The Boquete Gourmet | Tag Archive | Chocolate

Posts Tagged ‘Chocolate’

How to Throw a Tapas Party

Written on August 11th, 2010 by 3 shouts

Do you like to throw parties? Boquete is the perfect place to throw a party, with it’s cool mountain air to create the ultimate atmosphere, and with lots of folks living here who love to socialize. What better party to throw than a Tapas Party?

Panama is a Spanish country, and tapas is the perfect food to serve when friends and visitors get together. No one knows that better than Foodie Couture Chef, Dede Basden, visiting Boquete from Dallas, Texas.

During her visit to Boquete, Dede hosted a huge tapas party in my kitchen, one that included the guests preparing drinks and intriguing tiny dishes, laughing and munching throughout the evening while listening to Latin music. What a fun party!

Foodie Couture Tapas Party Menu

Red and White Sangria
Cayenne Shrimp Chips with Spicy Sriracha Aioli
Spicy Tuna Crisps
Corvina Ceviche in Egg-roll Cups
Mushroom Ravioli with Balsamic Brown Butter
Grilled Steak with Caramelized Onions and Blue Cheese
Chocolate Banana Egg rolls

The formula for a Tapas Party is simple: invite 12 good friends, get together ingredients for sangria and six tapas dishes, provide a recipe to each couple, put on some Latin music and let your guests do the rest.

Tapas are eaten throughout the party, as each dish is completed. It may be necessary to stop and make another pitcher of Sangria, no problem.

Be sure to have plenty of small plates on hand, plastic works just fine. And, include an easy dessert such as Dede’s Banana Eggrolls with Chocolate Syrup.

12 small eggroll sheets
6 bananas, cut in half
2 Hershey’s chocolate bars, cut into squares
1 cup shredded coconut, toasted
1 cup vegetable oil
Chocolate syrup, whipped cream, vanilla ice cream and coconut for garnishes

Place one eggroll wrapper diagonally on the counter and center a piece of banana on the lower half of the wrapper. Top with chocolate squares and coconut flakes. Roll the wrapper up over the banana and bring sides towards the middle so the extra dough is in the middle, forming a packet. Lightly wet the end of the wrapper so it will stick together. Heat oil in skillet over medium heat and when oil begins to bubble slightly, add the eggrolls and brown on all sides until crisp. Remove from pan and serve with chocolate syrup, ice cream, whipped cream and coconut flakes.

Dede has a standing Invitation to return to Boquete anytime and, if she has time, we’d love to have her host another one of her delightful parties! If you might be interested in partying with Dede, please let me know or check out her website at
Enjoy the party!

Fine Chocolate Available in Boquete

Written on August 7th, 2010 by no shouts

Boquete’s Sugar & Spice Bakery Pastry Chef, Richard Meyer has presented two very successful cooking classes for Boquete Gourmet during these last few weeks. Richard’s dishes were decadent and many students enjoyed the class so much chocolate, they became real aficionados of this fine delicacy.

The question asked in each class was where to buy fine, gourmet-style chocolate, the type found in France, Belgium, Holland or Germany. Many new residents in Boquete are yearning for the day when they can make chocolate delicacies from fine, imported chocolate here in Panama. And, now is the time.

The finest Belcolade Chocolate, imported from Belgium, is now available at the Boquete Tuesday Morning Market, beginning this Tuesday. The market is held in the Event Center, just over the bridge in the town center of Boquete, and it opens at 9:00am every Tuesday.

This fine, 70% cacao chocolate is bagged in pieces as they break from the huge, original bar. Pieces vary from 2 ounces to about one pound in weight. It is priced at 60 cents per ounce and comes with a recipe for Boquete Gourmet Chocolate Truffles, a very easy to make chocolate candy that requires no special skills to make. The truffle recipe is also included in Boquete Gourmet Community Cookbook, available at locations listed on the right of this article.

There are many, many sweet treats that can be made from this fine chocolate, including some pictured here.

But, if you’d like to make something different with your chocolate, try this chicken recipe made with chocolate. Chocolate and chicken might not sound like the tastiest combination, but chicken mole marries these two unlikely foods together and the result is culinary heaven. This dish mixes common spices with chocolate before cooking it with chicken. If you’d like to make something unusual with your fine chocolate, try this dish.

6 chicken breasts, skinless and boneless
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 cups broth
¼ cup almonds, slivered
1/4 cup raisins
1/2 teaspoon. cumin
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon sugar
2 oz. unsweetened Belcolade chocolate, chopped

In a large, ovenproof skillet, heat the oil and cook the garlic until just soft, not brown, then add the chicken and brown. Remove the chicken and add the chili powder, blending it in well. Use less chili powder or omit if you don’t like spicy foods. Add the broth, almonds, raisins, and seasonings. Simmer this, covered, for about 30 minutes. Add the chocolate to the mixture, stirring until melted and return the chicken to the skillet, spooning sauce over the chicken. Cover and bake at 350F degrees for 1 hour, or until the chicken is tender. Serve with some chopped cilantro and buttered egg noodles on the side

Pick up some fresh Belgian chocolate at this Tuesday’s Boquete Market, you’ll love cooking with it!

Are You “Crazy for Chocolate”?

Written on March 5th, 2010 by no shouts

Several years ago, David and I went to Sarasota, Florida to a “Chocolate Convention” and I’ll never forget it. We each had a card with 20 numbers on it and each numbered station offered servings of a different chocolate treat. We stayed at the convention until all 20 numbers were punched on our cards! It was an incredible experience and we’ve been “crazy for chocolate” ever since.

In Boquete, there is a “new” pastry chef in town, Richard Meyer. He opened Sugar & Spice Bakery in a new location on the main street, on the right side coming near the town center. Richard specializes in making delicious chocolate pastries using several varieties of chocolate. He also makes country breads, rolls, pies and almost every form of baked goods you’d expect to find anywhere in the world.

From the Sugar & Spice sign above the bakery door, you can tell from the loaf of bread and star-studded chef’s hat, that fine bread and a fine chef can be found there. Look carefully at Richard’s sign, it’s handmade and full of information.

I am very happy to announce that Richard will be the next Boquete Gourmet’s guest chef for April’s cooking class. He’ll make three very special chocolate desserts using 3 different chocolates and 3 different techniques to use with chocolate. His class will be held on Wednesday, April 7, 2010, beginning at 1:00pm at the Sugar & Spice Bakery.

The registration fee of $25 includes not only the class instruction, a serving of each of 3 desserts and unlimited “Boquete Gourmet” coffee, but a recipe book, paired wine tasting and “goodie bag” to take home.

If you love chocolate, or are actually “crazy for chocolate”, you won’t want to miss Richard’s very special “Chocolate Class” coming up April 7.

There are only 12 seats available, so email, call 6614-9514 or pick up your ticket today at Sugar & Spice. First come, first served.
Chocolate lover,

Five Foodbuzz Friends to Checkout

Written on February 2nd, 2010 by 5 shouts

Over these last few months, I’m getting into the “Foodie” Culture of bloggers from all over the world. I’ve been recently selected as a Featured Publisher on, which is big honor for me.  I’ve made hundreds of “foodie” friends online during this time.

I’d like to share some of my favorites with you, as they are folks much like me, expressing themselves in a new and exciting way.

If you’d like to see my profile on Foodbuzz, please click this link and you’ll see what I mean about this exciting new hobby of blogging. You’ll see hundreds of interesting blogs and you can “graze” from one to another by clicking “next” at the top of the page.

My very favorite food blog is, written by Greg Henry. Of course, he has been a personal friend of mine for many years.  Greg presented his “Hollywood’s Golden Age” cooking class in my kitchen last month. He has many awards for his creativity, lovely photos and “far-out” recipes.

Then, another favorite is, written by Drick Perry.  Drick calls himself a “home-style” cook specializing in southern Gulf-coast dishes from Alabama and Louisana.  His Bananas Foster and Christmas Morning Strata are a couple of my all-time favorite recipes.

Lori Lynn is writing an amazing blog, Lori’s photos have received much recognition internationally. I’ve tried to follow some of her techniques, but I have lots to learn. Lori’s also an excellent cook who uses interesting and unusual recipes.  She is a finalist in this month’s Foodbuzz 24-24-24 contest.

Don’t miss, by chocolate fanatic Tammyjo Eckhart.  I started to read her recipes and couldn’t quit.  She writes a “Saturday Sacrament” that showcases here favorite chocolate recipe for that week.  It’s a very fun blog, so have lots of time when you open Tammyjo’s link, especially if you love chocolate!

Last but not least, is, by fellow foreign foodie friend, Rachel White.  Rachel lives in Tokyo and you’ll see some similarities between her blog and mine.  She has written me that she would love to present a cooking class in my kitchen.  I have especially invited her to visit Boquete and to cook in my kitchen.  Maybe she’ll recipricate, Tokyo here I come!

If you love food and cooking, you’ll find lots of inspiration from any of these friends of mine. You’ll find hundreds of similar sites written by experienced food writers from all over the world on, but I think I’m the only food blogger from Panama. If you find another “foodie” from here, please let me know.  I’ve been having fun posting articles about Boquete, never realizing how many new friends would come my way. 

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