This is a dessert I go back to time and time again when I want to make something delicious and impressive looking, but is easy to prepare and not particularly time consuming i.e. my kinda cooking. I really like making these for friends, as they’re always surprised when I tell them just how easy these delights are to throw together.
I’m also on a secret mission to demystify food and cooking. It doesn’t need to be complex or fancy to taste and look good. Anybody can do it – and in my view should be able to – cooking and understanding food is a life-skill which has been continually eroded in recent times. Anyway, I digress. Considering how luxurious this dessert looks and feels when you taste it, you really don’t need to spend that much to make it – bonus!
I think my favourite thing about these little puds is the combination of rich, oozy chocolate in the middle plus the almost jam-like raspberries in the bottom. It’s both incredibly rich yet palate cleansing at the same time. It’s kind of a hybrid between a fondant and a soufflé; to be honest, it doesn’t matter what it is when it tastes that bloody good.
So, if you need a stress-free dessert for a dinner party or you just fancy a treat one night, then why not try knocking these up? Let me know how you get on or if you throw together any exciting flavour combinations.
Ingredients (makes 6 ramekins/small pots worth)
200g dark chocolate, melted
60g unsalted butter plus extra to grease the ramekins
3 eggs, separated
100g golden caster sugar
Pinch of salt
Orange zest (optional)
Cocoa powder for dusting the ramekins
Cream to serve
1) Preheat your oven to 180 (gas mark 5)
2) Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of hot water (make sure it doesn’t boil or touch the bottom of the bowl)
3) When melted, take off the heat and stir through the butter – I would add my flavourings at this point e.g. salt, vanilla, orange, as the residual heat will bring out the flavour
4) Separate your eggs into two bowls
5) Whisk up the yolks with the sugar until light and fluffy
6) Using an electric hand whisk (it’s quicker and easier!!!) beat the whites until firm, enough so they hold but not as firm as you would for meringue
7) When the chocolate is cooled, pour in the yolk and sugar mixture and stir through
8) Next, fold in the whites until combined and you have a nice smooth thick mixture – be careful not to knock out the air so use a plastic or silicon spatula or metal spoon and don’t beat it once the whites are mixed in
9) Butter your ramekins then put a bit of cocoa powder in each one and tap it round to cover the whole dish – this gives it something to cling on to as it rises
10) Place some raspberries in the bottom of each dish – I completely cover the bottom so about 6-8 raspberries
11) Spoon the mixture on top then bake for about 15 minutes
12) The puds should rise up quite a lot, be cracked on the top but gooey in the middle – serve with loads of cream or ice cream…or whatever you prefer! YUM.