The Chocolate Fondant or Molten Lava Chocolate cake is one of the most loved dessert items out there. This is probably the most asked about dessert from people to me, asking if I can make this. The excitement and anticipation of wondering if it will be perfectly molten inside is what draws in the audience. You can see the faces light up when they crack open the fondant cake with there spoon and they see that thick, rich and decadent chocolate "lava" flow out from the core. (thus also know as the lava cake) Its like your first kiss, you will always remember where you had your first chocolate fondant and how amazing every bite was. For those who had a bad first experience and never had it again, I strongly advice that you give this a go.
With this recipe I decided to add something a little different to all my dear friends who absolutely love caramel. You simply make a batch of Butter Scotch sauce and allow it to set. Once it has set is mostly firm, use a parisian scoop to make small balls and place onto a baking tray with silicon paper on. Place into your freezer and allow to become completely frozen. You can use this for many different sauces or filling to make your chocolate fondant your own.
180C/356F for 6-7 minutes
Caramel Centered Chocolate Fondant
This is one of the simplest prepared sauces which you can prepare in under 3 minutes. The word Meuniere translates literally to "miller's wife". Meuniere also refers to both a sauce and a cooking method used mostly for delicate fish. The cooking method is when you dredge the fillet of fish in seasoned flour. The reason for this it to protect the fish due to its delicate nature. Later on I will post a great fish Meuniere recipe with french style mint peas but today I'm going to show you how to make just the sauce. The reason I love this sauce is because it's sharp and refreshing due to the lemon juice, and is also silky smooth and velvety from the butter. The salty cured capers also add a lovely dimension to the sauce which would otherwise make the sauce flat if not incorporated.
This is going to be my last post from South Africa. My next post will be when I'm in Kuwait and starting my next culinary journey in the local cuisine as well as in Japanese cuisine! I'm very excited and eager to share it with all of you.
Edited by: Monique Boaventura
Potatoes and onions are two ingredients which don't always get the respect they deserve. These two ingredients are almost always the basis of most dishes. The potatoes are used as the starch component on the plate, which serves as the delivery and bulking component of the dish. The onion being the base of most sauces out there, forming the foundation of the sauce, and we all know if you don't have a good foundation, you're going to run into trouble later on. So I decided to make these two the working horse of the kitchen and the stars of the dish today. Using only a few herbs to add a bit of flare and a dash of wine and cream for a bit of body. This is a great hearty dish, perfect for a cold summers day. I've also paired the soup with the crunchy element of potato tuile's, to add a different texture and colour to the plate. For the garnishes I've used a sprig of Rosemary and some Oregano flowers just to bring a bit of green to the party. Some chopped chives or even spring onions sprinkled over the top would also do wonders to the presentation of the dish.
Edited by: Monique Boaventura
This sauce can be made and used with many different proteins or stir-fry dishes. It's a very simple and easy recipe to follow, and can be stored in the fridge for 1-2 weeks (ensuring the container which is being used is properly sterilised).
For the wine I used a good quality Merlot, it has a lower tannin count than other more full bodied red wines such as Cabernet or Sauvignon. The tannin in wines are what give the wine the bitter and woody puckering sensation. With less tannin in the Merlot, it allows for the fruity essence of the wine to be more present, making it perfect for the sauce.
Edited by: Monique Boaventura
So many people I know go crazy for a good Eggs Benedict. I've chosen to post a recipe today for the eggs Benedict, starting from the base to the topping! There are three different Benedict's, well at least three different traditional variations. Firstly there is the Eggs Benedict, which includes Gypsy Ham with a two poached eggs and hollandaise sauce. Secondly there is the Eggs Royale, this is a more dressed up Benedict, it has smoked salmon in the place of the Gypsy Ham and also has the poached eggs and Hollandaise sauce. Then last but not least, we have the eggs Florentine, this Benedict is served with a spinach base.
All of these different Benedict's are all traditionally served on a English muffin which is split in half and then place onto a pan or flat top with butter to crisp up. But now days we get a lot more variations of this morning delight, some of the others I've heard of is using bacon or parma ham. One thing which I have noticed when I go to restaurants in South Africa is that the Chefs name there Benedict's incorrectly, I don't know if they do this for the people so that they know that its still a Benedict that they ordering or just out of ignorance.
Ingredients for English Muffin
Ingredients for Hollandaise
Now that you have all your required ingredients ready, you are now able to construct your very own home made Eggs Benedict and enjoy it in the comfort of your own home.
Tonight I'm going to give you a great recipe to make your very own Thai Green Curry paste. So no more excuses to go and buy the bottled Thai paste, this recipe will give you a much more flavourful taste to your Thai green curry!
I was first introduced to this wonderful fresh Asian style sauce/paste while i was working at The Saxon Boutique Hotel and Spa. Its a ver simple paste to make, but packs a huge punch of flavour. We used it in a Thai style egg noodle chicken stir fry, along with some shrimps and nuts. It has a very bright and refreshing flavour, which is perfect for a light meal.
Demi-glace is one of the most popular sauces used in restaurants to go along with roast meats. In the food industry, this sauce is made in very large batches as it's easily stored in the freezer and can last for prolonged periods of time. When they make the sauce it can take up to 18-24 hours to finish. The reason for the prolonged preparations time is due to the huge size pot used to make it. They have to reduce the sauce by at least half, some reduce it even further to create a more intense flavour. ( you can imagine how long it will take to reduce 50L down to 25L) The sauce consist of two different parts, first part being a clear beef stock and the second part being espagnole sauce. (espagnole sauce is essentially a thickened brown beef stock with tomato paste added as well as a brown roux). So today I'm going to give you a quick and easy recipe for the espagnole sauce which you will then turn into a Demi-glace sauce. (Sauce making is a true skill and art form, in hotel kitchens and some restaurant there are chefs which only make sauces and nothing else, they are called Saucier Chef.)
There are so many self proclaimed foodies out there now a days, and each one claiming to be the best. But most of them forget the basics of cooking. Stock in a kitchen is like the foundation of a sky scraper! If you don't have a solid and sturdy foundation for your sky scraper, it will fall sometime during the construction of the building, or even worse, once the building is completed and then falls. What I'm trying to say is that if you don't start with a good, flavourful stock in the beginning of your cooking process you will fall short in flavour somewhere down the line and will have to compensate for the lack of flavour later on, this is wasting time and ingredients.
Like my Chef at the South African Chefs Academy told me: "Do it nice or do it twice!!!"
So today I'm going to help you out and give you a step by step recipe for the perfect home made chicken stock!
Storing the stock
Apples, Cinnamon and Ice cream: three thing that remind me of Christmas in South Africa.
Apple and raisin crumble
• 50g flour
• 40g granulated sugar
• 30g butter
• 10g brown sugar
• 1 can or 2 poached apples
• 10g raisins
• 2g cinnamon
• Mix the flour, butter and granulated sugar to get a bread crumb consistency
• Place apple pieces into a ramekin along with the raisins
• Cover with bread crumb mixture and sprinkle with brown sugar
• Place into 180C oven for 20-25minutes
• Serve with crème anglaist (see recipe page)
• 500ml cream
• 500ml milk
• 6 yolks
• 150g sugar
• 5ml vanilla
• 25ml amarula (You can also use Baileys)
• Bring milk, cream and vanilla to the boil then allow to cool for a hour
• Mix yolks and sugar
• Bring milk and cream back to boil, temper egg yolks and add to mixture off heat along with
• Strain mixture and cool down
• Place into sorbetier and allow to set ( Or you can place the mixture into a large container with a big surface area and place the liquid in it. Place the container into the freezer and every 10 minutes remove and give a good whisk and return to freezer.)
• Place into freezer for 90-120 minutes
P.S. Will be posting a home made Baileys recipe soon as well!
• 2 apples
• 200ml flour
• 10ml baking powder
• 125ml corn flour
• 5ml salt
• 5ml cinnamon
• 2ml nutmeg
• 2ml ginger
• 190ml cold water
• 50ml sugar
• Peel the apples and cut into 1/8 even wedges ( sprinkle with lemon juice)
• Mix in a bowl the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger powder, cold water
• Allow for the mixture to rest for 10 minutes
• Cover the apple wedges in corn flour and then cover with batter
• Place into a 170C deep fryer and cook till golden brown (use a deep pot with a thermometer will also work perfectly!)
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I'm a chef at heart and by trade, enjoy what I do and have a passion for the culinary world.