Once a gift to the gods, chocolate is now widely consumed around the world. In Italy, it’s used to add depth of flavour to braises, while closer to home, it’s paired with mint in a classic Australian biscuit. As we approach Easter, forget the eggs and give these rich temptations a crack.
By
Rachel Bartholomeusz

14 Jun 2013 - 4:04 PM  UPDATED 30 Mar 2021 - 4:59 PM

Recipes

France
Demonstrating classical elements of French patisserie, this decadent tart features a chocolate shortcrust pastry shell filled with morello cherries and a traditional chocolate cream, topped with a chocolate ganache glaze and glacé citron.

Chocolate cherry tart (tarte aux cerises et au chocolate)

 

Australia
Arnott’s much-loved Mint Slice has long been an Australian favourite, and we’ve paid homage to the classic biscuit here with a homemade version.

Peppermint slice

 

Italy
Agrodolce is a traditional sweet sour sauce believed to have originated in Sicily. While the exact ingredients of this reduction vary between regions, it commonly includes vinegar, sugar, wine, raisins and pine nuts, leading some to believe it has Arabic influences.

Sweet and sour braised rabbit (coniglio in agrodolce)

 

Lebanon
Derived from the Arabic word for "sweet", the term halva or similar is used in countries around the world to refer to countless varieties of nut- or flour-based confectionery. This sesame-based version, popular throughout the Middle East, is from Lebanon and is swirled with chocolate, slivered almonds and pistachios.

Chocolate nut halva

 

Hungary
A popular Hungarian street snack, this yeast pastry is coiled around rolling-pin shaped moulds, then baked on a rotisserie until golden, and finally dusted in sugar or other toppings, such as nuts, chocolate or sprinkles.

Chimney cake with nutella (kürtoskalács)

 

Mexico
This layered chocolate cake with ancho chilli paste and chilli-infused icing may be a modern creation, but the combination of chilli and chocolate is believed to have originated in Mexico with the Aztecs.

Chocolate chilli cake (pastel de chocolate y chile)

 

Photography by John Laurie.