Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Chocolate Fondant Puddings

  TT is still floating on chocolate cloud 9 and you can join him .....


fondant means melting in French - and as you can see,
 the chocolate doesn't just melt, it oozes!


If you like entertaining, here is the perfect dessert and we have Gordon Ramsay to thank. He’s quite a character in his own kitchen but on this occasion I have to hand it to him. I am thrilled to have found this recipe and am posting even though I haven’t got all the photos. I deliberately didn’t take any as I thought this would be a practice run. But it turned out to be a real winner so take it from me and follow the directions just like I did. I can only show you the results.


dinner party chocolate fondants
We all know that chocolate wins hands down. For me, this recipe also wins because it can be prepared beforehand and frozen. Full points!! All you have to do is pre-heat the oven, retrieve the individual puddings from the freezer, and put them in. It’s a cinch. Wherever you are. Turkey, the UK or wherever. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t love chocolate and these elegant little  puddings are sensational.





Ingredients for Chocolate Fondant Puddings

Makes 9 fondants

50g/2 oz melted butter, for brushing

Cocoa powder, for dusting

200g/7oz good-quality dark chocolate, chopped into small pieces

200g/7oz butter, in small pieces

200g/7oz golden caster sugar (I used regular toz şeker)

4 eggs and 4 yolks

200g/7oz plain flour

Caramel sauce and vanilla ice cream or orange sorbet to serve (I served them with a raspberry coulis and vanilla ice cream)

afiyet olsun!


Method

·         First get your moulds ready. Using upward strokes, heavily brush the melted butter all over the inside of the pudding mould. Place the mould in the fridge or freezer. Brush more melted butter over the chilled butter, then add a good spoonful of cocoa powder into the mould. Tip the mould so the powder completely coats the butter. Tap any excess cocoa back into the jar, then repeat with the next mould.

·         Place a bowl over a pan of barely simmering water, then slowly melt the chocolate and butter together. Remove bowl from the heat and stir until smooth. Leave to cool for about 10 mins.

·         In a separate bowl whisk the eggs and yolks together with the sugar until thick and pale and the whisk leaves a trail; use an electric whisk if you want. Sift the flour into the eggs, then beat together.

·         Pour the melted chocolate into the egg mixture in thirds, beating well beween each addition, until all the chocolate is added and the mixture is completely combined to a loose cake batter.

·         Tip the fondant batter into a jug, then evenly divide between the moulds. The fondants can now be frozen for up to a month and cooked from frozen. Chill for at least 20 mins or up the night before. *To bake from frozen, simply carry on as stated, adding 5 mins more to the cooking time.

·         Heat oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/gas 6. Place fondants on a baking tray, then cook for 10-12 mins until the tops have formed a crust and they are starting to come away from the sides of their moulds. Remove from the oven, then leave to sit for 1 min before turning out.




·         Loosen the fondants by moving the tops very gently so they come away from the sides, easing them out of the moulds. Tip each fondant slightly onto your hand so you know it has come away, then tip back into the mould ready to plate up.

·         Starting from the middle of each plate, squeeze a spiral of caramel sauce – do all the plates you need before you go on to the next stage.

·         Sit a fondant in the middle of each plate. Using a large spoon dipped in hot water, scoop a ‘quenelle’ of ice cream (this just means a nice blodge of ice cream).

·         Carefully place the ice cream on top of the fondant, then serve immediately. Repeat with the rest of the fondants.



Tips

1.      I was a bit nervous about making a pudding like this although I had been biding my time with the little metal moulds. In the end, we had some friends round whom I knew wouldn’t mind if the whole thing was a colossal flop (and anyway I thought the ice cream and raspberry coulis would be an adequate if not spectacular dessert if all else failed). But in fact, these little puddings are very resilient and there was no need to worry. They come out of their moulds extremely easily and retain their shape without collapsing. But the point is, they look and taste fantastic!

2.      *I baked mine from frozen. In my excellent Siemens oven, they took exactly 13 minutes. The first time round I followed instructions and did 10 + 5 mins and this was just a touch too much. We all thought 13 mins would be perfect so next time, that’s what I did and sure enough, it was. Make sure your oven is really hot when you put them in.

3.      I dusted them with sieved icing sugar first which gave them a professional look. The raspberry coulis not to mention the ice cream  went beautifully with the sludgy hot liquid chocolate which came oozing out of the pudding at first bite. Totally and utterly divine!!

4.      The recipe makes 9, the logic being that one is an ‘insurance’ that you can test for doneness. In my case the odd number worked out beautifully as we were 7 for dinner with 2 left in the freezer which I baked yesterday for TT and Daughter No 2!

5.      Gordon Ramsay points out that once you have mastered the basic recipe for these fondants, you can easily adapt their flavour eg you can add a generous splash of Baileys to the melted chocolate. Or you can make a chocolate and orange version by adding the finely grated zest of 1 large orange and an optional splash of orange liqueur.

6.      He adds that you can use 150ml aluminium muffin tins instead of the metal moulds, giving them 10 mins in the oven.

  Earmark this recipe for the next time you have friends coming round and you want them to die by chocolate!


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