Today is your lucky day. Not just because it's Friday, but because today is the day I'm going to share one of my absolute favorite desserts with you. It's not even so much a dessert as it is an EXPERIENCE. Please allow me to introduce you to my delightful little friends who answer to the name of Chocolate Toasts. You probably have all the ingredients in your kitchen right now and could make them a favorite part of your own repertoire too. I stumbled upon this ecstatic combination of ingredients on this very day in 2005, and it was such a felicitous discovery on a remarkable evening that it only seemed appropriate to share them with you today.
I live for the impromptu party. Though I derive great joy from planning and preparing an elaborate meal, I also love being able to quickly conjure up a mini party when friends stop by spontaneously. With a few key ingredients at the ready at all times, I am ready and willing to lift any situation up to a more celebratory level, sometimes on as little as 10 minutes notice, if necessary. My basic Impromptu Party Kit includes a hunk of interesting cheese, good bread and excellent olive oil, an assortment of briny olives, and some roasted almonds, especially the swoon-worthy Marcona almonds from Spain. My apartment always plays host to beautiful bittersweet chocolate bars, as well as festive bottles of fun sparkling wine plus gorgeous red wine. These are staples in my kitchen at all times, for I never know when friends are going to pop by, hungry and thirsty and eager to hang out.
Math was never my favorite subject in school, and that's an understatement if I ever heard one. But there are a few very basic equations that I find quite satisfying and downright beautiful when it comes to entertaining:
olives + a nice wedge of artisanal cheese + festive sparkly wine + friends = Instant Party
almonds + exquisite bittersweet chocolate + lovely luscious wine = Instant Dessert for Happy Friends
baguette + bittersweet chocolate + olive oil + flaky sea salt = SHEER HEAVEN, with or without friends, but even better with friends