Like all boys, I had more than one favorite dessert. But there was something about my family’s chocolate salami that was fascinating because of its trompe l’oeil appearance—it looks just like a small salami coated with “bloom.”
Special equipment: Kitchen twine, for tying the salami (optional)
- 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
- 12 ounces finely chopped bittersweet chocolate (about 70% cacao)
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 1 cup coarsely broken (½-inch pieces) graham cracker cookies
- 2 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar, plus more as needed
- Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over low heat. Remove from the heat and add the chocolate. Let stand until the chocolate is softened, about 3 minutes. Whisk until the chocolate is smooth and melted. Whisk in the egg. Fold in the graham crackers.
- Cover loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate, taking out every 10 minutes or to scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula, until the mixture is cool and thickened, but not set, 30 minutes to 1 hour. (Watch closely, because the exact timing depends on the refrigerator temperature and the chocolate brand.)
- Spread a 16-inch-long sheet of plastic wrap on a work surface. Spoon the chocolate mixture along the end of the plastic closest to you, forming a 12-inch log. Starting at the closest side, roll up the chocolate in the plastic to make a rough cylinder. Tightly twist the ends of the plastic in opposite directions to enclose and form the chocolate into a salami shape. Gently roll the salami on the work area to smooth the salami surface. Place it on a small baking sheet. Refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours or overnight.
- Unwrap the chocolate salami. Sift the confectioner’s sugar all over the salami to coat it. Tie the kitchen twine, if using, around the salami crosswise at 1-inch intervals. (If you want a very authentic appearance, look online for directions on how to do a “butcher’s knot” with a single long piece of kitchen twine.) The salami can be wrapped in plastic and refrigerated for up to 2 days.
- To serve, cut the chilled salami into thin slices. Let stand for a few minutes for it to lose its chill, and serve.
Note: If you have concerns about using raw egg, use an organic egg or look for pasteurized eggs at well-stocked natural food stores and supermarkets.