This is an after-school treat straight from childhood; it is so popular in Beirut that coffee houses offer it now everywhere. I have often wondered about the origin of this chocolate confection and after surfing dozens of French blogs, it appears that it comes from France.
You will keep your chocolate salami in the freezer; when you want a slice or two, pull it out and cut it; keep in the freezer.
After almost a dozen tryouts, I came up with two different recipes: one uses eggs and the other does not. Recipe #1 uses cocoa and is lighter, better suited for a snack; recipe #2 is richer, made with chocolate bars and a lot of nuts, and is most suited for a dessert with a drink or liqueur.
- 2 sticks of unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup of granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup of honey
- 3 eggs
- 3/4 cup of cocoa powder, Dutch-processed
- 1 Tablespoon of liqueur, whatever you like, or use a flavoring like vanilla extract
- 3 tablespoons of cornstarch, diluted in 1/4 cup of cold water
- 3/4 pound of Marie cookies, cut in small squares (plain cookies, like animal crackers)
- a handful of pistachios or almonds or hazelnuts, toasted (no need to toast the pistachios)-optional
- Cut the plain cookies with a knife or a rolling pin. Set aside in a large bowl.
- Place the sugar, honey and unsalted butter in a large pot; stir over low heat until the butter is melted and the sugar is dissolved (take out a teaspoon and rub two fingertips on the mixture to make sure it is not grainy). Add the cocoa powder and mix well to blend thoroughly.
- Cool the mixture a bit and when it is lukewarm, start introducing the eggs, one at a time as well as the liqueur, stirring constantly; when the mixture starts steaming, add the cornstarch mixture and stir for a minute till thick; if you notice that it curdles, no need to panic, drop the whole mixture in a blender and process until smooth, 5 to 10 seconds. Done.
- Transfer the chocolate mixture into the bowl with the broken cookies and nuts (if using).
- When the mixture had cooled a bit, spread a large sheet of aluminum foil or plastic wrap on a work surface and spread the mixture on it, shaping it like a fat sausage. Enclose it tightly and place in the freezer for at least 6 hours.
- To serve, cover the entire salami with powdered sugar; tie up with kitchen twine; slice and serve. Keep the remainder in the freezer.
Recipe #2 from Les Assiettes du Chef.
- 220 g chocolate at 90% cocoa (extra bitter)
- 120 g honey (about 5 ounces)
- 90 g unsalted butter (7 Tablespoons or 3 1/2 ounces)
- 120 g granulated sugar (2/3 cup)
- 120 g whipping creme (4 ounces)
- 150 g dry biscuits such as Marie cookies or animal crackers (2 cups)
- 75 g of flour (1/2 cup plus 1 Tablespoon)
- 75 g almond flour (1/2 cup toasted almonds chopped fine in a coffee grinder)
- 60 g hazelnuts, 60 g pecans (1/2 cup each)
- orange zest (optional, can substitute vanilla or orange oil )
- candied ginger, cut up in small pieces (optional)
- Melt the chocolate in the microwave or in a double-boiler on low heat; if using the microwave, start at 1 minute, adding 15 second increments (so as not to seize the chocolate).
- In a saucepan, place the sugar, honey, butter, and cream. Stir and make sure the sugar is dissolved. Boil the mixture for one minute, stirring constantly, remove from the heat and add almonds, or pecans or hazelnuts or pistachios and the flour and the chocolat.
- Stir over medium-low heat until the mixture thickens.
- Remove from the heat and add the LU biscuits. Let cool.
- Place two longs strips of plastic wrap or foil on a work surface. Pour the chocolate salami mixture like a big fat sausage. Wrap tightly and let it sit in the freezer for 6 hours.
- Pull out from the freezer, sprinkle with additional powdered sugar, tie in kitchen twine for fun, slice and serve.
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