Posts tagged chocolate

Speedy (Health Conscious) Millionaire Shortbread

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‘ll start by warning (yes warning) you that this recipe should not be compared to the decadence of the traditional millionaires shortbread. Firstly is the reduciton in indulgence ingredients, mainly butter and sugar, that I love so very much and praise. However, if you have a craving for this dangerous treat, but also want to balance this guilty indulgence with some form – even if tiny – of health awareness then its a good one. That said, it really is a speedy way to make your own version! The traditional version takes time – baking the shortbread base, making the caramel and then applying the chocolate. This, can be done in an hour!

If you do want to make a recommended amendment if time isn’t your’e enemy here, I think this recipe could be equally as good as the real thing just by changing the base for a traditional baked shortbread. Use 50g caster sugar, 125g unsalted butter and 150g plain flour – example recipe here. I personally think the date caramel is far tastier than the normal boiled sugar version! Firstly, its less rich so you can eat more of it…and secondly its natural sugar. Yes, still sugar but its far healthier.

(Based on a recipe by ‘The Plant-Based Londoner’)

Base

  • 90g oats
  • 130g nut of choice (cashew, brazil, almond)
  • 1 tbsp lacuma powder (optional)
  • 6 tbsp of nut butter of choice (try substituting in some coconut oil. Note, it will dominate the flavours)

Caramel & Topping

  • 300g pitted dates
  • Pinch sea salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1tsp vanilla extract
  • 200g dark chocolate
  1. Start on the base. Pulse the flour, lacuna powder, nuts and nut butter in a food processor until you have a soft dough that holds together. If it needs to be more moist add a little more nut butter. Tip out into a lined baking tray (line with parchment, foil or cling film) big enough so that the mixture is about 1 cm deep. It doesn’t matter what dish you use, just use one that is a suitable size.(20cm x 20xm recommended) Cover and chill in the fridge.
  2. Next, pulse the dates, sea salt, cinnamon and vanilla in the food processor. Add a splash of water and keep adding until you get a smooth but thick date caramel.
  3. Spread this caramel evenly over the chilled base and then cover and chill again.
  4. Break the chocolate into small pieces and melt in a heat proof bowl over a pan of simmering water until fully melted.
  5. Tip the chocolate over the chilling date layer and smooth out until even and completely covering the caramel.
  6. Cover again and chill until the chocolate has set hard.
  7. Once hard, tip the bar out onto a chopping board and cut into the desired square/rectangle. Please note – the top layer WILL crack where unwanted and not every piece will look perfect, if any. The 3 in the image I have are the only ones that did not misbehave. But the look isn’t everything so cut randomly into chunky morsels. Its more tasty that way.

 

Date & Himalayan Pink Salt Truffles

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ts safe to say I’ve been provided with my fair share of artisan chocolate samples for blog experiments. From Green & Blacks to Doble & Bignall the ampersand seems to be a common (and successful) theme here (If we forget the Loving Earth samples. Dairy free, doesn’t count). That said, next in the greedy queue naturally seemed (drum roll)…Doisy & Dam. A superfood chocolate they say! Quickly discovered to be due to the ingredients added and not the output of its consumption. Sadly. So when D&D approached ‘forage in the pantry.’ with a teasing package of goodies to sample I was keen to take up the challenge of a new creation!

Doisy & Dam are indeed just that. Teasing. A mixture of naughty and nice. Chocolate and superfood ingredients creating delicious bars of solid and artisan chocolate. I think the first thing I said on trying these samples was ‘Wow, the textures are great!’ and it wasn’t until researching their background that I discovered their claim for ‘irresistable texture’. They’ve nailed it. Take the ‘Cocao Nib & Vanilla’ bar which is my favourite so far. The cocao not only adds a lovely crunch and texture but a subtle unassuming bitterness to the what is after all a dairy milk bar. Their chocolates are said to never be made with more than eight ingredients (minimum 8% superfoods and have a high cocoa content to squeeze out the room for sugar and fat). Whilst I’m a true 90-99% gal, this comment I can casually breeze over but quite rightly. The flavour is worth it.

So, down to the recipe. The best way to really taste the true flavour of a chocolate (besides sampling fresh from the packet in slab form) is to make something pure. Pure flavours, nowhere to hide. Truffles? Forget chocolate fondants and mousses, truffles really do not hide bad quality. Now I normally lean towards dark chocolate truffles. They are more stable at room temp and have a better flavour and quality.  Whilst my goodie bag contained a mixture of dark and milk, I couldn’t help being drawn towards the ‘Date & Himalayan Salt’ edition and that I did.

A healthy indigence as D&D would say….thats wiped out here sadly with the cream addition…

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s I’ve mentioned I wanted to keep these super simple so they are plainly tossed in cocoa. However for a twist try adding an extra ingredient/texture to the mixture before pouring into the container (e.g. chopped nuts, diced ginger, more cocoa nibs, more salt, coconut…). Equally you can roll the finished truffles in this ingredients of choice instead and forgo the cocoa powder.

Ingredients

  1. Heat the cream in a saucepan until just below the simmer.
  2. Break up the chocolate and stir into the warm cream off the heat. Stir until fully melted and combined.
  3. Line a shallow bowl or tupperware with cling film. Pour the mixture into the dish. It should be about 2cm in thickness but this is optional. Allow to cool, cover and refrigerate.
  4. Once set, place in the freezer for about 1 hour or until hardened. This just makes it easier to cut.
  5. Get a large mixing bowl and add a few tbsp of cocoa powder
  6. Turn out onto a chopping board and cut into pieces (size optional). Mix in the cocoa powder and then store in the fridge in a container.

 

Chocolate Mint Tart with Sugared Pistachios

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y recent adventure to the colourful delights of Morocco has naturally fuelled my blogging obsession once again. I have, for this week at least, exhausted the classic tagine and now have only sweet treats on the mind. Green & Blacks recent emphasis on colour in our taste and perception can not only be reflected in their packaging but I couldn’t help but see this mirrored in Morocco which is a country that is summed up by colour and flavour. A feast for the eyes. With teasing fresh mint tea available in Morocco at any opportunity (whether requested or not) I stole this flavour inspiration using Green & Blacks new ‘Mint Crisp’ bar.

If you’re a chocolate connoisseur you’ll already have noticed Green & Blacks new bars – ‘Thins’ – so this won’t come as surprising news. Long ago I spotted the ‘Mint Crisp’ flavour and stocked up. I love this new format or bite-sized slices of flavoursome chocolate. Ironically here I’ve used the new ‘Thins’ bar in this recipe….which won’t make you that. But hey, the mint brings back the buzz of the Medina’s and Riads.

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This tart is rich and dense. If you’re not a mint fan then feel free to make this soley dark or try using G&B’s salted caramel thins in stead. The crunchy topping adds a lovely texture but again can be substituted with pecans, walnuts, or almonds (which would go particularly well with the salted caramel bar). Devour with some clean simple ice cream or fruit.

Pastry

  • 1 x quantity of shortcrust pastry (see here for recipe) made with additional small handful of desiccated coconut.

Filling

  • 150g Green & Blacks ‘Mint Crisp Chocolate’
  • 100g Green & Blacks dark 70-80% chocolate
  • 100ml single cream
  • 250ml whole milk
  • 3 beaten eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Topping

  • 50g pistachios
  • 1 tbsp caster sugar
  • 4 tbsp desiccated coconut
  • 1 large lime, zest only
  1. Start by making the pastry case according to the link above and using a deep 20cm wide pastry case. Add a handful of coconut to the flour if you like.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Set aside your blind baked pastry case while you make the filling.
  3. Mix the cream and milk together in a saucepan and heat until just about to come to the boil.
  4. Remove from the heat and break in the chocolate in small pieces. After a few minutes mix together until the chocolate is smooth and fully melted into the cream. Use a whisk to throughly combine the cream and melted chocolate.
  5. Leave to cool until lukewarm.
  6. When lukewarm, beat in the eggs and vanilla.
  7. Place the tart case on a baking tray and fill ¾ full with the chocolate filling.
  8. Place the tray on the oven shelf and once its stable, fill the tart to full with the remaining mixture (or as much as will fit int your tin! I had a little left over)
  9. Bake for about 20 minutes until just set and shiny.
  10. Remove from the oven and leave to cool completely.
  11. Meanwhile make the topping. Crush the nuts in a pestle and mortar until finely crushed but with a few chunks here and there.
  12. Toast the coconut in a dry hot frying pan until just beginning to colour golden and then add to the nuts. Stir in the lime zest and the sugar and combine.
  13. Once the tart has cooled, use this mixture to scatter over the top of the tart.
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Chocolate Fondant with Frangelico Mascapone

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I’ve always been in awe of the chocolate making process after watching an enlightening series featuring the modern day Willy Wonker, Willie Harcourt-Cooze. An enthusiastic middle class chocolate dreamer, he set about to live his dream of authentic chocolate making. To me, England feels like a country of chocolate addicts, or more likely, sugar addicts disgusing themselves as cacoa enthusiasts!? Without sounding like a chocolate snob, many of the milk chocolate bars that litter the countries newagents shelves have such a low cacao/‘chocolate’ content that in some countries it would be illegal to title this chocolate!

I’m an adorer of the dark stuff. The darker the better. I’ve always been amazed at how a 100% bar is created? With no sugar to bind it together its a pure cacao lovers heaven. Its painful sharing my 90% bar of goodness, when I just know that the majority will screw up thier faces in fright as they force down the ‘bitter soap’ they’ve just eaten as they compare to the likes of our dairy milk. But my chocolate interest has promted me to sample styles made from a variety of beans from all over the world and to really appreciate the differences in flavours. refining my love of the pure taste and the lower sugar content.

So when a work collegaue refreshingly and surprisingly bought in some tasty samples of his families homemade chocolate from their humble little Cotswold business – Doble & Bignall – I was keen to devour a piece and was taken by the first bite. Like beer, cheese and wine, chocolate varies in flavour substantially. Not just with the percentage but with the beans and country. Doble & Bignal have a small range of bars using beans from the likes of Panama and Venezuelan. The chocolate is smooth, tasty and distinctive. Perfect for a cheeky recipe. I kept the fonadant simple (I know…me not messing with a recipe!? Shocker) Firsty because shamefully this was the first fondant I’d attempted ever to make and the goo-cented, molten chocolate lava that should sterotypicaly weep from the middle like a happy sobbing child was far too much pressure to meddle with at this stage. So instead, go crazy on accompaniment. Frangelico mascapone, vanilla and orange ice cream or just heavily doused in a thick wall spporting, cement-like spatula of whippped double cream.

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Serves 6

Fondant

  • 85g caster sugar
  • 150g unsalted butter
  • 150g dark chocolate (E.g. Doble & Bignal’s bar)
  • 3 whole free range eggs
  • 3 whole eggs yolks
  • 1 tbsp plain flour
  • Soft butter and cocoa powder to line the moulds
  1. Start by greasing 6 small dariole moulds with butter. Dust with cocoa powder and shake of any excess. Set aside on a baking try.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  3. In a heatproof bowl combine the sugar, butter and chocolate and melt over a pan of barely simmering water. Allow to melt fully then set aside to cool slightly.
  4. When it is luke warm, whisk in the eggs continuously. The mixture will begin to thicken but keep whisking (don’t be tempted to add the eggs while the chocolate is still too warm of the eggs will scramble…yuck). Then fold in the flour.
  5. Pour the mixture evenly into the moulds and then chill for at least 25 minutes.
  6. Bake in the oven for about 12 minutes. Take out of the oven, run a knife around the edge and turn out onto a plate. Serve with a dollop of your chosen cream and watch and enjoy in awe as (hopefully) your gooey fondant melts all over your plate…!

NOTE: I took my first test fondant out of the oven after 10 minutes and it still felt a little squishly in the middle to the touch. With the risk of having an overocoked fondant I took it out anyway. Shamefully on turning out it collapsed all over the plate….hence the additional mintues. However, oven will vary so perhaps cook for less time and do a touch test before remving the whole batch if the pressure is on…!

Frangelico Mascarpone

Please note – I did this by taste so the below measurements are a total guide. Start with less and keep adding more sugar and liquer until it is to your taste.

  • 250g mascarpone
  • About 4 tbsp sieved icing sugar (or as much as you like just to sweeten)
  • 1-2 tbsp frangelico liquer (to taste)
  1. Whisk the frangelico and icing sugar into the mascarpone, tasting as you go along to sweeten as you like.

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Pear and Cinnamon Cake with Lotus Buttercream

 

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wanted to create an Autumn cake that would fit with the seasons. Having been a bit of a stranger to baking recently, a gloriously empty leafy weekend back home seemed like a good time to reassure myself that The Great British Bake Off hadn’t detered me from the cake world! Pears seemed like a good choice here and I’m a cinnamon addict. After recently discovering the delights of ‘Lotus spread’ I felt it needed a place in one of my recipes so is used here in a crunchy coffee tainted buttercream. The chocolate leaves are a nice Autumnal touch here for a special occasion but feel free to leave these off if life is far too short in your eyes…

Makes 2 small cakes or 1 large one

Cake

  • 740g pears
  • 40g butter
  • 3 tbsp light muscovado sugar
  • ½ heaped tsp cinnamon
  • 200g butter
  • 200g sugar
  • 200g self raising flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 3 large eggs, beaten lightly
  1. Peel, core and halve the pears and diced.
  2. Heat the 40g butter, sugar and cinnamon in a frying pan until melted.
  3. Add the pears and cook until the pears and softened and the caramel thickens and coats the pears. Set aside to cool.
  4. Preheat the oven to 170°C. and grease and line 2 small cake tins (15cm wide) or one large one (24cm spring form tin)
  5. Cream the butter and sugar together until fluffy.
  6. Add the eggs bit by bit with a little flour if it curdles.
  7. Fold in the flour and baking powder
  8. Finally fold in the pears and their syrup and spoon into the tins.
  9. bake for about 35-40 minutes until springy to touch and cooked in the middle. Leave to cool.

NOTE: Cake tin size: I used two small tins. This isn’t really a recipe that could make a tiered cake due to the pears which make it more of a dense cake. So either use 2 small tins for 2 cakes or one large one. I also had some extra mixture so made a few muffins (which will take about 20 minutes to bake) as gifts to take to some willing friends.

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Topping

  • 160g unsalted butter, softened
  • 80g ‘Lotus biscuit spread’, crunchy
  • 90g ish icing sugar
  • 40-50g dark chocolate
  • Handful mint leaves
  1. Start with the chocolate leaves. Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over some simmering water until melted.
  2. Use a pastry brush and coat the back of the mint leaves very thickly. Done too thinly and they will snap when ready. Don’t worry about doing these really thickly. Lay over a rolling pin to dry and pop in the fridge.
  3. Once set, remove from the fridge. I won’t lie, this bit is fiddly and I think I only ended up with 2 whole leaves. But, the effect is still good. Make sure your hands are really hot and carefully peel the mint leaf from the chocolate. Repeat and set these aside carefully.
  4. For the buttercream, cream together the butter, spread and as much icing sugar to taste. This is a guide and your tastes will vary.
  5. Spoon into a piping back and use to pipe your cakes
  6. Decorate with the leaves and serve!

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Lime Curd Bounty Bites

 

A little experiment from another Greek treat my sister and I recently collapsed over in owe and love on our recent holiday.  ‘Calm down’ you may say, its basically a bounty stuck on a biscuit? Agreed. But a good one and after a 5th evening of baklava, this was most welcome.

On returning home I’ve adapted my own version. I usually use recipes, books and blogs just for inspiration more than a guide and I’m not one to steal recipes like for like without my own twist. But the filling needed a starting point so I’ve used the solid recipe from a fellow blogger (see here….but please return!) and spiked mine with lime curd. Like I say, it was an experiment and apparently lime curd doesn’t freeze? (see recipe for more detail on this) But these still turned out pretty awesome.

PS. No I didn’t stick mine to a biscuit but a ginger snap wouldn’t go a-miss here. Or anywhere for that matter?

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Makes about 15

  • 140g unsweetened desiccated coconut (and some for decoration)
  • 40ml coconut oil, melted
  • 30ml maple syrup
  • Lime curd – optional (enough for 1tsp/bite)
  • Zest 1 lime
  • 100g Green & Blacks 85% dark chocolate (Also good here would be their lemon flavour bar)
  1. Begin by combining the coconut, 35ml of the coconut oil, syrup and a pinch of salt in a food processor until well combined.
  2. Use a ice cube tray or mini cupcake mould and line with cling film. If using the lime curd, drop a small tsp into each.
  3. Fill each hole with a tsp or so of the coconut and push down until compressed well on top of the curd (if using)
  4. Freeze until set for about 2 hours.
  5. After this, melt the chocolate over simmering water and set aside.
  6. Remove the coconut from the freezer and take each from their wells and place on a baking tray lined with baking parchment. The lime curd will probably be a bit sticky but go with it if you can.image
  7. Dip each piece using two forks into the bowl of melted chocolate until covered fully and place flat side down on the baking parchment
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  9. Repeat with the remaining pieces and top with a sprinkle of coconut and lime zest while the chocolate is still not fully set.
  10. Place in the fridge until set and then store in an air tight container so they don’t pick up any nasty fridge odours…!

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Banana and Cardamon Loaf

 

This is my go-to banana loaf recipe for when those bruising and sweetly turning bananas are slowing deteriorating in the fruit bowl, unaware of their potential. This loaf is easy to knock out and can be kept for a while in the cake tin. Here I’ve added the beautifully pungent ground cardamon but this can be left out or substituted.

I love banana loaf as its one of those ‘cakes’ that is less restricted by Paul and Mary’s dreaded ‘science’ of baking. This recipe for example only has one egg in the entire mixture but still manages to set with a lovely rich texture. The recipe is therefore hugely open to adaptation and I change mine practically every time. Try these little additions which I’ve done in the past:

  • Ground cardamon, cinnamon or ginger
  • Replace hazelnuts for your classic walnut
  • Add chunks of chocolate chips
  • Add a handful or desiccated coconut
  • Add a decadent molten layer of peanut butter/salted caramel/Nutella inside
  • Top the mixture with a crumble mixture before baking
  • Soak the bananas in rum for a bit…

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Makes 1 loaf (Taken from Delia Smith’s ‘All in one Banana Loaf’ with a few adaptations)

  • 75g butter, softened
  • 110g caster sugar
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  •  225g plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground cardamon (or other spice of choice)
  • 4 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 70g hazelnuts, toasted and chopped roughly.
  • Handful demerara sugar
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C and line a loaf tin with parchment.
  2. Place the butter, sugar and egg in a food processor and combine (or use an electric hand whisk)
  3. Sieve over the flour, spices and baking powder and combine (don’t worry if it looks dry!)
  4. Add the bananas to the processor and combine until you have a smooth and creamy batter.
  5. Stir through the nuts (or any chocolate chips, coconuts additions etc)
  6. Pour into the loaf tin and sprinkle generously with the demerara sugar (or crumble) to create a nice crunchy topping. (If adding a layer of peanut butter/caramel etc, add half the batter to the tin, dot with the chosen filling and then spoon on the remaining batter to cover before baking)
  7. Bake for 50-55 minutes until cooked.
  8. Leave to cool in the tin before removing and slicing

Gorgeous sliced, toasted and layered with cinnamon butter

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Slow cooked shin of Beef with Cinnamon and Star Anise

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There’s something about slow cooking which quickly prepared meals (regardless if wholesome and homemade) just cannot replace. Depth of flavour, love and attention and a melt in the mouth texture. Slow cooking allows so much time for the flavours to develop and infuse. I was skeptical at the extent to which just a small star of wooden star anise and a cigar coil of cinnamon could impart but it really is amazing at the subtle but very evident punch a pinwheel of spice can offer. Don’t worry, the chocolate cannot be tasted in an offensive way just a rich silky background to a beautiful sauce. Although I will warn you….don’t think about adding your favourite Cadburys bar. Keep it dark.

Serves 3-4

  • 1kg beef shin (allow a little more if feeding hungry chaps or leftovers)
  • 2 large onions, sliced
  • 1 pint red wine
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 star anise
  • 5 black peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 pint beef stock
  • 25g dark chocolate (85%+)
  • Flat leaf parsley
  • To serve – roasted cumin carrots, savoy cabbage, creamy mash
  1. If you can, soak the cuts of beef in the red wine with the cinnamon and star anise over night.
  2. When ready to cook preheat the oven to 120°C. Heat a large heavy bottomed casserole dish with a splash of light oil, pat dry the beef and season well. Brown in the oil on all sides until golden and then set aside.
  3. Add the chopped onion and gently cook until soft for about 15 minutes making sure they don’t catch on the bottom.
  4. Add the beef back to the pan and turn up the heat. Add the wine, the cinnamon, star anise, pepper and bay leaf.
  5. Bring to a simmer and simmer gently for a few minutes until the wine has reduced a little. Top up the pan with enough beef stock to cover the meat and prevent it from drying out on cooking.
  6. Place in the oven and cook for 3 hours with the lid on by which time it should be deliciously tender and falling apart.
  7. After 3 hours, remove from the oven and take out the beef and as many onions as you can and set aside.
  8. Drain the sauce (adding a little more stock if it has reduced too much) and discard the spices. Place the sauce in a saucepan and simmer gently to thicken slightly spooning off any fat. Season to taste.
  9. Add the chocolate and stir in until melted.
  10. Return the beef to the pan and heat through.

Serve with a sprinkling of chopped parsley with some deliciously creamy mash potato. Soften some chopped garlic in a knob of butter before adding some shredded savoy cabbage and braising until soft. Cumin roasted carrots with a charred edge are also a delicious pairing.

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Marsala soaked Prune and Chocolate Brownies

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The weather recently (with the odd exception) has been quite frankly horrendous that even the wine samples I bought home from work last week have resorted to their own wetsuits. (Some new Armit wine carriers which were enthusiastically handed out at work). If new to Armit Wines see here….we have a healthy collection of vino.

After a long week, some juicy samples were a welcome bounty to whisk home accompanied with the new sly advertising to an unshameful Friday evening in. Yes, I stayed in. It was bliss.

The wine. This Seresin Estate (Organic) Sauvignon Blanc is a definite crowd pleaser for those who love this NZ favourite. Flawlessly zesty with fresh, acidic and noteworthy mouthwatering and sharp gooseberry flavours. I immediately knew it would please my mum’s taste so off home I went the following day with sample and an extra shiny halo. Its a nice punchy wine but confirms my appreciation for more classic French wines which I’m growing to love more….

In addition to this white I also bought home a downright delicious and luxurious Marsala. My mind instantly went to my favourite wild mushroom, pancetta and marsala baked chicken recipe but I felt the harvest of my kitchen creations should be shared with the office so a baked creation was in order. Rich, moist and deep dark chocolate brownies with plump sweet prunes drunk and bloated on this boozy Marsala…

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It is also ‘Fairtrade’ week so as a nod to the chaps at Green & Blacks and a toast to the founding of the Fairtrade Foundation I urge you to use their Fairtrade chocolate here or another equally good natured product. This basic brownie recipe (minus the prunes) is courtesy of Bill Granger and is one I’ve been meaning to attempt. Warming – they are very rich!

Marsala soaked Prune and Chocolate Chunk Brownies

Makes about 18-20 large ones

  • 350g caster sugar
  • 80g Green & Blacks Cocoa powder
  • 60g plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 200g unsalted butter, melted
  • 200g Green & Blacks dark cooking chocolate, chopped
  • 140g pitted prunes
  • 4 tbsp marsala
  1. Begin by soaking the prunes in the marsala for about 6 hours of overnight – the longer you do this the more they will absorb the booze so the less you will have to waste!
  2. Preheat the oven to 160°C and grease and line a brownie tin (mine was)
  3. Sieve the flour, baking powder and cocoa and mix with the sugar.
  4. Add the melted butter, eggs, vanilla and stir to combine.
  5. Chop the prunes into big chunks and add with the chopped chocolate and mix.
  6. Spoon into the lined brownie tin and bake for 40 minutes or less for an molten centre.
  7. Leave to cool in the tin before removing to a wire rack and slicing into decadent chunks.

Chocolate-torte-mousse-fudge-stlye-brownie-cake

 

This is an original Green & Blacks recipe with original G&B chocolate from my thumbed and chocolate covered copy of their first recipe book. I cannot take the credit for this decadent creation so I hail the writer of the book and the creator of the recipe….if I ever meet you, you deserve a big kiss….assuming you’re male, tall, dark and handsome that is….

In the original recipe, this ‘cake’ has been royally dusted in a shimmering sheen of gold dust. I didn’t get hold of any in time but to make it as glamorous and irresistible as the famous bond girl then go for it. I also chose to flavour mine with 1/3 ‘Maya Gold’ chocolate as suggested- an orange and spice flavoured bar. However, an orange, lemon or even salted bar (I’m dying to try that as I write) would be amazing too. Served with my marmalade and cocoa nib ice cream, the festive orange was a soothing addition.

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Serves about 12

  • 200g dark chocolate, broken into chunks
  • 100g Maya Gold chocolate (or orange, lemon, salt, etc…)
  • 275g caster sugar
  • 165g unsalted butter, cubed
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 tbsp ground almonds
  • Icing sugar to dust
  1. Grease and line a springform cake tin (20-23cm wide). Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Place the butter, sugar and chocolate with a pinch of salt in a heatproof bowl and place it over a pan of barely simmering water and heat gently until all melted and combined. Set aside to cool a little.
  3. Whisk the eggs with the almonds. When the chocolate has cooled slightly, fold the eggs in and mix well to combine. It will look like it won’t combine at first but pursue it until smooth and creamy.
  4. Pour the mixture into the tin and level off. Bake for 35-45 minutes until set but with a small amount of give when touched in the middle.
  5. Leave to cool completely in the tin before removing and serving at room temperature. Scatter with a generous snowy blanket of icing sugar or a bond-girl-style sheen of gold dust and serve voraciously with cream or ice cream.

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