Chocolate Pots de Crème:
-12 oz. milk chocolate chopped finely (I got mine from a gourmet chocolate store so it was expensive, just get the best quality you can as this will determine how awesome these come out).
-5 large egg yolks
-2 Tbsp. sugar
-1/4 tsp. salt
-1 1/2 cup heavy cream
-3/4 cup half and half
-1 tsp. coffee or espresso essence (this is also hard to find and expensive, if you want sub 1 Tbsp. of coffee liquor
-1 Tbsp. vanilla extract (*make sure it's the real stuff)
-1/2 cup heavy cream
-2 tsp. sugar (superfine if you have it)
-1/2 tsp. vanilla extract*
Place chocolate in a medium bowl, place fine mesh strainer over the chocolate and set aside for the moment.
In another bowl whisk together the egg yolks, sugar and salt until combined. Whisk in the cream and half and half. Once combined transfer this mixture to a saucepan and cook over medium-low heat stirring constantly and scraping bottom with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula. Cook until thickened and silky, will be around 175 to 180 degrees. Don't allow the custard to overcook, will burn so watch it carefully. Will take about 8-10 minutes on the stove.
Take this mixture and immediately pour the fine mesh strainer over the chocolate so it covers all the chocolate. Don't touch it for about 3-5 minutes. When ready whisk to combine the now melted chocolate with the custard. Don't over whisk, just go till totally combined. Add in the coffee essence or your substitution and the vanilla extract and whisk until incorporated.
Divide the mixture between 8 small cups or ramekins (I lined the up on a cookie sheet for easy transport). Let them cool on counter then cover with plastic wrap and put in fridge for 4 hours. Bring out and let sit on counter for about 20-25 minutes before serving. (Don't put on the topping until right about ready to serve.)
To make the whipped cream combine the 1/2 cup heavy cream, 2 tsp. sugar and the 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract with an electric mixes on medium/high speed until stiff peaks form. Immediately spoon on top of the pots de crème and then sprinkle with cocoa powder. Serve an enjoy!
Note: If you prefer bittersweet chocolate change to only 10 oz of chocolate and use 5 Tbsp. of sugar instead of 2.