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Paul Carmichael's great cake

"Great cake, also known in Barbados as black cake or rum cake, is a variation of British Christmas cake that's smashed with rum and falernum syrup," says Momofuku Seiobo chef Paul Carmichael. "This festive cake varies from household to household but they all have two things in common: tons of dried fruit and rum. It's a cake that should be started at least a month out so the fruit can marinate in the booze. Start this recipe up to five weeks ahead to macerate the fruit and baste the cake."

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Earl Grey ice-cream, PX prunes, chocolate and honey


Start this recipe a day in advance to prepare the ice-cream, ganache and honey jelly.

You'll need

300 ml milk 200 ml thickened cream (35% fat) 50 ml sweetened condensed milk 85 gm caster sugar ¾ tbsp Earl Grey tea leaves   Chocolate ganache 100 ml milk 100 ml thickened cream (35% fat) 50 gm powdered glucose 50 gm caster sugar 2 egg yolks 250 gm Valrhona Manjari chocolate, coarsely chopped 200 ml thickened cream (35% fat), whipped to soft peaks   Honey jelly 125 gm honey 2.5 titanium-strength gelatine leaves, soaked in cold water for 3-5 minutes   PX prunes 300 ml Pedro Ximénez 50 gm caster sugar 1 tsp vanilla bean paste 200 gm pitted prunes   Chocolate crumb 100 gm couverture 20 gm Dutch-process cocoa 10 ml extra-virgin olive oil 5 gm eggwhite   Chocolate cigarettes 120 gm good dark chocolate (62% cocoa solids)

Method

  • 01
  • Combine milk, cream, condensed milk and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat and bring up to 80C on a sugar thermometer. Add tea leaves, then remove from heat and set aside to infuse (10 minutes). Pass mixture through a fine sieve into a bowl and refrigerate for at least 12 hours. Churn in an ice-cream machine, transfer to a sealed container and freeze until required.
  • 02
  • For chocolate ganache, combine milk, cream, glucose, sugar, yolks and chocolate in a bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water. Once chocolate is melted, whisk until smooth and incorporated. When the temperature reaches 80C on a sugar thermometer, remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Fold in whipped cream, transfer to a sealed container and refrigerate to set (4 hours).
  • 03
  • For honey jelly, place honey in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer, swirling pan so it cooks evenly. When honey starts to smell like caramel, add 125ml water (take care, honey may spit) and bring back to boil. Squeeze out excess water from gelatine, add to honey and stir until melted. Pour mixture through a fine sieve over a 10cm x 15cm tray lined with plastic wrap and refrigerate to set (about 2 hours). Cut into 5mm cubes and set aside until required.
  • 04
  • For PX prunes, combine all ingredients except prunes with 50ml water in a saucepan and gently simmer over medium heat (10 minutes). Add prunes, reduce heat to very low and cook gently until syrup is reduced and sticky, and prunes are plump and juicy (30 minutes). Set aside until required.
  • 05
  • For chocolate crumb, process couverture and cocoa in a food processor to a fine crumb. Whisk oil, eggwhite and a pinch of salt in a bowl then add to chocolate mixture and pulse briefly to achieve a fine crumb. Set aside until required.
  • 06
  • For chocolate cigarettes, melt chocolate in a small bowl placed over a small saucepan of gently simmering water. Spread chocolate thinly with a palette knife over the base of a small metal tray and refrigerate to set (5-10 minutes). Using a scraper, gently push against chocolate so it curls and forms long thin tubes, then refrigerate to set (10 minutes). To dislodge cigarettes from tray, gently push scraper against them in the opposite direction to the first. Place in an airtight container and refrigerate until required.
  • 07
  • To serve, spoon 2 heaped tablespoonfuls of chocolate crumb in each of 6 serving bowls in a rough line. Using a teaspoon dipped in hot water, form 2 quenelles of chocolate ganache for each plate, dipping the spoon in hot water between each, and place one on each side of the crumb. Place a prune next to each quenelle, scatter 4-5 pieces of honey jelly over then, using a dessert spoon dipped in hot water, form a large quenelle of Earl Grey ice-cream for each plate, then place 4-5 chocolate cigarettes on top.

At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people

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