“With the flavours of Spain and the passion of flamenco, this chocolate dessert ticks all the boxes for me. The cakes should be just cooked on the outside and starting to pull away from the sides of the moulds, while the centres should be soft and molten. Because all ovens vary so much in temperature, if you can, bake one to check the timing before baking the rest. This is a great dessert for entertaining because everything can be prepared a few days ahead, then all you have to do is pop the fondants in the oven just before serving.” Shane Delia, Shane Delia’s Moorish Spice Journey
Almond milk ice-cream
- 100 g caster sugar
- 425 ml almond milk
- 4 egg yolks
- 250 ml (1 cup) thickened cream
- 250 ml (1 cup) Pedro Ximénez sherry
- 250 g sugar
- 185 g (1 cup) dried white baby white figs (see note)
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 vanilla bean, halved lengthways
- 1 orange, zest finely grated
- 80 g (½ cup) roasted almonds, coarsely chopped
Chipotle chocolate fondant
- 50 g (½ cup) cocoa, for dusting
- 150 g dark chocolate buttons
- 1 tsp dried chipotle chilli powder (see note)
- 150 g unsalted butter, chopped
- 125 ml (½ cup) Pedro Ximénez sherry
- 3 eggs
- 3 egg yolks
- 55 g (¼ cup) caster sugar
- 35 g (¼ cup) plain flour, sifted
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Freezing time 3 hours
Chilling time 2 hours
To make the ice-cream, place the sugar and 125 ml (½ cup) of almond milk in a saucepan and stir over low heat until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and set aside.
Using an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the egg yolks until thick and pale. Add warm almond milk mixture and beat on low speed until cooled.
Whisk the cream in a separate bowl until soft peaks form. Stir in the remaining almond milk, then fold in the egg yolk mixture. Pour the mixture into a 500 ml (2 cup) capacity container and freeze for 3 hours or until firm. Allow to soften slightly before serving.
Meanwhile, to make the poached figs, place the sherry, sugar and 250 ml (1 cup) water in a small saucepan and stir over low heat until the sugar dissolves. Add the figs, cinnamon, vanilla and orange zest and simmer for 10 minutes or until the figs are soft. Add the almonds, remove from the heat and set aside.
To make the fondants, lightly grease six 125 ml (½ cup)-capacity dariole moulds, then dust with the cocoa, shaking away any excess.
Place the chocolate buttons, chilli and butter in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of just simmering water, making sure the bottom of the bowl is not touching the water. Stir occasionally until melted, then remove from the heat. Add the sherry and stir to combine, then set aside.
Using an electric mixer, beat the eggs and egg yolks until thick and pale. With the motor running, gradually add the sugar and beat until well combined. Gently fold in the sifted flour, then stir in the chocolate mixture and mix gently. Spoon the mixture into a piping bag fitted with a 2 cm-wide nozzle. Pipe the mixture into the moulds, then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours or up to 5 days.
When ready to serve, preheat the oven to 200°C. Remove the plastic wrap, then place the moulds on a baking tray and bake for 10-12 minutes or until the fondants are firm around the edge. Remove from the oven and carefully run a knife around the edge of each mould and invert onto serving plates. Serve with a spoonful of fig compote and the almond milk ice-cream.
• Also known as Persian figs, baby white figs are available from Middle Eastern grocers but you can use sliced larger dried figs if unavailable.
• Chipotle powder is available from specialist food stores or spice merchants. If unavailable, use the same amount of pureed chipotle chillies in adobo sauce.