Sunday, December 23, 2012

Andy Tauer's Advent Calendar Giveaway (And A Cake!)


It's the most wonderful time of the year: Andy Tauer's Advent Calendar giveaway. This holiday season the prize is even more special, since the winner of today's giveaway will get to first chose a 5 piece sample set from Andy's two lines: Tauer Perfumes and Tableau de Parfums (any five he or she wants to try) and then select a FULL BOTTLE of his or her choice. The samples and the bottle will be sent directly from the perfumer's studio in Switzerland, and the draw is open to everyone worldwide. All you need to do is leave a comment telling us what's your favorite chocolate cake or treat.

My gift to you is one of my favorite cake recipes that once again comes from my mom, Nina. It's a delicate and fragrant chocolate and poppy seed torte. Now, poppy seeds are not the most common ingredient in North America. If we see them at the supermarket it's in those little McCormick bottles made for sprinkling on bagels or something. Don't buy that, please (I can hear my friends and readers in Eastern Europe howling with laughter as we speak) . To make this cake you'll need to buy the seeds in bulk from a spice market or a natural food store (or even order online). Make sure to buy whole seeds and grind them yourself in a spice grinder/coffee grinder. It takes less than five minutes to process the whole 7 oz in a couple of batches and ensures your seeds are not rancid (ground poppy seeds go stale incredibly fast). Whole poppy seeds keep nearly indefinitely in the freezer, so you can buy more and keep frozen (that's what I do).


Nina and Gaia's Chocolate and Poppy Seed Torte

Ingredients:
7 oz (200 gr) freshly ground poppy seeds
5.5 oz (150 gr) dark chocolate
1 3/4 sticks unsalted butter (200 gr)
3 tbs brandy/cognac or any favorite liquor (even a sweet red wine will do)
1 1/4 cup sugar (I tend to reduce it to 1 cup, but it's a matter of taste)
3 tbs fine breadcrumbs
6 eggs in room temperature

How to:
Heat oven to 325 degrees (F). Grease and flour a  round 10" baking pan (I've used various pans, round and square, as well as played with depths. The only thing that changes is baking time and your need to babysit it).

1. Separate the yolks from the whites. Beat the whites with the sugar until nicely stiff.
2. Melt chocolate and butter (I use the microwave, my mom doesn't), add brandy, poppy seeds, breadcrumbs and egg yolks, mix well, then add the beaten whites.
3. Pour into your prepped pan and bake at 325F for about an hour (a bit less if using a square pan). The cake is delicate and should remain rather moist.
Optional: glaze with melted chocolate (I rarely bother).

Let me know if and when you make this cake and don't forget to leave a comment telling us about your favorite chocolate cake.

Happy Holidays!

Images from artdecoblog.tumblr.com and pastrysampler.com.




227 comments:

  1. I love a good German chocolate cake.

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  2. I made a steamed chocolate pudding in the slow cooker about 30 years ago and I have never forgotten it. One of these days I am going to do it again. Otherwise I like a thin layer of real chocolate, not frosting, on a desert.

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  3. My favorite chocolate treat is most anything from See's candy. Thanks for sharing your mom's recipe :-)

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  4. Chocolate lava cake, definitely. :)

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  5. My SO has taken to baking cakes and in the hunt for a perfect German Chocolate cake, took ideas from several different recipes. He now has requests frequently from friends to bake the cake for their birthdays! It's a delicious 3 layer that looks as beautiful as it tastes. :)

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  6. My favorite chocolate treat right now is chocolate macarons from a local bakery. Nom.

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  7. My favourite is a Hungarian chocolate cake, called Csállay Torta. Two types of chocolate in it and lots of walnut. Haven't eaten for a while now, no one makes it anymore cause it is complicated to make and possibly something wrong with the recipe, it gets a bit too runny in the end, one has to eat it with a spoon. But the taste is heaven...

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  8. Sacher cake is my favourite...

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  9. Texas Brownies with chocolate and nuts And hot icing! Jennifer Smith aka bookwyrmsmith at live dot com

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  10. That poppy seed chocolate torte sounds fabulous! My favorite chocolate cake is still my great-aunt's farmhouse recipe for sour milk cocoa cake. Made with bread flour, it's dense and not very sweet, and best eaten plain, no frosting, with a big glass of cold milk.

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  11. Wow, in fact I love all choco cakes but mostly those with dark rich chocolate body and same cream/ filling/ topping, the richer/darker the better, should not be dry but moist, creamy.............stop myself because I am craving. Thx for the drawing!

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  12. good strong cup of black coffee and couple of chunks of 70% Lindt

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  13. I love any chocolate cakes... they are my favorite sins haha... this is a great draw. Thanks

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  14. Happy holidays! Where I live (Eastern EUrope), poppy seeds are commonly used in cooking and baking and it's one of my favorite flavors and poppy seed stuffed cakes are typical for Christmas. As to chocolate - just yesterday I made a no-flour chocolate cake (just chocolate, butter and eggs) and it's divine!

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  15. I like chocolate cakes,Sacher is my favorite!
    And also Cheese cake with some chocolate flakes on top just amazing :)

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  16. Eva K.: Meine Lieblings Schokotörtchen sind die, die innen noch flüssig gefüllt sind. Yummi

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  17. Chocolate cream made with saffron, Cointreau and orange jam. Simply delicious!

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  18. Hello! My favourites are chocolate muffins with peanuts and marzipan, but I will definitely try your receipt!

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  19. i like white chocolate :)

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  20. My favorite chocolat cake is a traditional cake in my region named "tenerina" (like a little tender girl)it's very simple with chocolate, butter and eggs, but it's a real caloric bomb.

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  21. I like any chocolate cake and your Mums' recipe looks delicious. I have never really baked a cake and am lazy so I go to the local supermarket and buy their "Belgian chocolate cake"
    I shall certainly tell you if I decide to try your Mums' recipe, I know my children would be delighted.

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  22. I've eaten many chocolate cakes in my life but somehow I've always returned to Sacher cake, an old cake from the golden time of Vienna. This is certainly my favourite cake.

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  23. My favorite chocolate treat is peanut butter balls dipped in chocolate. I only make them at Christmas time since they are not so healthy but, oh so delicious!

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  24. My favorite treat is chocolate!!! Real dark, not too bitter, organic and by "real dark" I mean vegan/animal stuff free! I'm vegan! :)
    I have yet to find and try a good simple vegan chocolate cake recipe! (but I tend to be lazy, cooking wise, so... Until then, chocolate will do just fine!)

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  25. My favorite chocolate treat is the chocolate cake that I made with my secret recipe :P .. and a good piece of Sacher Torte from Vienna

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  26. Chocolate brownies from l local jewel with sugar drizzle topping. Probably the best desert ever.

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  27. Had no idea you where even doing these. Great idea Andy! And that cake looks yum!

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  28. My favourite chocolate cake is a white and milk chocolate chunk brownie - yum.

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  29. Brownie is the one my wife is making. I love it!

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  30. I love rich dark chocolate cake with rick dark butter filling, all topped with whipped cream. What a sin ;-). Thanks for the drawing!

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  31. Homemade lemon scones with cream and a selection of jams. :-)

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  32. for me it is Chocolate Cheesecake

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  33. Hi, Gaia

    When I was child, my mom used to do a simple cake of chocolate and cookies. As I say, it was simple but delicious; sweet and crunchy.

    Happy Holidays!!!

    P.S. I hope you´re enjoying the By Woman ;)

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  34. Black Forest / Schwarzwald cake... and thx for a lovely recipe

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  35. My favourite chocolate treats are the dark chocolate dipped strawberries Godiva makes fresh batches of everyday...So decadent and yet makes you feel you are catching up on your daily intake of 5 fruits and veggies too! Guilty free choco pleasures...

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  36. A really good chocolate bonbon with a cup of coffee after a really good diner with really good friends would be my favorite chocolate moment. Thank you for the recipe and the conversion to grams.

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  37. Yum!
    Merry Christmas!
    Jillie

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  38. We definitely should try your recipe, looks like this cake could become a favourite one!

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  39. I just love eating plain dark chocolate but my Mum decently did a chocolate cake for Dad's 50th birthday and it was absolutely delicious.

    Thanks Non Blonde for this awesome giveaway!

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  40. Just the darkest chocolate I can get - Bonnat and Michel Cluizel are favourites...

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  41. I love anything chocolate based. Could someone bake me a chocolate, pecan, raisin cake with gooey filling and a triple chocolate frosting? Only a bottle of Andy's perfume would be better ...

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  42. I love chocolate mousse cake so much, my mother makes it for me for my birthday every year!

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  43. oh I ABSOLUTELY need to make this cake (or eat someone else's at the very least!)

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  44. I am not a huge fan of chocolate desserts, but something lovely happens when chocolate is paired with a salty element.

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  45. Hello there, thank you Andy and thank you the Non Blonde for this. A lovely christmas to all of you. Unfortunately I'm not good in baking cakes. But I have a christmas tradition getting myself a cake which is called "Baumkuchen" here in Germany. The real "Baumkuchen" is soooo good and only comes from the region of a town named "Salzwedel". There are masses of "Baumkuchen"-fakes around. The one dipped in white choc is the best, I think. And definitively worth "googling" ...

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  46. Chocolate cake is not my favorite because it can be so dry, but I do love a sticky, chewy dark chocolate
    brownie. Yum.

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  47. I just made a batch of soft, juicy, pitted prunes filled with Cointreau laced chocolate ganache, and then rolled in dark chocolate and then cocoa. Divine! Thank you Yotam Ottolenghi for the recipe.

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  48. My favourite chocolate cake is a spicy cake called Chocolate Voodoo Drunken Zombie Cake (minus the raisins). The name is awesome and the taste is equally good.

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  49. Pure chocolate! Nothing beats a good bar of belgian milk chocolate.
    Happy Holidays!

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  50. This is definitely a childhood memory rather than reality as you never see these any more but my favourite chocolate cake is rum truffles. I don't mean truffles in the proper chocolate/cream mixture but the old British baker type of truffle where left over cake from previous days was mushed up, mixed with (fake) rum essence, a few raisins, some cocoa and coated (fake) chocolate threads. They were kind of a proto downmarket cake pop. Much as I love macarons, brownies, Sachertorte, chocolate mousse cakes and so on, I yearn for these.

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  51. I'll go with Sachertorte- I love it! Thanks for this AMAZING draw, and happy holidays!

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  52. My favourite chocolat treats are Lindor bonbons.
    I'm easy as that.

    quimerula(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  53. How lovely! Ahhhh, chocolate. I love chocolate so this is actually quite difficult to choose a favorite, haha! I would say that my favorite chocolate is Neococoa's chocolate truffles, especially the mocha cinnamon one. But right now the Chex Mix Muddy Buddies are definitely climbing up there too! As for chocolate cake, honestly I like plain chocolate cake the best frosted with fresh whipped cream with a bit of confectioner's sugar in it. I have a recipe in a chocolate recipe book I've been using for years. :)

    Thank you for the awesome recipe! I can't wait to try it, and thank you for hosting this giveaway and Andy Tauer for being so generous and awesome. :) Happy holidays!

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  54. Your recipe sounds so good, I am tempted to try it. I like the flourless cakes, as they are always moist and decadent.
    Thank you for hosting the draw!
    Regards,
    Jackie b

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  55. My favorite chocolate cake is the ''Sacher-torte'' from Wien! I like the contrast between chocolate and apricot marmelade and between the soft dough and the chocolate crust on top! There's a place close to my hometown where they make the best one ever!

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  56. A good Swiss, Belgian or French chocolate truffle can send you to heaven!
    Sweet wishes from Athens

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  57. Hello there, thank you Andy and thank you Gaia for this. A lovely christmas to all of you. Unfortunately I'm not good in baking cakes. But I have a christmas tradition getting myself a cake which is called "Baumkuchen" here in Germany. The real artisanal "Baumkuchen" is soooo good and only comes from the region of a town named "Salzwedel". There are masses of "Baumkuchen"-fakes around. The one dipped in white choc is the best, I think. And definitively worth "googling" ...

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  58. My favorite chocolate cake is "the best chocolate cake in the world" (the name is a bit silly, but actually is the commercial name so...)it's made with Valrhona chocolate and layers of chocolate meringue, it must be a sin.
    Thank you for the draw!

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  59. My favorite is the Chocolate Mud Cake. There's lots of variants but the way we do it, it basically comes out as really thick dense warm chocolate.. It's marvelous!

    Happy Holidays all!

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  60. I love a rich chocolate mousse cake- almost too rich to finish!

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  61. Cake full, but very full, of Nutella and orange!!! I go crazy!!!

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  62. Is there such a thing as a bad chocolate cake? I love any chocolate cake but if I had to pick a favorite I'll say warm chocolate pudding cake. Merry Christmas!

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  63. I've never met a chocolate cake I didn't like--especially one made with bittersweet chocolate. Even one little square can elevate my mood in a moment!

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  64. I have no specific favourite, but anything that combines chocolate and nuts and/or seeds is a winner, and this thing with using ground poppy seeds sounds intriguing!

    Happy christmas everyone!

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  65. My favorite cake was a chocolate cake my mom used to make for all family birthdays. It was a layer cake with whipped cream in the middle, very 50s-era. All of our deserts had to be chocolate or they weren't worth eating!

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  66. My Grandmother used to make a Coca-Cola cake when I was young that was fantastic, best thing ever! Chocolate cake with chocolate frosting both of which had coca-cola in it, yum!

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  67. I love ALL chocolate cake =) but if forced to name one I'd have to go with German Chocolate cake or molten chocolate cake! Thanks for the recipe, I love poppy seeds as well!

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  68. A chocolate mousse would be a favorite cake. My most preferred chocolate would be an intense dark.

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  69. I love German chocolate cake. Coconut and pecans with moist chocolate cake is heaven on earth.

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  70. Thank you Gaia for the poppy seed chocolate torte recipe! European cook that I am, I actually have a poppy seed mill and am always looking for ways to use poppy seeds.

    My favourite chocolate cake recipe is one that I got from the New York Times a number of years ago. It couldn't be simpler: very few ingredients mixed together, under baked, and then chilled. It is divine, and I always get asked for the recipe -- it is the Azo Family Chocolate Cake (and there is a story attached to it):

    http://www.nytimes.com/recipes/11453/Azo-Family-Chocolate-Cake.html

    Thanks Andy!!

    Monika

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  71. I love all things chocolate, the denser and richer the better. However I must put in a plug for our local treasure, Taza Chocolates. Their 87% dark chocolate bar is my current crack. Thanks Gaia this is a great drawing!

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  72. A hot brownie with nuts and a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream. Yum.

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  73. I like pretty much every chocolate cake, I'm enjoying my advent calendar chocolates at the moment and I like hot chocolate. I also love warm chocolate with strawberries and cream with pancakes.

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  74. My wife makes a fantastic Christmas treatcalled pan peppato. Chocolate is not the main theme, but rather a crucial player in an amazing symphony. Which is where I like it, playing a part rather than singing a solo.

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  75. I make a dark chocolate cake, fill it with lemon curd and frost it with bitter chocolate ganache. The lemon is a nice contrast. It's delish....
    I've added your Mum's cake to my short lst of "must-try-this" recipes. It looks really good.

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  76. I had a chocolate-pear cake in Venice that was amazing - light, moist, not cloying, just perfect. The pears were in the cake and provided a subtle flavor.

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  77. My favorite chocolate is a good flourless chocolate cake - yum! But really any chocolate is fine by me - sometimes my favorite chocolate is what's there! Thanks for the draw and the recipe - sounds delicious!
    Laura - ltrittipoe(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  78. Fannie May chocolates are my favorite, especially Trinidads.

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  79. I like chocolate cookies a lot, but several weeks ago i got some "Pralinen" from my colleague that i really enjoyed when it's melting inside my mouth.

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  80. I'm not a big chocolate fan but I do love a chocolate and hazelnut roulade

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  81. I just love chocolate period! Rich drinking chocolate would be a favorite at the moment. Thanks for the draw!

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  82. Chocolate in any form (except white) works for me!

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  83. Thanks for the nice cake recipe and for holding Andy's draw! Merry Xmas!

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  84. I love any kind of chocolate.

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  85. Fun to hear your mom is also a "Nina." There aren't a lot of us, at least where I live. I love chocolate spritz cookies, the camel shape in particular. We always made spritz when I was a child; camels that carried the three kings, stars for the star they followed, and green trees. I don't ask to be entered in the draw, I won last year! Thank you again, Mr. Tauer!

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  86. Cayenne truffles from Dean's Sweets in Maine.

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  87. Interesting idea with chocolate&seed. Unfortunately, in my country sell something with poppy is strictly prohibited, even seeds :(
    Schwarzwald cake is the best for me!
    Thanks for you and Andy for the lovely draw and Merry Christmas!

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  88. Do cookies count? I make a mean batch od salted chocolate chip cookies :)

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  89. I love all chocolate cakes, but dense flourless chocolate cakes are my favorite with some ganache on top! Your recipe sounds fabulous, I may have to try it! Thanks for the entry an happy holidays :-)

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  90. Thanks for this recipe--it looks amazing! I love chocolate cake of all kinds, and well-made chocolate candy. The best I ever tasted came from Belgium. Unfortunately, I didn't save the wrapper, so I don't recall the maker's name. :-(

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  91. Mud cake is my favourite. It melts in your mouth and makes you a bit lightheaded... Thank you for the draw and happy holidays!

    Kay

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  92. I can never resist a molten chocolate cake! Thank you for the recipe.

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  93. Wow, what an amazing giveaway...samples and a full bottle! My favorite chocolate is Bernard Callebault chocolates. I am going to try your cake recipe.

    Thanks,

    Betty Dagney

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  94. My favorite chocolate treat is the chocolate bag from McCormick and Schmick's. soo decadent.

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  95. Went to a family wedding last night and was talking about Christmas Eve with my sister-in-laws. One of them makes something she calls Yum-Yum Cake which is more pudding with a crust than cake, but I'm looking forward to having it on Christmas Eve, because it's something I have only once a year!

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  96. The chocolate cake with grounded nuts and raisins, my father made especially for my birthdays since my 3rd till my 14th
    will never forget that taste...

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  97. My favorite chocolate cake is Black Forest Cake. Have a nice Christmas and thanks for the Draw.

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  98. I have a recipe for a flourless chocolate cake that I love -- you can't more chocolatey with only 3 ingredients -- eggs, sugar & chocolate!

    Merry Christmas!

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  99. I love all chocolate cakes! But if I had to pick just one, it would probably be chocolate cheesecake!

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  100. My favorite chocolate cake is called "Black Forest". Actually I like better an adaptation my gradma used to do: instead of using cherries, she used strawberries with the chocolate. A confession: I'm a chocoholic.
    Moore
    mail: carolbhz2010@gmail.com

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  101. Wow - poppy seeds and chocolate sound lovely. I am a big fan of chocolate porter/stout cake made with Guinness or another dark beer! thanks for the Advent hosting for Andy....

    R_UN

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  102. My favourite is plain chocolate mudcake, topped with quark - not the subatomic particle but a delicious, slightly sour dairy product :)

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  103. I never thought of mixing poppy seeds and chocolate. That's an interesting idea. Do you think a 4-year-old would like it? It's my daughter's birthday in a few days and she asked for chocolate cake.

    My favorite chocolate recipe is brownies (SORRY, not cake!). I was making my super-rich, bittersweet brownies one afternoon and realized I was out of good vanilla. So instead, I used about a tablespoon or so of good, aged balsamic vinegar. The resulting brownies were incredibly rich, moist, chocolatey and darkly fruity. Now, this is my goto brownie recipe. I can't imagine them without the balsamic at this point.

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  104. I love Texas sheet cake. Too addictive.

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  105. I love the dark chocolate cakes, there is one which comes out of the oven with a slightly runny centre, it is called Le Pleyel,I think. Any combinations with chocolate and nuts/almonds or cherries would be great.

    Ground poppy seeds in cakes is just so good, seems to be usual in Austia and Hungary. It is the first time I see it in a chocolate cake.

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  106. Trying to choose a favorite chocolate recipe is like trying to choose a favorite perfume for me....can't be done! I'm making cream puffs for Christmas Eve with pistachio ice cream inside and smothered with home made hot fudge sauce. Sanders in Detroit used to sell a wonderful chocolate cake with fudge icing that had ripples/tunnels on top filled with yummy cream frosting....I could go on! Would love love love to sample the Tauer perfumes and own another bottle. I have L'air du desert morocaine (sp?) but have not had the opportunity to try other Tauer creations. Happy holidays everyone.

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  107. My mom made a sour cream chocolate cake that was to die for! Soooo good!!!

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  108. I love chocolate in all forms, so any chocolate based creation will hit the spot for me!
    This christmas I'm making my own yule log for the first time...........fingers crossed it will turn out fit to dish up to friends & relatives

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  109. I can't eat chocolate...but I'm ready for a nice apple tarte or crumble or betty or pie.

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  110. Chocolate bread pudding with rum sauce...AnnieA

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  111. My favorite chocolate cake is made at my local bakery- simple and traditional. Merry Xmas!

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  112. Oh, I love chocolate mousse cake - light and silky. And rich, dark brownie with nuts. Your poppy seed recipe sounds delicious!

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  113. Actually not a huge chocolate fan, but I'll happily have a chocolate croissant or a chocolate bar every now and then. Thank you for hosting Andy Tauer's contest!

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  114. I think plain old devil's food, with a mocha frosting, is always reliably good. Happy holidays, perfume fiends!

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  115. I'll take any chocolate cake that's offered to me. Thanks for hosting the giveaway!

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  116. I love poppy seed deserts so I will definately have to try your recipe!
    My favorite chocolate cake is schwarzwalder kirch (black forest cake).

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  117. Your torte sounds delish! My favorite chocolate cake is our "Nana's Chocolate Cake" made with sour cream and powdered sugar butter cream icing. But almost any chocolate is good. Warm Holiday wishes to all.

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  118. "Fondant de Chocolat" is the best for me... Dark! With vanilla ice cream on the side... Mmm... Merry Christmas to all :-)

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  119. Thanks Andy and Gaia for the draw! I love dark chocolate, but not chocolate desserts so much--I prefer fruit like baked apples or poached pears, or pie!!!

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  120. Dear Gaia, I'm your devoted but silent reader. though this time i have to participate and drop a word here as i love Tauer's perfumes.
    with regards to choco treats, my fave is simple but gorgeous - it's a proper thick hot chocolate.
    Season's greetings!
    Inna

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  121. What a great recipe ! It's similar to one my grandmother gave me more than 45 years ago, when I started having an interest in making my own recipe box. Do people still do that, I wonder ? Why have a box, when you can scan them or take an image and use your tablet, right ? Some traditions should never change, I think.

    Thanks again, Andy !

    Happy Holidays To All !

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  122. Thank you Andy for the generous giveaway. And thanks Gaia for the recipe. It looks amazing. Our favorite chocolate Christmas treat is the Chocolate Anise Crinkle Cookie. Made with dark chocolate and a touch of Sambuca or Pernod and dusted with powdered sugar. Wonderful, rich and bite-sized. Happy holidays!

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  123. Favourite chocolate cake is real Sachertorte. Other than that I am not a huge chocolate fan.Thanks for hosting this draw!

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  124. Thanks for the recipe! My pumpkin souffle pie has had it and since poppy seeds are weirdly plentiful in L.A. I'll be making this torte for Christmas night dinner. And I'm totally making the glaze. My favorite WINTER chocolate cake/treat is an individual chocolate souffle from a marquee L.A. restaurant served w/ perfectly whipped cream.

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  125. Thank you for the inspiration, i have dark chocolate Valrhona and now, I know what I'll try to prepare today.
    Happy Holidays!
    Pivoine.

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  126. My favorite chocolate cake is the one a friend bakes me every year for my birthday which is Jan. 1. We celebrate and eat it on New Year's Eve and it always makes me feel happy and well-loved.

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  127. I love both chocolate and poppy seeds, and must try this.

    My favorite chocolate cake is devils food cake, made with 50/50 butter and avocado instead of shortening - super creamy and buttery but not heavy.

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  128. Great cake recipe, thanks! I don't know which is the bigger draw, a chance to share chocolate cake ideas or Andy's samples (sorry Andy but I am sure you love chocolate too :-)! So many great ideas! I love Countess Toulouse Lautrec's flour less chocolate cake, 1 lb of dark chocolate, 4 eggs, 3/4 stick of butter and 1 tablespoon of flour! To anyone who hasn't baked before and wants to do something chocolate, just go for it! Happy holidays!

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  129. I love cheese cake, any kind is good @lillyfer85

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  130. My favorite is chocolate cake with buttercream frosting! Yum

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  131. Today my favorite chocolate treat is the Surprise cookie I'll be making for Christmas Eve. Guittard chocolate, cakey cookie layered with a marshmallow and dark chocolate frosting. Decadent!

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  132. I love dark chocolate and any cake that features this, frosted or not is great. Thank you for posting the chocolate poppy seed torte recipe.It sounds fabulous! For other chocolate treats, I like the Hachez 88% and Pralus.

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  133. My all-time favorite is a chocolate & vanilla checkerboard cake made with Valrhona chocolate. You have to use a special baking pan to achieve the effect. It's a bit of trouble but worth it!

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  134. I like white chocolate bars, especially those with honey crunch bits!

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  135. I really like a good chocolate soufflé

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  136. What a lovely and generous draw Andy and Gaia, thank you! My favorite chocolate dessert is one my dear father used to make every holiday, Chocolate Grand Marnier Mousse. It was a luscious mix of milk and dark chocolate layers, complete with lady fingers soaked in Grand Marnier. To this day I can taste the rich smoothness of it.
    PS-My kitties (Rocky and Smokey) send their best holiday wishes to you and your furr babies.

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  137. My favorite is a chocolate Religieuse.

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  138. Dark Chocolate Ganache or torte or a rich bunte. This cake of yours looks wonderful - I may have to try it for Christmas. Thanks for hosting this wonderful draw and happiest of holidays to you and Andy. Rachel h.

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  139. I have a New Basics cookbook and in it something called kathleen's chocolate cake. It is the moistest. Thanks to Andy and Gaia.

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  140. My favorite is the molten chocolate cake my friend, Campe, makes. The oozy center is divine!

    What a giveaway!!! Happy holidays, Gaia!

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  141. Happy Holidays and Thank You and Tauer perfumes for the Draw!

    My favorite chocolate treat is a frozen Chocolate Mocha Cheesecake my mom used to make on the holidays- Creamy chocolate-y cheesecake goodness on a crumbled chocolate cookie crust! Yum!

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  142. My favorite chocolate treat is a pan of hot brownies,just coming out of the oven, ah he smell! ah! the expectation! Oouuh! It is still too hot to taste!!!

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  143. I love the rich, dense gateau au chocolat

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  144. When I think of chocolate my mind always seem to go to these rum balls I'd get when I was an exchange student in Germany. They can't possibly have been as good as I remember...

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  145. Chocolate espresso brownies

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  146. I wish sweets were more often adorn with poppy seeds! My favorite chocolate cake recipe was one I made with dark chocolate and rich peanut butter icing and shaved curly chocolate on top! Thanks for the give away.

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  147. I love a brownie-like Texas sheet cake with chocolate frosting. The fudgier, the better.

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  148. My favorite chocolate cake is by far Demeter's Hot Fudge Sundae!! It smells so realistic w/o a single calorie ingested..

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  149. I love choclate chips cake, it's like a cake and like a biscuit at the same time and it is verty easy to make at home:)

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  150. Chocolate macaroons with a raspberry middle/buttercream

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  151. My favorite chocolate treat is chocolate toffee brownies. It's kind of a death-by-chocolate thing, and I can only take a few bites of it, but it is delicious.

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  152. Thank you for the stellar recipe. I can't wait to try it. What a great gluten free option. My favorite choco dessert is the fondant au chocolate that my husband makes.

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  153. I'm one of those freaks who doesn't like chocolate, so my favorite cake is actually strawberry shortcake. Fruit beats chocolate any day in my belly.

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  154. My favorite Chocolate is Mayor Domo Hot chocolate from Oaxaca!

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  155. Spoiled bitch that I am, I cannot be bothered to bake. ;-) My favourite chocolate treat is Godiva Double Chocolate Raspberry Truffle with a glass (or four) of champagne.

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  156. I simply adore chocolate gelato from il laboratorio del gelato in the Lower East Side and the choco coco martini by Max Brenner.
    I will try your recipe for New Years! Thanks Gaia.

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  157. My favorite is Schwartzwalder Kirschentorte- Black Forest Chocolate Cherry cake, but since there's uncooked alcohol in it, I haven't had it in 30 years, but it is still my favorite.


    Other than that, Baci by Perugina, or even Nutella--(just give me the jar and the spoon!)



    Happy Holidays to all!!



    Lawrence (and Rosa del Gata) in Ohio

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  158. Dark chocolate cheesecake!

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  159. Oh. I think real chocolate cake is too sweet for me, but I like prune cake. If it's done right it has some chocolaty flavours.

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  160. I adore chocolate, but my very favorite treat is one (or five) of the caramels I make at home, sprinkled with a little sea salt. Creamy, buttery, chewy, sweet and salty all at the same time. Yum.

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  161. A mousse au chocolat so rich you think someone's got their measurements all wrong - 24 egg yolks - shall I say more? It is our staple for a huge Christmas table and makes us all purr with delight. (Recettes de Ma Tante Melanie by Manuel Gasser is the original source, I think, but we found it in the cooking colum of Die Zeit about 30 years ago). If you can find it it is sure worth checking out the other recipes in that cookbook. Classical bourgeoisie cooking.
    Thank you for your recipe - am going to try this. Happy Holidays!

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  162. For the past few years my favorite chocolate treat has been the champagne truffle from Godiva. Larisa

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  163. My favorite chocolate cake is the one a bake. I on't know what it's called, but I know that it is absolutely delicious.

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  164. I'm baking a virtually flourless chocolate cake for Christmas this year and serving it with vanilla ice cream. YUM!
    Thank you for this generous draw.

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  165. i do like brownies best but my favourite is icecream with brownies

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  166. I love chocolate mousse and a Guinness chocolate cake by Nigella Lawson. Simple recipe, but quite delicious. Thanks to Andy for the generous draw and to Gaia for years of enjoyable reading.

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  167. Every holiday season I used to look forward to a chocolate ganache torte with walnuts that my mom made. But she's been gluten free the last couple years and won't make it anymore because she wouldn't be able to resist eating it!

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  168. Recipe sounds fabulous. Funny, I'm in Australia and and never have trouble buying poppy seeds. Anyway, I have a favourite chocolate cake recipe which is just everything in a bowl (in a set order mind you), mix, pour into pan, and into the oven it goes. Delish, and never fails.

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  169. Sacher - not too sweet, classic chocolate cake:)

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  170. Thanks for the great recipe. I think my favorite chocolate treat is Vosges chillies and chocolate Oaxaca dark chocolate bar -- yum!

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  171. Looove poppy seed and am intrigued to see it combined with chocolate. A good Sachertorte is one of my favourite chocolate cakes, but most of my chocolate consumption is just a plain dark chocolate bar (70 - 85%) with no extra flavouring except vanilla.

    Thanks for hosting this draw opportunity and thanks to Andy for his generosity.

    -- Lindaloo

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  172. My mom makes a really good chocolate zucchini cake.

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  173. Viennese Sachertorte (Sacher cake)
    forever my favorite!
    :)
    Sandra

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  174. My favourite would be homemade chocolate brownie cake nom nom

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  175. I adore a creamy,moist Black Forest! Cheesecake too!
    My fave chocolate cake recipe is from "The Gretta Anna recipes"
    by Gretta Anna Teplitzky.My copy is in storage but the "Chocolate Torte Los Angeles" is my all time favourite.
    Happy Holidays Gaia!

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  176. Happy Holidays to you and all your readers! I'm not such a big fan of poppy seeds but that looks so good I might try it...or at least make my sister bake it. lol Chocolate zucchini cake sounds interesting too! Me? I'm a heathen. My favorite chocolate cake is sold at the Cheesecake Factor. I think it's 7 layers of cake and fudge with chips too. After about 5 minutes you've hit chocolate overload but those 5 minutes are good!

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  177. I love anything with chocolate, and most of all the Green and Blacks organic chocolates range. Also I love profiteroles with smooth, luscious dark chocolate sauce.Thanks to Andy for his generous spirit!

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  178. My favorite dessert is a lemon cake. I would take cheese over chocolate, any day! But thank you for hosting the draw, and thanks to Andy for another pleasurable Advent Calendar. Merry Christmas to you both!
    Sincerely,
    Carole MacLeod

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  179. Thank you for recipe, Gaia. Your recipes (and the Blond's) always turn out great. Thanks to Andy for the prize!
    My favorite chocolate treat is a mug of hot chili chocolate from the local chocolate shop.

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  180. I love, love, love See's Candies butterscotch squares -- yummy milk chocolate and brown-sugar goodness! Thank you so much, Andy, for your incredible generosity, and thanks to you, Gaia, for hosting!
    perfumeannie at g mail dot com

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  181. My favorite chocolate treat is Dorie Greenspan's "World Peace Cookies" - they're basically chocolate sables or shortbread, and utterly dangerous.

    Thanks for the giveaway, these are always fun!

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  182. Hello Gaia, fun that you are hosting today's givaway. I have to say I am fond of a good chocolate martini with a coffee bean garnish. My favourite chocolate cake is a rich Sacher torte with a little brandy or rum in the mix. Best wishes for the season. :-)

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  183. The Dutch chocolate pepper cookies (pepernoten) that we eat during Sinterklaas (Saint Nicholas Day) are the best. Somehow the cinnamon/cardamom/ginger/chocolate combination really works! :) Eva

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  184. At the moment I love Lindt chocolate with whole hazelnuts, but I wouldn't say no to some Lindors either!

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  185. My all-time favorite treat is gelato (pretty much any flavor will do!), but I'd have to say that my favorite baked goody is maple gingerbread cake with maple cream frosting and a bit of candied orange peel on top. It's Un Crime Exotique (or maybe Five O'Clock Gingembre) with a lashing of Au Lait and a splash of Theorema, in a cake!

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  186. Chocolate! I love chocolate in every form but my absolute favorite is brownies. There's nothing like a dense, chewy brownie with chocolate frosting. Yum!

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  187. I love all things chocolate; however, I have to say that this time of year I love the buche de noel cakes. It's not that I think they are the best tasting chocolate cake out there, but they are so pretty. And after having made one for a Christmas past, I know how much work they take to do them right. Also, thanks so much for the recipe! I'm on a gluten-free diet, but this would be so easy to make with GF bread crumbs! I really miss chocolate cake and am so looking forward to trying this. Thanks for the contest and Happy Holidays to everyone! Kandice

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  188. My favorite chocolate treat is chocolate brownies with chocolate frosting. Moist and gooey in the best ways.

    Thank you for doing this giveaway Gaia and Andy Tauer! I can't wait to see who wins! J'adore L'air du Desert Marocain, and would love to own a full bottle.

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  189. Favourite chocolate cake - brownies! They make me happy!

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  190. our family recipe chocolate celebration cake . Used for birthdays, celebrations ,high days and holidays and all round good times. xx

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  191. This year's experiment was a dark chocolate and sesame seed cookie that was a bit hit.

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  192. I love Coca Cola cake because it sounds so terrible, but it tastes so good!

    Thanks

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  193. i love the fudge my mother makes for the holidays each year- it is an old recipe from See's and includes marshmallows. yum.
    thanks for the yummy giveaway

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  194. I make two Martha Stewart's Double Chocolate Diavolos two days before the event. They are good right out of the oven, but if they sit they get so dense and delicious one tiny slice is plenty. That day, I put a layer of jam between them and a light glaze over the top, a sprinkle of something fresh and inviting like berries or coconut (but never ordinary frosting, ugh). Thank you for the generous draw opportunity!

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  195. My favorite chocolate cake is a milk chocolate bundt cake. with no icing. Since I love cake, and find icing too heavy/sweet/sticky, bundts are the best for me--and they typically, like a torte, very moist. YUMMMMMY! Thanks for the recipe, the giveaway, and most importantly, your dedication day in and day out, to helping put a smile on my face, via your blog! CindyN

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  196. my fav chocolate is the mix icecream creation germanchocolate from coldstone.

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  197. My favorite chocolate treat are Trader Joe's Dark Chocolate Caramels with Sea Salt. The salt accents the bitterness of the dark chocolate and the sweetness of the caramel perfectly. Excellent with some red wine, too!

    Thank you Andy, for your annual giveaway and wonderful perfumes, and Gaia, for your amazing blog! Happy Holidays!

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