The trick to chocolate fondant is not to over-bake them or let them sit around for too long after they're taken out of the oven, as the gorgeous gooey centre will disappear. The dimensions of your ramekins will affect the final baking time – if they're tall and skinny, they'll require less time. Those that are short and squat will require the maximum time indicated. Like anything, practice makes perfect and, after a couple of goes, you'll soon discover how long it takes to bake your fondants perfectly.
- melted butter, to grease
- cocoa powder, sifted, to dust
- 250 g good quality dark chocolate, chopped
- 180 g unsalted butter, chopped
- 4 eggs, at room temperature
- 2 egg yolks, at room temperature
- 110 g (½ cup) caster sugar
- 2 tbsp Frangelico, brandy or whiskey
- 110 g (¾ cup) plain flour
- 2 tbsp cocoa powder
- icing sugar, to dust (optional)
- cream or vanilla ice-cream, to serve
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.
Preheat oven to 200°C. Brush 10 x 125 ml (½ cup) metal dariole moulds (see Baker's tips) well with the butter and then dust with cocoa to lightly coat.
Put the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (don’t let the base of the bowl touch the water). Stir occasionally until melted and smooth. Remove from heat and set aside.
Use an electric mixer to whisk the whole eggs, egg yolks and sugar for 4-5 minutes or until very thick and pale and a ribbon trail forms. Whisk in the chocolate mixture and the Frangelico. Sift together the flour and cocoa powder, add to the chocolate mixture and use a large metal spoon or spatula to fold until evenly combined.
Divide the mixture evenly among the prepared moulds and place on an oven tray. Bake in preheated oven for 11-13 minutes or until the puddings are set on top, but still feel a little soft when you press in the centre with your finger. Remove from oven and turn onto serving plates (see Baker’s tips). Serve immediately dusted with cocoa or icing sugar, if desired, and accompanied by cream or ice-cream.
• You can also use ceramic ramekins or dishes instead of metal ones, but you'll need to increase the baking time by 2-3 minutes.
• You may need to run a palette knife around the outside of the puddings to release them from the moulds.
Anneka's mission is to connect home cooks with the magic of baking, and through this, with those they love. Read our interview with her or for hands-on baking classes and baking tips, visit her at BakeClub. Don't miss what's coming out of her oven via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.
Photography by Alan Benson. Styling by Trish Heagerty. Food preparation by Wendy Quisumbing.
This recipe is from our online column, Bakeproof: Comfort puddings.