Truffles, Easter eggs or sweet Valentine’s seduction. Flights from heartbreak, or blissful birthday bonbons. It’s a fact: chocolates are simply divine.
In Chocolate there are original, melt-your-heart offerings, which includes a wicked assortment of chocolate recipes to satisfy every hmmm: the eating, dipping, drinking and spreading kind; fruity thrills such as naartjie malva pudding; crunchy treats, from rooibos biscotti to macadamia-nut honeycomb; fancy, creamy, nostalgic and naughty recipes that will enchant you; effortless favourites: no-bake brownies and end-of-the-month truffles, and SOS tips to rescue your craving. With all the technical info you need to embark on your chocolate journey.
Here are two delicious chocolate recipes to tantalize your tastebuds! Stand a chance to win a copy here
Chocolate Raspberry ‘Hertzoggies’
Crisp, bitter chocolate pastries filled with tart raspberry jam and topped with sweet coconut meringue, these little tartlets are so good, I might be forgiven for calling them ‘Hertzoggies’!
MAKES: 12 l TIME UNTIL YOU CAN EAT THEM: 1½ hours l DIFFICULTY LEVEL: medium
25 g (62 ml) cocoa powder
225 g (375 ml) cake flour
125 g (125 ml) salted butter, chilled and cubed
80 g (155 ml) icing sugar
3 large egg yolks, refrigerated
15 ml (1 tbsp) ice water
165 g (125 ml) raspberry jam, for filling
egg whites from 3 large eggs, at room temperature 210 g (250 ml) castor sugar
160 g (375 ml) desiccated coconut
Grease 12 x 8-cm tart tins (or you could use a muffin pan). Place the cocoa powder, cake flour, butter and icing sugar in a food processor and process until the mixture forms a breadcrumb consistency. With the motor running, add the egg yolks and just enough water so the pastry comes together and forms a soft dough. Form into a flattened ball, wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 180 °C (160 °C for fan-forced). Roll out the dough on a floured surface or between two sheets of baking paper to 5 mm thick. Cut the pastry into rounds using a cookie cutter large enough to line your
tart tins. Press the pastry into the tins and spoon 15 ml (1 tbsp) of jam into the bottom of each tart.
Make the topping by whisking the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add the castor sugar while whisking so it forms a glossy meringue, then fold in the coconut. Place the coconut meringue in a piping bag fitted with a plain nozzle and pipe drops onto the top of the tarts. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes or until golden and the meringue is crisp. Allow to cool completely before serving.
TIP: Filling the piping bag just got a whole lot easier! Place the piping bag in a tall glass or cup and fold the top over the edge of the glass or cup, then add the filling.
Salted Caramel and White Chocolate Tiramisu
Italians can be fiercely protective over their tiramisu. I know this because I am married to one! I’ve suggested countless twists on the traditional flavours, all of which have been rejected – except this one. In the words of my husband, Nino: ‘This is the best tiramisu in the world’.
SERVES: 8 to 10 l TIME UNTIL YOU CAN EAT IT: best made the day before l DIFFICULTY LEVEL: a little effort
45 g (90 ml) castor sugar
375 ml (1½ cups) freshly brewed, strong coffee
45 ml (3 tbsp) grappa or coffee liqueur (optional)
SALTED CARAMEL WHITE CHOCOLATE SAUCE
200 g (250 ml) white sugar
30 ml (2 tbsp) water
80 g (80 ml) salted butter, at room temperature
125 ml (½ cup) cream
100 g good-quality white chocolate, finely chopped
sea salt flakes
WHITE CHOCOLATE MASCARPONE MOUSSE
3 large eggs, at room temperature
4 g gelatine sheets or 4 g (2,5 ml) powdered gelatin 100 g (125 ml) white sugar
60 ml (½ cup) cold water
250 ml (1 cup) fresh cream
250 g (275 ml) mascarpone
150 g good-quality white chocolate, melted
24 store-bought finger biscuits
cocoa powder, for dusting
Make the espresso syrup by dissolving the sugar in the hot espresso, then allow to cool. Stir in the grappa and set aside to cool.
To make the sauce, place the sugar in a small saucepan with the water and heat (without stirring) until melted and caramelised to a deep golden brown. Add the butter and cream, and swirl to form a sauce. Add the white chocolate and a pinch of sea salt flakes. Set aside and allow to cool completely.
To make the mousse, beat the eggs with an electric mixer until pale and thick. The mixture should leave a trail – this is called the ribbon stage. Soften the gelatine sheets in water.
Prepare the sugar syrup by heating the sugar with the water until it dissolves. Bring to the boil until it reaches 121 °C on a sugar thermometer.
Gradually add the hot syrup into the eggs while beating. Squeeze the water out of the softened gelatine and place it in the still-warm pot which had the sugar syrup in it. Allow it to melt, then pour into the egg mixture. Whip until cool to the touch and thick, about 10 minutes.
In the meantime, gradually add the cream to the mascarpone until thick and smooth (take care not to overmix the mascarpone or it will split). Fold the cooled egg mixture into the mascarpone with the melted white chocolate.
To assemble, dust the bottom of a deep 22 x 28-cm serving dish with cocoa powder. Dip the finger biscuits into the cooled espresso syrup and arrange on the bottom of the dish. Spread a third of the caramel sauce over the top, then dust with cocoa powder. Place half of the mascarpone mixture over, then dust again with cocoa powder, followed by a soaked finger biscuit layer, one-third of the caramel sauce and a layer of cocoa powder.
Place the remaining mousse in a piping bag fitted with a plain nozzle and pipe blobs on top. Dust with cocoa powder, to finish. Serve with the remaining caramel sauce.
TIP: Tiramisu is best made the day before serving so that the flavours really develop.