We're spoiling you with another fabulous entry in the Godiva Chocolate Challenge competition. Nisha's chocolate and raspberry creme brulees are based on Godiva crème brulee truffle. Even without a blow torch you can still acheive a classic caramelised topping for your dessert.
I wouldn't call myself a hardcore chocolate fan, as opposed to the husband whose aim in life is to eat as many chocolates possible (in one go). That said, there are times I crave a bar of chocolate more than anything else, and I kind of become a monster rummaging through my chocolate stash. At that time even a bar of cooking chocolate would do fine. I do use chocolate a lot in baking and what I've realised is that cooking with good quality chocolate makes so much of a difference, and Belgian chocolates top the list.
When I was asked to take part in the Godiva chocolate challenge
, I first thought I'd go all out and make something extraordinary. I scouted around all my fancy cookbooks and bookmarked a couple of interesting chocolate recipes. And then I thought to myself, I'm not the fancy-cooking type, I'm more the easy-to-put-together type. I thought about all those chocolate goodies I've tried and each one was better than the other, which made decision making quite a feat. And that's when I realised, I'd once tried a crème brulee truffle from Godiva long back and that I should experiment with that flavour. Vanilla creme brulee is a regular dessert at ours and I hadn't experimented with the chocolate version. Throw in some raspberries, because everyone knows chocolate and raspberries are a match made in heaven, and I knew I would hit the spot.
So that's exactly what I prepared for the challenge and we loved it. I don't own a blow torch, so I made use of my trusty oven grill. It works great, except that if you take your eyes away for a second, you could end up with burnt cream, and not in a nice caramelised sort of way. So watch it like a hawk and if you are not sure of the grill strength, try with one first and then continue.
I would have loved to add some Chambord raspberry liqueur as well, but couldn't get my hands on it and so had to pass. I garnished the crème brulee with a macaron filled with the creme brulee mix. I just took aside a bit of the mix before it was whisked with the egg yolk, put it back on the heat along with a bit more chocolate and let it thicken. It was then refrigerated to get a truffle like consistency. I then crushed some raspberries and mixed into it before piping it on to the macarons.
Chocolate and raspberry crème brulee
300ml double cream
50 gms good quality dark chocolate (70 % cocoa), finely chopped
1 tsp vanilla extract
50 gms caster sugar + enough to sprinkle on top
3 egg yolks
Around 12 to 15 raspberries + enough to garnish
Macarons and mint leaves to garnish
Pre heat oven to 150C and place 3 crème brulee dishes into a deep roasting pan. Divide the raspberries between the 3 dishes (scatter them around).
Bring the cream to a boil in a saucepan. Reduce heat and simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring continuously, so that its doesn't form a film on top. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract.
Keep the chocolate ready in a bowl and pour over the vanilla infused cream. Whisk until smooth.
Whisk the egg yolk and caster sugar together in a separate bowl till well combined. But don't over beat as you don't want it all light and fluffy. Slowly pour the chocolate cream into the egg mix, bit by bit, whisking continuously. The mix becomes a bit thick, which is what you are aiming at.
Strain the mix into the 3 prepared crème brulee dishes, till about 3/4th full.
Fill the roasting pan with hot water, making sure it comes up at least half way up the sides and gently place on to the middle rack of the oven. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until they are just about set. It's ok if its a bit wobbly in the middle and looks a bit underdone, as it will set further in the refrigerator.
Remove the dishes from the water bath and cool on wire racks after which you can chill them in the refrigerator overnight or till ready to use.
Place a rack closest to your oven grill and preheat to maximum.
Take the dishes out of the refrigerator and sprinkle with caster sugar, as evenly as possible. Gently tap to distribute them evenly.
Place under the grill till the top is well browned and caramelised, say around 2 minutes. Watch it carefully, it doesn't take long to mess up. Take it out and keep aside to cool (holding back the urge to touch) after which the top would harden.
Garnish with French macarons, raspberries and some mint leaves and serve.
Inspired to make your own chocolate creation? Enter the Godiva Chocolate Challenge by 15th March