Steamed Moist Chocolate Cake
For the cake batter
- 70 g butter
- 10 g heavy cream
- 80 g castor sugar
- 90 g fresh milk
- ¼ tsp vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- 65 g all-purpose flour
- 20 g cocoa powder
- 10 g dark chocolate, melted
- ¼ tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp baking soda
For a simple chocolate ganache
- 100 g chocolate (dark or milk chocolate)
- 90 g cream
- Combine and heat the sugar, milk, vanilla extract, butter and cream in a saucepan until the sugar has dissolved and butter has melted. Ingredients need not come to a boil. Remove from heat and leave it to cool once ingredients have melted.
- Once cooled, whisk in the egg, beating until the egg is well combined.
- Sift the cocoa powder, flour, baking powder and baking soda in a large mixing bowl. Pour the liquid mixture into the dry ingredients and mix well, making sure the batter is free of lumps.
- Pour the batter into a prepared pan and place it in the steamer. You need not preheat the steamer. Steam over medium heat for about 30 minutes and make sure that the top of the pan is covered loosely with a sheet of aluminum foil. Insert a skewer to test for doneness. If it comes out clean, remove from the steamer, otherwise continue steaming for a further 5 minutes before testing again.
- Let the cake cool for at least 20 minutes before adding the chocolate ganache. In the meantime, prepare the ganache by heating the cream until it boils. Remove from heat once it has boiled and pour it over the chopped chocolate, whisking rapidly to ensure that the chocolate melts. Allow the ganache to cool slightly before pouring over the cooled chocolate cake. Decorate as desired.
Four Cheeses Macaroni
- 4 tbsp + 2 tbsp butter
- 500 g / 1 lb medium pasta shells
- 1/4 cup plain flour
- 3 cups milk
- 1 cup beer (replace with milk if preferred)
- 400 g / 14 oz (about 3-4 cups grated) of cheeses of your choice
- 1 tbsp each Dijon mustard and Worcestershire sauce
- 2 cups coarse bread crumbs (6 slices of bread)
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Heat a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook pasta until very al dente, according to package instructions. Drain once almost cooked and pour into a lightly greased 9×13″ baking dish.
- Meanwhile as your pasta is cooking, in a separate saucepan, melt 4 tbsp of the butter until liquid. Add the flour and whisk so it forms a paste, cook for 2-3 minutes but do not brown. Slowly add the milk and beer, adding about 1/2 cup at a time and whisking each time until no lumps can be seen and the sauce thickens. Add a pinch of salt and a few generous grinds of pepper, the Dijon and the Worcestershire, and stir well.
- Grate or roughly chop all of the cheese and stir it into the white sauce. Continue stirring the white sauce on medium-low heat until no (or very few) cheese lumps can be seen. Taste and adjust as necessary—add more Dijon or Worcestershire, salt, or pepper (cheese is quite salty so you probably won’t need much salt). Pour over the mostly cooked pasta in the pan, and stir carefully so that pasta is coated with cheese sauce.
- Melt remaining two tablespoons of butter and drizzle over the bread crumbs, toss to coat slightly. Sprinkle evenly over the pasta in the dish. Bake at 400 F / 200 C for 15-20 minutes until topping is golden and sauce is bubbling. If your dish is very very full, be sure to put a rimmed baking tray under it in the oven to avoid a baked cheese mess!
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