Chocolate Purse

A popular dessert offered at Merriman’s Kapalua, Waimea and Kaua’i locations. It is sure to be a popular addition and perfect ending to your dinner parties at home. Makes 12 purses


8 ounces chocolate (70% cacao) chopped into 1/2 inch-pieces
2 ounces chocolate (55% cacao) chopped into 1/2 inch-pieces
3/8 cup water
1 tablespoon instant coffee dissolved in 2 tablespoons boiling water
1 cup granulated sugar
4 eggs
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour


8 tablespoons clarified butter, melted
8 tablespoons cocoa powder
6 (8 x 16 inch) sheets phyllo dough
12 teaspoons granulated sugar
Vanilla ice cream


Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

Place all chopped chocolate in a large bowl. Measure water, coffee and 1/4 cup of the sugar into a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Pour boiling mixture over the chocolate and stir until the chocolate melts. In a separate bowl, whisk eggs until the whites and yolks are well combined. Add remaining 3/4 cup of the sugar and continue to whisk until pale yellow in color. Set aside.

Whisk softened butter into melted chocolate mixture until well combined. Whisk in egg-sugar mixture. Sprinkle in flour and whisk to combine.

Grease 8 x 8-inch baking pan with butter or vegetable shortening, add chocolate mixture and place inside a larger baking pan. Add warm water to the larger pan until halfway up the sides of the small pan. Place in the middle rack of the preheated oven and bake for 30 minutes. The filling can be prepared up to a day ahead of serving. If preparing ahead, cover and store in the refrigerator.


Preheat oven 400 degrees F.

Using knife, divide the filling (which should be the consistency of a firm pudding) into 12 equal portions. In a small bowl, whisk melted clarified butter and cocoa together to form a slurry. Remove phyllo from package, keeping the sheets rolled up, and cover with a damp towel. Working quickly to avoid drying, unroll 1 phyllo sheet and, using a pastry brush, paint with the butter-cocoa slurry and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of the sugar. Fold phyllo sheet in half so the longest edges meet, and press to adhere. Paint the top layer with butter-cocoa slurry. Cut the phyllo in half crosswise to form 2 equal rectangles and place 1 portion of the chocolate filling in the center of each rectangle. Working with each rectangle separately, gather up the edges of the phyllo and press together to form the purse. Place both purses on a baking sheet and repeat to make 12 purses total. If not baking immediately, cover in plastic wrap and store in a cool place for up to 2 hours.

Bake purses for 3 to 5 minutes, until just barely turning brown at the edges. Serve immediately with vanilla ice cream.