Puro coffee and tiramisu

Tiramisu

A couple of weeks ago, I was contacted by Puro Coffee to see if I would like to review some of their Fairtrade coffee products and try them out in my baking.

Being somewhat of a coffee fiend I jumped at the chance – I drink at least 4 cups a day, virtually all of the cakes and bakes you’ve seen on here have been eaten accompanied by a cup of coffee, and I am also a big fan of coffee flavoured cakes and desserts – this coffee and walnut cake is one of the best I’ve made a while and coffee ice cream is one of my favourite indulgences.

I loved how my hamper of goodies arrived – carefully packaged in a hessian sack, tied with a lovely flower, with handwritten labels describing each coffee. Included were three packs of coffee – Puro Organic, Puro Noble and Puro Fuerte – some sachets of hot chocolate and sugar, a set of cappuccino and espresso cups and saucers and even a Puro bookmark – I can finally stop using random shopping receipts to keep my place, excellent!

When Puro first contacted me they gave me a bit of background info about the company – founded in 2005, they source Fairtrade and organic coffee, and work with the World Land Trust to protect areas of rainforest in Equador, Columbia and Brazil, and sell coffee both directly to consumers and through a number of cafes and restaurants.

I know not everyone reading this will be interested in the Fairtrade side of things, but if you would like to find out more about Puro’s story you can watch a video, here.

It took me a little while to sample everything but now I have I can safely say that all of the coffees are as delicious as they are environmentally and socially conscious. My favourite was the Puro Fuerte, a dark roast which is exactly the kind of kick you need first thing in the morning!  The hot chocolate I wasn’t so keen on, as it seemed a little overly sweet for my liking, but then I think you’re always better off making your own blend anyway.

When it came to using the coffee in baking, the first thing that came to mind was tiramisu. It’s something that has been on my to-bake list forever, and what better motivation to make it than a sack full of coffee?!

There seem to be a huge amount of variations on what is essentially a very simple recipe, but in the end I settled on The Purple Foodie’s recipe, which seemed fairly traditional and uncomplicated.

I scaled down the savoiardi biscuits by two thirds and the marscapone filling by a half, and used pure coffee with no alcohol – apparently this is the true Italian way, although if I made it again I think I would add something just to give it a little extra punch.

I made on large bowl, and one cappuccino cup – if you were doing it all in individual cups I think it would make 4-6, depending on size.

Overall I was pretty pleased with how it turned out, but sadly it wasn’t a patch on the one I ate in Rome on my birthday two years ago – I think it’s just one of those desserts best left to the professionals!

Tiramisu (adapted from The Purple Foodie)

For the savoiardi (lady finger) biscuits:

  • 1 egg, separated
  • 30g caster sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 20g plain flour
  • icing sugar to dust

For the marscapone filling:

  • 250g marscapone
  • 2 eggs, separated
  • 45g caster sugar

To assemble:

  • 200ml very strong coffee
  • cocoa powder to dust

For the biscuits, beat the egg yolk and half of the sugar until light and aerated, then add in the vanilla. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites and remaining sugar until stiff peaks form. Sift the flour into the egg yolk mixture and fold in gently, then fold in the egg whites, a third at a time. You can pipe the mixture into fingers, but I just used a spoon which worked out fine – just spread lines onto a greased an lined baking tray, the dust with the icing sugar before baking at 200 degrees for about 12 minutes, or until golden and crisp.

To make the filling, whisk the egg yolks and half the sugar in one bowl and the egg whites and remaining sugar in another bowl, as before. beat the marscapone in a third bowl to soften, then add the egg yolks, followed by the egg whites.

To assemble, dip the savoiardi biscuits into the coffee – just quickly, so they don’t go soggy. Add a layer of coffee soaked biscuits to the cup or serving dish, then top with a layer of marscapone. Repeat the layering two or three times, ending with a layer of marscapone, then dust with cocoa powder and chill until serving.

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Chocolate, hazelnut and marzipan torte

Chocolate, hazelnut and marzipan torte

My ‘to-blog’ list is just ridiculous at the minute, I have such a backlog to get through!

I don’t want to complain too much, because I’m glad to have lots of successful bakes to share as well as a couple of reviews which I’m very grateful to have been given the opportunity to carry out, but it does mean that I’m somewhat behind on posting and only just on time for entering two of this month’s blogging challenges.

randomrecipes2

This month’s Random Recipes challenge, set by Dom at Belleau Kitchen, was a little different to usual – the choice of book was completely down to us.

I had a little moment of panic at the thought of such freedom, but quickly decided it would make sense to choose something from my most recently purchased recipe book, Boutique Baking by Peggy Porschen.

I handed it over to the pony for the random selection, and was very pleased with his choice as it was one that had stood out to me the very first time I flicked through the book – a chocolate hazelnut torte, topped with a layer of marzipan and chocolate ganache.

Which brings me nicely onto the second challenge I’m entering this for – Classic French, hosted by Jen at Blue Kitchen Bakes. Ganache is the theme so this torte works perfectly!

french_logo

The cake itself is delicious and went down very well with all my taste testers – a really moist yet light textured sponge with a great balance of flavours – it sounds like quite a lot going on with chocolate, hazelnut, rum and the marzipan, but they all complement each other perfectly.

I had heard good things about Boutique Baking and based on this recipe I’m not disappointed – I can’t wait to try some of Peggy’s signature pretty cupcakes and triple-layer cakes as part of my mission to improve my decorating skills this year.

Chocolate, hazelnut and marzipan torte (from Boutique Baking by Peggy Porschen)

  • 150g whole hazelnuts
  • 75g dark chocolate, chopped
  • 50g self raising flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 150g butter
  • 150g light brown sugar
  • 3 medium eggs, seperated
  • 2 tbsp dark rum
  • 20g caster sugar

To finish:

  • 200g marzipan
  • 125g dark chocolate
  • 60ml double cream
  • 1 tbsp liquid glucose

Start by blitzing the hazelnuts in a food processor until finely ground, then add in the chopped chocolate, cinnamon and flour and blitz again until the mixture has a sand-like texture. Beat the butter and brown sugar together until light and fluffy, then add in the egg yolks and rum and beat again to combine. Fold in the chocolate and hazelnut mixture, then whisk the egg whites and caster sugar into stiff peaks and fold in, a third at a time. Spread the mixture into a greased and lined 8″ round cake tin and bake at 150 degrees for about 50 minutes, or until risen, springy to the touch and starting to crack around the edges. Leave to cool before removing from the tin.

To make the ganache, heat the cream until almost boiling, then pour over the chocolate. Stir to melt the chocolate, then add in the liquid glucose and leave to cool. Roll out the marzipan on a surface dusted with icing sugar, to a little larger than an 8″ circle. Spread the ganache on top (saving about 2 tbsp) and chill in the fridge until completely set.

Use the cake tin to cut out a perfect 8″ circle from the marzipan. Turn the cake upside down onto a serving plate so the perfectly flat bottom is on top, warm the remaining ganache and spread a thin layer on top of the cake for the marzipan to stick to. Carefully lift the marzipan circle and place on top of the cake – then you’re ready to serve, enjoy!

Chocolate sticky toffee pudding

Chocolate sticky toffee pudding

Whenever I’m planning a trip abroad, the first thing, without fail, that I think about is the food.

One of the best things about going to another country is experiencing its unique cuisine, and the dishes it is best known for. And, obviously, cake, pastries and dessert are my priorities for getting a true taste of wherever I’m visiting.

European countries such as France and Italy are well known for their sweet delicacies – who could go to Paris and not try a macaron, or spend a weekend in Rome without eating a gelato? And don’t get me started on Belgium and its chocolates…

I often wonder though, what people think when they come to England. What foods are we known for? There are many cakes, biscuits and desserts which are uniquely British but have people outside of the UK ever even heard of them?

For me, if there’s one thing that feels truly British, it’s a good pudding. Treacle sponge, jam roly poly, bread and butter pudding – all traditional, warming desserts that take a good week to burn off the calories of – that’s what say’s British sweet treats to me.

tea time treats

What this brings me around to, in a round about way, is the theme for this month’s Tea Time Treats, hosted by Kate at What Kate Baked and Karen at Lavender and Lovage, which is ‘perfect puddings‘.

I don’t have many real ‘pudding’ recipes on the blog, largely because they’re the kind of thing that’s baked and eaten immediately, in the evening when there’s no light for taking photos, but I’m so glad I made the effort for TTT because let me tell you, this pudding is GOOD!

Sticky toffee pudding is a classic, which really doesn’t need improving. Unless of course you’re the friendly pony, in which case everything can be made better by adding chocolate.

This chocolate sticky toffee pudding, a Green & Blacks recipe, still has all the key ingredients of a traditional sticky toffee, but with a bar and a half of dark chocolate thrown in to intensify the flavour of the sponge and take it to a whole new level of indulgence.

This recipe makes a huge amount, and you honestly don’t want to know how many calories are in the sauce alone, but it is so worth it. Seriously, go make it now – it’s the perfect winter any-time comfort pudding.

Chocolate Sticky Toffee Pudding (recipe from Green & Black’s Ultimate Chocolate Recipes, also available online)

Served 12, generously

  • 150g dark chocolate
  • 150g pitted dates, chopped
  • 300ml boiling water
  • 100g butter
  • 150g light brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 225g plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1tsp bicarbonate of soda

For the sauce:

  • 140g golden syrup
  • 140g light brown sugar
  • 50g butter
  • 115ml double cream
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Start by melting the chocolate over a low temperature then set aside.  Add the dates to a saucepan with the boiling water and simmer for 10 minutes. Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, then add in the eggs one at a time, followed by the melted chocolate. Sift in the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda and fold in.

Pour the dates and their water into a food processor and blend to a puree. Stir this into the cake mixture, then spread into a greased and lined 8×8″ square cake tin and bake at 180 degrees for about 50 minutes, or until risen and springy to the touch.

To make the sauce, heat all the ingredients in a saucepan over a medium heat until the butter has melted and the sugar dissolved. Bring to the boil and stir until thickened. To serve, cut the warm cake into squares and pour the sauce over the top. Cream of ice cream will finish it off perfectly!

Blood orange cheesecake

Blood orange cheesecake

This is going to be a pretty quick post, mainly because the picture above is the only one I took of these cheesecake that’sI’m even half happy with – apologies!

I still wanted to blog it though, because it was actually a really good cheesecake – please look at the original over at Under the High Chair and be inspired by those gorgeous photos because it is well worth making!

For me any sort of citrus cheesecake will beat most other flavours hands down, and this one has a lovely level of orange flavouring – not too overpowering but enough to give it a bit of a tang.

It’s a great texture too, and got lots of compliments from my taste testers at work – unfortunately it’s down to the fact it was eaten at work that I couldn’t take proper pictures but never mind!

It was one of my bosses’ birthdays and he is an absolute biscuit fiend, and so I made the biscuit base in his honour, using his favourite custard creams. I was actually surprised how well it worked and think I would use them again for any cheesecake where you don’t want the base to distract from the filling.

One more dodgy picture to finish, sorry sorry sorry…

Blood orange cheesecake (adapted from Under the High Chair)

  • 180g custard creams
  • 30g butter, melted
  • 560g low-fat cream cheese
  • 120g caster sugar
  • 10g cornflour
  • 60g low fat yoghurt
  • zest and juice of one lemon
  • zest and juice of one blood orange
  • 4 medium eggs

For the topping:

  • 60g white chocolate, melted
  • 20g icing sugar
  • 40g cream cheese
  • zest and juice of one blood orange

Blitz the custard creams in a food processor then pour in the melted butter and blend until well mixed. Press into the base of a grease 8″ round cake tin and bake at 190 degrees for 10-15 minutes or until golden. Leave to cool while you make the filling.

Beat the cream cheese to soften then add in the sugar and cornflour and beat to combine. Add the orange and lemon zest and juice then beat in the eggs one at a time, and finally stir in the yoghurt. Pour over the biscuit base and bake at 180 degrees for 10 minutes then turn the heat down to about 130 and bake for another hour, or until set but with a wobble in the middle. Leave to cool in the oven for a couple of hours, then at room temperature until completely cold. Chill in the fridge overnight.

To make the topping, beat the orange zest and juice into the cream cheese, then add the melted white chocolate and icing sugar. Spread over the top of the cheesecake and keep in the fridge until ready to serve.

Chocolate pudding pie

Chocolate pudding pie

This is most definitely a dessert of indulgence.

It’s pure chocolate bliss – crunchy chocolate biscuit base, dark and rich chocolate filling, puffed up and cracked at the edges, sunken and silky smooth in the centre.

As reluctant as I am to bring up the V-word in January, if your other half is anything like the pony this would make the perfect end to a romantic meal – just make sure you haven’t filled up too much on the starter and main because it’s very, very rich!

This is another recipe from the Green & Black’s cookbook I was given for Christmas, and another resounding success – I have a feeling this book will be getting plenty of use throughout the year!

Not only was this delicious but it’s really very simple to make – I highly recommend you give it a go, and buy the book while you’re at it!

Chocolate pudding pie (from Green & Black’s Ultimate Chocolate Recipes)

For the base:

  • 80g butter
  • 60g dark chocolate
  • 225g digestive biscuits

For the filling:

  • 180g butter
  • 180g dark chocolate
  • 4 medium eggs
  • 180g brown sugar (recipe calls for dark but I used light)
  • 180ml double cream

To make the base, melt together the butter and dark chocolate (microwave will be fine), and crush the biscuits, either with a rolling pin or in a food processor – they need to be fairly fine crumbs. Stir in the melted chocolate and butter to thoroughly coat the biscuit crumbs, then press into the base of a greased 9″ round springform tin, and leave in the fridge for half an hour while you make the filling.

For the filling, melt the butter and chocolate together as before, then leave to cool. Add the eggs, sugar and cream to a food processor and blend well, then pour in the melted chocolate and butter and blend again. Pour the filling over the chilled base, then bake at 180 degrees for about 45 minutes – it should puff up at the edges and be firm to the touch, but with a slight wobble. Leave to cool, then dust with icing sugar or cocoa powder to serve.

Cranberry swirl cheesecake bars

Cranberry swirl cheesecake bars

As the pony and I were going to be spending Christmas day at our house with just the two of us this year, celebrations with my family took place a couple days earlier, and I volunteered to cook.

They are all meat eaters, and my step dad in particular feels quite strongly that a meal without meat is really nothing more than an appetiser, so I always relish having the chance to show them that vegetarian meals can be every bit as tasty and satisfying as a big slab of steak.

For the main course, I went with a veggie lasagne – a bit of a cliche, but with homemade pasta and a really good tomato sauce it tastes amazing – roasted cherry tomatoes and green beans and a garlic and mozzarella flatbread/pizza type thing.

For dessert, I thought we would need something light, especially with days of roasts, Christmas pudding and yule log just around the corner, and when I saw these cheesecake bars posted by Handle the Heat I knew they would do the trick.

A buttery biscuit base and creamy vanilla cheesecake is swirled with freshly made cranberry sauce, which cuts through the sweetness perfectly. They’re also light on calories – sliced into 12 bars they’re only about 160 calories each which is pretty good for cheesecake!

They went down very well with my family, as did the rest of the meal – although they’re still a long way from being sold on the virtues of vegetarianism…

Cranberry swirl cheesecake bars (recipe adapted from Handle the Heat)

  • 175g biscuits – I used Fox’s butter crunch
  • 40g butter, melted
  • 400g low fat cream cheese
  • 150g caster sugar (50g for the cranberries, 100g for the cheesecake)
  • 100g fresh cranberries
  • 3tbsp water
  • 1 tsp vanilla paste or extract
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 1 tbsp plain flour

To make the base, blitz the biscuits in a food processor until they turn into fine crumbs, then pour the melted butter in while the mixer is running. Press into the base of an 8×8″ square greased and lined tin and bake at 180 degrees for about 10 minutes, or until golden and firm to the touch. Leave to cool.

For the cranberry sauce, heat the cranberries, 50g sugar and water in a saucepan over a medium heat for 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries have popped and created a syrupy liquid. Pour into a food processor and blent until smooth. You may need to add a little extra water to thin, or a little icing sugar to sweeten, depending on how tart the berries are.

While the cranberry sauce is cooling, beat the cream cheese with the remaining 100g sugar until smooth, then add in the eggs, vanilla and flour and beat again. Pour over the cooled biscuit base, then drop dollops of the cranberry sauce on top. Use a skewer to swirl the cranberries through the cheesecake, taking care not to over mix, then bake at 180 degrees for about 45 minutes, or until pulling away from the edges of the tin but with a slight wobble in the centre.

Leave to cool completely at room temperature, then transfer to the fridge to chill for at least 2-3 hours before slicing into bars and serving.

Apfelstrudel and baking with Truvia

I have the lovely Dom at Belleau Kitchen to thank for this strudel – it was a huge hit with the pony and I probably wouldn’t have thought about making it if it hadn’t been for Random Recipes – so thanks!

This month’s RR challenge was to dig around at the back of your cupboards to pull out a forgotten ingredient, then randomly select a cookbook and find a recipe that could use it.

When it comes to the kitchen, I’m generally pretty organised and know where everything is, so I put the pony in charge of selecting my ingredient, which ended up being a tin of ready-made custard – very gourmet!

The randomly selected cookbook was Two Greedy Italians, by Antonio Carluccio and Gennaro Contaldo, who funnily enough don’t use ready-made custard in any of their recipes. Luckily I did find a recipe that would be perfect accompanied by custard, and so I give you their Tyrolean Apfelstrudel.

As long as you don’t go crazy and try to make your own filo pastry, this recipe is super simple but gives great results.

I swapped the sugar in the recipe with Truvia, a calorie-free sweetener which I was very kindly sent a tub of to sample. I think it’s perfect in a recipe like this, where the sugar is literally just for sweetness, rather than altering the structure of the dish, and no one would ever tell the difference.

I’ve also tried Truvia in a crunchy granola bar recipe, which will be appearing here soon and in which it worked fine, but I think the real test will be using it in a sponge cake – once I’ve tried it out I’ll let you know how it goes!

Apfelstrudel (adapted from Two Greedy Italians)

  • 4 sheets filo pastry (estimate this to be about 75g, but depends which brand you use)
  • 4 large cooking apples, peeled cored and chopped (weight of chopped apples 560g)
  • 50g butter
  • 100ml water
  • 30g Truvia (or 100g sugar)
  • 1tsp cinnamon
  • handful ground oats
  • 3 tbsp sultanas
  • 50g butter melted, to brush the pastry

Add the chopped apples to a large saucepan with the butter, water and sweetener and cook over a medium heat until the apples have softened, but not completely lost their shape. Remove from the heat, then stir in the sultanas, cinnamon and ground oats – add just enough to absorb the liquid and make the mixture come together.

Lay one of the sheets of filo out on a baking tray and brush all over with the melted butter. Place another sheet on top, and repeat with all four sheets. Spoon the apple mixture into a line lengthways down the centre of the pastry, leaving a couple inches at each end. Fold in the short ends first, then roll up from the long side. Brush the top with butter, then bake at 180 degrees for about 15 minutes, or until crisp and golden.

Serve hot with your ready made custard, cream or ice cream!

Apple and blackberry crumble pie

I am fully in Autumn/Winter baking mode now, and as far as I’m concerned nothing signifies the end of summer and start of autumn more than blackberries.

This pie is adapted from a Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall recipe for the Guardian, which was about pairing the last of the summer’s produce with the start of the autumn’s, and used raspberries with the apples. He must be living in some strange micro-climate as raspberries were long gone around here when it was published!

Luckily the blackberries were still ripe for picking, and are a classic partner for apple. I pretty much followed the recipe to the letter, but I found Hugh’s quantities for both the pastry and the crumble were far too much, you could probably make 3/4 of the pastry and 2/3 of the crumble and still have some to spare.

Although I made this mainly for the pony to have for breakfast, I think it’s a perfect dessert for chilly evenings, served hot with a big dollop of custard. Which is probably why winter makes me fat…

Apple and blackberry crumble pie (adapted from The Guardian)

For the pastry:

  • 200g plain flour
  • 35g icing sugar
  • 125g butter, cubed
  • 1 large egg yolk

For the filling:

  • 6 medium apples (about 750g), peeled and cored
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 225g raspberries

For the crumble:

  • 100g plain flour
  • 75g butter
  • 50g light brown sugar
  • 50g rolled oats

To make the pastry, stir together the flour and icing sugar the rub in the butter with your fingertips, until it resembles breadcrumbs. Add the egg yolk, cutting through the mixture with a butter knife, then add a little cold water, a tiny bit at a time, until the mixture starts to come together and can be pressed into a dough. Wrap the ball of dough in cling film and chill in the fridge for 20 minutes, then roll out and use to line a 10″ flan tin. Bake blind for 10 minutes at 180 degrees, then remove baking beans and paper and bake for another 10 minutes, or until golden and crisp.

For the filling, quarter and slice the apples, then heat in a heavy based saucepan for about 5 minutes, or until starting to soften. Hugh FW uses butter for this, but I don’t think it’s necessary. Add the brown sugar and leave on the heat just until the apples are starting to caramelise, then transfer into the baked pie case. Scatter the blackberries on top.

For the crumble, rub the butter into the flour then stir in the sugar and oats. Sprinkle the mixture on top of the fruit, clumping some of it together a bit, then return the pie to the oven for about 30 minutes, or until the crumble is golden and the fruit juices are bubbling. Remove from the tin and serve while warm.

Chocolate ginger crumble cake

I’ve always liked ginger, but at the minute I LOVE ginger. I don’t know if it’s because I’ve been making gingerbread in September and doing excess amounts of raw dough taste-testing, or just because its warming spice feels right for Autumn, but right now I’m all about the ginger.

This recipe is from my oldest and best loved cookbook, Chocolate by Joanna Farrow. I made this before, years ago, and wanted to try it out again in the hope that it was as good as I remembered.

Luckily, it was! I was a bit concerned when I took it out of the tin, as it looked a bit flat and hard, but the key to this is eating it warm – the chocolate melts and the ginger flavour really comes through – delicious!

Unfortunately in the time it’s taken to get around to blogging this the cake has been eaten, which is a shame as I’m really craving some more chocolate and ginger. Guess I’ll just have to bake something else…

Chocolate ginger crumble cake (from Joanna Farrow’s Chocolate)

  • 250g butter
  • 375g plain flour
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • 175g caster sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp ground mixed spice
  • 200g milk chocolate, chopped
  • 125g dark chocolate, chopped
  • 25g stem ginger, grated
  • 2 tbsp demerara sugar

Add the butter into a bowl with the flour and baking powder and run together with your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Stir in the caster sugar, then weigh 250g of the mixture into a separate bowl and set aside. Ass the egg, vanilla and mixed spice to the remaining mixture and stir until it comes together, then press into the bottom of a greased and lined 9″ round tin.

Scatter the chocolate over the base, mix the ginger into the crumble mixture you set aside earlier, and sprinkle over the chocolate. Bake at 180 degrees for 50 minutes – 1 hour, until the crumble is golden. Serve warm, with cream or ice cream.

A celebration chocolate torte

This week we were celebrating – the pony has a new job!

The only possible way this could be celebrated was with chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate, in the form of this quadruple chocolate torte.

Chocolate brownie base, creamy chocolate topping, chocolate truffles and chocolate shavings – what more could a pony want?

I was inspired to make this when I saw Jac at Tinned Tomatoes’ deep chocolate cheesecake. The pictures just look so tempting!

I didn’t think there was enough cream cheese involved to be a proper cheesecake though, which is why I’m calling it a torte, but cheesecake or torte, biscuit base or brownie base, it’s delicious and a must-bake if you too have a chocolate lover in your life.

Celebration chocolate torte (adapted from Tinned Tomatoes)

  • 1 x 9″ round brownie base – I used this recipe, and just baked it in a round tin rather than square
  • 100g light cream cheese
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 250ml toffee flavoured yoghurt (low fat works fine)
  • 60g cocoa powder
  • 250ml double cream
  • chocolate truffles (recipe below) and chocolate shavings to decorate

Beat the caster sugar into the cream cheese until smooth, then fold in the yoghurt and then cocoa powder, making sure everything is well mixed. Whisk the cream to soft peaks, then fold into the chocolate mixture, until everything is just combined. Pour over the base (still in the tin!) and spread evenly. Leave in the fridge to set for 3-4 hours, then top with the chocolate truffles and shavings.

Simple chocolate truffles

  • 65g dark chocolate, chopped
  • 50g double cream
  • cocoa powder to coat

Heat the cream in a saucepan or in a jug in the microwave, then pour over the chopped chocolate. Leave for a minute then stir to melt all the chocolate. Leave in the fridge until the mixture has set hard. Use a spoon to scoop the mixture out into 8 small balls, then, working quickly, roll each between your hands and then roll in the cocoa powder to coat. This is a basic truffle recipe that’s infinitely adaptable – addition of any form of liqueur usually goes down well, as does coating in more melted chocolate, rolling in chopped nuts etc…