups flour
7 tablespoons cocoa powder
¾ teaspoon salt
1/8 cup boiling water
1/8 cup Red Burgundy
1 cup raw sugar
½ cup vanilla sugar
6 tablespoons margarine, melted (not tub margarine)
2 teaspoons Madagascar Bourbon vanilla extract
½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Handful fresh raspberries
Mix the flax seed and water. Combine the flour, baking powder, and sugar. Mix the hot and wine into the flour and add the cocoa and salt. Mix in the margarine and vanilla. Add the flax mixture. Pour into an 8 x 8 greased pan or cookie molds. Bake 25 minutes. Cool on rack. Cut into 12 bars.
Second, the gelato: Tahitian Vanilla Bean Gelato
2 cups Mimic Cream
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 Tahitian Vanilla Beans, scraped
Pinch of salt
Make a slurry by mixing the 1/4 cup of the cream with the cornstarch, mixing until the starch is dissolved and the mixture is smooth. Heat the rest of the cream in a medium-sized saucepan. Add the vanilla beans. When it almost starts to boil, stir in the cornstarch mixture, salt and cook at gentle simmer for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, scrape into a bowl and chill thoroughly, preferably overnight. Freeze the gelato in your ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Makes 3 cups.
Cut into bars to fit on top of the brownies. Freeze up.
Finally, the Fudge Sauce
1/2 cup dark chocolate
1 South Sea Island Vanilla Bean (Indonesian)
In double boiler, heat fudge until melted and bean is infused. Top or dip each gelato brownie. Add a raspberry and pop back into freezer until set.
Allow the dessert to sit out 7 minutes before serving. Serves 8-12