May 26, 2013

Chocolate Concorde Cake

The Chocolate Concorde cake is one that Mum unearthed from the depths of The Fundamental Techniques of Classic Pastry Arts by the French Culinary Institute.  It's a delicious combination of rich chocolate mousse and crunchy chocolate meringue logs.

We don't have a cake ring so we just made it in the detachable circle part of a Springform tin.

Incredible to look at, and yet not that difficult to make.  This one's definitely a show-stopper!

May 10, 2013

Cookie Dough Ice Cream

When I first tried Ben & Jerry's ice cream, I was immediately drawn to the Choc Chip Cookie Dough flavour because cookie dough is one of my favourite things.  Personally, I felt that Ben & Jerry's version didn't have nearly enough cookie dough and I dislike having chocolate chips in ice cream.  So I decided to make my own version.

To make Cookie Dough Ice Cream at home, all you need is this cookie recipe without the bicarb soda (you can use chocolate chips or leave them out, your pick!) and a tub of vanilla ice cream.

1. Leave your ice cream out of the freezer so that it goes soft and a bit runny.

2. Meanwhile, make your cookie dough.

3. Roll the dough into balls of whatever size you'd like (I usually make a variety of sizes, but not bigger than a tablespoon) and put them in the freezer to harden.

4. Pour the ice cream into the bowl of your electric mixer.  You can mix by hand, but I prefer to use my Kitchenaid with the K beater attachment so I get flecks of cookie dough throughout the ice cream.

5. With the mixer on slow, throw the frozen cookie dough in a few at a time until all of them are incorporated.

6. Pour the finished ice cream into a container, making sure that the cookie dough balls are evenly dispersed throughout.

7. Leave to set in the freezer.

8. Consume with joy.

May 2, 2013

Steve Ritual Brownies

Okay, I know that I usually rave about every single brownie recipe I try and go on and on about how it's the best - but I think I've hit the mother lode here.  If you like your brownies dense and creamy, this is for you.  Even the edges are just as good - no fluffy cakey bits!

The main jewel of this recipe is its particular method of baking.  After taking the brownies out of the oven, you need to immediately set the pan in an ice bath.  This ensures that the whole brownie ends up fudgy and soft with just a hint of crunch in the crust on the top.

Recipe Adapted From: Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-In-Your-Mouth Cookies by Alice Medrich
Ingredients (20 cm (8 inch) square tin)
110g butter
110g dark chocolate
250g white sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
2 eggs
60g flour
2/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)

1. Set the oven to 205C (400F).

2. Melt the butter and chocolate in a large bowl.

3. Stir in the sugar, vanilla and salt.  I just used a wooden spoon and did it by hand.

4. Beat in the eggs, one at a time.

5. Stir in the flour and beat with the spoon until the batter is all smooth and glossy.  It will be quite liquid.

6. Pour the batter into a 20cm (8 inch) square pan lined with baking paper.  Yes, mine is lined with foil - this was a mistake, because the brownie sticks to the foil.  So use baking paper!

7. Bake the brownie for 20 minutes or until it begins to pull away from the edge of the pan.  Mine was super super fudgy after 20 minutes of baking, so you could probably do 25 minutes and still be fine.

While the brownie's baking, prepare an ice bath - fill a larger baking tin or a roasting pan with water and then add some ice cubes.  Make sure there isn't too much water - you don't want it overflowing and getting on your brownies!

8. When the brownies are done baking, place the pan straight into the ice bath and leave it to cool.

9. When the brownies are cool (or a little bit warm...they're delicious like that, though they're much easier to cut when they're cold), transfer the slab to a cutting board and cut into whatever size you like.

And enjoy the chocolatey goodness.