You guys, it is officially “The Holidays.”
How are we at the end of the year already?! Am I the only one that feels like 2015 was a blur? In any event, lets talk about holiday meals—specifically, Italian-style holiday meals!
I paired up with Colavita and Perugina to create two crazy tasty Italian dishes that would be an awesome addition to any holiday table! I wanted to do something a bit unique, so I included olive oil and chocolate in both courses (trust me here you guys…it sounds strange, but this works, and it works well).
To start, how about some of the best meatballs you will ever try? They’re made with a mixture of beef and pork, or ultra tenderness. I’ve used ciabatta soaked in milk, and an egg as the binding agents. I find that the tears of bread result in a much more pleasant texture than bread crumbs. Inside I’ve also added sautéed onions, fresh thyme, and some cumin and cinnamon for a little holiday warmth.
The sauce is where things get really interesting…I’ve added grated Perugina dark chocolate straight into the tomato base! It sounds strange, but its adds such a rich depth of flavor! It’s not chocolate-y at all, just deep and rich. Plus, when I told my mom about my recipe, she told me that my grandma always added a bit of chocolate to her red sauce! Apparently I’m not as original as I had hoped 😛
These meatballs make a fantastic appetizer at a holiday party, or serve them over some spaghetti. I turned some of the leftover into meatball subs with melted provolone cheese on top. It was insanely tasty!!
And for desert? The most decadent chocolate cake—is there anything better? Seriously, guys…this cake is crazy fudgy. It’s completely flourless, and oh-so-rich. The chocolates I chose to use in it are flavored with lemon and orange, and they play so nicely with the fruity olive oil!
I serve it with a snowy white dusting of powdered sugar, and a dollop of creme fraiche. The slight tang and creaminess of the creme fraiche cuts the richness just enough. Cut this cake into thin slices because I’m not kidding when I say a little goes a long way!
Guess what? Colavita and Perugina want to share the awesome products I used here (and MORE) with you! You can enter below for a chance to when a gift basket full of amazing products from both Colavita and Perugina!
Yield: 8-10 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
- 3.5 oz. Perugina Dark Chocolate Limoncello Chocolate Bar, finely chopped
- 3.5 oz. Perugina Dark Chocolate Orangello Chocolate Bar, finely chopped
- ½ cup Colavita 100% Argentinian Fruity Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- 4 large eggs
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- confectioners’ sugar, to serve
- crème fraîche, to serve
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 9-inch spring form pan with a bit of olive oil. Line the bottom with parchment paper, and grease the paper.
- In a large, microwave-safe bowl, melt together the chocolate and olive oil for 30 seconds; stir very well, then return to the microwave in 10 second bursts, if needed, until fully melted.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix together the chocolate/olive oil mixture, and the sugar and salt until cool. Add in the eggs one a time, mixing well after each addition. Add in the cocoa powder and mix until combined. Scrape into the prepared pan. Rap it a few times on the counter to release any air bubbles.
- Bake for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs clinging to it. Allow to fully cool before removing from pan and peeling off the parchment from the bottom. Sift confectioners’ sugar over top, and serve with crème fraîche.