Barefoot Contessa, was seated in a small booth in a darker hall at the Fancy Food Show last week. I almost missed her, but I'm glad I didn't. Every time I watch her show on the Food Network, I hope to be invited to dinner at her beautiful home, to dine in her lovely garden, or help out in her great kitchen.
The Barefoot Contessa has just published her 7th cookbook in the Barefoot Contessa series. The new one: How Easy is That?: Fabulous Recipes & Easy Tips by Ina Garten (Clarkson Potter, 256 pages, $35) is filled with tips and recipes for the home cook, more for beginners than the experienced chef, but great for all.
Of interest in this new cookbook to the Chocoholic is the Mocha Chocolate Icebox Cake. I haven't tried it yet, but will soon. Let me know if you have.
MOCHA CHOCOLATE ICEBOX CAKE
2 cups cold heavy cream
12 ounces Italian mascarpone cheese
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup Kahlua liqueur
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 (8-ounce) packages Tate's Bake Shop chocolate chip cookies, or other thin crisp chocolate chip cookies
Shaved semisweet chocolate, for garnish
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, or with a hand-held mixer, combine the heavy cream, mascarpone, sugar, Kahlua, cocoa powder, espresso powder and vanilla. Mix on low speed to combine, then slowly raise the speed and beat until mixture forms firm peaks.
Arrange chocolate chip cookies flat in an 8-inch springform pan, covering the bottom as much as possible. Break some cookies to fill in the spaces. Spread a fifth of the mocha whipped cream evenly over the cookies. Place another layer of cookies on top, lying flat and touching, followed by another fifth of the cream. Continue layering the cookies and cream until there are 5 layers of each, ending with a layer of cream. Smooth the top, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight.
To serve, run a small sharp knife around the outside of the cake, and remove the sides of the pan. Sprinkle the top with the chocolate, cut into wedges, and serve cold.