Feasting (or Ffffffff…ummmm…I give up…Chocolate) 7

February 23, 2014

Finally folks, here is the post I promised. There is chocolate. Oh yes. I prepared this post after Ria’s ethereal Fog post and I was on a bit of an F word buzz. F being for Feast. And Fantastic. And February, before she vanishes. And Fffffffwwwwooooooaaarr because you’ve eaten so much you need to unbutton your trousers.

It’s been a very good season for feasting. We’ve had BBQ weather, picnic weather, sandwiches and ice-cream weather. Weather for standing at the open door of your cool-bellied fridge and marveling at all the bounty inside. And for those of you who follow our instagram feed you’ve probably already noticed it’s been The Summer of Chocolate. I’ve done so much afghan biscuit making I’ve been asked for the recipe. Which has meant making (ahem, eating) many, many more batches of biscuits to get it perfect.

So burdensome.

Today, because of all the chocky munching I’ve been doing, I have not one but….wait for it…it gets sequential…TWO great chocolate recipes for you AND a link to another, making it a trifecta of chocolate goodness.

I know, I know, don’t thank me (just send cash).

 

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First up….

1. Afghans (recipe adapted from this one by kiwibaking.com)

What: Crunchy-fudgey dumpling shaped chocolate biscuits smothered in ganache and topped with a walnut hat.

Good for: Morning tea, afternoon tea, gifting and midnight snacking.

You’ll need: 

– 200 grams butter

– 1/2 cup sugar

– 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

– 1 1/2 cups flour

– 4 tablespoons of cocoa ( I often use raw cacao instead, as I have it for making these and it makes the biscuit slightly less cocoa-y. Which is good for later when I drape it, overbearingly, with ganache. Both versions are yum.)

– 2 cups of cornflakes (please, please, please don’t use weetbix)

– Pinch of salt

– Walnuts

The How:

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees centigrade / 350 fahrenheit

2. Cream butter and sugar. Then add vanilla and stir through.

3. Combine flour, cornflakes, salt and cocoa / cacao. Add this to the butter+sugar. Mix well.

4. Roll into golf ball size and place on a cold, greased tray. Put a little thumbprint in the top of each one if you want to (for walnut placement post ganache-ing)

5. Bake for 15 minutes.

6. Once cooled dress the biscuits with ganache (I would halve that particular recipe) and a walnut.

 

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2. Spiced Chocolate Pots (adapted from Rick Stein’s French Odyssey)

What: Dense, rich (!!), subtly spiced chocolate treasure / love potion dressed with crème fraiche and dusted with cocoa

Good For: Dinner parties (we had them for a Mexi themed NYE dinner), being a bit fancy and generally impressing the knickers off your friends.

You’ll need:

– 225 grams chocolate (minimum 60% cocoa solids)

– 15g soft butter

– 4 egg yolks

– 150 ml double cream

– 150 ml full-cream milk

– 50 g caster sugar

– 6 tablespoons creme fraiche

– Spices you fancy (I used 1/4 teaspoon crushed chilli flakes, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon and a pinch of chinese all spice)

– cocoa powder for dusting

The How:

1. Break chocolate into a heatproof bowl and rest over a pan of gently simmering water. Leave till melted then remove and stir till smooth.

2. Stir in softened butter and egg yolks.

3. Place cream, milk and sugar in a small pan, bring to boil, then stir in chocolate mix and spices.

4. Pour into espresso cups or tiny glasses and leave somewhere cold to set but don’t refrigerate.

5. Serve with a dollop of creme fraiche and dust with cocoa powder.

 

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3. Vanilla bean ice-cream with salted caramel and cocoa nib cookie crumb

What: A grown-up icecream sundae with the perfect balance of sweet, salty, bitter and FUN.

Good For: Crowds, barbecues and hot days; grown-ups who are not really grown-up at all.

If I could adapt or improve this recipe to make it my own I would. But seriously, why gild the lily? So, here is the link. Brought to you by the good folks of Design Files Daily and Jade Bentley of Monsieur Truffe whose instagram feed  (Easter chocolate moulds and deliveries of beautifully wrapped chocolate bars from all over the planet!) is killing me.

There you are: my chocolate (recipe) triplets. Enjoy!

May the rest of your February be fruitful, feast-ful and fabulous,

HUGS, Hannah x

7 comments

1 Ria Voros { 02.23.14 at 3:49 pm }

Oh god. You kill me. Which one should I make first? Good thing I bought a big bag of dark chocolate baking chunks yesterday. Tell me: where do Afghans get their name? It’s very curious and I can’t help thinking of a warm blanket and a skinny long-haired dog…

2 Hannah Tunnicliffe { 02.23.14 at 6:35 pm }

Good question, Ria. No-one knows why they are called Afghans. It’s a great mystery. They featured in the Edmonds cookbook which was a kiwi baking bible, became wildly popular and origins were forgotten. Reckon I’d make number one first, then three, then two. Then shuffle and repeat. And repeat… X

3 Liz O'Brien { 02.25.14 at 12:59 pm }

Yay! An afghan recipe. Hard to get hold of these beauties in London. Will definitely be my next Saturday afternoon project. Thank you!!!

4 Hannah { 02.25.14 at 8:39 pm }

Hey you! 🙂 Yes, you have to try them. Once you have cornflakes in the house it’s impossible not to make batches and batches. Love is winging its way to London…. x

5 Best of Season: SH Summer — fork and fiction { 03.09.14 at 5:42 am }

[…] a bit disappointed by shoddy fruit this summer (what happened there, NZ?) so compensated by eating stacks of chocolate and making sexy salads, some of which were inspired by the great “Super Natural Every Day” […]

6 5 with … Hannah Tunnicliffe | Organised Chaos { 09.11.14 at 3:06 am }

[…] I haven’t made it for a while and I have been thinking about it. That’s a sign of a good recipe, right? Just because this is “healthy” please don’t get the impression that I am one of those “I only eat tofu at sunrise with Taurus rising” type of people. As evidenced by this post with not one but THREE different chocolate recipes:   http://www.forkandfiction.com/archives/3005 […]

7 Season of Salt and Honey : 5 Minutes with Author Hannah Tunnicliffe { 03.31.15 at 7:47 pm }

[…] icing and a walnut. I have adapted the traditional recipe to suit the way I like them; here is a link. (Top tip: my kids prefer to top with a freeze-dried raspberry instead of a […]

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