Warning! The following recipe may invoke inappropriate noises and drooling. (You may want to read this one on your own… just saying.)
With Valentine’s Day just around the corner I thought I’d try baking something deliciously decadent and just downright sinful to help those looking to impress their loved one this weekend. You can thank me later. 😉
Now, when I think of sexy foods I immediately think of melted chocolate. I mean, there’s no denying that ‘weak at the knees’ feeling you get when you see a glossy, dark chocolate being poured. Am I right?
Hence, Black Forest Chocolate Fondants.
Rich, hot, dark chocolate cake… an oozy, melty middle… drizzled with a brandy spiked cherry sauce. (My gosh I’m swooning just writing this!)
Yup, these little beauties are guaranteed to woo anyone with the irresistible combination of sweet, fruity, rich, chocolatey, and, let’s face it… boozy!
Saying that, you don’t need to be trying to impress someone to enjoy this recipe! Trust me. If you happen to be single, make em anyway! You could share the second with a friend… or just, you know, have them both in the privacy of your own room. I wouldn’t judge.
In fact, I’ll do the same.
*cue Marvin Gaye*
To start, I made a cherry coulis by adding pitted dark cherries, sugar, water and lemon juice into a saucepan. I brought this to the boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar, then let this cook for 5 minutes till the cherries were soft. I then whizzed this up in a food processor (once cooled) then passed it through a sieve to get a smooth cherry coulis. I left this to chill in the fridge till ready to serve.
Before making the chocolate fondant mixture, I macerated 4 pitted cherries in a tablespoon of cherry brandy to place in the middle of the fondants. I left these in the fridge to chill, soften and absorb the brandy until needed. If you don’t want to use alcohol you could always use a tablespoon of orange juice instead – you want something acidic to break down the berries and help them release their juices.
For the chocolate fondant mixture, I started by melting the rich dark chocolate, and the butter in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water till glossy and smooth. You could do this in bursts of 30 seconds in the microwave and stirring in between to save time (just take care not to burn it!). Personally I prefer melting chocolate over a double boiler because it’s just so satisfying to stir! #swoon
I then left the melted buttery chocolate to cool to room temperature whilst I prepared the rest of the ingredients.
In another bowl, I whisked the whole egg, egg yolk, and sugar till pale, thick and fluffy.
I gradually added the melted chocolate to the fluffy eggs (dribbling it down the side of the metal bowl to help it cool) and slowly mixed it together.
I then added the flour and folded this gently into the mixture.
To assemble the fondants, I pre-prepared 2 dariole tins by greasing the insides with butter and coating with cocoa powder. I spooned in the chocolate fondant mixture to about half way of the dariole tins, before popping in 2 of the macerated cherries (which I’d drained beforehand, adding the boozy liquid to the cherry coulis!). I topped this with more of the chocolate batter till there was only a 1cm ish gap from the top of the tins.
I then left these to set up in the fridge for around 30 minutes. You could always make these the night before and leave them in the fridge until needed.
Once suitably chilled, I placed the fondants on a baking tray and baked at 180°C for 10-12 minutes. You’ll know they’re cooked when the top of the fondants have risen (but with a slightly sunken middle), and look baked instead of gooey.
Immediately turn out onto a plate, and serve hot with a dollop of vanilla ice cream and the boozy cherry coulis.
- For the cherry coulis:
- 200g fresh dark cherries, pitted and halved
- 3tsp granulated sugar
- 1tsp lemon juice
- 4tbsp water
- For the fondant:
- 4 fresh dark cherries, pitted
- 1tbsp cherry brandy
- 40g caster sugar
- 75g dark chocolate, chopped
- 75g butter, chopped, plus extra for greasing
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 large whole egg
- 1tbsp plain flour
- cocoa powder, for greasing
- Add the cherries, sugar, water and lemon juice to a saucepan. Bring to the boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
- Continue to cook for 5 minutes until the cherries become soft. Allow to cool.
- Blitz in a food processor to a smooth puree.
- Press through a sieve into a bowl, then leave in the fridge to cool until needed.
- Grease 2 small dariole tins with butter then coat with cocoa powder. Leave in the fridge until read to use.
- In a small bowl, add the cherry brandy to the fresh cherries and leave to macerate until needed.
- Place the chopped butter and chocolate into a heatproof bowl and melt over a pan of simmering water. (Do not let the base of the bowl touch the hot water!)
- Once melted, remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
- Into a large bowl, add the egg yolk, whole egg and sugar. Whisk until thick and fluffy.
- Gradually whisk the melted chocolate into the fluffy eggs.
- Sift in the flour and carefully fold into the mixture to incorporate.
- Spoon the chocolate batter into the prepared dariole tins, filling them halfway.
- Drain the macerated cherries, saving the liquid (add this to the cherry coulis!). Place 2 cherries in the centre of each chocolate fondant.
- Spoon on more of the chocolate batter leaving about 1cm from the top of the dariole tins.
- Leave in the fridge for a minimum of 30 minutes to set, or even overnight.
- Preheat oven to 180°C.
- Once the fondants have set up, place onto a baking tray and bake from chilled for 10-12 minutes until the top is no longer gooey and looks cooked. Immediately turn out onto a plate.
- Serve with a dollop of vanilla ice cream drizzled with the cherry coulis.