I have to admit that I’m not entirely convinced about the combination of dark chocolate and roses. Rosewater and pistachio nougat — absolutely — that is a traditional Middle Eastern dessert. Nougat and chocolate — sure, why not. I think I’ve seen chocolate coated nougat before. It’s basically chocolate and marshmallow flavours. That said, there is a chocolate bar I recall from the far past called a ‘Big Turk’ which was chocolate-coated Turkish Delight. I just did a search on it and it’s actually still being made by Nestlé. Who knew?
Perhaps if the cake was made with white chocolate? I will try that in the future.
Anyway, following are the recipes for each of the components of this plate.
Flourless Chocolate Cake
The ubiquitous ‘molten chocolate cakes’ that still exist on many restaurant menus. This recipe is from a restaurant I used to work at.
1 lb bittersweet chocolate
¾ lb unsalted butter
1 ¼ lbs sugar
8 large eggs
8 egg yolks
1 oz orange liquor
4 tablespoons cornstarch
Chop the chocolate into small pieces and melt it with the butter in a bain marie. Meanwhile combine the sugar and cornstarch in one bowl and whisk the eggs and egg yolks in another bowl.
I use a stand mixer for this. First put the melted chocolate and butter mixture into the mixing bowl with a whisk attachment. Start the mixer on slow speed. Slowly add the sugar and cornstarch to the mixing bowl. Once that is well incorporated with the butter and chocolate, gradually add the egg mixture, and finally the shot of orange liquor.
Mix the lot until it looks glossy and paler in colour. It will also bulk up somewhat.
I use this to make individual small cakes. Basically take some ringmolds and butter and flour them. Then use a collar of parchment paper to line the inside. This may be overkill. Using either parchment paper collars or butter/ flour should be good enough to make for a non-stick result. Put the prepared ringmolds on a baking pan lined with a silicon mat, or a sheet of parchment paper. Scoop about 4 to 6 oz of chocolate batter into the ringmolds and bake at 375°F for about 20 mins.
The idea is to see a raw circle in the centre about the size of a silver dollar. When you re-heat the cake later, the centre will still be slightly wet, hence the ‘molten’ in molten chocolate cake.
Rosewater Ice Cream
5 T rosewater
1 vanilla bean
2 ½ cups 18% table cream
2 large eggs
120 g sugar
dried rose petals
Split the vanilla pod and place the pod and seeds with the cream in a pot. Heat until the mixture just comes to the boil.
Meanwhile in a bowl, beat the eggs and sugar together then slowly add the hot cream to the egg mixture. Beat this constantly to prevent the eggs from curdling.
Remove the vanilla pod and place everything back in the pot and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly until the mixture thickens slightly to the consistency of a light custard. Do not boil the mixture or the eggs will curdle.
Pour the lot into a bowl and refrigerate until well-chilled. Add the rosewater and rose petals and process in an ice-cream machine.
Something about the texture of this ice cream reminded me of Indian ice cream, aka kulfi. 5 tablespoons of rosewater is enough to let the flavour burst through, but you may want to add an extra tablespoon-or-two if you really love rosewater.
Pistachio Nougat…recipe posted later…