Chocolate Creme Bars
Chocolate cookie base
1 cup of unbleached flour
1 cup of Almond flour
1 cup of unsalted butter, 2 sticks, cubed and chilled
4 tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of cardamon
1/2 teaspoon of ginger
1/4 teaspoon of star anise
1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon
8 oz of white chocolate, melted and cooled
1 cup of heavy cream
4 egg yolks
4 tablespoons of Grand Marnier
4 tablespoons raw sugar
1 tablespoon of water
1 teaspoon of unflavored gelatin
pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Line a brownie baking pan with parchment paper, with flaps coming up so that the bars will be easily removed from the pan - about a 9-inch by 18-inch pan or two 9inch square pans.
Place the cookie base dry ingredients into the food processor and pulse to combine. Add butter and pulse until a ball forms. Roll out in the back pan and press evenly across the bottom. The dough should be flat, no need to work it up the sides of the pan. Back about 25 to 30 minutes. The cookie base should start pulling away from the sides of the pan. Let cool at room temp for an hour then place in the fridge for an additional hour.
Remove from fridge, place parchment paper on the surface of the chocolate, cover with plastic, and set aside at room temp.
In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over the water and let stand until softened.
Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, using a handheld electric mixer, beat the cream until softly whipped. Refrigerate until chilled, about 10 minutes.
In a small, microwave-safe bowl, heat the orange liqueur at high power until hot, about 45 seconds. Stir in the softened gelatin until dissolved.
In another medium bowl, beat the egg yolks with the sugar and salt at high speed until pale and thickened, about 5 minutes. While beating the yolks, beat in the orange-gelatin liquid; scrape the side and bottom of the bowl. Beat in the melted chocolate. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the whipped cream in 2 additions. Scrape the mousse into a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 4 hours or overnight.
Place garnish ingredients into a small bowl and whisk, set aside.
Uncover chocolate cookie base, remove from pan, and place on cutting board. Using a long sharp knife or a cutting wire, cut the cookie in half. Place new parchment into the baking pan that the cookie base was removed. Place a collar of parchment around the sides. Return on part of the cookie to the pan, spoon-filling mixture in, spread until flat and level, add the remaining cookie on top. Press slightly, return to the fridge to set for at least 90 minutes.
Remove from Fridge, remove from baking pan, and release collar. Now you could cut into squares now while still firm, then garnish with spice mixture.
NOTE: for cookie base, you can divide the dough into two balls then spread it into a tin layer into two pans, reducing cooking time by half.