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Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Death by Chocolate recipe & holiday stuff

View from the beach front, across the bay
I've spent the past few days galloping around Westgate-on-Sea with fellow author Mhairie Simpson. She lives there, and I'm a little jealous - it's gorgeous. Right on the sea-front, with a micro-climate that means it's a good bit more pleasant weather-wise than a lot of the UK.

Of course, getting there was an adventure - I had an argument with the ticket machine, which promptly ate my outbound ticket, and spat out my return and a coupon that said it was printed about 8 days earlier. The guy at the gate got this horrified look in his eyes and waved me through, probably on the theory of Making It Someone Else's Problem. Then I got to her flat and promptly tripped over the door jamb.

The Tickets of Doom
Her folks are lovely - mum is a textile artist, and I never knew you could DO that stuff with quilting. I'm hoping to get her on the blog in the near future. Dad is an ex-pilot, and a natural-born story teller (and a really good cook). Little brother is one of the best saxophonist's I've ever heard. That family has so much talent it's terrifying.


The two dogs were awesome. Pandora is like a large, talking powder puff. Mojo was camera shy and vanished every time I hauled out the iphone.
Pandora, commenting on the weather.





On my last night there, I cooked up Hong Kong Chicken and Death by Chocolate. I uploaded a picture of the Death by Chocolate to Facebook, and the response was gratifying. It's one of the easiest things to make, and the recipe is below for you:

Death by Chocolate
Death by Chocolate recipe

Ingredients:
1 x 200ml double cream
1 x large slab white chocolate
1 x large slab milk chocolate
Salt
Olive oil
Mixed spice (cinnamon, ginger & clove if you don't have the ready mix version)
Optional extra - a couple of squares of dark chocolate to grate over the top.

Method:

Place a glass bowl over a pot of boiling water. Break the milk chocolate up and let it melt in the bowl. Add a pinch of salt. Add +/- 50ml cream when melted, and whisk briskly. Remove from the heat, add 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil, whisk again. You'll end up with a quite sticky texture.
Pour it into the glass, or whatever container you want to use. To get the effect of the dark chocolate running up the sides of the glass, simply tilt the glass for a few seconds in each direction.
Rinse out the glass bowl, break up the white chocolate and melt in the bowl over the hot water again.
Add a pinch of salt, and the rest of the cream. Add the mixed spice. Whisk everything well, remove from the heat, and add 1/2 tablespoon olive oil. Whisk well, and pour it onto the milk chocolate mix in your container.

Once it's cooled, grate your dark chocolate over the top. You can add a ginger biscuit base if you'd like to stretch this further; I got four glasses out of this mix, and it's a very rich desert. I skipped the biscuit base as my friend needs to avoid gluten as much as possible.

Tips and hints:

Do NOT refrigerate. The olive oil adds a lightness to the mixture (and you can't taste it), but it means it will congeal if refrigerated. This is great if the fridge is already full and you need a quick pudding; this took about fifteen minutes to get together, and about three of those involved the cook's privilege of licking the mixing bowl.

Use normal chocolate rather than cooking or coating chocolate; it has better flavour.

Enjoy, add your own twist, and have fun with it. A splash of brandy in the milk base would go down rather well.