Cooking with alcohol: Cheers and a totally decadent food recipe

In an ongoing effort to boost the taste of my dishes, I have been experimenting with cooking with alcohol. Because very little is need for a large punch of taste, I am pretty happy with the results.

I started, like everyone does, with the classic bananas foster recipe (bananas sliced lengthwise and sautéed in a pat of butter until brown, then doused with an ounce of rum which my husband insists on igniting to the horror of the cat who promptly dives under the bed only to return when the husband cheerily announces dessert is served and he is starving and wasn't that fun?) and expanded my repertoire to include everything from an onion soup doused with sherry to a Gruyère sauce laced with vermouth that I improvised for crepes stuffed with asparagus (talk about fast and easy and super tasty).

Anyway ... I got a news release. The release subject is of no real interest. But it did contain a recipe. One that is truly decadent (heaven help those of us on a diet). One that uses a good bit of alcohol for taste. And one that totally captured my imagination. Interested? Then ...

To hell with caloric cost
Yes, the recipe, below, is loaded with fat (but it is not too bad with sugar). And it has oranges. I'm clinging to those orange segments as my only hope for rationalization. Slim hope, I know, but if it works for shoes ...

But, what grabbed my attention was the creative use of the whiskey. It ups the flavor of this to totally delish. And delish is good. So if you want to try your hand at baking with alcohol, this looks like a yummy start.
Food recipe: Bittersweet Chocolate Tart with Crystallized Violet, Mandarin Orange and Cragganmore Creme Fraiche
Yield- 4 persons

3/4 Cup Heavy cream
1/3 Cup Whole milk
7oz. Bittersweet chocolate
1 large egg, slightly beaten
4 3" partially baked puff pastry shells
12 Mandarin orange segments
2 Tbsp. Crystallized violet petals, crushed
3 Tbsp. Creme Fraiche
2 Tbsp. Confectioners sugar
1/4 cup Cragganmore Whiskey
8 Mint leaves, torn into bits

In a medium saucepan, bring cream and milk to a simmer. Remove from heat, add chocolate, and stir until the chocolate is thoroughly mixed. Let cool to room temperature. When cooled add the egg and whisk until completely incorporated.

Pour batter into baked pastry shells. Bake for 12-15 min in center rack at 375F. Filling should be firm but still trembling in the center. Remove them from the oven and place them in the refrigerator. Chill for 2 hours, until completely set.

In a small pot, heat the whiskey. Tilt the pot and flambe the whiskey. When the flame completely dies down, remove from the fire and chill. In a small bowl, whisk together the confectioners sugar and the creme fraiche until thick. Slowly drizzle in the reduced whiskey. Chill.

In the center of each tart, garnish with the mandarin orange, the crushed violet petals and the Cragganmore Creme Fraiche. Sprinkle each with the torn mint and serve at once.

Eat more!
There are more alcohol-flavored recipes on the site. They don't look to be too concerned with calories and vegetarianism (HA! They laugh!) but I actually prefer to mine non-vegetarian sites for vegetarian recipes because, even though they require more diligence when checking the ingredient list, in my limited experience they tend to deliver far better results.

Cheers!