Dessert

Rich Chocolate Ice Cream with Peanut Butter

Makes: 1.5 liters

So, we’re on the ice cream train with the recent acquisition of a proper ice cream maker.

And so where do you start?

Personally, I think that Rum and Raisin or Pistachio are the creme da la creme though I am dismissed by Nat and the boys as being old and old-fashioned.

Which meant opening the floor to alternative ideas.

The boys adamantly want a Coke Sorbet which we might try; though that left Nat’s suggestion of chocolate and peanut butter the sole entry and winner on our first bout of ice cream making.

And here it is.

She is a rich one this one and if you paired it with some salted caramel, you would be sent to sweet heaven.

As an accompaniment to a dessert fitting of such an extraordinarily rich and opulent ice cream, this is definitely a recipe you should try.

I guess I can do my Rum and Raisin late at night when everyone is asleep.

Ingredients

Rich chocolate ice cream
2 cups heavy cream
1 ½ cups whole milk
7 large egg yolks
¾ cup sugar
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
¼ tsp salt
200gm bittersweet chocolate (70% or above), chopped
2 tsp vanilla extract

Peanut Butter
6 tbsp unsalted butter at room temperature
¾ cup icing sugar
¾ cup crunchy peanut butter
3 tbsp heavy cream

Method

    1. For the chocolate ice cream: in a heavy saucepan, combine the cream and milk. Warm over a medium-high heat, stirring occasionally until you have a simmer.
    2. Separately, in a heatproof bowl over a water bath, combine the egg yolks, sugar, cocoa powder and salt. Whisk vigorously until the mixture doubles in size: 2 minutes or so.
    3. Remove the cream mixture from the heat. Whisking constantly, slowly pour about 1 cup of the cream mixture into the egg mixture until smooth. Pour the combined mixture back into the remaining cream mixture, whisking constantly and heat over a medium heat; add the chopped chocolate and vanilla to the saucepan and stir until the chocolate is melted and combined. Cook until it forms a custard thick enough to coat the back of the spoon, ensuring it does not boil.
    4. Pour the custard through a fine sieve into a bowl and cool.
    5. For the peanut butter: in a bowl, combine the butter, icing sugar, peanut butter and cream. Using an electric beater on medium, beat for 5 minutes until the mixture is light and fluffy.
    6. Churn the rich chocolate ice cream until almost done. Pour the peanut butter mixture in just before setting and allow to churn.
    7. Kaboom.
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Dessert, Vegetarian

Chocolate Spiders

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Seriously?!

Chocolate Spiders

Makes: 15 spiders

Nat’s Oma (German for grandmother) used to make these for Nat and all the grandkids… all the time.

Five spiders down, I can assure you that the simplest things in life are the best and that you’ll need far greater self-control than I have to not eat them one they’re chilled.

Go spiders!

Ingredients

1 packet Chang’s Original Fried Noodles (100gm)
2 tbsp crunchy peanut butter
200gm milk chocolate

Method

  1. In a microwave-safe bowl, break up the chocolate into small chunks. Add the peanut butter and melt on high for about 60 seconds. Stir the chocolate mixture and if not fully melted, heat for another 15 seconds or so until melted.
  2. Add the noodles and mix well, try not to break the noodles.
  3. On a baking paper lined tray, spoon the mixture into small mounds and refrigerate until hard.
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Dessert, Vegetarian

Stephanie Alexander’s Chocolate and Almond Cake

Stephanie Alexander’s Chocolate and Almond Cake

Serves: 6 – 8

You want decadent, you got it!

A favourite of the wonderful Stephanie Alexander, it is simple to prep and even simpler to serve; double cream, some raspberries and a picnic on the grass like we did.

This is a tick tick number and one to definitely try for a casual dinner when you want to really wow the team.

Ingredients

125gm good quality dark chocolate (70 per cent cocoa solids)
1 tbsp brandy
1 tbsp espresso
100gm unsalted butter, softened
½ cup caster sugar
¾ cup ground almonds (we blitzed them in the food processor)
3 eggs, separated: lightly beat the yolks, beat the egg whites until firm though not dry
Icing sugar for dusting
Double cream and raspberries or strawberries to serve

Method

  1. Preheat the oven the 160c. Butter an 18c, round cake tin and line with baking paper: this is a cake that can split and leak easily so the baking paper is best.
  2. Combine chocolate, brandy and espresso in a heatproof bowl that fits snugly over a saucepan of simmering water, ensuring the base of the bowl does not touch the water. Heat without stirring the chocolate until it is melted. Stir and add the butter and sugar. Mix well.
  3. Add ground almonds and stir very well. Remove from the heat. Stir in the beaten egg yolks. Lighten the mixture with a spoonful of the beaten egg whites and then softly fold in the rest.
  4. Spoon the batter into the cake tin. Bake for 40 minutes. Remove and allow to completely cool in the tin, remembering that the cake is fragile and will plit.
  5. Carefully turn onto a plate, dust with icing sugar and serve with the cream and berries.
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Dessert

Flourless Chocolate Cake

Serves 6

This is a really simple and elegant dessert and one easy enough that it makes it into my remit; it’s not that I don’t love tackling and serving a great and complex dessert, though the main meal always takes priority for me.

And so this is where this dessert shines; it is quick, easy and looks like half the afternoon was given to it.

And it lasts a few days which makes it triply as good.

Ingredients

1 tsp instant coffee powder
¼ c boiling water
200gm butter, chopped
180hm dark chocolate, chopped
2 tbsp cocoa powder, sifted
4 eggs, separated
1 c caster sugar
2 c almond meal (ground almonds)
Cocoa powder, for dusting
Double cream and strawberries to serve

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 160c (180c if not fan forced).
  2. Grease a 6cm deep, 22cm round base spring-form cake pan. Line the base and sides with baking paper.
  3. Combine and stir the coffee powder and boiling water.
  4. Place the butter, chocolate, cocoa powder and coffee mixture in a medium saucepan over a low heat and stir continuously for about 3 minutes until combined and melted. Remove, transfer to a bowl and allow to cool slightly.
  5. Beat the egg yolks and sugar for five minutes until thick and set aside. Separately, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form.
  6. Add the chocolate mixture and almond meal to the egg yolk mixture. Combine and then gently fold in the egg white mixture.
  7. Pour into the pan and bake for 40 to 45 minutes and then allow to cool complete.
  8. Dust with the cocoa powder (or icing sugar) and serve with the strawberries and cream.
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