Everyone loves a good dessert. You’re mad if you don’t. There’s nothing I enjoy more than a sweet and decadent treat at the end of a meal but when it comes to looking for inspiration to create my very own, the first person I turn to is the god of all pastry chef gods, Michel Roux.
I received his newest book, Desserts, to review last week. I flicked through and stopped in my tracks when I arrived at the warm chocolate fondant recipe. There is no doubt about the fact that I’ll always choose this dessert if it is on the menu. No doubt. But for some reason I’ve never attempted making it at home, probably because I thought it would go wrong and I’d end up smashing it up with a fork – yes, this has happened in the past and that little tantrum has become a joke in my household.
Enjoy with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or a generous glug of double cream.
Warm chocolate fondant recipe – serves 10 – 12
200g butter, softened, plus 20g to grease
200g good-quality dark, bitter of Manjari chocolate, preferably Valrhona, finely chopped
200g icing sugar, sifted, plus extra to dust
4 eggs, mixed with an extra 4 egg yolks
55g plain flour
35g dark, bitter cocoa powder
Use a brush to lightly butter the insides of 12 metal rings, 5 cm in diameter and 3.5cm high and line each with a band of greaseproof paper.
Preheat the oven to 190 degrees c / gas mark 5. Put the chocolate into a heatproof bowl and set over a saucepan one-third filled with hot water, making sure the bottom of the bowl is not in contact with the water. PLace over a gentle heat until the chocolate has melted, then take off the heat and set aside in a warm place.
Using an electric whisk, beat the butter and icing sugar together until pale and aerated, then slowly incorporate the eggs, whisking constantly to keep the mixture smooth. Reduce the mixer speed and incorporate the melted chocolate a little at a time. Sift the flour and cocoa together over the mixture and fld in carefully, using large metal spoon.
Fill the prepared moulds with the fondant mixture to the top of the rings.
Bake in the oven for 8-10 minutes. To check to see if they are done, inserts a small skewer into the centre of one; if the centre feels liquid, it is not yet cooked. If it feels soft, and the skewer meets with no resistance, they are done – the centre should be vert slightly runny. Remove from the oven and leave to rest on the baking tray for 30 seconds.
Lift the rings off all the fondants, slide a small palette knife under one, transfer it to a serving plate and remove the band of greaseproof paper. Repeat with the rest of the fondants. Dust the tops with icing sugar and enjoy served with double cream. Serve immediately.